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FOX Sports TV ratings for Bundesliga continue to disappoint

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It’s too easy to blame FOX Sports for the poor TV ratings due to their failure to begin promoting its coverage of the Bundesliga just two weeks before the season even though they knew they’d be televising the games since 2013 when they acquired the rights.

The reality is that the Bundesliga TV viewing figures are more a reflection of the current interest level in German soccer compared to other leagues. A significant handicap for the Bundesliga is that it has a weekend schedule that almost identically mirrors the Premier League, the most popular English-language soccer league on US television. So, for the Bundesliga to thrive, it needs to change the viewing habits of Americans who are addicted to watching the Premier League on NBC Sports. That is a monumental task.

To be fair, both the Bundesliga and FOX Sports are starting from ground zero.

German soccer has been invisible from the mainstream after years of being shown on GolTV, which was a poor marketing and distribution decision by the German authorities. At the same time, FOX Sports hasn’t cultivated an audience of soccer fans that are used to watching hours and hours of club soccer on its network. The soccer coverage on FOX Sports is too sporadic — a US friendly one night, UEFA Champions League every two weeks on a Tuesday and Wednesday afternoon, a MLS game on a Sunday evening. The result is that wall-to-wall weekend soccer coverage on FOX Sports is non-existent. Compare that to 8-hours of non-stop Premier League coverage on any given Saturday on NBCSN.

No wonder FOX Sports and the Bundesliga are having a difficult time trying to attract soccer viewers.

SEE MORE: View the Bundesliga TV schedule for games shown on US TV and streaming.

The TV viewing figures for Bundesliga games on FOX Sports are painful to read (see below):

Saturday, August 29

Bayern Munich vs. Bayer Leverkusen, 12:30-2:30pm ET, FOX Sports 2, 53,000
Stuttgart vs. Frankfurt, 9:30am-11:30am ET, FOX Sports 2, 4,000

Friday, August 28

Wolfsburg vs. Schalke, 2:30-4:30pm ET, FOX Sports 1, 85,000

Sunday, August 23

Ingolstadt vs. Borussia Dortmund, 9:30-11:30am ET, FOX Sports 1, 76,000
Borussia Monchengladbach vs. Mainz, 11:30am-1:30pm ET, FOX Sports 2, 17,000

Saturday, August 22

Hamburg vs. Stuttgart, 12:30-2:30pm ET, FOX Sports 1, 90,000
Hoffenheim vs. Bayern Munich, 9:30-11:30am ET, FOX Sports 1, 71,000
Cologne vs. Wolfsburg, 9:30-11:30am ET, FOX Sports 2, 6,000

Sunday, August 16

Wolfsburg vs. Frankfurt, 9:30-11:30am ET, FOX Sports 1, 50,000

Saturday, August 15

Borussia Dortmund vs. Borussia Monchengladbach, 12:30-2:30pm ET, FOX Sports 2, 42,000
Bayer Leverkusen vs. Hoffenheim, 9:30-11:30am ET, FOX Sports 2, 34,000

Friday, August 14

Bayern Munich vs. Hamburg, 2:30-4:30pm ET, FOX Sports 2, 32,000

SEE MORE: Where to find the Bundesliga on US TV and Internet.

Based on the above numbers, here are two observations we can glean from the data:

1. FOX Sports 2 is a barren wasteland.

The best the Bundesliga has done on FOX Sports 2 thus far has been the 53,000 viewers for a Bayern Munich game — and that’s for Germany’s most popular team. If you want to guarantee a minuscule viewing audience, then FOX Sports 2 is it.

The two main issues for FOX Sports 2 are (1) there are several major TV providers who don’t offer the network, and (2) for those soccer fans who are fortunate to even get the channel, many of the TV providers are only offering it in SD.

2. The Premier League > Bundesliga.

It’s no coincidence that the highest viewing audiences for the Bundesliga so far this season on FOX Sports have happened when there wasn’t a Premier League match at the same time (90,000 on a rare Saturday where there was no 12.30pm ET Premier League kickoff, and 85,000 on a Friday where the Premier League doesn’t have games scheduled; at least not until next season).

