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ESPN Announces Plans for Euro 2012 Coverage for Viewers in the United States

espn logo 600x450 ESPN Announces Plans for Euro 2012 Coverage for Viewers in the United States

ESPN today announced its plans for coverage of the Euro 2012 tournament.

For the first time, ESPN will have pre-match, half-time and post-match coverage of each of the 31 games. The opening and final matches will each have a 30-minute pre-game show, while all of the other Euro 2012 matches will feature a 15-minute pre-game show.

All 31 games will be shown live on ESPN3.com, while ESPN will show 22 live and ESPN2 will show nine live. ESPN Deportes will show 27 of the games live, while the remaining four will be on tape delay. This compares to Euro 2008 where the games were spread across ESPN, ABC, ESPN Classic and ESPN2.

Additionally, all 31 matches will be archived and can only be accessed on ESPN3 through July 31, 2012, and non-exclusively through the end of the calendar year (Dec. 31, 2012). All matches will be available for replay on ESPN3 shortly after completion.

For each broadcast, ESPN Deportes match coverage will begin at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. ET, while ESPN and ESPN match coverage begins at 11:45 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. ET.

The schedule of Euro 2012 games is as follows (all times Eastern; England games in bold):

Fri, June 8, 12 p.m., Poland vs. Greece, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Fri, June 8, 2:45 p.m., Russia vs. Czech Republic, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sat, June 9, 12 p.m., Netherlands vs. Denmark, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sat, 2:45 p.m., Germany vs. Portugal, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sun, June 10, 12 p.m., Spain vs. Italy, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sun, June 10, 2:45 p.m., Republic of Ireland vs. Croatia, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Mon, June 11, 12 p.m., France vs. England, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Mon, June 11, 2:45 p.m., Ukraine vs. Sweden, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Tue, June 12, 12 p.m., Greece vs. Czech Republic, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Tue, June 12, 2:45 p.m., Poland vs. Russia, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Wed, June 13, 12 p.m., Denmark vs. Portugal, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Wed, June 13, 2:45 p.m., Netherlands vs. Germany, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Thu, June 14, 12 p.m., Italy vs. Croatia, ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Thu, June 14, 2:45 p.m. Spain vs. Republic of Ireland Gdansk ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Fri, June 15, 12 p.m., Ukraine vs. France, ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Fri, June 15, 2:45 p.m., Sweden vs. England, ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sat, June 16, 2:45 p.m., Czech Republic vs. Poland, ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sat, June 16, 2:45 p.m., Greece vs. Russia, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes at 5:30 p.m.
Sun, June 17, 2:45 p.m., Portugal vs. Netherlands, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sun, June 17, 2:45 p.m., Denmark vs. Germany, ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes at 5:30 p.m.
Mon, June 18, 2:45 p.m., Croatia vs. Spain, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Mon, June 18, 2:45 p.m., Italy vs. Republic of Ireland Poznan ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes at 5:30 p.m.
Tue, June 19, 2:45 p.m., England vs. Ukraine, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Tue, June 19, 2:45 p.m., Sweden France, ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes at 5:30 p.m.
Thu, June 21, 2:45 p.m., Quarterfinal I – 1A vs. 2B, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Fri, June 22, 2:45 p.m., Quarterfinal II – 1B vs. 2A, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sat, June 23, 2:45 p.m., Quarterfinal III – 1C vs. 2D, ESPN2 / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sun, June 24, 2:45 p.m., Quarterfinal IV – 1D vs. 2C, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Wed, June 27, 2:45 p.m., Semifinal I – Winners QF I vs. QF III, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Thu, June 28, 2:45 p.m., Semifinal II – Winners QF II vs. QF IV, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
Sun, July 1, 2:45 p.m., Final – Semifinal Winners, ESPN / ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes

What’s impressive about this year’s coverage of the European Championships is the sheer number of games that will be shown on ESPN, the flagship network. As you can see here, previous Euro tournaments were mostly shown on ESPN2 and ESPN Classic.

While ESPN hasn’t announced their final line-up of commentators and pundits for their coverage this summer, we do know that Michael Ballack, Alexi Lalas, Kasey Keller and Steve McManaman will be involved.

What’s your opinion about the coverage plans that ESPN has announced? Are you pleased or disappointed? Share your opinions in the comments section below.

This entry was posted in England, ESPN, Euro 2012, Leagues: EPL. Bookmark the permalink.

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.
View all posts by Christopher Harris →

28 Responses to ESPN Announces Plans for Euro 2012 Coverage for Viewers in the United States

  1. Spurs Fan says:

    Just pickup the Bbc or ITV pre and post match coverage and you’ll save a lot of $, and give us a break from those clowns – I mean pundits!

    • The Gaffer says:

      There’s no way to legally watch the BBC or ITV pre and post-match coverage in the United States. Based on what I saw from ESPN during the last World Cup, the coverage was far better Stateside than in England. Let’s hope ESPN picks a stellar team for this summer!

