Ireland’s TV3 is set to become Virgin Media Television from the end of August 2018.
The group’s three free-to-air channels, TV3, 3e and be3, will be rebranded as Virgin Media One, Virgin Media Two and Virgin Media 3, with Virgin Media Player becoming the new name for the on-demand broadcast player. Plus, a brand new sport channel, Virgin Media Sport, is also being launched.
In all, Virgin Media Television will air more than 450 top-level football matches in the coming season, including UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Europa League, as well as qualifiers for UEFA EURO 2020 together with a range of exciting fixtures from the inaugural UEFA Nations League that begins in September and from other top football tournaments. Graeme Souness will head up the panel of experts, bringing award-winning analysis and opinion to the most prestigious football competitions in the world.
After a momentous year for Irish rugby and in addition to exclusive coverage of the NatWest 6 Nations, the Heineken Champions Cup Rugby will be live and free-to-air television for the first time since 2006. Broadcasting nine live Heineken Champions Cup rugby games, Virgin Media Television will show one live group stage match per week, followed by one Quarter-Final and one Semi-Final, culminating in the Champions Cup Final in May.
The network will also show brand new original Irish drama Blood, a psychological crime thriller starring BAFTA nominee Adrian Dunbar, and will offer viewers a new, nightly 8pm New Bulletin fronted by journalist and broadcaster Claire Brock.
Ireland’s Got Talent has also been confirmed for a second series, which will be on screens early in 2019, with a call for applicants open now.
Pat Kiely, TV3 Group Managing Director said; “As part of Virgin Media, TV3 group channels have grown in scale and quality. It’s now time to build on this momentum and move to Virgin Media Television. This is a natural evolution as we bring our channels and platform closer together. Virgin Media One, the new name for TV3, will be the home of some of Ireland’s biggest and most popular shows with Virgin Media Two, Three and Sport giving our viewers and customers a diverse choice of great content. These are exciting times for media and we’re delighted to be at the forefront of the changing face of broadcasting in Ireland.”