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What’s Missing From Your Premier League Viewing Experience?

question mark Whats Missing From Your Premier League Viewing Experience?

NBC Universal has a lot of work ahead of them in preparation for their Premier League debut on US television next August.

We’ve already discussed which A-team of presenters, commentators and pundits we’d like to see on NBC Sports beginning next summer, but what other recommendations do you have based on what’s currently missing in your Premier League viewing experience.

I’ll give you a couple that I think NBC should seriously consider (that we currently don’t get with FOX Soccer):

1. A Saturday night match highlights package similar in format to BBC’s Match Of The Day,

2. A weekly interview/caller-driven show. It’d be similar to FOX Football Fone-In, but the show would feature hard-hitting interviews with opinionated guests (no soft ball questions to footballers who are boring to listen to). Plus, callers would be able to dial in to ask questions to the hosts and guests. Instead of FOX Football Fone-In’s two hour duration, one hour should be sufficient.

But what are you currently missing in your Premier League viewing experience on US television? What would make it a better experience?

Post your suggestions below.

This entry was posted in Leagues: EPL, NBC. 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 →

43 Responses to What’s Missing From Your Premier League Viewing Experience?

  1. Rony says:

    Epl = NBC
    Champions league = Fox soccer
    La Liga = BEIN sports

    What US soccer fans need is on comprehensive soccer channel.

  2. Frankie says:

    The one thing that’s missing for me is a very comprehensive Internet package where I can see all of the games online and pick-n-choose which goal highlights I want to see if I’m short on time.

  3. brn442 says:

    Spot on Gaffer, hopefully – the HD will shine through. A call in or an opinion show (like ESPN’s first take), a football based lifestyle show, and a match of the day type round up. Documentaries?

    NBC is not building an entire channel around soccer like Fox did, so I’m not sure if NBC will/has to – go out of its way to do anymore than focus on delivering a slick production around its shiny new sports package.

    The US soccer audience are much more educated than they were 10 years ago.

  4. Marc L says:

    Eh, just show all the matches, make it easy for me to know what channel to find them on, and make them accessible via streaming.

    Anything past that is just gravy.

  5. Reid says:

    The only think missing from my viewing experience is good streaming Pregame and Post game coverage.

    Currently, if you stream through Fox Soccer, you get nothing, not even during half time. You have to subscribe to cable if you want to get any of that. Most of the time, I just find a Sky stream and listen to those guys talk or get up at 6:00 to listen to the early shows from England.

    I’d love to have some streaming access to that, or a least a show that recapped the day later in the evening that also had comments about the game.

    I’d even sit through web commercials (like Hulu) so NBC could get ad revenue if it enables them to provide better streaming service.

  6. Fernando says:

    I think a match of the day type show would handle this but I do like seeing the post match views of the managers.

    That’s something that can be easily added to coverage.

    I would like for NBC to show the players walking out of the tunnel and the final whistle reactions of the teams live without cutting out to a commercial.

    • The Gaffer says:

      I agree Fernando that NBC should do what ESPN did (in the early days of their coverage last season) where they showed players walking out of the tunnel, as well as the post-match reactions. Great idea.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

  7. Brad Banks says:

    Make all the matches accessible online and don’t charge me $20 a month for it.

  8. Cam says:

    1. All games should be televised live. A league pass subscription sort of package would be fine, of course I’ll pay for that, but with all the channels on the NBC roster is it really that much to ask for to air games live, especially considering the biggest slot is 10am Eastern on Saturdays. I mean, who watches USA or MSNBC at 10am on Saturdays anyways?

    2. Full pre-match and post-match coverage. I want to see the players in the tunnel, walk onto the pitch, the camera scan across all the players, the handsakes, the warm ups. Then after the game all of the celebration, handsakes, etc. until everyone is off the pitch. Then I want to see the Manager’s interview immediately following the game.

    3. True English commentary. If NBC throws some voiceovers from a LA/NY studio over the game I’m going to lose it. Is there anything worse than that? FOX Soccer does it for Europa league games (Tottenham fan) and it makes me want to watch the game on mute. I want a commentator who is at the game and not only that but I want to hear the best. I want to hear Tyler, Champion, Banyard, not some dude from the MLS.

    4. Weekly talk show. Give us a show that we can watch every week with people who know the game and are fully engrossed in the EPL. I want an hour at least each week that I can watch a group of analysts go over the previous weeks games, upcoming games and just general football talk. FOX Football Fone-In was great and ESPN Press Pass ain’t bad but it’s impossible to find. I need that in my life again.

  9. Mufc77 says:

    Being Liverpool season 2.

  10. Mufc77 says:

    I Don’t suppose we could get saint & greavise on Saturday morning gaffer.

    Ill be happy just to have the Utd games available each week. I don’t care what channel the games are on as long as I can watch.

    I hope they don’t bring in all American talent for pre game shows. Warren Barton might look like a deer in headlights at times but at least he knows what he’s talking about having played at the very highest level got most of his career.

