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Sky Sports has won the exclusive UK rights to Major League Soccer. Previously the league was shown by BT Sport in the UK. But BT isn't taking it lying down. It's just extended its deal with Italy's Serie A football league, and will remain its exclusive UK home until 2017/18.

Under the deal, Sky will show at least two MLS league matches every week, plus the AT&T MLS All-Star Game, the playoffs and the cup final.

"Football in the US and Canada has enormous potential for growth and we can't wait to bring this competition to our viewers for the first time," Barney Francis, managing director of Sky Sports, said in a statement. "Thierry Henry has joined us, he created fantastic memories in MLS, and we look forward to seeing more of those great stories from across the Atlantic."

Former England skipper David Beckham hailed the deal as an "important moment" for MLS that would help "broaden its appeal outside of US."

BT already has exclusive rights to the UEFA Champions League until 2018, so the Serie A deal bolsters an already strong European football line-up.

Sky recently paid an eye-watering £4.2 billion on broadcast rights for 75 per cent of the Premier League's live matches. BT Sport shelled out £960 million for 42 live games.

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