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • Dust says:

        Really Gaffer? C’mon, obviously you are entitled to your opinion, but to compare the analysts and coverage they had for the WC on the BBC and ITV or Sky with what is offered on ESPN is quite crazy.

        Alexi….really? McManaman…Really? Bob Ley…Really? Martinez was ok but not great. I saw both english and U.S coverage on various games and it is not even close.

        I know and understand why there is a chip on the shoulder of most american fans of English Association Football or “Soccer” as it is called here, frustration builds in a quest for legitimacy and recognition, i understand that. It has not been an easy road for fans of the game when it comes to wanting the respect of other nations fans.

        A euro snobbery can be very frustrating, but to honestly say that the media packages for analysis and/or coverage is far better in the USA than in the UK is naive.

        It would be like comparing ESPN, NBC, FOX or CBS coverage of NFL games to Sky’s NFL coverage…its not even close.

        The coverage of games out here is a joke, if it wasn’t they wouldn’t be adding all these extra segments for the euro’s.

        It got to the point that I went out and purchased a Mac Mini (600 bucks with HDMI output) and hooked up to my TV and use the internet to watch SKY, BBC, ITV or even ESPN India for the Pre, Half Time and Post game coverage of games because on what the USA networks are providing is terrible.

        A huge game, absolutely massive, the north london derby that had title implications Spurs vs Arsenal coverage was so poor, the pre game was the English voice over the pitch as they warm up for 3 minutes. No effort, it was like, hey just be grateful you even get it.

        The 10 minute pre game coverage of Arsenal vs Liverpool by Ian Dark standing outside the ground then cutting to the booth was terrible as it is every week. The US networks still haven’t figured out the balance of commercials and coverage.

        Sorry for the rant, with all due respect I just can’t believe that you honestly believe your own post.

        • Martin says:

          I live in the US now, but grew up in Scotland. In Summer 2010 I was in both places, so experienced the live coverage of both ESPN, BBC and ITV.

          Having grown up with the stellar BBC coverage and passable ITV coverage, what I am about to say surprises even me.

          ESPN in the US was better. It wasn’t even close. ESPN had a pre-show of almost every game that was devoted to the teams playing, not just chat about England. Their analysts were decent though the commentary paled in comparison to the ITV guys. But the overall presentation was first class. ESPN deserve all the plaudits that they get. They clearly learned from their below average 2006 presentation.

        • The Gaffer says:

          Dust, there’s no comparison. The best commentators and pundits were hired by ESPN for the World Cup 2010 coverage: Martin Tyler, Efan Ekoku, Jurgen Klinsmann, Steve McManaman, Roberto Martinez, Ian Darke, Derek Rae, Ruud Gullit and many others. Who did BBC have that you would rate higher than those? Same with ITV. In fact, ITV’s coverage was so bad that they missed England’s opening goal against the United States. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjghz–qSMU

          Don’t take it from me. ESPN’s coverage of the World Cup won 38 different awards including 3 Emmy’s: http://www.espnmediazone3.com/us/2011/06/02/espn-presentation-of-2010-fifa-world-cup-earns-industry-honors/

          I think it’s unfair to compare ESPN’s coverage of the 2010 World Cup to the EPL coverage done by FOX and ESPN. For the World Cup, ESPN invested far more time and money into the production. FOX and ESPN are improving its coverage of Premier League matches, but those aren’t nearly as good as Sky.

          Cheers,
          The Gaffer

  2. Taylor says:

    Have circled June 13 – I’ll never get tired of watching Holland – Germany. Watched it for the first time in 1988 Tournament and have always been interesting.

  3. Derpy says:

    Can’t wait to watch England lose all 3 games!!

  4. CTBlues says:

    I’m am glad they will not putting games on specific channels like Deportes and ESPN3.com, but are showing them on all of them because not everybody has access to all of ESPN’s “channels”.

  5. Mitch says:

    This is incredible news! So excited and I love that I have to option to watch every single game! Don’t have a problem with the pundits as long as Piers Morgan isn’t involved.

  6. Soccer says:

    Thank you ESPN. This also shows how much more popular soccer is now then it was 4 years ago.

  7. MACCA-FAN says:

    This is amazing. I’m going to take off work for the month of June. I hope Ian Darke and Steve McManaman do every game. I don’t care if it’s imposible, I want it. I NEED IT.

  8. Brad in SoCal says:

    ESPN’s coverage of soccer/football has steadily improved. I really enjoy their Premier League broadcasts. Darke and McManaman have great chemistry. They’ve even stopped giving scores of other games without a spoiler alert first. Looking forward to Euro 2012.

    I must confess to be mystified by some folks’ apparent enthusiasm for watching games on computer (ESPN3). The advent of HD is one of the triumphs of technology, and is meant to be enjoyed on a BIG screen. Why go backwards?

    • Panda says:

      What’s great about ESPN3 is that I can watch it all at work or wherever I am via my “mobile device”. Yeah, I’d rather watch it on my 60 inch HDTV but the convenience of watching it anywhere is a nice bonus.

