Are You More Likely to Watch MLS Games On TV Now that NBC Will Carry EPL? [POLL]

nbc mls 600x406 Are You More Likely to Watch MLS Games On TV Now that NBC Will Carry EPL? [POLL]

With the English Premier League media rights moving from FOX Soccer to NBC Universal beginning in the summer of 2013, NBC Universal will be broadcasting both English Premier League and MLS matches to soccer fans based in the United States.

MLS, NBC and many MLS fans are hoping that NBC’s acquisition of the Premier League rights in the US will help increase the TV ratings for MLS matches. NBC plans on cross-promoting its coverage of the two leagues, so that when viewers are watching Premier League matches, they’ll be updated that MLS matches will be shown later that day or weekend. And vice-versa.

But will it have an impact? Are you more likely to watch MLS games on TV now that NBC Sports will begin showing the Premier League on US television, or not? Share your opinions in the comments section below. And be sure to answer the poll today.

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 →
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49 Responses to Are You More Likely to Watch MLS Games On TV Now that NBC Will Carry EPL? [POLL]

  1. gary says:

    I’ll watch EXACTLY as much MLS as I previosly watched – NONE!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Marc L says:

    MLS is fine to go to if you want to see the game live in the US at the highest level at which it is played domestically.

    But watching on TV or following a club closely? Nah. Just not compelling enough with no relegation and like 80% of the league making the playoffs. Makes the whole thing pretty pointless when you have gotten used to following clubs in other countries where every single minute of every match is crucial and you’re thinking goal differentials and other stuff like that.

    • Andrew Beck says:

      I’m not sure how 53% (which will probably fall to 50% when they add #20) equates to 80%.

      And with the 4/5 play in games in each conference, the punishment for not finishing 1-3 in your conference is massive.

    • jenko133 says:

      because supporting a team thousands of miles away from ur couch is so compelling….

      tell me other than last season (man city/man u) which did we ever have to think about goal differential in a single table?

      all u eurosnobs are the same. get ur facts straight and get ur head outta the gutter please.

      • S04th says:

        Just FYI (and just in my time as a Eurosnob),

        2007; PSV over Ajax for the Dutch title on GD.

        2006; Real Madrid over Barca for the La Liga title on GD.

        2004; Rosenborg over Valeranga on GD for the Norwegian championship.

        2003; Rangers over Celtic for all the SPL marbles on GD.

        2000; Bayern Munich wins the Bundesliga over Leverkuesen on GD.

        1989; Arsenal over Liverpool for the old 1st division title on GD.

        1986; Celtic over Hearts on GD for the Scottish crown.

        1984; Stuttgart over both Hamburg AND Munchengladbach on GD to win it all in Germany.

        Leeds, Chelsea and Wigan have all won lower divisions on GD. Many Euro leagues (France, Italy, Greece, etc.) have a tie-breaker game so there are more. Plus many instances – like Bayern’s injury time draw in 2001 to win the Bundesliga over Schalke – where GD has forced a result in the last match.

        • The Gaffer says:

          And let’s not forget the Premier League relegation battles where teams have gone down based on goal difference.

          Cheers,
          The Gaffer

  3. Andrew Beck says:

    I’ll probably end up watching about the same. I tend to watch all Seattle away games live, all the home games I watch on the DVR. Then I watch about half the other games, but almost always on the DVR and at 2x speed.

  4. Andy says:

    Oh boy, it’s time for a good Euro football v. MLS food fight. I say live and let live. I’ll watch a football match from any league over 99% of the crap that’s on TV.

    • MmMMmmMm says:

      Sanest post in the thread

      • Charles Boyer says:

        Agreed. A football match is better than most of what else is on television.

        And yes, I do understand that MLS is not up to par with the major European leagues.

        MLS is getting better every year, however, and the interest in a good number of cities is pretty high. Really, 66K people for a regular season MLS match in Seattle this year? That’s outstanding and shows that the northwest is a football hotbed. Kansas City and other cities have great followings too. So while MLS may not quite be the BPL or Serie A yet, the money that will fuel MLS’s growth towards an elite league is certainly starting to come in.

        • Garry Craske says:

          Take away the Sounders, Earthquakes, Red Bull and Galaxy and you have a league of League One standard soccer.

