Despite ESPN losing the World Cup rights to FOX Sports, ESPN plans extensive English and Spanish-language news and information coverage of the 2018 World Cup in Russia across its media platforms in the United States during the month-long tournament, June 14 – July 15.
ESPN’s English-language coverage will include a special one-hour SportsCenter – primarily on ESPN2 at 5 p.m. ET – on every match day of the tournament. The SportsCenter editions will focus primarily on World Cup news and analysis. ESPNFC.com correspondents will also provide on-site reports from Russia. ESPN FC, the global soccer program available exclusively in the U.S. on ESPN+, the ESPN App and ESPN.com, will also air daily.
ESPN Deportes, the 24-hour Spanish-language sports network, will prominently feature World Cup coverage on SportsCenter, Fútbol Picante, Jorge Ramos y su Banda, Raza Deportiva, Los Capitanes, Cronómetro, and more, providing expansive news and analysis throughout the competition. Much of the 2018 World Cup content on these shows will originate from the ESPN Deportes set in Moscow, overlooking the Kremlin.
Anchors Max Bretos and Antonietta “Toni” Collins will host English-language editions of SportsCenter focusing on the World Cup. In good news for soccer fans, Taylor Twellman will be on SportsCenter show daily.
Dan Thomas, Alexis Nunes and Adrian Healey will host ESPN FC shows on ESPN+.
Former England National Team player Steve McManaman, a top analyst during ESPN’s World Cup coverage in South Africa and Brazil, will return, joining a roster of experts in the U.S. that includes Craig Burley, Julie Foudy, Shaka Hislop, Kasey Keller, Paul Mariner, Kate Markgraf, Brian McBride, Januscz Michallik, Alejandro Moreno and Stewart Robson.
ESPN’s global soccer correspondents – Sam Borden, Gab Marcotti, Jeff Carlisle, Tom Marshall, Raf Honigstein, Colin Udoh, Julien Laurens, and more – will provide live, up-to-the-minute reports.
Reporter/host Sebastian Salazar and analyst Herculez Gomez, a former U.S. Men’s National Team player, will focus on the Mexican National Team.
Daily editions of ESPNFC.com, the leading global soccer news and information platform, will feature an array of World Cup content in English and Spanish with reporting from Russia, including reporters at every match. Planned highlights:
Reporters at every game and around the world: Correspondents – Nick Ames, Borden, Carlisle, Honigstein, Graham Hunter, Marcotti, Marshall, Nick Miller, Mark Ogden, Nick Miller and more – will report from Russia and from each participating country in the tournament.
ESPN the Magazine
ESPN The Magazine’s World Football issue hits newsstands June 8, focusing on the teams U.S. fans can root for and why, with the U.S. Men’s National Team not in the big competition. Highlights:
• Wright Thompson’s feature on Paul Pogba – France’s exciting and personable star – is the cover story
• When Mohamed Salah was taken down in the Champions League final, 100 million people felt his pain, writes Egyptian-American Mona Eltahawy, as she explores an anguished Egypt that awaits its star’s return
• ESPN’s global sports contributor Sam Borden goes inside the subculture of Russian soccer hooligans who meet in forests to fight each other, and more.
ESPN Social Media
Park the Bus with Taylor Twellman:
Park the Bus will stream live on Twitter (live.twitter.com/espn) during opening round Mexican National Team matches – vs. Germany (June 17), vs. South Korea (June 23) and vs. Sweden (June 27) – and during the knockout stage of the World Cup. ESPN’s lead soccer analyst Taylor Twellman will host. The program will offer a mix of analysis, reaction, fan questions and trending content.
ESPN Spanish-Language Platforms
ESPN Deportes will present nearly 500 live hours of World Cup-related news and information programming from June 14 – July 15 across ESPN’s Spanish-language network, digital and radio platforms.
ESPN Deportes News and Information
SportsCenter will feature a two-hour edition (M-F, 12-2 p.m. ET), and two evening shows (11 p.m. and 1 a.m. ET) except on days with México matches
Fútbol Picante, the Mexican soccer-themed news and analysis debate show, will expand to two hours nightly on primetime beginning at 9 p.m. with additional live shows before and after México matches
Raza Deportiva, the live morning radio/TV simulcast show, will expand from five to seven days a week (10 a.m.– noon ET)
Jorge Ramos y Su Banda will expand from five to seven days a week (4 – 7 p.m. ET)
José Ramón Fernández, David Faitelson and other commentators will discuss the latest of the tournament on Cronómetro, weekdays at 7 p.m. ET
Nación ESPN (weekdays at 8 p.m. ET) will air with special segments from Russia and Los Angeles
ESPN will have 34 on-air personalities providing analysis from Russia, led by 1978 World Cup champion Mario “El Matador” Kempes and his 1974 World Cup teammate Quique Wolff (Argentina); former Mexican National Team stars Hugo Sánchez, Jared Borgetti, Tomás Boy, José Antonio “Tato” Noriega, Rafa Puente and former player and coach Mario Carrillo; and Jorge Bermudez, former Colombian National Team player and a current club manager in the country.
Prominent soccer journalists who have covered numerous World Cup tournaments will be featured: José Ramón Fernández, Jorge Ramos, David Faitelson, Fernando Palomo, Andrés Agulla, Ciro Procuna, Hernán Pereyra, Hector Huerta, Kary Correa, Adalberto Franco, , Martin Ainstein, Heriberto Murrieta, Roberto Gómez Junco, Ángel García Toraño, Miroslava Montemayor, Alex de la Rosa, Vanessa Huppenkothen, Mauricio Pedroza, Rafa Ramos, Álvaro Morales, Jorge Pietrasanta, Sergio Dipp and more.
Reporters assigned to specific National Teams include John Sutcliffe (Mexico), Manu Martín (Spain), Andrés Agulla (Costa Rica) and Carolina Padrón (Panamá).
ESPN Deportes Radio, ESPN’s Spanish-language radio network in the U.S., will offer around-the-clock World Cup news, information and updates throughout its programs. Reporters – Pedro Vita (Covering Panamá), Marden Devia (Colombia), Stephanie Chaverri (Costa Rica) and Miguel Álvarez (México) – will provide up-to-the-minutes news daily. The shows: ESPN Rusia – Primer Tiempo (11 p.m. – 2 a.m. ET); ESPN Rusia – Segundo Tiempo (2 – 6 a.m.); Firma ESPN Mundialista (6 – 9 a.m.); Raza Deportiva Mundialista (9 a.m. – 12 p.m.); Es Así y Punto (12 – 1 p.m.); Zona ESPN Mundialista (1 – 4 p.m.); Jorge Ramos y Su Banda (4 – 7 p.m.) and Destino Fútbol Mundialista (7 – 11 p.m.).
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