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Comprehensive guide to World Cup coverage on US TV

Russia 2018 is here, and we’ve written a comprehensive guide to World Cup coverage on US TV in order to make your viewing choices as easy as possible.

Comprehensive guide to World Cup coverage

IMPORTANT DETAILS

If you want detailed information on all of the aspects of the World Cup TV and streaming coverage, read our World Cup TV coverage FAQ: Answering questions about Russia 2018 TV schedule, which goes into exhaustive detail including the kickoff times so you know when to set your alarm clock.

FOX SPORTS

With FOX Sports acquiring the English-language rights to World Cup 2018, that means that ESPN will not be broadcasting the competition for the first time in over a decade.

To find out all of the details (including how much FOX Sports paid for the rights), study up on our FAQ on FOX Sports World Cup TV coverage.

Other than the World Cup TV schedule and details about the World Cup Groups, the next most important question is who are the commentators. The good news is that Derek Rae is among the names, but the bad news is that only two out of the six lead commentators are going to be in Russia. The vast majority of the commentators and co-commentators will be holed up in a studio in Los Angeles.

Don’t worry though. The producer responsible for FOX Sports’ World Cup coverage says it’s no big deal.

Of course, we at World Soccer Talk railed against FOX’s decision as well as going on a rant about it. And we questioned why FOX Sports executives budgeted so much for a studio instead of investing in their talent especially after suffering a hangover after the US crashed out of World Cup qualifying.

Don’t miss FOX’s World Cup schedule as well as details on how to watch the World Cup in 4K and all of the World Cup shoulder programming FOX has.

TELEMUNDO

Telemundo is planning to deliver the biggest and most authentic World Cup tournament ever on US television. Read more about their plans in the FAQ on Telemundo World Cup TV coverage that we wrote.

While FOX has most of their commentators and co-commentators in Los Angeles, Telemundo will have all of the commentators in Russia. Read up on our guide to Telemundo commentators, presenters and analysts to learn more (as well as news about the first woman on US TV to commentate a men’s World Cup from the host country). Plus,
Telemundo will be sending reporters from across U.S. to the World Cup in Russia to make sure all angles are covered.

If you’re interested, we also interviewed Telemundo’s lead commentators to get insight on how they’re preparing for the World Cup tournament.

Don’t miss the Telemundo World Cup TV schedule

LEGAL STREAMING

FOX will be promoting their FOX Sports App pretty heavily, but the bad news is that you need a cable or satellite TV subscription to watch the World Cup on it.

Thankfully, there are several options to watch the World Cup that you can read about it in the cord cutter’s guide to watching the World Cup. fuboTV, especially, has announced an extensive World Cup streaming offering. Plus, if you want to watch the World Cup with foreign commentators, there’s news about Sling TV streaming the World Cup in Portuguese, French, Arabic and Polish.

Last but not least, FOX Soccer Match Pass will not be streaming the World Cup this summer.

 

bEIN SPORTS

beIN SPORTS will have a nightly episode of The Locker Room airing on their English- and Spanish-language channels where their experts will analyze the latest talking points from the World Cup.

Prior to the World Cup, beIN SPORTS will be running a nightly series titled Destination Russia, which will preview each of the teams competing at World Cup 2018.

beIN SPORTS will also broadcast a nightly series entitled Stars Of Russia. Every night, that show will chronicle two different stars to look at who will be playing at the 2018 World Cup.

In addition to the above programming, beIN SPORTS will have an impressive list of original content during the World Cup.

ESPN & ESPN DEPORTES

Despite not having the rights to the World Cup, ESPN has planned an impressive amount of coverage dedicated to the World Cup including a nightly show on SportsCenter as well as extensive coverage on ESPN FC.

ESPN FC will air nightly on ESPN+ with news and analysis from their analysts and reporters. ESPN is also sending Seb Salazar and Herculez Gomez to Russia to embed them in the Mexico camp to bring coverage of El Tri to viewers in the United States on a daily basis.

Plus, ESPN Deportes will have almost 500 hours of live World Cup coverage throughout the tournament across TV, digital and radio.

UNIVISION DEPORTES

Univision is planning to feature wall-to-wall coverage before World Cup games, during a halftime with no commercial breaks and post-match. And much more.

Read about Univision’s World Cup TV coverage plans.

NBC SPORTS

NBC Sports will be encouraging its viewers to watch the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Spanish on its sister network Telemundo Deportes. NBC has even got to the extent of making World Cup games available via the NBC Sports App (authentication required).

BBC AND ITV

While the BBC and ITV won’t be broadcasting in the United States, here’s the streaming schedule for their World Cup games.

SEE MORE: Details on World Cup radio broadcasts for soccer fans in the USA

 



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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Smoley

    June 1, 2018 at 6:21 pm

    Couldnt Telemundo at least have one guy speaking English along side the two other broadcasters speaking in Spanish durng the match?

    That’s what happens at my neighbor’s backyard BBQ, and we all sorta understand each other. That would still be better than going to Lalas’ house for dinner and having to listen to him talk nonsense, with Stu Holden attending on speaker phone.

    • Steven

      June 11, 2018 at 2:20 pm

      I think Telemundo is prevented from using English-speaking commentators beside the Spanish-speaking commentators. It would violate their agreement with FIFA. However, I don’t see anything wrong with the Spanish-speaking commentator occasionally using English phrases while calling the game. That may be one way to attract English-speaking viewers.

  2. Brian Woodford

    May 31, 2018 at 4:12 pm

    Wish they were still broadcasting it. Fox dishonors the game with commentators covering games from LA. Absurd.

  3. ToffeeFever

    May 30, 2018 at 5:14 pm

    ESPN/ABC televised the World Cup for 20 years (1994-2014), so this is actually the first time they won’t since TNT aired it exclusively back in 1990.

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