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World Cup TV coverage FAQ

For soccer fans in the United States, we’ve compiled all of the details about the World Cup TV schedule and World Cup TV coverage in one place. Plus we’ve answered several questions from you, the readers, so you have all of the information you need at your fingertips.

 

World Cup Coverage FAQs: FOX | Telemundo | Univision | BBC | ESPN | beIN

 

World Cup TV coverage FAQ:

 

Q: Who will be showing World Cup 2018 for viewers in the United States?

A: FOX Sports has the exclusive English-language rights to World Cup 2018, while Telemundo has the exclusive Spanish-language rights to World Cup 2018.

 

Q: How many games will be televised live on FOX Sports and Telemundo?

A: Every single game will be shown live in the United States. According to Telemundo, 56 of the 64 games will be shown live on Telemundo while the remaining eight matches will be on Universo.

FOX Sports will televise 38 games on the over-the-air big FOX network while 26 will be on FS1.

 

Q: Where is the World Cup TV schedule?

A: We’ve created a World Cup TV schedule that combines all of the viewing options available to soccer fans in the United States.

 

 

Q: What are the kickoff times for the World Cup 2018 games?

A: Since Russia is hosting the games and the country has a significant time zone difference with the United States, the kick-off times aren’t optimal for viewers in the States. Here’s the complete list of World Cup kickoff times. Most games will be at 8am ET, 11am ET and 2pm ET.

 

Q: How much World Cup coverage will each network have?

A: Telemundo will have 17 hours of 2018 World Cup coverage per day, which will total over 500 hours of World Cup-related programming across Telemundo and Universo as well as more than 1,000 hours of original content across Telemundo Deportes’ digital platforms.

FOX Sports promises 350 hours of FIFA World Cup programming.

ESPN and Univision Deportes are also offering a ton of World Cup coverage.

 

Q: What will FOX’s schedule of pre-match, post-match and entertainment shows look like?

A: Read our article to find out all of the details.

 

Q: How can I stream the World Cup legally and not miss anything?

A: After reviewing all of the streaming services available, we recommend fuboTV (more details here).

 

 

Q: When is the tournament?

A: June 14 to July 15, 2018.

 

Q: How many games will feature commentators from Telemundo and FOX Sports at the stadiums in Russia, and what is the lineup of commentators who will be there?

A: Telemundo has announced that they will have announcers in the stadiums for approximately 65% of the games, while the other 35% of games will feature commentators announcing games from the International Broadcast Center in Moscow. Telemundo’s lead commentator will be Andres Cantor who has worked at 10 World Cup tournaments in his stellar career.

For FOX Sports, 65% of FOX Sports’ commentators will be housed in Los Angeles calling the World Cup games off TV monitors. The others — John Strong/Stu Holden and JP Dellacamera/Tony Meola — will be calling games from the stadiums in Russia.

Read our guide to FOX’s World Cup commentators, analysts and presenters.

And check out our guide to Telemundo’s commentators, presenters and studio analysts.

 

Q: What talent will the networks have for World Cup 2018?

A: Telemundo’s lineup includes Andres Cantor, Sammy Sadovnik, Miguel Gurwitz, Ana Jurka, Carlos Hermosillo, Karim Mendiburu, Copan Alvarez, Manuel Sol, Juan Pablo Sorín, Claudio Borghi, Sebastián “El Loco” Abreu, Rolando Fonseca, Juan Pablo Ángel and Horacio Elizondo.

FOX’s lineup features commentators John Strong/Stu Holden, JP Dellacamera/Tony Meola, Derek Rae/Aly Wagner, Glenn Davis/Cobi Jones, Mark Followill/Warren Barton and Jorge Perez-Navarro/Mariano Trujillo. Match presenters and analysts include: Rob Stone (presenter), Kate Abdo (presenter), Fernando Fiore (presenter), Ian Joy (presenter), Alexi Lalas, Aly Wagner, Ian Wright, Lothar Matthäus, Moises Muñoz, Kelly Smith, Hernan Crespo, Guus Hiddink and Dr Joe Machnik.

 

Q: How many World Cup tournaments has FOX Sports and Telemundo televised before?

