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Fox Soccer Channel Misses Live Coverage Of EPL Goal Fests


While playing with my kids on Sunday morning, I checked Twitter for a minute and was astonished to see that Jermain Defoe had just scored a hat trick for Tottenham Hotspur. My first impulse was to grab the remote and to switch on Fox Soccer Channel, but I was greeted with the live match between Stoke City and Portsmouth. Then, for a second, I thought that the match from White Hart Lane was on Setanta Sports. Wrong again. I quickly realized that the match of the season was being shown by Fox Soccer Channel later that evening on delay.

I resorted to following the rest of the match on Twitter and was astonished, as I’m sure you were too, at the final 9-1 scoreline.

And that’s not all we missed. We also missed Saturday’s 3-3 goalfest between Hull City and West Ham United, described as one of Hull City’s most spirited performances of the season.

Not a good weekend for Fox Soccer Channel since both the Hull and Spurs matches were only shown on delay instead of live in the United States. To be fair to Fox, the Stoke against Portsmouth game was always earmarked for the Sunday 11am ET timeslot by the Premier League and Sky, so they would have been able to show the match live from White Hart Lane which kicked off at 10am ET.

It just goes to show that you can’t win them all. However, it does point to a couple of things which is (1) the network’s dependency on showing matches involving the top four can be a hinderance at times, and (2) how important it’ll be for ESPN to hopefully sublicense an additional timeslot of 10am ET Saturdays for 2010-2013 from Fox Soccer Channel so that we’ll have four Premier League games televised live at the same time (on ESPN2, Fox Soccer Channel, Setanta Sports and Setanta Xtra). We can dream, can’t we?

Photo credit: Soccergoalx1.

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  1. forweg

    November 25, 2009 at 3:35 am

    Nobody mentioned that the FSC idiots deleted ALL the stoppage time from the Hull-West Ham game. Why? It wasn’t even running late. They’ve pulled this crap before, and I’m sick of it.

  2. villafandan

    November 23, 2009 at 11:40 pm

    As others have said, FSE is part of sports pack required for FSC on DTV. I didn’t think about looking to change the audio, I quite like Spanish commentary now and again for a change. There’s some gems in those extra channels sometimes if you keep ’em peeled.

  3. TT

    November 23, 2009 at 7:39 pm

    Gaffer, if you’d watched the Spurs goal fest live you’d have been able to enjoy the MOTM performance of……Dean Sturridge:

    “Please please please give the goal to David Brentley coz it’s sheer quality.”


    • The Gaffer

      November 23, 2009 at 8:10 pm

      With minds like that, god help the future of English football punditry!

      The Gaffer

  4. Efrain

    November 23, 2009 at 6:51 pm

    I have Directv and love it with all the soccer I can now watch. But, even though I have the sports package, which includes all the Fox regionals, it does not include Fox Espanol or ESPN Deportes. We have to pay extra to get that. Since I am paying extra for Setanta and the sports package, I just cant justify paying more for two spanish channels with limited soccer. Besides, many of the ESPN Deportes matches can also be seen on ESPN360. So I rarely miss a match that I want/need to see 😉

    • Cantona

      November 23, 2009 at 11:24 pm

      you need to check you satellite setup then.. i dont have any of the spanish packages either.. but it IS included with the sports back.. it may be on a different satellite..which may be a different configuration than you have.. i have the big oval dish with 5? lbn.. i remember when i had the older configuration i had less channels available..


  5. Cantona

    November 23, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    Directv…. .sports back.. and you have it..
    no footy fan should be without directv …its a must..


    • Johnathan Starling

      November 23, 2009 at 8:30 pm

      I use to think that about DTV, however ATT U-Verse is worlds better than DirecTV could ever be. Cheaper to.

      I could say the same about Verizon Fios, but I don’t have the product.

      • sucka99

        November 24, 2009 at 1:39 pm

        no Setanta Xtra or extra champions league / europa league / la liga games on u-verse

  6. brn442

    November 23, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    I wouldn’t bet my house on spurs exceeding expectations on anything. It’s a shame that it wasn’t on Fox but that’s not their fault

  7. F1Mikal

    November 23, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    agreed, what a buncha wussy whingers here; the match was on Fox espanyol.

    too lazy to look at the Spanish channels, huh?
    now wonder America is still where it is in World Football…


    • nothap'n

      November 23, 2009 at 3:42 pm

      no. i’ve gone directly to the numbered channel for Fox sports Espanol that is listed on DirecTV’s web site, and when I enter the channel #, I get nothing. It’s because it is included in a separate package that has to be purchased with all of the Spanish-speaking channels. As we have been saying, there are a lot of other people who don’t get the channel either.