    Under no circumstances do I want to see piers Morgan in any pre/post game show, the same goes for the Geordie fella Hudson and Keith costigan.

  11. Joe says:

    I want to see soccer come to those who can’t afford the tv/Internet packages. The beauty of the game is that anyone from any economic class can play. We need a free game every week on both tv and Internet.

    • CTBlues says:

      18-20 games on NBC which is an OTA station so if you have a HD antenna and a TV with a QAM tuner you are all good to watch those matches for free.

  12. mark says:

    NBC needs to understand that the EPL is a league based in England and therefore not to Americanize the product. The viewing experience is enhanced when pregame coverage and commentary is from those who live in that part of the world, or if NBC wants to put an American face to its product then at least send the people to England.

    The experience should be as if the viewer is actually at the stadium. When NBC televises American football it sends its crew to the stadium where the game is to be played and often they report about what people in that city have to say about their team or issues relating to their team. The same format should be used for EPL games.

  13. rej4sl says:

    I agree with the Free games on t.v. Football should be available to all economic levels of people. To a lot of people a league pass is out of the question. But free games on NBC, NBC Sports, and other NBC outlets is awesome. I would also like the online stream to be free or available like ESPN online to Comcast Customers as part of our package. And of course the English feed not to Americanize it.

  14. John says:

    Please no American commentary. It is awful. I remember Steve Cangalosi (Red Bulls announcer) doing the olympics and referring to a volley as a “one-time shot”. This is not hockey.

  15. Marc L says:

    Yeah, agreed with all these posters about preferring as little as possible as far as American commentators. Funny how I AM an American, grew up here, played the game here, and I myself get irritated as all hell at our own guys on those Fox shows trying to opine about the EPL.

  16. Frill Artist says:

    Provide a proper streaming package that includes ALL the EPL matches for a monthly access fee. No withholding of matches like Fox Soccer 2go and I will be more than happy to pay.

  17. Frill Artist says:

    Will they show it on local channel NBC?

  18. Kobashi says:

    A 60 to 90 minute pre-game show on the weekend that has a look at all the games on the week schedule. The Sunday edition can look back at the Saturday games. Interesting punditry where former stars of the league drop in and give their opinions of what is going on. Long form features on the clubs and the players. A former ref would for sure be a part of the show who can be called on during a game to give his opinion on the big decisions.

    A weekly show that features a couple of long form stories that wraps up with a roundtable discussion of the weeks big stories.

    Hire good video people that can create interesting highlight videos. I always though Fox failed on this. There are how many filmmakers in Hollywood and they never hired someone that regularly did killer highlight packages and hype pieces for the TV presentation that got people talking. Fox had gotten better recently but for too long just mailed it in.

    I’d love to see a soccer radio show on the new NBC Sports Radio Network that can also be podcasted. Even if it is on from 5am to 6am M-F which is before most Sports Radio Stations start broadcasting locally on the East Coast and is in the middle of the night for people on the Pacific Time Zone. It would be a good primer to start the day as a soccer fan and is in the graveyard shift that it’s not a breaking point for a possible deal where a local sports radio station is considering signing up with Yahoo or NBC as their Sports Radio provider.

    I’d prefer that they use an on air production staff that is all British or even mostly Brit. I like the escapism from American Sports which I love that soccer provides by having people from the UK do commentary. It sets soccer apart from the other sports as something different.

  19. Garry Craske says:

    Post match manager and player interviews, plus like most have said good English based commentary and NO Bartonesque boneheads!

  20. David says:

    One of the most difficult things that face NBC is to decide whether to follow in the footsteps of Fox and have most of the analysts talking from this country or to go in a different direction and do so from England. I hope they decide to move their production to England so that they will be able to convey exactly what is being felt and heard in and around England. It will enhance the viewing experience tremendously.

  21. Pakapala says:

    I think the official EPL highlight show is good enough. No need for a Saturday show. I think the talk show is a very good idea.

  22. Thomas says:

    I want to see and hear the stadium atmosphere when I watch a game. The chants, the tifo, the songs– it’s all part what makes watching soccer exciting, and I’d like that to be better captured before and during the game.

    ESPN does a relatively good job setting the scene prior to games, but Fox almost never shows the crowd or the stadium before and during the game. Watching a Fox game, you have no visual sense of where the game is being played. The Euros and World Cup telecasts do a great job of incorporating crowd shots into the broadcast, and I’d love to see NBC do this for the EPL.

  23. Angry says:

    For me its simple, get the Sky Sports commentator feed. The last people i want to hear are the likes of JP Delecamera, Kyle Martino, etc…. Martin Tyler is a legend in his field and American announcers pale in comparison…

  24. alex says:

    What’s missing is a show with substantive analysis, rather than mere “punditry”. Video-based tactical analysis of matches where the analysts are given sufficient time to provide insights that the average fan at home who didn’t play professionally probably didn’t pick up on during the match

  25. Nelson says:

    Gaffer,

    We spend a lot of time talking about what we HOPE NBC will do. There are so many good ideas and suggestions on here that it would be nice to know our voice is being heard, especially since NBC is probably in the development stage and making theses big decisions right now. Any chance NBC can hear this?