The bad news for FOX is that many of the people who are interested in watching the Bundesliga are already fans of Premier League clubs. And the number of times in the next few months when there’s no Premier League match being shown at the same time as a Bundesliga game is few and far between.

SEE MORE: Read Susie Schaaf’s weekly Bundesliga column on World Soccer Talk.

Interestingly, FOX Sports has informed Soccer America that they’ll be broadcasting a Bundesliga match on Sunday, September 13 on the over-the-air FOX network before or after NFL broadcasts (depending on local markets). The match will be the game between Bayern Munich and Augsburg from the day before (which will be shown live on FOX Sports 1).

The move by FOX Sports is a desperate one to artificially boost the numbers. The short-term benefit will be an opportunity to issue a press release to brag that they’ve set a record for the most-watched Bundesliga match on US television. The long-term strategy will be to hope that they can win over mainstream sports fans and encourage them to seek out future Bundesliga games on FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2. Plus, FOX Sports may decide to follow a similar strategy to broadcast more Bundesliga games on the over-the-air FOX network on a delayed basis during NFL season.

Why is the move by FOX Sports desperate? While the same strategy worked for FOX when they set an all-time record viewing audience of 1.6 million for a Premier League game shown on tape-delay in 2011, FOX had already cultivated an audience of soccer fans who were watching EPL games on FOX Soccer. For example, the number of people who watched that same game live on FOX Soccer was 360,000. In contrast, with FOX Sports’ coverage of the Bundesliga, they have been unable to surpass 90,000 viewers, which is pitiful in comparison.

But maybe the Bundesliga game on the over-the-air FOX network is the boost that FOX Sports’ coverage needs to generate more interest in future coverage? While we’ll see what impact the game on FOX has on future Bundesliga matches on FOX Sports 1 and 2, it doesn’t change the fact that the Premier League is the Bundesliga’s worst nightmare when competing for TV ratings. In order to inflate the numbers, tape-delayed German soccer broadcasts that don’t compete with Premier League games may end up being the best strategy moving forward.

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58 Comments

58 Comments

  1. Blue Lou

    September 17, 2015 at 10:13 am

    Gosh, you don’t think that Fox Soccer ignoring the Bundesliga for YEARS has anything to do with the current situation?

  2. Ritchie

    September 11, 2015 at 8:04 pm

    I do believe that the lack of promotion has hurt the ratings. That could definitely help.

    Also:

    -1 for your “starting from ground zero” reference.

  3. MC

    September 10, 2015 at 1:40 am

    Oh, I have a lot of thought on Bundesliga, but will try to make short. Started following B-liga back in 80’s. Great league, very competitive at that time. I lived there in the 90’s, enjoyed quality of game, coverage from Premiere and Sat 1, just awesome… The national team was big time in the 80’s and the 90’s well.

    The troubling trend emerged in the mid 90’s, started with that a****** Beckenbauer who was president of Bayern, by far richest team in the B-liga. They would identify key players with the competition, buy them all, then just bench them as they cant play them all. Is not coincidence that out of Bayern’s 25 league titles, the 13 of them they won withing last 20 years.

    What this has to do with ratings in USA? Nothing at all. Ratings in us are based on name recognition and notoriety. Outside of Bayern what other German teams people recognize here. I challenge even soccer fans to name 3 starters on Dortmund team. Also all issues with Fox mentioned in this forum don’t help. They had BPL at some point and the rating started going up once NBC took over.

    • Javier

      September 17, 2015 at 1:28 pm

      Marco Reus
      Shinji Kagawa
      Ilkay Gundogan
      Mats Hummels

      All of these players are pretty well known by most soccer fans.

  4. yespage

    September 8, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    A bunch of comments but the article hits the nail.

    1a) Football saturation. You can only watch so much.
    1b) Whomever actually has FS2 likely doesn’t have it in HD.
    2) Relatively “new” league to the US market. New fans to the German league need to reacclimate to a league with new teams and players they largely don’t know.
    3) Americans get a little antsy when large German crowds start chanting.

    In other words, it is easier to watch the EPL on several levels.

    • toby

      September 8, 2015 at 12:25 pm

      The Bundesliga was the first European League shown on American TV in the 1970s and 1980s. so it is hardly a new league.

      Problems for the Bundesliga summed up.