      • sucka99

        November 24, 2009 at 1:17 pm

        i believe you need at least a 3 LNB dish – probably why you don’t see it

  8. Christian

    November 23, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    Fox Sports en Espanol is available in Tampa on Verizon Fios.

  9. nothap'n

    November 23, 2009 at 12:26 pm

    I know you lose the ‘live’ experience of the game and if you already knew the result it might not matter, but at least FSC played the game on delay later on. Which meant that all 10 games were shown this weekend at some point. It was fascinating to see how Tottenham and Defoe scored, even though I knew what was coming.

    If you really wanted to, you could have avoided any updates from the game and watched it as if it was live later in the day, which is something I’ve gotten used to over the last couple of years.

  10. who cares

    November 23, 2009 at 9:18 am

    Actually it was on Fox Sports Espanol. Like ‘Cantona’ said up there, hit the SAP and voila. I’m guessing this was unadvertised because I didn’t see any ads for it on Saturday. But anyway they should do this more often.

    • sucka99

      November 24, 2009 at 1:16 pm

      i’m really stunned about the lack of network-wide advertising on Fox – I had no idea the WPS final was on FSN LIVE until i looked at an online schedule. FSC had it delayed because of conflicting Serie A coverage.

      They’ve started doing some of it with the Champions League, but it’s like these networks are islands to themselves.

  11. nothap'n

    November 23, 2009 at 8:51 am

    I read an article midweek that said that the game was originally scheduled for Saturday, but that both teams agreed to move the game to Sunday in order to get an additional day of rest since a good deal of the players were involved in international play. The article also said that the teams did this in spite of the fact that it would not be televised. I’m not sure if that also applied in England, but I’m pretty sure that was the reason why it was only shown on delay.

    To me, it added an almost mythical aspect to the game. When it was 4-1, 5-1, and I kept checking to see that Spurs kept scoring, it was almost unbelievable.

    It was disappointing to not have the game somewhere like SetantaXtra, but I just think it was a matter of the teams changing the date of the game at the last minute.

  12. Cantona

    November 23, 2009 at 8:02 am

    I dont understand all the gripes here… it was live on Fox Sports Espanol and you just had to hit SAP button for the TWI commentary… stunning match as well…


    • nothap'n

      November 23, 2009 at 8:53 am

      Who gets and does not get Fox sports Espanol? I have DirecTV and it’s basically the only network I do not get when it comes to football; that and ESPN Deportes. I’d have to pay for the Latino bundle or something which normally isn’t worth the fee.

      • The Gaffer

        November 23, 2009 at 10:14 am

        I don’t believe many of the readers to EPL Talk have Fox Sports en Espanol. I don’t. Does anyone else have it?

        The Gaffer

        • Johnathan Starling

          November 23, 2009 at 10:45 am

          I have it. If you pay for the sports package on DirecTV, you should have it.

          • Gaz

            November 23, 2009 at 11:06 am

            On Comcast it is part of the Latino package – it is separate from the Sports package. I already pay extra for the sports package so, like most people, I don’t see the need to pay even more for the odd game on FSE.

        • AtlantaPompey

          November 23, 2009 at 11:21 am

          I have it, but I don’t get English using the SAP button. It is included with the sports package that includes all of the FoxSports Networks.

          • Gaz

            November 23, 2009 at 1:23 pm

            I guess they must do it differently regionally then. I even called when I first got the sports package and was told that I’d have to have the Latino package to get FSE and ESPN Deportes.

        • sucka99

          November 24, 2009 at 1:14 pm

          i get it but i didn’t know it was on FSE. Last season most of the EPL games on FSE were delayed

  13. sucka99

    November 23, 2009 at 7:53 am

    you’re assuming, of course, that Setanta will still be around what with already losing some EPL games to ESPN this year – in mid contract and losing a bunch of their rugby coverage. Also assumes that ESPN would want to take the EPL after averaging a .2. A lot of the opinions I read are such that ESPN will forget about the EPL (or relegate it to ESPN Deportes) after the World Cup is over. They didn’t even promote the EPL or El Classico this weekend during the MLS Cup telecast.

    • Gaz

      November 23, 2009 at 11:09 am

      I thought that was strange too. Why not put up a few adverts about the Saturday EPL games during the MLS final?

  14. AtlantaPompey

    November 23, 2009 at 7:27 am

    Predicting which match will be entertaining and which match will be dull is practically impossible. FSC has to take some of the matches offered because, like you pointed out, they have no choice. ESPN getting another time slot is entirely up to ratings. I’m not sure they are getting good enough ratings right now to justify the expense.

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