Former Premier League footballers Stu Holden and Tim Howard have joined Turner Sports’ coverage of the UEFA Champions League as studio analysts, the broadcaster announced today.
Turner Sports will simultaneously utilize two fully-integrated studios – in Atlanta and Los Angeles – throughout its coverage of the UEFA Champions League. Howard, a current MLS player, will contribute to UEFA Champions League studio coverage on Wednesdays, with Holden regularly appearing on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. They will join previously announced host Kate Abdo and Steve Nash, along with additional commentators and special guests, throughout the season.
Additionally, Fernando Perez, a former MLB player with media experience as a MLB Network contributor and Vice correspondent, will be on site for B/R Football at select matches throughout the season, delivering a firsthand account of the unique atmospheres that surround the world’s game.
Howard, a veteran U.S. Men’s National Team goalkeeper and current member of Major League Soccer’s Colorado Rapids, also has extensive international experience with EPL clubs Manchester United (2003-07) and Everton (2006-16). Howard spent a decade with Everton, amassing more than 400 appearances. Prior to Everton, he spent three seasons at Old Trafford with Manchester United.
Holden notched two stints in the Barclays Premier League, first with Sunderland (2005) and later Bolton Wanderers (2010-14). In 2011, he earned Bolton Wanderers “Player of the Year” honors. Born in Aberdeen, Scotland, and raised in Texas, he won two MLS Cups in his home state while a member of the Houston Dynamo.
Prior to working for Turner Sports, Howard was a co-commentator for several Premier League matches on NBC. Howard is a complete unknown when it comes to analysis in a studio, so it’ll be interesting to see how he copes. His appearances as a co-commentator on the Premier League coverage were underwhelming, but that was several years ago so it’s possible he may have grown more into the role as time has passed by.
Holden, while working with Turner, will continue as a FOX Sports employee after his impressive co-commentary work for the American broadcaster during the World Cup.
For Holden, it’s a smart move given his knowledge of the game and the fact that FOX Sports is out of the European club soccer business except for the Bundesliga. It’s an opportunity for him to increase his exposure among a new audience, and to share with viewers his knowledge of the game where he was perhaps held back at times when he was at FOX Sports.