      1.) Americans do not relate to German culture
      2.) Americans do not care about German teams from cities they have never heard of.
      3.) Uncompetitive league where Bayern win easy every week
      4.) Lacks glamour and star quality throughout the league
      5.) It looks too German and Foreign on TV
      6) Games are played at the same time as the more popular EPL
      7) Not as diverse as the EPL

      • yespage

        September 8, 2015 at 6:45 pm

        Yes, it was shown a generation ago.

      • toby2

        September 9, 2015 at 4:39 pm

        What exactly is german culture? And why are millions of americans of german heritage?

        Bundesliga on NBC would be as good as PL in ratings after some time. And generally speaking, the PL ratings are POOOOOOOOR for such a huge country. Soccer in U.S. is like darts in europe….

    • Thomas

      October 14, 2015 at 11:02 am

      4) If American TV media controlled by powerful men of Jewish faith, why the hell would they want to push anything German-related? Other than cars and beer, Germany usually gets a bad rap.

  5. aaron

    September 7, 2015 at 1:25 am

    The core of the issue is Fox Soccer as an overall platform has been average at best and not very good overall in the last 5 years. Fox has champions which is solid as the broadcaster are from europe/ UK so its a good 90 min. Ian Joy will help on the margins with the Bundesliga but ( i think he realizes now what a mess they have) get 2x check vs BEIN sports.

    In the end BEIN sports would have been a much better deal (next TV rights cycle), I even predict BEIN might cut a shared rights deal with Fox so they can do a better job then Fox (which only does 15 min pregame) there is no real weekly show or consistent broadcast model for Fox. Online is the industries worst and they dont care (the last 3 years it is a joke).

    I love the Bundesliga (since i went to Germany in the late 80’s in the Army but Fox is lame, and will get 100k if they are lucky ( i of course will watch as the football is better then 50% of the EPL- which i like also)

    • BW

      September 15, 2015 at 3:39 am

      beIN Sports pulled a staggiering 4,000 viewers for PSG-Bordeaux on Friday. That’s two cities Americans know and Zlatan Ibrahimovic on the pitch, plus a later start time (4pm eastern) than the Friday Bundesliga game. What was the reason there? Too many young white men in the stands?

      BTW, the Mönchengladbach-HSV game on FS1 at the same time drew 49,000.

      There are some fairly ridiculous statements being bandied about here. Fact is, the Bundesliga is the only league other than the EPL to be associated with a mainstream US sports broadcaster. Fact is, the Bundesliga has only had that association for a grand total of four matchdays. The longterm deals associating La Liga, Serie A and Ligue 1 with beIN mean that’ll stay that way for a while. So I really don’t think anyone in Bundesliga Towers is hitting the panic button just yet.

  6. Tom

    September 6, 2015 at 4:37 pm

    If Germany spoke English and England spoke German, the Bundesliga would be the most-watched league in the world.

    • soccsertex

      September 6, 2015 at 4:44 pm

      It’s more than the German language that’s the problem. It’s cultural. The atmospher is great the stadiums are full. But it is all young white men in the crowd. The EPL crowds are young and old. Men and women, and an ethnic mix. It’s just more inclusive. That’s why the rest of the world watches the EPL.

      • Flyvanescence

        September 6, 2015 at 5:41 pm

        If you actually believe that . . . Wow thats dumb.

      • Eugene

        September 6, 2015 at 11:06 pm

        Also in America, you see NFL and NBA stars wearing EPL jerseys. The deal with Draft Kings allows more the sports fan of an interest here to watch any EPL game

        • toryblue

          September 7, 2015 at 7:36 am

          it’s become very obvious that you know nothing of American sport to say that NFL and NBA stars are wearing EPL jerseys. because they certainly don’t do so during the games or outside of them. and no, the occasional instagram picture does not count. and i doubt the average American is dying to start watching the EPL due to Draft Kings. ultimately soccer is watched by soccer fans in the USA, and only soccer fans. and if you watch soccer on english language TV, you aren’t watching anything other than the EPL. not MLS, not the Bundesliga, not La Liga, – nothing.