    • CTBlues says:

      I have said this on MLStalk as well and I will say it again it is very easy to hook your computer up to your tv these days since most of them have HDMI ports on them and the as long as you have a decent internet speed you get a HD quality picture.

    • Guy says:

      Brad, not sure what your experience is with ESPN3, but when I watch ESPN3 it is on my HDTV and the full screen picture is excellent. One cord from my computer to my TV. That’s it. Any nitwit (and I qualify) can do it.

      • Gaz says:

        Yup.

        I canceled cable for a HDMI cable from my laptop to my TV. I use WatchESPN, Fox Soccer 2 Go, and MLS Live to see matches. WatchESPN has a great picture on my big-screen, and usually includes before and half game coverage.

        The only negative is one or two EPL matches per weekend are held until post-midnight. For all the money I save, however, it’s a small price.

  9. trickybrkn says:

    time to plan those vacation accordingly!!! Gaffer, you should start a page where people can post local pubs and bars that will be showing the matches… The only way to watch the Euros is with some expats…

  10. CTBlues says:

    Gaffer,

    Was this the big soccer news ESPN was supposed to be annoucing or is that still to come? I thought it was going to have to do with more than just Euro2012 so I was just wondering.

    • The Gaffer says:

      More information to come from ESPN, but the main news we’re missing right now is who the commentators are going to be.

      It’ll also be interesting to see if FOX Soccer decides to do any programming during Euro 2012. They don’t have the rights, but they sometimes do a nightly analysis show.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

  11. Hatch says:

    What time is the England match on June 15th? I have seen different times on different sites. Including ESPNs….

    • The Gaffer says:

      The game kicks off at 2:45pm ET, and the pre-game starts at 2:30pm ET.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • Hatch says:

        Gaf,

        The EPL TV Listings has this game as a NOON kick off as well as other sites like ESPN. But above you have 2:45pm. I just want to know if you know the exact time for kick off. I am hoping it is 2:45pm, but I plan on taking off work this Friday and I just want to have the correct time locked down as I see different times on different sites…..

        Thanks!

        Hatch

  12. Dust says:

    Gaffer,

    TV
    Gary Lineker, Alan Shearer, Lee Dixon, and Gordon Strachan.
    guests Klinsman was workIng for the bbc alongside Clarence Sedorf and Emanuel Adebyor.

    (please stop trying to compare McManaman and Lalas to Linker and Shearer)

    Match commentary was by Guy Mowbray, Jonathan Pearce, Steve Wilson, Simon Brotherton and Steve Bower, with co-commentary from Mark Lawrenson, Mark Bright, Mick McCarthy and Martin Keown.

    (Jonathan Pierce is a legend, unless u lived in London and listen to Capitol gold coverage maybe it won’t resonate.) Guy Mowbray is just as highly regarded in the sports commentary works as Martin Tyler.

    Is was good to see Tyler used by espn he is awesome. But he commentates not provide the pre, half time or post game analysis. The access to layers from each respective country didn’t even come close to the bbc’s.

    The love affair with the team is clear, everyone is entitled to their point of view but seriously. The expectations of coverage for soccer is so low that I guess thats a big reason.

    It’s the whole package, interviews, access. Bbc also allowed you to pick a diff commentator team if you wanted.

    The coverage of football in the uk is so much more robust if you really watched it you would definitely agree. Remember you said it was far better, not a little or even on par. If that isn’t the chip on the shoulder and homerism, I don’t know what is. You are not being objective at all.

    Typed from my iPhone

    • The Gaffer says:

      Dust, I never compared Lalas to anyone. I’m not a big fan of Alexi because of his anti-England bias, but I don’t think he’s as bad as everyone makes him out to be.

      Lineker I like, but more for his on-air personality. If he’s not in front of a teleprompter, he’s like a deer in headlights (see http://youtu.be/k5jUtZ-UFIE). Shearer is absolutely awful. How he still has a job as a pundit, I do not know.
      Dixon is mediocre at best. Strachan, I haven’t had a chance to listen to as much as I would like.

      I like Mowbray and Pearce, but they’re B-level commentators compared to the A-team of Tyler, Rae and Darke.

      I love the BBC but they were nowhere near as good as ESPN was during World Cup 2010. I’m talking about everything from the commentators to the pundits to the overall production. But World Cup aside, the coverage in Britain is nowhere nearly as good as it used to be. Sky does a decent job, and ESPN UK is trying very hard but much of the UK TV media are too nice to the managers and players not only in interviews but also in analysis during games. They’re still much better than the US coverage, but there are very few talented people in the UK that I would rate highly (Gary Neville, Gary O’Reilly, Martin Tyler and Jonathan Pearce are a few of the exceptions).

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

    • Paul In Porter says:

      Why this fixation with pre-, half time and post-game content? Are you so incapable of assessing the game for yourself that you need a talking head to do it for you? Just give me the line-ups and let me watch the game. I’ve been watching football for 50 years and, by now, I think I can just about work out what is happening.

  13. mike says:

    people we have got the beautiful internet now there is no ESPN or FOX. Sky is the best coverage there can ever be. Kudos to you DUST.

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