The deal marks a significant milestone as AFC competitions will be shown in Russia for the first time along with extensive coverage across the CIS territories

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has today announced TV Start as their new media partner in Russia and the CIS territories including Ukraine, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Belarus, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia to broadcast the AFC’s major competitions  from 2021 to 2024.

The media partnership includes AFC national team and club competitions, including but not limited to the AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar Final Round, the AFC Asian Cup China 2023, as well as the AFC Champions League and AFC Cup from the 2021 season.

TV Start launched a 24/7 linear sports channel in parallel to their existing production businesses last year and is now adding the AFC competitions to their rapidly growing portfolio of sports properties including the Austrian Federal Football League, the Korean K-League, the German Federal Basketball League, handball and volleyball leagues, as well as several winter sports events. Over 60% of all pay TV consumers in Russia have access to TV Start and will soon enjoy top AFC football from the convenience of their homes.

Dato’ Windsor John, the AFC General Secretary, said: “We are delighted with this new partnership in Russia and the CIS territories where football continues to grow massively.

“TV Start’s recognition exemplifies the ever-growing attraction and value proposition of the AFC’s competitions and further underlines our ambitions through the AFC’s Vision and Mission to stage world-class competitions for our teams, players and passionate fans.”

Anton Shirokov, Managing Director at TV Start, said: “We are proud to introduce our fans to a variety of Asian competitions, including K-League, Chinese Basketball and now the AFC competitions. We have found that Asian sports is received well by our audience in Russia. We are confident about our partnership with the AFC and look forward to increasing the popularity of AFC competitions in Russia and in the CIS territories. We are excited about bringing Asia’s top national team and club competitions to our audiences.”


Patrick Murphy, Board Member and CEO at Football Marketing Asia said: “We are certainly excited to welcome TV Start as our valued media partner in Russia and the CIS territories. This is the first time ever that AFC competitions will be broadcast in Russia and we are confident that the additional broad coverage across the CIS territories will help to further strengthen the presence of and passion for Asia’s top national team and premier club football beyond the Continent.”

About the AFC

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) is the governing body of Asian football and one of the six Confederations making up FIFA. Formed in 1954 in Manila the AFC was sanctioned by FIFA in Berne, Switzerland, on June 21 of that year. The AFC has its headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and consists of 47 Member Associations.

About Football Marketing Asia

Football Marketing Asia (FMA) is the exclusive commercial partner of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) for the rights cycles 2021-2024 and 2025-2028. FMA is headquartered in Hong Kong S.A.R., with offices in the Middle East, Southeast Asia and China PR. FMA combines unparalleled global football experience with in-depth Asian know-how and expertise.