          • Eugene Molloy

            September 8, 2015 at 1:51 pm

            First off, it looks like you have no idea what you are talking about. Your comment makes no sense. USA soccer fans watch soccer? What are you talking about? If you a fan of a sport you watch it. That goes for any sport. Have you every heard of Kobe Bryant, Lebron James or Andrew Luck????? All huge soccer fans and been to many events live. Second, if you followed the NFL, you would know that fantasy football is a huge reason why it is so successful. Shows and websites dedicated to fantasy. Like a previously said, having a deal with Draft Kings will get some fans of other sports interested for the gambling aspect

            • toryblue

              September 17, 2015 at 12:52 pm

              wow, you named 3 people. you realize that there are a whole lot more NBA and NFL players than those 3? and my comment makes perfect sense; you just can’t comprehend it. the people who watch soccer in the USA are American soccer fans. it doesn’t go beyond that. soccer doesn’t attract casual viewers here. if it did, the ratings would be a lot larger than they are now. and Draft Kings focuses on fantasy football more than anything else. people go there for that specifically. thinking that the people who play fantasy football will suddenly start paying attention to the EPL because of a tie-in is magical thinking. fantasy soccer is not a thing in the USA. certainly not the way that fantasy football or baseball are.

      • BW

        September 15, 2015 at 3:41 am

        Yes, EPL crowds include a healthy cross-section of society and that’s why all anyone is talking about is how inclusive the Premier League is.

        http://www.theguardian.com/sport/david-conn-inside-sport-blog/2011/aug/16/premier-league-football-ticket-prices

  7. soccsertex

    September 6, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    The Bundesliga isn’t going to get any better. This window 13 players moved to the EPL for 200k Euros.
    Next year the EPL TV deal starts, when there will be even more funds to raid the Bundesliga. A couple more years of this and Stoke will be buying the best Bayern players

  8. Bill

    September 6, 2015 at 3:15 pm

    There is a soccer glut. A few years ago, only Fox Soccer was really televising soccer on a dedicated basis. Now you have bein, NBCSN, FS1, Spanish language broadcasts, etc.

  9. Tony

    September 6, 2015 at 12:46 pm

    1. Bein is in fewer homes than Fox Sports 2, but La Liga matches still outdraw them (La Liga has the advantage of being on later).

    2. FS2 not being in HD hurts a lot. Does Fox Sports Go have the games live? It may be better to use Fox Sports go and Airplay it to an Apple TV.

    3. Fox has a lot of good soccer properties – World Cup, Champions League, Bundesliga, International Champions Cup, MLS, some European Qualifiers, etc. If they want to increase interest in Bundesliga and soccer in general, they need to promote it during their football programming and their recap show. Let viewers now that soccer is available, highlight important upcoming matches, etc.

    4. Outside of Bayern Munich, German teams aren’t well known globally. Very few people know what/where Leverkusen, Monchengladbach, Dortmond, etc are. It’s going to be extremely difficult to get soccer fans to watch Hamburger vs Hertha or something instead of a random Premier League game in the morning.

    5. That leads to my final point – there is a hell of a lot of soccer available in the US. Between NBCSN, Bein, Fox Sports, there is 50 or so hours of soccer on every weekend. There aren’t enough soccer fans in the US yet to absorb all of that. Over time, ratings may increase for Bundesliga but it will be hard work. That said, Bundesliga has every incentive to try to make it work – they see the money the Premier League gets from global TV and don’t want to be left behind

  10. rrev

    September 6, 2015 at 7:43 am

    They should put most games on FS1, the Bayern Leverkusen match on FS2 the other day. They should put the biggest match on the main Fox network, in my area Fox has infomercials on Saturday morning, I don’t know if it’s the same everywhere, they should advertise more, NBC gives EPL updates during SNF and has had Rebecca Lowe on, they should make all matches available on Fox Sports GO, NBC does it and even BEin does with their websites, a major network should not be charging for some crap streaming service and channel like Fox Soccer 2 Go and Fox Soccer plus. It’s not going to get high ratings anytime soon with all the other established options on at the same time but they can at least try instead of relegating something to a channel not everyone would have and others have in SD in 2015.

  11. toby

    September 6, 2015 at 5:52 am

    Fox gambled and lost. They purchased the rights for Bundesliga just before the all German Champion League final, thinking the BL would be the league that would dominate Europe and be the new best league in the world. They thought the Dortmund and Bayern rivalry would dominate Europe and drive interest in the BL.