A: It’s the first time ever that FOX Sports and Telemundo have televised a men’s World Cup tournament. FOX Sports televised the 2015 Women’s World Cup, while Telemundo’s parent company NBC Universal has hosted several Olympics.

 

Q: How will Telemundo differentiate itself from FOX Sports (and vice-versa)?

A: Telemundo’s Jim Bell says, “I think our coverage is always different. I think it’s more authentic. We all believe it’s more fun. And having our announcers at the venues, depending on how far FOX cuts back, I think everyone believes that you just get a better call when you smell the grass and seeing it in three dimensions and calling it from the booth.”

“Our goal from the beginning has been to create the most authentic and consumer-engaging coverage of a World Cup that has ever been seen in the United States,” said Telemundo Deportes Executive Vice President Eli Velazquez. “We’re looking at how we can create the most engaging, in-depth and authentic coverage that will be relatable not just to diehard soccer fans but also to the casual fans.”

In addition, Telemundo Deportes announced its first ever daily special prime-time show exclusively dedicated to World Cup, live on Telemundo. Airing nightly at 7 p.m. ET on Telemundo, throughout the duration of the tournament, the show marks the first time ever a U.S. broadcaster of the World Cup produces a prime time show solely dedicated to the World Cup.

FOX Sports’ presentation of the global event features more soccer matches on broadcast television than the last four World Cups combined (English-language).

On a daily basis, FOX will keep viewers updated on all of the latest news, discussion and highlights with two shows. The first is World Cup Live. It’ll be hosted by Kate Abdo from 6am ET as it previews that day’s action. The matches will be hosted by Rob Stone. Then every evening, FOX will broadcast World Cup Tonight every afternoon from Russia with Fernando Fiore as the host of the daily highlights and discussion show.

 

Q: What are the expectations from the broadcasters regarding the number of viewers that will tune in to the World Cup games?

A: Telemundo Executive Producer Jim Bell says that “this World Cup will be the most consumed event in Spanish-language history given the proliferation of [mobile, computer and tablet] screens, social and digital and good ‘ol linear television.” No specific estimates were given in terms of numbers, but the expectations are high.

FOX Sports’ Executive Producer David Neal says that “We are not going to judge ourselves on the ratings and the numbers and it is really is an apples to oranges comparison. We will judge ourselves on the level of excellence we expect from ourselves and we won’t get distracted by numbers.”

 

Q: What impact will the United States not qualifying for the 2018 World Cup have on the coverage?

A: “It’s unfortunate that the United States didn’t make it in [to the World Cup],” said Telemundo Deportes President Ray Warren. “But we’re going to serve our fans because it’s the World Cup. We have no plans to do anything less because of [the US not qualifying].”

Meanwhile, it’s understood that FOX Sports slashed their World Cup budget as a result of the US Men’s National Team failing to qualify.

 

Q: How many homes is Telemundo available in?

A: Telemundo is in more than 53 million homes in the United States. It reaches 94% of U.S. Hispanic viewers in 210 markets through its 17 owned stations and 55 broadcast affiliates. In addition, Telemundo also owns WKAQ, a local television station serving Puerto Rico.

Universo is available in more than 40 million households.

 

Q: What about reruns of World Cup games for soccer fans who miss the live games?

A: Universo will carry encore presentations of each day’s games beginning at 5 p.m. ET every day from Friday, June 15 through Sunday, June 24. During the last week of the group stage, from Monday, June 25, through Thursday, June 28, encores will begin at 4:30 p.m. ET. For the round of 16 and through the Final, encore presentations will air each night beginning at 8 p.m. ET.

FOX Sports has released no details about re-runs, but games will be available on-demand via their FOX Sports Go and FOX Sports apps.

 

Q: Will Telemundo have an SAP option?

A: No, Telemundo will not have a SAP option. Telemundo has the exclusive Spanish-language rights so they’re not allowed to broadcast games in English-language even via SAP. Vice-versa, FOX Sports will not have a SAP option to feature Spanish-language commentary.

 

Q: How can I watch the World Cup in 4K HDR?

A: Hisense and FOX Sports have partnered to broadcast the games in 4K HDR. Read more here. Games will also be available via DIRECTV (read more about DIRECTV’s 4K coverage).

