With four kids, business meetings galore, writing for EPL Talk and managing the bloggers who write for the other eight sites in the network, my home life can be a bit of a shambles at times. I finally did my 2009 taxes in August. The house is a mess. My to-do list is way too long. And, to be honest, most of it is due to my insatiable appetite for soccer. I love the sport and work on this site so much, sometimes to the detriment of the more important things in life.
Thankfully, I’ve been able to make some big progress this season and I’m finally beginning to get more accomplished at home and in my life while still being able to watch soccer. This season, for the first time ever, I’ve completely changed my viewing habits when it comes to the Premier League. No longer am I chained to the TV set in my living room. I’ve been able to break free so I can still accomplish watching my soccer but also to have time getting chores done and errands run.
Here’s my list of timesavers when it comes to fitting in the Premier League into a busy schedule:
- ESPN3.com and FoxSoccer.tv. These two online websites are a godsend for providing a way to watch games either at work or anywhere a computer is. I’ve been able to watch Premier League games while at a Starbucks, in my office and from a hotel. FoxSoccer.tv is $15/month but with it and Fox Soccer Channel (and ESPN3.com), you can guarantee that you won’t miss a Premier League match all season. ESPN3.com is free if your ISP has a deal with ESPN.
- the excellent half-time and post-match highlights provided by Premier League Productions, which can be seen on FoxSoccer.tv, Fox’s broadband channel. I’ve become really addicted to how wonderful the content is. The segment, which is backed with Kasabian’s wonderful Fire song, features the following just seconds after the half-time and full-time whistles end: Goals, match highlights and statistics. If there are several matches happening at the same time, I can flip from game to game on FoxSoccer.tv and catch the highlights without having to watch the entire game (unless I really want to),
- the brilliant FoxSoccer iPhone app. Yes, it’s ridiculous that Fox is currently charging users $7.99/month to access the streaming video and video highlights even if you pay $15/month for FoxSoccer.tv, but this app is worth every penny. While I love FoxSoccer.tv, despite its unreliability at times, I’m still tied to it with a laptop and it’s hard to take the laptop with me when I’m traveling. But with the FoxSoccer iPhone app, I’ve been able to watch games while in a car dealership waiting room, standing in line for 2.5 hours getting my passport renewed, sitting at a traffic light while running errands and sitting in the back of a cab as it drove through Chicago on the way to O’Hare Airport. In addition to streaming live all of the same Premier League and Champions League games that FoxSoccer.tv airs, the FoxSoccer iPhone app also features video highlights of the games that FoxSoccer.tv airs, which are usually available just a few minutes after games end.
- Google Reader. While Google Reader doesn’t stream Premier League games or provide highlights, what it does do is compile all of the Premier League news from websites that I subscribe to, courtesy of RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds. While I don’t expect you to be as addicted as I am to find the latest news that EPL Talk readers should know about (I’ve scanned more than 300,000 articles in the past 12 months), you can customize Google Reader to appeal to your tastes and let the news come to you, rather than you comb sites for news itself.
Now don’t get me wrong. I still get a chance to watch full Premier League games each week, but certainly not as many as I used to. But I don’t feel like I’ve been left out. Instead of waiting for the Premier League Review Show or Match Of The Day to see the highlights from the games, I end up watching them on my mobile phone.
As a bonus tip, be sure to get the EPL Talk iPhone app if you haven’t already done so. It’s free and features all of our blog posts, comments, EPL Talk Podcast episodes, photos and Twitter updates.
What tips do you have to save time so you can fit the Premier League into your busy life? Share them in the comments section below.
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