    But what they got was a uncompetitive league, with no rivalry for Bayern and losing it’s star players. Fox deeply regret buying the rights for the BL which is why they where so desperate to win back the EPL rights because they have no faith in the BL.

    There was this great article in the The Guardian where an EPL executive spoke about the BL. He said German football has full stadiums and great atmosphere like English football, but the crowd is completely white young men and too German and European to appeal to people outside this culture. When you look at an EPL crowd you see men, women, old, young, children and people of different colours and faiths. You even see American celebrities at games like Tom Cruise, Jim Carey, Sam L Jackson, LeBron James and John Cena He said the EPL has a more inclusive feel so appeals more to people around the world. When you add it is the most competitive and excited league it is no wonder it is the most popular league on every continent.

    • Collin

      September 6, 2015 at 11:19 am

      You should do some research before making a post like this.

      1. Fox didn’t buy the Bundesliga rights for America, they purchased Bundesliga rights domestically (in Germany) for their subsidiary Sky Sports Deutschland and with this deal also included international rights for FOX to distribute where the Bundesliga did not currently have a partner. Fox has not gambled and lost because we are only 3 weeks into a 5 year deal that sees the Bundesliga in Fox on America.

      2. At the moment, there is more parity in Bundesliga than the English Premier League. First through Seventh in the BL are seperated by 3 points, with Borussia Dortmund sitting top of the table. In the Premier League, Manchester City are in 1st, having not conceded a goal with the next closest legitimate contenders being Manchester United or Arsenal, with neither looking like they have what it takes to catch up (this saddens me as an Arsenal supporter).

      3. The Premier League has had 3 different winners in the last ten years, the Bundesliga has had 4.

      So because the comments of this article have a theme of calling things incredibly early I may as well join in? The Premier League will be won early by Manchester City (landslide) and the Bundesliga title will go down to the wire with Dortmund and Bayern in the first two positions, Wolfsburg a close 3rd. Making the Bundesliga the most competitive league in Europe.

      • toby

        September 8, 2015 at 12:13 pm

        @Colin

        1. Fox paid money for the USA rights so regardless of how it came about paying money is gamble because they want a return on their investment. They didn’t get the rights for free. They have lost because the problem is fundamental. The rating shows the BL gets even lower ratings when an EPL games is on at the same time. Germany has always shown games at the same time as the EPL and this will not change. Unless the BL will play games at midnight in Europe to not compete the EPL it will always been second best become Americans watch the Premier League like the rest of the world.

        2. Everyone knows Dortmund won’t last and not beat Bayern, so don’t get excited when there isn’t anyone good enough in the Bundesliga. Man City are top now, but the EPL is better than the BL because there are plenty of games Man City could get beat, because there are so many good teams.

        3.Despite going back into time there may have been 3 winners of the EPL, but most of the time they have been close championships. The fact with the Bundesliga in the last 3 years been dominated an won early makes the league currently unappealing. Plus the big difference between Germany and England is Americans don’t always support the best teams. Americans are passionate about English teams so they don’t have to be champions to be invested. Arsenal and Liverpool haven’t won the league for a long time, but are two of the most popular teams in the USA, because people just enjoy the journey.

        4. Keep dreaming German football is just not appealing that is why it lags behind the English, Spanish and Italian leagues in global relevance. Man City are only top now because they have played the weak teams in the league.

        • niko

          September 22, 2015 at 4:19 am

          The EPL must be the best league because they where so good in the Champions League in the last years. Look also on the UEFA five year coeficient. My Friend the EPL is in terms of speed, technical and tactical quality behind LA-Liga and Bundesliga despite of all his money.

  12. norwalkvirus

    September 6, 2015 at 5:15 am

    I just want to watch games that don’t involve München.

  13. Erik Cortez

    September 6, 2015 at 4:34 am

    I don’t get why Fox makes you pay for Fox Soccer 2Go. ESPN doesn’t charge extra for Watch ESPN and they broadcast tons of matches from Euro qualifiers and Champions League matches to Liga MX and Copa MX matches they can’t pass on TV due to scheduling conflicts. Bein Sports doesn’t charge you extra either if you have Bein Sports in your cable/satellite package. NBC Sports and Univision Deportes doesn’t charge extra either but why does Fox?