Telemundo will offer a special multi camera 4K feed available on a video-on-demand, next-day basis for every game through Comcast and xFinity.

 

Q: What are the plans to broadcast the World Cup games on radio?

A: As of press time, FOX Sports have released zero details on their radio plans. What we do know is that Fútbol de Primera will broadcast the games on Spanish-language radio (see radio schedule). Here are the alternatives to listen to the World Cup on radio in the United States for English-language soccer fans.

 

Q: What programming will beIN SPORTS have during the World Cup?

A: While beIN SPORTS does not have the rights to broadcast the World Cup, beIN SPORTS will have an impressive list of original content during the World Cup.

 

Q: Where can I find commentaries of the World Cup in languages other than English and Spanish?

A: Read our complete list of international commentaries available for the World Cup including Arabic, French, Portuguese and Polish.

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27 Comments

27 Comments

  1. Ese Mismo

    May 31, 2018 at 2:45 pm

    how do we watch 4K world up matches in the US?

  2. Miguel Tenorio

    May 27, 2018 at 3:17 pm

    Gaffer, what time will World Cup Tonight air in the evenings? and what Network? I’m assuming FS1

  3. Hecho En Ciudad Universitario

    May 16, 2018 at 1:35 pm

    World Cup Live from FOX will it be on FS1 or FOX.

    • Christopher Harris

      May 16, 2018 at 2:21 pm

      It’ll be on FS1 every morning from 6am ET.

      • Cornelius Jones

        May 16, 2018 at 5:29 pm

        Not on June 16, right? FRA-AUS at 5:00 AM CT/6 ET

        • Christopher Harris

          May 16, 2018 at 5:55 pm

          Correct. The France-Australia game kicks off at 6am ET that day, so World Cup Live won’t be on at 6am ET that morning.

          • Fiorentina1969

            May 26, 2018 at 11:23 am

            Hi there — I thought I’d check one more time if you heard anything about possible tape delays in English of World Cup football matches. Let me know at your convenience. Thanks.

            • Christopher Harris

              May 26, 2018 at 11:47 am

              Not a word from FOX. I’ve asked their PR department, but no word back. It sounds like they haven’t made a decision yet.

              • Fiorentina1969

                July 1, 2018 at 9:39 am

                Hi there,

                I’m enjoying the football World Cup coverage — I think they’re doing a good job. One question: do you happen to know who’s got the rights for Euro 2020? Fox or ESPN? Thanks.

                • Christopher Harris

                  July 1, 2018 at 10:07 am

                  ESPN has the rights to Euro 2020.

              • Fiorentina1969

                July 4, 2018 at 12:15 am

                Hi there,

                Since for Wednesday 4-Jul or Thursday 5-Jul there are no scheduled live football matches, are you aware of any World Cup shows on Fox or FS1 on these two days? Thanks.

                • Christopher Harris

                  July 4, 2018 at 4:01 pm

                  I’m not aware of anything, sorry!

  4. R.O

    February 9, 2018 at 4:18 pm

    “FOX Sports will televise all of the games across its network of channels including FOX, FS1, FS2 and FOX Soccer Plus.”

    You’re kidding – right?! FS2 and Fox Soccer Plus?! Channels that most providers don’t carry and you have to pay extra to get FSP if provider does carry it. This is the freakin World Cup and not the Super Bowl or some other one country tournament. I will watch most games on Telemundo but looks like I’ll miss a few that aren’t on Telemundo (shown on Universo)

    This will be the 1st WC since 1982 that I won’t be able to watch all the games because Fox decided to put some games on an “off” channels and providers refuse to carry.

    I know it’s about money, but FIFA should not have awarded Fox the WC unless all the games are available on channels that 99.99% who have cable and Sat can get and not on a specialty channel

    At least when ESPN had it, it was on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC. All providers carried those channels.

  5. Juan

    February 9, 2018 at 10:00 am

    Telemundo in HD? When?

  6. Sri

    February 8, 2018 at 1:57 pm

    Will there be 4K Ultra HD broadcast in the USA? if so I am assuming the rights are not exclusive to Hisense TV’s, correct?