          • dano328 says:

            Nonsense. MLS are not that bad. More players like Higuain with the Crew are coming here. I would love to see a competitive tournament with MLS vs Championship sides to show how much they have improved.

  5. Mufc77 says:

    18 years in the USA and I’ve watched a grand total of zero mls games and I doubt that’s going to change now.

    • jenko133 says:

      whoaa u zero MLS games watched in 18 years of being in the US? we got a bad ass over here…

      eurosnob alert up the wazooooo

  6. Tod says:

    you’re not supposed to ask these questions. my plan is always: wait and see, maybe buy an MLS jersey or find a way to get funds for youth err… soccer.

  7. Yespage says:

    One of the major benefits of the EPL is being able to watch the games live during the weekend in the morning. I don’t watch much in the way of sports in the afternoon or evening.

  8. Bishopville Red says:

    EPL is my wife; I remember when we fell in love and her maiden name was “First Division”. It’s true love and that’s not going to change. But I still have a pulse and will peek at girls as they walk by to see if they’re pretty.

    MLS games are among the girls that walk by now and again. Sometimes she’s pretty and I’ll look longer, sometimes (actually, usually) she’s not so great to look at and I look away. But a few ugly ones won’t change the fact that I’ll still sneak peeks the next time just in case I eyeball a beauty.

    And hey, if your type is different than the type I go for, vive la difference. I’m not going to crap on you for digging blondes and don’t care to listen to your disdain for brunettes.

    SB

  9. Nelson says:

    Being that I live in a media bubble (no cable or sat tv, just rabbit ears) I never hear about MLS. So, If I get NBC Universal to watch EPL, I’ll no longer have a filter for MLS. Maybe I’ll end up watching a game or two.

    I wonder how many games I’ll get from NBC-WCYB with my rabbit ears?

    • Guy says:

      You won’t be getting NBC Universal with an antenna of any sort. It is strictly a cable channel.

      • Nelson says:

        I know. Thats why I said “if I get it”. I hate to pay for cable but I’m not going to miss out on my EPL. What tier is NBC Universal? Will I end up paying a higher able bill than someone who gets FOX Soccer? Hope not.

        • Guy says:

          Ahh. When you said you were in a media bubble I thought you couldn’t get cable/sat.

          If it’s any consolation NBC Sports is in the basic package (at least with TimeWarner in NC).

  10. Dean Stell says:

    I’ll watch the same which is to say I’ll watch Galaxy games and the stray other game.

    One question I’d have for those abroad is how is the NBA handled overseas. Like in Spain is there a single TV network that has access to the NBA and also the Spanish domestic league? Has that kind of set-up helped or hurt viewership of the domestic league?

  11. PaulF says:

    That’s like saying would i watch CFL games because they are being shown on NFL network or ESPN.

  12. Jason Poon says:

    The same, but I’m already watching plenty to begin with.

    The beautiful game is just that. If there is a beautiful game on (college, MLS, La Liga, Mexican League, EPL, whatever), I will watch that over anything else.

    But I will say that I’ve grown more fond of MLS in recent years. Mostly because of MLS Live and how accessible and affordable it is. $60/year is a heckuva deal and when there’s no footie to watch over the summer months, MLS does just fine.

  13. Paul says:

    For those of you who have beIN Sport… did you just see the Arsenal match? One of the best matches I’ve seen in a while… brilliant comeback.

  14. Tomas Brolin Fatcakes says:

    What antiquated thinking from some of the comments. A Seattle Sounders match has more atmosphere in spades than an average Wigan-Stoke City bore.

    • jtm371 says:

      you watch your mls where they have to paint the lines where the free kick is taken and where the defenders stand.what a F-ing joke ENJOY!

      NO ON MLS!

      • MmMMmmMm says:

        Every league has its drawbacks. Lets be frank, the PL didnt really acquit itself in glory this past weekend. A sloppy Arsenal squad barely beats the worst club in the PL on an offside goal, and Man utd/chelsea turned out to be a complete farce.

        • whateffinwhat? says:

          If you had to watch Wigan every week, you might not have the same passion for EPL footy.