    • Christopher Harris

      September 6, 2015 at 9:07 am

      FOX has a dilemma because it has its FOX Sports GO product, which is free to access via authenticated login but you can only watch live content. However, FOX Sports GO isn’t very good or reliable. For example, it crashed during the UEFA Champions League draw.

      Then FOX has FOX Soccer 2GO, but that’s operated by a completely different company (Perform) out of the UK, so FOX has very little influence over improving the service.

      • MC

        September 9, 2015 at 10:53 pm

        FOX Sports GO is free for huge number of providers, but not for Dish Network. Dish is just not supported even if you have legit subscription. Apparently there is some feud going on between Fox and Dish. Insane…

  14. Borussia DortMan

    September 6, 2015 at 3:25 am

    Games on FS1 or FS2 are fine for me as I have both channels in HD. The Bundesliga numbers should improve as the numbers cannot go any lower. FoxSports executives should try and capitalize on the following:

    The Bayern München vs. Borussia Dortmund title race – The black and yellows look resurgent this season. These two have been great rivals in recent seasons and Dortmund is the one club that can challenge München for the title race.

    Numbers will also improved with the introduction of Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez to Leverkusen. Mexican fans will tune in to watch their star striker get playing time in a league where more goals and exciting play is common. The more he succeeds the better for ratings.

    Similarly featuring games with American’s like Aron Johannsson, Fabian Johnson, and Alfredo Morales cannot hurt. While Johannsson may not be as popular a player that moves the needle like Jozy Altidore or Clint Dempsey, a goal scorer is fun to follow if you are an American fan and success at Bremen may be a great way for FOX to bring in national team fans. FOX cannot rely on this but it help bump up ratings.

    Also I believe Man City will win the PL and may win it in convincing fashion. If it’s even more lopsided than last season’s title race with Chelsea in cruise control, it could also help certain games get better numbers in the Bundesliga. We’ll see if other teams in the PL can get their act together soon.

    • rrev

      September 6, 2015 at 7:25 am

      Jozy Altidore can move the needle? That’s sad.

    • Eugene

      September 6, 2015 at 11:04 pm

      The champions league final between Dortmund and Munich was one of the lowest rated champions finals ever. The Bundesliga is getting lower ratings than the NWSL

      • BW

        September 15, 2015 at 3:32 am

        “The Bundesliga is getting lower ratings than the NWSL”.

        This is pure genius. NWSL games are being played in the evenings. More people watch television in prime time. It doesn’t require a rocket scientist to deduce that NWSL broadcasts might attract more viewers.

  15. Pakapala

    September 5, 2015 at 11:33 pm

    Christopher wrote:
    “The two main issues for FOX Sports 2 are (1) there are several major TV providers who don’t offer the network”

    I keep seeing this line repeated in WST articles but they never mentioned which are those major providers that don’t carry FS2. As far as I know, among the major providers out there, Comcast is the only one who is not carrying FS2 all over the country, only in some regions. However I thought DirecTV, Dish, Fios, AT&T, etc… don’t they all carry FS2?

    • Chris S.

      September 6, 2015 at 2:18 am

      I know this sounds like a first world issue here, but watching FS2 in standard def on my 60″ tv is absolutely brutal. Can’t even tell who is who on the field… Unfortantely I no longer have FS2 since Xfinity does not carry it, and even if they did, why would I want to watch the Bundesliga in SD when I can catch so many other matches in other leagues in HD?
      Though I love the bundesliga, I would rather watch a game where I can actually see what’s going on, then tune into a bundesliga game trying to make out the pixilated blurs on the pitch.

      • Chris S.

        September 6, 2015 at 2:36 am

        BTW, I subscribe to FS2GO and by far FS2GO has to have the worst picture quality of any of the streaming services Ive tried. I hook up my laptop to my TV via HDMI. With Fubo – picture is HD crystal clear, ESPN3 – HD crystal clear, NBCSports Live Extra – HD crystal clear, NGSN – HD crystal clear, Sling TV – HD crystal clear. By “crystal clear” I literally mean cannot tell the difference from regular HD picture from cable TV.