  7. vabeacher

    January 28, 2018 at 10:38 pm

    I’m sure Kate Abdo will get a lot of screen time, Fox loves their female hosts. I’m guessing she will come out of this World Cup as a superstar, and get a major broadcasting job for other sports in addition to soccer.

  8. Nino

    December 27, 2017 at 11:11 am

    Anybody trust fox (NO) or anyone trust Fox News ( I don’t think so ) so perhaps no one trust FOX sports ???

    • Curtis Williams

      May 16, 2018 at 6:00 pm

      You mean, Faux Sports, right?

  9. rkujay

    December 16, 2017 at 6:17 am

    What happened to the self imposed ban? One week? Please…for murdering multiple websites any reasonable prosecutor would opt for 20 to life.

    • Jim

      December 16, 2017 at 6:51 pm

      When he said “time for me to disappear for a while” he meant just while he took a nap.

  10. Cantona

    December 15, 2017 at 5:01 pm

    So now you have read their contracts??? Your worthless

    Cantona—-

  11. Harry

    December 12, 2017 at 9:52 am

    If Fox was smart it would use the world feed for commentary. Now that the US is not in the tournament it won’t matter. Will save them some money as well.
    Another option for Fox would be to cover the tournament by embracing one of the nations and using analysts from that nation. It will make it more interesting and give the coverage some edge.

    • Oliver Tse

      December 15, 2017 at 11:18 am

      Expecting FOX Sports to deploy 3 Mexicans for all matches involving Mexico through the quarterfinal round.

      Jorge Perez-Navarro (on loan from ESPN Deportes’ Miami bureau) will call play by play (Spanish naming convention. Perez is his surname.)

      Mariano Trujillo (on loan from FOX Deportes) will be the analyst, both in the booth and in the studio.

      Francisco X Rivera will be the touchline reporter.

      ==

      As for the other commentators, we know:

      John Strong and Landon Donovan will be the #1 team at FOX Sports, as BOTH have contractual language guaranteeing them spots on the #1 team.

      Now that Brad Friedel is no longer available (head coach of New England Revolution), the analyst role on the #2 team will be split between Stuart Holden and Aly Wagner, with Wagner almost a LOCK to call the 3rd place game due to her experience as a player at World Cup 3rd place matches (she did NOT mail it in, unlike Alexi Lalas who mailed in the 1995 Copa America 3rd place match.) JP DellaCamera will be the #2 play-by-play man.

      Your guess is as good as mine how FOX will mix and match LA-based announcers for teams #4-6. We do know that only American accents will be considered by David Neal, so the pool of suspects narrow: Glenn Davis, Mark Followill, Mark Rogodino (pxp); Cobi Jones, Tony Meola, Brian Dunseth (analyst).

  12. Azer

    December 3, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    I wish I can spend a month overseas or even go to Canada and watch the World Cup in style instead of watching it on Fox Sports. Canada will use the world feed for commentary while it looks like Fox will be using it’s domestic crew from LA. Think about it people, JP Dellacamera calling a Germany or England game. Are you kidding me, No thanks. We miss you ESPN.

  13. Ivan

    December 1, 2017 at 12:39 pm

    Not many exciting games, to be honest…”I can’t wait for the tourney opener between Russia and Saudi Arabia.” Said NO ONE EVER!

    32 teams is about 8 too many…yet they want to completely nullify the excitement of qualifiers and get the tournament to 100 teams or whatever shortsighted, money grabbing idea FIFA has now conjured…

    Oh, well, it means I will get a lot more work done and can afford to skip a good portion of the group stage games on weekdays . That’s going to be a first for me, but, I mean, Panama v. Tunisia; Poland – Senegal; there are some truly awful matches early on that unless you have nothing better to do or your country isn’t playing, then-me-h.

    • Shannon

      December 1, 2017 at 1:34 pm

      What do you want? A world cup with just Brazil, Argentina, Germany & Spain to start with?
      I bet the whole of Russia & Saudi Arabia can’t wait for the tourney opener. Plus a lot of other soccer fans round the world. Myself included.
      It’s actually these sort of games that make the world cup what it is. The best sporting tournament in the world.

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