          • The Gaffer says:

            I think that’s quite harsh. Wigan is an attractive side to watch that plays very good football. Just because they’re a smaller team doesn’t mean they should get picked on, unfairly.

            Cheers,
            The Gaffer

      • gbewing says:

        as oppossed to the blatant cheating of PL where defenders continually violate the 10 yard rule- of all the MLS things this one always gets thrown out-why? what’s the big deal- seems like a simple solution that saves time in lining up-

        • Guy says:

          Aren’t the lines merely digital? The players/ref can’t see them, so the broadcast is showing them for the fans. Is that really helpful or necessary?

          • Andy says:

            MLS uses the vanishing spray that makes a line on the pitch and disappears after about 45 seconds. Not sure why it’s use is so controversial with some people. Seems like it solves the problem of defender walls cheating forward.

          • Guy says:

            Thanks, Andy. Didn’t know that. I don’t watch MLS, but certainly have nothing against it. A healthy domestic league is a good thing and I think all the purpose-built stadiums are a big move in the right direction.

            Maybe I’ll watch a match just to see the paint! :-)

    • Guy says:

      You may find Stoke’s style boring, but if you think the atmosphere at the Britannia is boring you’ve not been paying attention. The 27,000 fans that fill the place week after week put stadiums twice its size to shame.

  15. Tomas Brolin Fatcakes says:

    And MLS Live is one of the BEST online services for any of the pro sports leagues, and certainly better value than the overpriced (and now worthless) FoxSoccer2Go.

  16. Efrain says:

    Between Arsenal and Barcelona, I dont think that will leave me much time to follow a third league.

  17. Kobashi says:

    I will end up watching more MLS games just for the fact that I will be watching more NBC Sports on the weekends during the Premier League Season.

    I just don’t know if I’ll ever get fully invested in MLS w/o a local team to support. If there was a MLS team in Detroit where I’m from or in Florida preferably in Tampa I’d likely be more all in with the league. There is so much on TV and only so much time in a day to watch everything. I love American Sports too that it’s hard to convince myself that a Real Salt Lake/Chicago Fire game in late May is the best TV option when there is the NHL/NBA Playoffs going on.

  18. gbewing says:

    I already watch all of Sporting KC games and yes I can see watching more games of other teams-I have increased my viewing of game of the week already and I like the NBC coverage and anouncing

  19. Scrumper says:

    The key is getting the kids interested in MLS for the future of the game in the US.

    • gbewing says:

      more importantly 16-25 age range the passionate supporters is the life blood of the league-I think MSL is doing that as 2 more soccer stadium onlys being built which leaves only 2-3 teams not with their own grounds-San Jose in need of the biggest stadium upgrade. My biggest MSL fear is LA and NY are allowed to be too dominant with ability to sign more internationals than other teams.

  20. As for MLS, I only watch games involving the Chicago Fire or if there is a big match up (Galaxy vs Red Bulls as an example). So, the EPL on NBC changes nothing to me.

    I can watch EPL matches as a neutral, even if it involves the bottom clubs. I can’t do that with MLS.

  21. dano328 says:

    I don’t have an MLS side closer than 300 miles. If there was a team in my town I would be a season ticket holder. I support MLS as a neutral and bought the MLS Direct Kick package as way of supporting the league. If the “England only” fans in the US/Canada would stop slagging of the MLS and give it a fraction of our attention it will help it improve. It is getting better and I think 10-15 years now no one will be laughing at MLS.

  22. CTBlues says:

    Here is a pretty good link that Earl Reed posted on MLSTalk about NBC’s acquisition of the EPL rights.

    http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/thegoalkeeper/176347831.html

  23. gillyrosh says:

    Already watch a lot of MLS on ESPN and NBC Sports.

  24. krazymunky says:

    I have to force myself to watch my Vancouver Whitecaps on mlslive (live in california).

    Unless they start showing canadian MLS teams on tv…i will be watching the same amount.

  25. Harry Cee says:

    NBC’s only problem is that they don’t advertise matches enough so it’s kind of hard to know when a game is being televised. It’s great knowing that they got the rights to show EPL but the one thing that Fox did do right is letting you know via commercials and ads, when games would be on….it’s that simple.

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