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ESPN announces Euro 2008 broadcast schedule

Posted on by Jeff Hash

It has been a day of introductions here at EPL Talk, so let me be the latest to say hello to all of you. I am honored to be joining the site alongside all the new members, and I would like to thank The Gaffer for the opportunity to write here.

Now to the big news. ESPN announced it’s broadcasting plans for Euro 2008 today. First, like with U2 during World Cup 2006, a single artist has been tapped by the network to provide all the music of the tournament. In this case, it will be the English band Coldplay, who will be releasing a new album on June 12th. So, if you are not a fan, start getting ready now, as you’ll be hearing a lot of them.

Second, and more importantly, is the schedule itself. The blog Awful Announcing have already broken it down by day (with one correction: the Turkey v Czech Republic match on June 15th will be on ESPN Classic, not ESPN2). So, how many matches will each network get? The bulk of them (17 of 31) will be airing on ESPN2, seven will be showing on ESPN, five will be on ESPN Classic, and two matches (a quarterfinal and the final) will be airing on ABC. ESPN also announced that, before the final, ABC will be showing an MLS matchup between the Los Angeles Galaxy and D.C. United at noon eastern. For those of you with HD, 26 of the 31 matches will be available in high definition on either ESPN, ESPN2, or ABC HD; ESPN Classic matches will only be available in standard definition. ESPN 360, the network’s online video service, will show all matches except the two on ABC, and ESPN Deportes will be providing Spanish-language coverage of all matches. Finally, ESPN Classic will show a half-hour highlight program during every evening of the tournament just in case you miss something.

The last announcement is one that should interest historical fans of the game; each weeknight from May 26th to June 5th, ESPN Classic will be showing each of the last nine Euro final matches.  From West Germany’s three straight final appearances between 1972 and 1980 to Greece’s shocking victory over the hosting Portugese in 2004, you’ll get to see them all before this year’s tournament.

I’m glad to see the powers at ESPN have shown a willingness to put the final on ABC, but I do have to wonder if the lack of additional matches on that network will hamper it’s viewership.  It’s also good to see that most matches will be available in HD.  Overall, I would say I’m happy with the schedule announced today.  Now all that’s left is for the tournament to begin.

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26 Responses to ESPN announces Euro 2008 broadcast schedule

  1. betsy's bolton bum baster says:

    great first post!! welcome!!

  2. Nevitt says:

    HD!!! Woo Hoo!!!

  3. Chad Looker says:

    kudos espn…especially showing the last 8 euro finals, what a treat

  4. Paul Bestall says:

    Here in the UK, there’s some people complaining because by law the British TV stations have to show all the games on free to air tv. They feel that because no home nations are in the tournament, it doesn’t represent any value, which is a ludicrious arguement. Im sure football fans in Wales and Northern Ireland are sick of watching England and Scotland and would prefer to watch some countries that are actually good!!

  5. damir- says:

    So it turns out that ESPN is taking a step in the right direction.
    I love it.

    I plan on watching every game of the tournament, the 17 on my HD TV and the rest on my computer.
    All for free.
    The way it should be.

  6. john in tampa says:

    Now, if only we could convince espn to broadcast the champions league in hd….

  7. eplnfl says:

    You’ll do a fine job Jeff.

    What a comment on the state of soccer in America, a soccer double header on a major American network. Not long ago you couldn’t get an American broadcaster to show a World Cup final match. How times have changed !

    I maybe in the minority here on this but I think ABC/ESPN does a good job in presenting the game to the American audience. Some fans would rather see a Sky, BBC, etc. feed, but the growth of the game is in part dependent on American broadcasters learning how to cover the game for the American sports fan. ESPN has put forward a very entertaining presentation of their Thursday night MLS match. It’s become must see sports TV for me.

    Really like the idea of a nightly wrap-up show. FSC and it’s soccer report lacks a lot when Bobby McMahon is not on the show as the Gaffer has pointed out. If ESPN does anything well, it’s in it’s wrap up and review shows.

