A comprehensive guide to English soccer TV commentators and co-commentators

 

GARY NEVILLE

The former Manchester United right back is as good of a studio analyst/pundit as he is being a co-commentator, which puts him in the category of one of the best in the world. It’s not often that we get to hear him on US television, but when we do, it’s often a high-profile UEFA Champions League game. Perhaps his most memorable call was the orgasmic cry after Fernando Torres scored on the counter attack to wrap up the victory against Barcelona. 

 

GARY O’REILLY

The former Crystal Palace footballer isn’t featured as a co-commentator as much as he usually is, but when he is working a game, he often shares a lot of solid observations regarding what players are doing wrong (in terms of positioning, marking, etc). He has an easily recognizable voice too. 

 

MICHAEL OWEN

While Michael Owen was a legendary footballer, his skills as a co-commentator are awful. It’s a combination of stating the obvious or saying something ridiculous that puts Owen on the list of one of the worst co-commentators in the business. Thankfully, most of his work is for BT Sport, so those in America don’t get to hear him too often.

 

DAVID PLEAT

Pleat is a storyteller. During live commentaries, the veteran co-commentator will often reminisce and tell stories of how he discovered certain players who are playing on the pitch. The stories can be quite informative at times, but after hearing dozens of his commentaries, his trait can start to become a little annoying at times. Still, Pleat is one of a kind and often can be heard commentating Tottenham Hotspur games (one of the former clubs, of many, that he managed) on Sundays. 

 

DAVIE PROVAN

Now that Craig Burley joined ESPN recently, Davie Provan is one of the few Scottish experts left who is co-commentating the Premier League on a weekly basis. He can be heard every week with his easily recognizable voice. Just like Burley, he isn’t afraid to pull any punches when giving his analysis on-air.

 

NIALL QUINN

The former Irish professional footballer and manager can often be heard giving his analysis on co-commentaries for UEFA Champions League matches. His co-commentary is consistently good, and his Irish accent definitely is a plus.

 

STEWART ROBSON

Robson, a former Arsenal and West Ham midfielder, has provided commentary for ESPN during FA Cup matches and was heard next to Jon Champion during the American network’s 2014 World Cup coverage. The polarizing Robson is not the most well-liked pundit working in the business (at least by Arsenal fans), but if you listen closely to him, he reads the game so well and often shares a lot of pearls of wisdom that will open your eyes to the game. Robson often commentates Bundesliga and Serie A games for broadcasters in Europe, so his knowledge of players from around the world is quite impressive. 

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