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FRI, 2:45PM ET
ALM Subscribers Miss First Half Of Barca v Arsenal

foxsoccer tv 1 Subscribers Miss First Half Of Barca v Arsenal

Since it’s relaunch on March 1, the track record for — Fox’s broadband product that features live and recorded games — has been frustratingly poor. First there were the problems that plagued the Manchester United against Liverpool match shown live on Sunday, March 20. And Tuesday, the website was down for the entire first half of Arsenal’s biggest game of the year, their second leg against Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League.

Soccer fans trying to access the website on Tuesday afternoon received a timed-out error message (see above screenshot). The site was down for approximately 50 minutes from 2:45pm to 3:35pm ET. When the site did return at 3:35pm ET, the first half of the Barcelona against Arsenal match was already over and viewers were greeted with the half-time broadcast. Viewers desperate to see the match online would have missed four goals including a spectacular first half hat trick by Lionel Messi.

For matches of this magnitude, whether it’s Man United against Liverpool or Barcelona versus Arsenal, it’s vital that the website is able to handle the surge in traffic and to deliver a quality experience for the subscriber.

In addition to the issues with massive matches that are shown live, there continues to be a problem with games that are available on demand where the audio and video are not synced. Watching a game from this past weekend on demand, I ended up turning off the volume because the audio commentary was ten seconds ahead of the video and it completely ruined my experience of watching the game online.

Looking ahead to’s schedule for the close of the season, the following games are ones where we hope will be equipped to handle the surge in traffic during the most crucial time of the season:

  • Sunday April 11: Tottenham Hotspur v Portsmouth, FA Cup semi-final, 11am ET
  • Wednesday, April 14: Tottenham Hotspur v Arsenal, 3pm ET
  • Sunday, May 9: Final day of the Premier League season where the title race may come down to a photo-finish between Chelsea, Manchester United and Arsenal.

In the meantime, it’s probably no coincidence that Fox Sports Interactive has posted a job opening for a Broadband Product Manager who would work on the and website. What’s revealing in the job posting is that part of the job responsibilities is to “develop specs for product improvements such as picture in picture and live chats.” Both would be welcome additions to the experience.

What are your opinions about the technical issues that is encountering? Is your patience running thin, or is this to be expected due to a mid-season re-launch after Setanta USA went out of business? Post your feedback in the comments section below.

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About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
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