        I don’t know if it’s the limit of only 2.4 mb/s or what exactly, but the picture has way more pixelation than any of the others I’ve tried and my internet speeds are mid 50 mb/s. Plus the picture has a faded look and the program is much more of a resource hog on my system than any of the others. Though I am now able to watch any bundesliga match, often the crappy picture quality can damper the experience. If they had not offered the $100 a year package I would never have payed $20 a month for such inferior quality. Since Fox is not doing a great job promoting there FS2 channel in HD, at the very least provide your internet service of matches at the same level as your competitors…

      • rrev

        September 6, 2015 at 7:23 am

        I have TWC and they also only have it in SD, if you use the FSGO app it is in HD, so I usually just use my Amazon Fire TV to watch FS2 events. It is annoying to have to do that to get an HD picture but I can’t tolerate SD.

    • Christopher Harris

      September 6, 2015 at 9:01 am

      FOX Sports 2 is in 46 million homes and only in 40% of households.

      In addition to Comcast, there are other select cable systems where FS2 is not available in every area such as Cablevision.

      • Pakapala

        September 16, 2015 at 8:22 am

        You’d have to explain to me and the WST readers in what way Cablevision (a regional provider through and through) qualifies as being labeled major TV network provider. Even in the limited market that it covers, it’s still not among the top TV carriers.

        The fact of the matter is Comcast/Xfinity is the only major provider still behind in term of providing its customers with FS2 nationwide. The problem that explains the low numbers is that Comcast dos not carry it and since, in many regions of the country, they are usually THE ONLY option available to viewers, that means bad news for FS2.

  16. Lou burns

    September 5, 2015 at 10:24 pm

    Well I quite like the BUNDESLIGA, and watch when I can. But unfortunately I live in a Cox monopoly area, and FS2 is in standard def only. So I will only watch the matches on FS1, and they are very few.

  17. Jody Strauch

    September 5, 2015 at 9:17 pm

    I would hope that a publication focused on world soccer wouldn’t stoop to the lowly “which league is better than the other” drivel and focus on growing the game of soccer worldwide, including Bundesliga in the U.S. And as mentioned, when many cable providers only carry Fox Sports 1 (even if I wished to pay yet another premium price for FS2 or FS+) and since, the season is only three games in, why begin persecution so early?

    • Christopher Harris

      September 5, 2015 at 9:27 pm

      Where did I say in the article that the Premier League is better than the Bundesliga?

      • Jody Strauch

        September 6, 2015 at 8:49 am

        “2. Premier League > Bundesliga” — to quote yourself. I realize here you are talking about ratings but I assume you know, out of that context, what that refers to — that long debate about which league is better.

        • Christopher Harris

          September 6, 2015 at 9:02 am

          You’re reading too much between the lines. I was referring to TV ratings not quality of soccer.

    • toby

      September 6, 2015 at 8:33 am

      The fact is German football like German culture doesn’t appeal to people internationally. Fox gambled hoping there would be an audience for German football and hoped German football would have been the best league in the world because they signed the contract after the all German CL final. They deeply regret this decision. They now have the rights for a minor European league with no cross over appeal to Americans. I think a clue they had no faith in the Bundesliga is the fact they tried to spend big on the EPL despite holding the rights for the BL.

      The average America who doesn’t even like soccer knows about Man Utd, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Spurs and even West Ham and the cities they are from. I am not sure Bayern Munich is known outside of people who like soccer let alone the other clubs.

      It isn’t exactly rocket science that German football is not popular in the USA, because German culture isn’t that relevant to Americans so why would they watch German football?

      • Eugene

        September 6, 2015 at 11:02 pm

        100% correct. Also the EPL is now working with the NFL and Draft Kings which is making the league more known to the general American public

      • toby2

        September 9, 2015 at 4:31 pm

        I read your whole statement and i have to say its pure bull$hit. Its so wrong on basically every level.

  18. Bryan

    September 5, 2015 at 7:54 pm

    I love watching Bundesliga, but this Fox deal is awful. With Gol TV you could at least watch the replays of games throughout the week on replay. You want to watch all the games on Fox, well then you have to pay an extra $20 a month for Fox Soccer 2 Go…which has no Roku or Amazon stick support, so even if you shell out the money you’re stuck watching on your computer, iPad,etc.