  8. Pingback: ESPN makes known Euro 2008 broadcast schedule

  9. Pingback: ESPN Launches Ads to Promote Euro 2008 TV Coverage | EPL Talk

  10. jamez says:

    some1 tell me

    if i have espn in australia?

    will it show all the euro 08

  11. Jeff Hash says:

    Jamez, ESPN does not hold the rights to Euro 2008 in Australia.

    According to Wikipedia and press releases, Setanta Sports Australia will be airing all 31 games of Euro 2008 via it’s subscription service, and SBS TV is scheduled to air 8 matches (including the final) over the air.

  12. koona says:

    damn I AM glad to hear this news.

    I am really seeing that ESPN recognizing the soccer as the new venue in North America.

    on top of that I do not have to subscribe for Setanta, which had broadcasting rights for Euro 2000 and 04, which cost me a hundred buck…

  13. UVA Robert says:

    Wow! I can get rid of Setanta now! It is truly amazing to see an awakening in the US in regards to futboll (soccer)! My prediction-baseball would be a thing of the past within next ten years! Soccer Moms will make sure of this! :)
    Go Poland !

  14. selam tesfaye says:

    Hi I am huge soccer fun so euro 2008 is there only day time espn show the the game? or the game will be air again. thank you

  15. Don says:

    Hi I am unthusiastic soccer fan. I am wondering
    that can we watch the soccers match online for free, especiall y espn? thanks for answerin.

  16. Terre says:

    I don’t have hd tv system. I would like to know if the Euro 2008 will be broadcast on regular ESPN

  17. Terre says:

    you can wacht soccer macht for free at TVUplayer. There are soccer channels

  18. The Gaffer says:

    Terre,

    Most of the matches will be on ESPN2.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

  19. Alex says:

    If ESPN was serious about football (soccer) they wouldn’t have the idiotic constant scroll along the bottom of the screen!! Maybe get some analysts that actually know something about the game. I had hoped Fox Soccer Channel would be broadcasting some matches, but clearly ESPN has the money. I look forward to watching all matches on Spanish channels! Even if you know zero Spanish, trust me, it’s way more exciting than the “vanilla” ESPN broadcasts I remember from the World Cup.

  20. Michael says:

    Alex, all of what you’ve said is complete rubbish, no offense.

    First of all, the scroll they have along the bottom of the screen is there for all sports. In America, soccer isn’t the mainstream sport and there are several other professional and collegiate sporting leagues going on at the same time. It’s important for ESPN, who is the sports broadcasting leader in this country, to show the day’s most important news and scores from other leagues across the country. As it is, the scroll takes up only a tiny little bit of the screen anyway. Get over it.

    As for the commentators and analysts, have you seen the lineup for the Euros? Derek Rae, Tommy Smyth, Andy Gray, Adrian Healey, Robbie Mustoe, and the various in-studio hosts are all quality.

    Give me a break, Alex. Complete rubbish.

  21. m2fc says:

    I watch espn online and use a voice adaptor to nullify the announcers so that I can just hear the crowd. The problem is that they just don’t know when to shut up.

  22. Lizzy says:

    Ok, I know what time the games are on, but when I look at the actual broadcast schedule for ESPN on my cable (Cox), I see Saturday’s games starting at 230 Sunday morning. thats not my idea of broadcasting in a timely manner. What’s up with that?

  23. Footie4ever says:

    Damn, I missed all the classic finals, and I even have ESPN classic (I guess I got caught up in the Stanley Cup finals). Anyone out there have tapes/dvds of the games I can loan/buy? TIA

  24. iceman says:

    http://sports.espn.go.com/espntv/espnTopics?topic=ESPN_EURO08
    does that mean that holland russia will be on the regular abc channel? the one that u dont need cable for.

  25. The Gaffer says:

    Iceman,

    Yes the match will be on ABC. No need for cable on this one. Spread the word.

    Cheers,
    The Gaffer

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