Barcelona to air on ABC TV during opening LaLiga weekend of ESPN’s 8-year-deal

When LaLiga Santander returns for its 91st season on Friday, August 13, ESPN+ will be the exclusive, new home of coverage in the U.S. and content from the league will appear across a combination of ESPN, ESPN Deportes, and ABC platforms. Opening weekend will kick off with Valencia CF at home against Getafe CF on Friday, August 13, with a live pre-show at 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPN+.

On Sunday, August 15, a LaLiga match will air for the first time ever on broadcast television in the U.S. when FC Barcelona hosts Real Sociedad at Camp Nou in Barcelona with live coverage beginning with a 30-minute pregame show at 1:30 p.m. The Spanish-language telecast of the match will be on ESPN Deportes, and ESPN+ will stream the English- and Spanish-language presentations of the match.

LaLiga 2021-22 season-opening weekend will cover four days (Friday, Aug. 13 – Monday, Aug. 16) featuring 10 matches streaming live in English and Spanish on ESPN+. In Friday’s opening match, Valencia CF’s new manager José Bordalás will make his debut against former team Getafe CF, which he coached for the past five years. The four matches on Saturday include: CA Osasuna vs. Espanyol (11 a.m.), Cádiz vs. Levante UD and RCD Mallorca vs. Real Betis (1:30 p.m.), and D. Alavés vs. Real Madrid, the kickoff of Carlo Ancelotti’s second spell in charge as Los Blancos, at Vitoria-Gasteiz, Álava (coverage begins at 3:30 p.m.).

SEE MORE: ESPN+ FAQ for La Liga: Everything you need to know

On Sunday, August 15, three matches will start with RC Celta vs. LaLiga’s reigning champion Atlético de Madrid (coverage begins at 11 a.m.), FC Barcelona hosting Real Sociedad (coverage begins at 1:30 p.m. live from Camp Nou), and Sevilla FC vs. Rayo Vallecano (4:15 p.m.). Matchday 1 action concludes Monday, August 16, with Villarreal CF vs. Granada CF (2 p.m.), followed by Elche CF vs. Athletic Club (4 p.m.).

A Look at FC Barcelona vs. Real Sociedad, Sun., August 15, 2 p.m., ESPN+, ESPN Deportes, ABC

After losing the league title to Madrid-based teams in the last two seasons and finishing the last one in third place, Barcelona is looking to return to the top in 2021-22 – a title the team last won in the 2018-19 season. Real Sociedad is coming off an excellent 2020-21 season where it finished in fifth place and earned a spot in European competition. The most recent meeting between both clubs was a 6-1 Barcelona win at the Camp Nou on March 21, where Lionel Messi scored two goals and delivered an assist in his record-breaking 768th appearance for Barcelona, who extended their home winning streak in LaLiga against Los Txuri-urdin to 23 games. Real Sociedad is looking for its first league win at Barcelona since 1991.

Comprehensive Surround Programming on ESPN+

Beyond the live matches, ESPN+ will offer a variety of surround programming focused on LaLiga – including match previews, highlights, magazine shows, and more – and will continue to cover LaLiga extensively on signature ESPN+ shows including ESPN FC, Jorge Ramos y su Banda and Fuera de Juego.

ESPN FC, ESPN’s signature soccer program with news, analysis and highlights from around the world seven days a week, will cover LaLiga Santander throughout the season, and ESPN FC’s LaLiga Matchday 1 coverage will include pre- and post-shows for the day’s key matches.

Additional LaLiga coverage on ESPN+ includes comprehensive archive of classic matches, as well as several LaLiga shows including Pre-Season LaLiga, a yearly program dedicated to the upcoming season; LaLiga World, a magazine show available to stream every Tuesday during season featuring highlights from the previous week’s round; LaLiga Show, a weekly program featuring previews for next round every Thursday; and the LaLiga Highlights Show, a Sunday night highlight show recapping the previous round. All surround programming will be available in English and Spanish on ESPN+ at the start of the season.

ESPN’s 20-Day Countdown to LaLiga

As the new LaLiga season nears, ESPN will be counting down by introducing one of LaLiga’s 20 clubs to fans each day leading up to Matchday 1. Starting this Saturday, July 24, every LaLiga club will be featured in a “takeover” day across The Walt Disney Company platforms – each day will showcase the club’s unique stories, traditions, star players, fan bases and rich histories. The 20-day countdown will include custom hype videos, celebrity fan guests and custom social content.

ESPN+ will stream more than 380 matches in English and Spanish during the LaLiga season as part of a historic rights agreement announced earlier this year.

LaLiga Santander, the top division in Spanish soccer, is one of the world’s marquee sports leagues, featuring 20 clubs, including perennial global powers FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Sevilla FC, and more. The 2021-22 season will see 17 clubs from the 2020-21 season — D. Alavés, Athletic Club, Atlético de Madrid, FC Barcelona, Cádiz CF, RC Celta Vigo, Elche CF, Getafe CF, Granada CF, Levante UD, CA Osasuna, Real Betis, Real Madrid, Real Sociedad, Sevilla FC, Valencia CF and Villarreal CF, and Rayo Vallecano, RCD Espanyol de Barcelona and RCD Mallorca, the three clubs promoted from the 2020-21 Segunda División.

 

La Liga TV schedule

All times Eastern.

 

Friday, August 13

03:00 pm EDT
Valencia vs. Getafe
ESPN+

Saturday, August 14

11:00 am EDT
Osasuna vs. Espanyol
ESPN+
01:30 pm EDT
Mallorca vs. Real Betis
ESPN+
01:30 pm EDT
Cádiz vs. Levante
ESPN+
04:00 pm EDT
Alavés vs. Real Madrid
ESPN+

Sunday, August 15

11:30 am EDT
Celta Vigo vs. Atletico Madrid
ESPN+
02:00 pm EDT
Barcelona vs. Real Sociedad
ABC, ESPN Deportes, ESPN+
04:15 pm EDT
Sevilla FC vs. Rayo Vallecano
ESPN+

Monday, August 16

02:00 pm EDT
Villarreal vs. Granada
ESPN+
02:00 pm EDT
Elche vs. Athletic Bilbao
ESPN+

 

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