    Honestly any other network would be better for Bundesliga. 1. Nbc 2. ESPN 3. Bein/gol TV/fubo

    Fox needs to give Fox Soccer 2 Go away free to Fox subscribers at the very least, then they need to build an app for Roku so people to be able to watch those games easily on their big screens to be even in the same ballpark of service NBC is offering with the premier league. It’s really a shame because Bundeslga is a great league, trapped in an American TV agreement with the worst provider in term of helping build the popularity with a U.S. audience. I for one am incredibly bummed. At least Fubo network still offers BVB TV, so I can watch replays there, but for almost every other German side they’re facing a uphill battle on attracting US fans.

    • Mws192

      September 5, 2015 at 10:27 pm

      Air Play works with Fox Soccer 2 Go. You need an AppleTV, not a roku or Fire Stick to go with that iPad.

    • Harry Cee

      September 9, 2015 at 8:27 am

      This point is basically it. Fox Sports is running this the same way they ran the EPL and it’s an outdated model. If they hope to raise fans, they need to follow NBC’s model. it’s no excuse why they can’t get people to watch. NBC increased viewership in less than a year by setting up an easy model allowing viewers access to games and having a great pre- and post game wrap-up something that Fox just doesn’t seem like they can’t be bothered to include. So if they want to figure out why they can’t get good ratins, they need to look at the way they distribute the games to viewers and start from there.

      1. Fox Sports 2 needs to be in HD. In this day and age, no one should have to look at a good game in SD

      2. Stop charging people extra money for Fox Soccer Plus because almost no one I know uses it.

      3. Same with anything else that has a price tag on it. No reason why anyone should be paying Fox monthly for a product that NBC does much better with.

  19. Andrea Haag

    September 5, 2015 at 4:52 pm

    You know, I want to see all, or most of the Bundesliga games on Fox channels but my cable provider, Comcast/Xfinity, only has the FOX 1 Sports channel. Now this is one of the main reasons why most of us aren’t watching! If I could get FOX 2 Sports or the FOX Soccer channel I would probably be watching all day and all week. I don’t much care for the English Premier league.

  20. Ivan

    September 5, 2015 at 4:03 pm

    It’s too early, and the only way is up.

    The Bundesliga games I’ve seen this season so far have been more enjoyable to watch than the Premier League games.

    • Al Jean

      September 5, 2015 at 5:31 pm

      “the only way is up” Or down!

      “The Bundesliga games I’ve seen this season so far have been more enjoyable to watch than the Premier League games.” What? why you only want to compare it to EPL, why not La Liga or L1.

      There is a reason why EPL is the most watched league in the world, you like it or not. We can sit here try to find the excuses why Bundes, L1 or La Liga are better than EPL but, the number doesn’t lie.
      It seems like some people try really hard to find any excuse to denigrated EPL, but there is a reason why networks fighting for its right. Next stop is Chinese market, the already fighting for its. Here in France, Canal+ and Bein S, are waiting for the fight to begin.

      Some people will always say EPL is worse than this or that league, even the reality tell them other.

      Sorry for my English.

      • toby

        September 6, 2015 at 6:16 am

        It is pure envy. The EPL is the best and most popular league in world sport let alone football. So people have to criticise it to feel better about their minor leagues. The EPL makes more money for it’s foreign rights than the BL makes in total because it is the best product.

        • Flyvanescence

          September 6, 2015 at 9:44 am

          But simply put, La Liga Primera Division is easily better than the PL. Its teams dominate Europe (not just the “big 2”) and even the teams in the lower half of the table played cohesive interesting football. The reason is the player base. Spanish clubs churn out players that are far better than the ones coming through English ones. Almost all the PL’s talent is imported, which makes a lot of teams look like a patchwork of good players than a cohesive team.

          The main reason the PL is the most popular is the language. English is the generally worldwide spoken international language, making the league much easier to follow than other leagues.

          • Eugene

            September 6, 2015 at 10:59 pm

            La Liga is 2 teams, Barcelona and Madrid. No one else has a shot at winning. T
            he best players on those teams Ronaldo, Messi, Neymar, James, Suarez, Bale are also imported

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