    • The Gaffer says:

      Nelson, I’ve been in touch with NBC and have learned that they’re avid readers of EPL Talk and are reading all of the suggestions.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • Nelson says:

        Wow, that is awesome!
        Lets hope the NBC people see some value in what is being said around here. NBC has the opportunity to make the EPL the best we’ve ever seen. Can’t wait to see what happens.

        • NBC Sports Guy says:

          I work for NBC Sports, and check in with EPL Talk daily. Keep the thoughts and opinions coming, we take this community very seriously. Looking forward to a great run.

  26. Nelson says:

    1. Ian Darke style pre game segment for color and atmosphere. Outside stadium shots, fans, city, history are intriguing and set the stage for the game. New viewers will also be “invested” in the game.

    2. English announcers at the game. SKY feed would be great or get a Darke / Macca model going.

    3. Get plenty of shots of the stadium, fans and tunnel before kick off.

    4. Have some half time analysis.

    5. Post game shots of stadium, fans and some interviews of players and managers. Again, SKY feed is probably best.

    6. Get some intelligent post game analysis. You know, Gary Neville style, with good visuals, models and replays. Soccer fans love this and potential fans need to see the intelligence and tactics in the game.

    7. Do NOT dumb it down. Even new American viewers will be more likely to tune in if the “talk” is above them.

    8. Do NOT try to Americanize the experience. Believe it or not Americans want something different and special otherwise they beer would have tuned in.

    9. Do NOT show sc

  27. Nelson says:

    1. Ian Darke style pre game segment for color and atmosphere. Outside stadium shots, fans, city, history are intriguing and set the stage for the game. New viewers will also be “invested” in the game.

    2. English announcers at the game. SKY feed would be great or get a Darke / Macca model going.

    3. Get plenty of shots of the stadium, fans and tunnel before kick off.

    4. Have some half time analysis.

    5. Post game shots of stadium, fans and some interviews of players and managers. Again, SKY feed is probably best.

    6. Get some intelligent post game analysis. You know, Gary Neville style, with good visuals, models and replays. Soccer fans love this and potential fans need to see the intelligence and tactics in the game.

    7. Do NOT dumb it down. Even new American viewers will be more likely to tune in if the “talk” is above them.

    8. Do NOT try to Americanize the experience. Believe it or not Americans want something different and special otherwise they beer would have tuned in.

    9. Do NOT show scores of other matches for the day. Spoilers!

    10. Just hire Ian Darke. He’s just gonna be twiddling his thumbs over at ESPN anyway.

  28. Scrumper says:

    For real analysis they need to show some of the pre and post game shows from the UK. It’s so lame to see a bunch of suits with amazing ties trying to talk about the EPL in the US and I cringe when I realize that’s what we’re probably going to get. So it’ll be the on button at kick off and the off button at full time.
    They could try and tie up with the Talksport programmes. Some of them are currently on Sirius channel 94 although it’s a bit chopped up and misses the best shows such as Andy Goldstein and of course Sirius are so far in the hole it’s anybody’s guess how long they can continue.

    So for me I just want NBC to show the
    games live and I don’t mind paying a premium to get them. And PLEASE do not broadcast scores of other games.

  29. Joe says:

    What about Apple TV? The other pro sports are on there. Love to see the EPL as well.

    • dust says:

      The apps they make available for football will be key, it would be nice to see NBC apply the “access anywhere for any game on any device” approach.

      An app for the apple tv box or some form of agreement when they launch their tv would be in order, but NBC is owned by Comcast and will likely mean some exclusivity for cable providers, which i feel would be a mistake, but hey, business is business.

      I hope they provide club focussed content for ALL clubs in the BPL not just the Top 6 Clubs, like I have said before, a 30 min weekly show on what just happened and what coming up. Unfortunately because it isn’t a “football” station and will have other sports Im not sure they will do that.

      They could still produce that programming and offer it as part of the subscription app viewing experience, so take the app experience further than fox did with just live games, give access to editorial content through the app/subscription service too.NBC does do the MLS 36 which is good original programming, so I do have faith they will produce some good content.

      I just hope they innovate on access and experience design when looking at the BPL in america, even if that means packaging the two leagues (MLS and BPL) to achieve it.

      Especially with My Spurs having a partnership agreement with the SJ Earthquakes (the american league winners & MLS cup favorites) with Simon Dawkins, (on loan form spurs) a key player for them. I think Wondolowski (MLS record goalscorer) could end up going to Spurs in the MLS offseason to train and maybeplay.

      Camera’s following Wondo and Simon back to spurs and the new state of the art training facility for that spell would be an interesting watch for any fan of MLS or BPL, I think and nicely associate the two leagues.

  30. Dimi says:

    Hopefully NBC will pick up the Barclays Premier League Review show which currently airs on Sunday nights on Fox Soccer.

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