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Major League Soccer announces five-year deals with TSN, TVA Sports

Toronto FC fans cheer during first half MLS Cup final action against the Seattle Sounders in Toronto on Dec. 10, 2016.

Mark Blinch/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Major League Soccer has extended its TV deal with TSN for five years while striking a new five-year French-language agreement with TVA Sports.

MLS is coming off a bumper season in Canada that saw Toronto FC beat the Montreal Impact in the Eastern Conference final before losing the MLS Cup final to the Seattle Sounders via penalty shootout. The championship game drew more than 1.5 million viewers in Canada.

"Coming off the record-setting season the league had in Canada, we are excited to announce these new deals with TSN and TVA Sports," Gary Stevenson, president and managing director of MLS Business Ventures, said in a statement. "These agreements are a clear indication that our media partners – along with the league and our Canadian clubs – are investing in the growth of the sport in Canada."

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RDS previously held French-language rights in Canada. TSN has been a broadcast partner since 2011.

This season TSN will show every Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps game and a "select number" of Montreal Impact matches as well as "marquee matchups" featuring U.S.-based teams as well as English-language coverage of the MLS all-star game, playoffs and MLS Cup.

MLS coverage will include Friday night coverage and a game of the week Saturday nights. The full broadcast schedule will be released at a later date.

TVA will provide French-language broadcasts of Montreal Impact matches plus the all-star game, playoffs and MLS Cup – more than 50 games in total per season.

South of the border, MLS is about to start the third season of an eight-year rights deal with ESPN, FOX and Univision.

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