ESPN Plans To Stay Put Despite CL Loss

15 04 2009

A few weeks ago Fox made what is considered in soccer circles as the biggest splash of the past decade. According to many they changed the landscape of soccer coverage in the United States when they were able to obtain the rights to the UEFA Champions League. This was huge news as Europe’s most important club competition became synonymous with the Worldwide Leader In Sports for well over a decade. Various people began questioning the commitment that the network had in the promulgation of the game in the United States, but the network sees it differently.

“We currently have some of the top brands in the game. So we will have a mix of the best domestically and the best internationally,” says ESPN spokesperson Mac Nwulu. He mentions that ESPN is still a major player in the rights game here in the United States. Despite losing the biggest and most prestigious club tournament in the world, ESPN says that they are looking into various leagues around the world for the future and will see if it is feasible for them on every end. that will be watched by people within their demographic. ESPN currently has the rights to the MLS, as well as US National teams. They will also transmit international competitions like this summer’s Confederations Cup as well as the biggest sporting event on the planet- The World Cup- which is to be held next “summer” (their winter) in South Africa.

“We want to see what is best for us and most popular for our (audience). We will always be looking for the best soccer out there.” adds Nwulu.

For the past few months ESPN was rumored to be making a big move towards obtaining the English Premiership in an effort to bolster their current products. This was a result of the huge success that the network had when they transmitted last summer’s European Championships. This along with placing scores from the EPL, Spain, Italy and Mexico on their Bottom Line were looked at as important steps towards securing what is arguably the most important soccer league in the world at this present time. it was also a step in the right direction as far as reassuring the commitment they had towards globalizing their sports coverage. That rumor since then has faded as Fox

ESPN will air the UEFA Champions League for the last time in this cycle when the final is played in Rome, Italy on May 27th.