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FOX to Show Arsenal Against Man United EPL Clash Live On January 22nd

FOX Sports has decided to show the January 22 game between Arsenal against Manchester United live on the free-to-air FOX network instead of FOX Soccer. The decision was undoubtedly made due to the success of the TV ratings for the Premier League games that FOX has shown next to NFL programming,

“We see a tremendous opportunity to broaden exposure in the U.S. for the world’s best soccer competitions,” said FOX Sports Co-President & COO Eric Shanks. “We’ve broken viewership records with each subsequent FOX broadcast and we are thrilled audiences are responding as we make matches more widely available.”

The broadcast of Arsenal against Manchester United will begin at 10:30am ET on FOX, while the game will kick-off at 11am. It’ll be the first time a live Premier League game has been shown live on free-to-air network television.

On Sunday, Sept. 18, the FOX network presented Manchester United vs. Chelsea, followed by Tottenham-Arsenal on Sunday, Oct. 2 and Chelsea-Liverpool on Sunday, Nov. 20. All three broadcasts were shown on tape-delay which either preceded or followed the locally televised NFL on FOX game, and came after FOX Soccer’s live coverage earlier in the day.

FOX’s broadcast of Liverpool’s 2-1 defeat of Chelsea on Nov. 20 is the most-watched Barclays Premier League match of the three on the network, delivering a 1.1 household rating, with 1.67 million total viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research. Of the five international soccer matches broadcast on FOX since 2010, only 2011s UEFA Champions League Final between Barcelona and Manchester United drew a bigger audience (2.6 million) than Chelsea-Liverpool in November.

Showing the Arsenal against Manchester United live on free-to-air television in the United States will hopefully boost FOX’s TV ratings for the live broadcast of Chelsea against Manchester United, scheduled to be shown live on Super Bowl Sunday on FOX at 11am ET.

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16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. manufan

    January 22, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    I have watched many soccer games on Fox Soccer Channel and Fox Soccer Plus where the quality of the picture was picturesque . However, I was disappointed at how fuzzy the picture was during the broadcast of the Man U-Arsenal game today, as I would expect it to be at least as good as the EPL matches broadcast on partner networks. I hope that Fox will fix this issue before they show the broadcast of the Man U-Chelsea game two weeks from today.

  2. LoveEPL

    December 28, 2011 at 11:02 am

    The EPL is one of the greatest soccer leagues in the world and the games that have been on FOX have not failed to demonstrate that. Hopefully there are more games to come after the NFL season, besides the Champion’s league final so more americans can see what the beautiful game is all about. At the same time, I hope it does not undermine the progress the MLS has made.

  3. Eplnfl

    December 9, 2011 at 6:30 am

    No one as I recall every thought the EPL would be live on network tv. What progress! Everyone was just hoping 5 years ago that ESPN would show the games. Now one would have to assume that next season a regular EPL game will be on the Fox network.

  4. rej4sl

    December 7, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    I hope they simulcast with Fox Soccer as our local Fox Station here in the Twin Cities sucks. As it is winter they will most probably destroy it with a weather forecast.

  5. np

    December 5, 2011 at 10:54 pm

    Great news! Hopefully they do a good job promoting the live broadcast with ads during nfl games and primetime tv. The fact that we in america will see more live matches on free tv than in england is great. We have come a long way since the days for $20 pay-per-view options 10 + years ago.
    Good decision by fox because man u will bring in many americans and having 2 large attacking teams should make for a good game.

    • JC

      December 5, 2011 at 11:15 pm

      You said it. I remember paying for those $20 matches and thinking it was as good as we’d ever get.

  6. Patrick in Austin

    December 5, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    Didn’t FOX show Chelsea-Liverpool live on Super Bowl Sunday last year? I remember it was Torres’ first game for the Blues.

    • The Gaffer

      December 6, 2011 at 11:13 am

      Patrick, you’re correct (blushing). I was out of the country for that game on Super Bowl Sunday earlier this year, so it didn’t sink in that that game was the first one shown live on national TV. Good catch.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

  7. gooner

    December 5, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    this is just more great news for soccer fans in this country. It wasn’t even five years ago that people were having a serious debate about whether soccer will ever get big in this country or not. I would say that this news puts the nail on the coffin of those people who say that soccer is boring, that will never take off in America and will always be alien.I read stories of people saying that they spot people wearing soccer jerseys on college campuses and suburban supermarkets in places you wouldn’t imagine people’d be interested in the sport. What can you do? Soccer is such a sport that it wins over the hearts and minds of people, like it did mine all those years ago.

    Please remember, that us soccer fans are not in a battle with those people who hate soccer. When I’m on college and watch it on ESPN2, almost all the time, I’m the only one watching it and that’s okay with me. I watch it in quietude and any American person wants to come by and watch it, that’s their choice. We just love our sport so much that we don’t and should never feel the pressure or need to defend ourselves watching it. when we hear stories about its progress and establishing a foothold in this country, we accept it with grace and humility. We don’t need to gloat and taunt those people who still think soccer is an alien sport in this country.

  8. glee

    December 5, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    Hope they do a better job with the pre-game show than the one they had before the champs league.

  9. J

    December 5, 2011 at 2:33 pm

    So glad this will be at The Emirates …

  10. jason

    December 5, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    This is progress. Do I assume this will be the first LIVE EPL game to hit a major network?

    • FCAsheville

      December 5, 2011 at 2:49 pm

      “It’ll be the first time in U.S. history that a Premier League game will be shown live on free-to-air network television. “

      • The Gaffer

        December 5, 2011 at 6:08 pm

        To be fair to Jason, the story didn’t originally say that it was the first Premier League game to be shown live on network television. After Jason posted that comment, I updated the article since it was a very astute observation.

        Cheers,
        The Gaffer

        • jason

          December 6, 2011 at 10:18 am

          Thanks for telling all to be fair to ol’ Jace, it being my first comment left on this here sight and all.

          • The Gaffer

            January 19, 2012 at 3:59 pm

            I was out of the country and missed the Premier League game between Chelsea and Liverpool last Super Bowl Sunday, but it wasn’t shown on live free-to-air network TV, so the original statement stands!

            Cheers,
            The Gaffer

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