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English Championship deal with ESPN close to being renewed

English Championship deal

ESPN’s English Championship deal is close to being renewed, sources revealed to World Soccer Talk.

With the 2022/23 season scheduled to begin Friday, July 29, anticipation is building for the return of the English Championship, League One and League Two. While a deal has not yet been signed, World Soccer Talk understands that ESPN is making plans for the new season in anticipation of the agreement being finalized. For instance, the opening game of the 2022/23 Championship season is going to be on ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes. When it airs, the English Championship is set to get a major boost in the reach for the league with the opening game on linear television. For the remainder of the season, the vast majority of games available to ESPN are going to be on ESPN+.

Interest growing for Championship among US soccer fans

Competitively, the English Championship is arguably the best second division league in the world. This season, in particular, will be of even greater interest for American viewers. US Men’s National Team (USMNT) goalkeeper Zach Steffen has joined Championship club Middlesbrough on loan. As of press time, Daryl Dike is at West Bromwich Albion. Plus other Americans include Josh Sargent (Norwich), Duane Holmes (Huddersfield), Ethan Horvath (Luton), Lynden Gooch (Sunderland), among others.

Among soccer fans who regularly watch the Championship, their chief complaint is that ESPN+ doesn’t broadcast all of the games. However, ESPN+ broadcasts all of the games made available to them. Since the majority of Championship clubs have their own streaming channel, the only way to watch all games is to subscribe to two services. For instance, a fan of Swansea City needs to subscribe to both ESPN+ and the Swansea City streaming service to have access to all the games of his or her favorite team. The club-specific streaming service used by many clubs in the Football League is known as iFollow. Check your official club’s website for more information about their streaming service.

On a typical weekend, ESPN+ streams three to four games. For soccer fans in the United States, games on the iFollow streaming service are blocked when games are on ESPN+.

2022/23 English Championship deal is close

With new clubs to the Championship this season featuring Sunderland, Burnley, Norwich, Watford, Wigan Athletic and Rotherham, the 2022/23 season promises to be another competitive one. Last season, Fulham, Bournemouth and Nottingham Forest were the three teams promoted to the Premier League after a long and exciting season.

ESPN’s schedule of Championship games is subject to change. Everything is contingent on the deal being signed, but presumably if the agreements aren’t finalized by Friday, ESPN will temporarily broadcast the games to ensure that fans don’t miss out on the action.


Championship TV schedule

All times Eastern.


Friday, August 19

03:00 pm EDT
Norwich City vs. Millwall

Saturday, August 20

10:00 am EDT
Preston North End vs. Watford

Sunday, August 21

07:00 am EDT
Bristol City vs. Cardiff City

Friday, August 26

03:00 pm EDT
Luton Town vs. Sheffield United

Saturday, August 27

07:30 am EDT
Sunderland vs. Norwich City
10:00 am EDT
Huddersfield Town vs. West Bromwich Albion

Tuesday, August 30

03:00 pm EDT
Watford vs. Middlesbrough

Wednesday, August 31

03:00 pm EDT
Blackpool vs. Blackburn Rovers


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  1. Noel

    July 27, 2022 at 11:57 am

    I think as a Portsmouth fc fan ESPN should show more league one matches as well but I think what is televised in uk would be shown on ESPN+ for EFL league one. I like watching EFL Championship

  2. Andrew

    July 26, 2022 at 1:18 pm

    Any word on League one matches? ESPN+ has shown some in recent seasons but often it seemed like weeks would go by between matches.

  3. KW

    July 26, 2022 at 11:34 am

    Does this deal include FA and League Cups? Or is that a separate deal?

  4. Mike

    July 26, 2022 at 8:14 am

    I do wish the EFL would allow all matches to be broadcast in the US. I get trying to make people purchase iFollow, so they think twice and purchase a ticket to the match instead. This situation is not present in the US, and could boost clubs financially from the ESPN deal (streaming rights, name recognition of smaller clubs, purchase of kits, etc..

    Oh well, I will still watch what is available.

  5. Daniel

    July 26, 2022 at 2:35 am

    So basically the only games avaliable to ESPN+ is whatever Sky broadcasts. Correct? The EFL are just kicking themselves in the foot not being able to all the games in the US. I really had wished NBC got this so they could be the Home of English Football. Prem,EFL,EFL Cup,FA Cup.

  6. jason

    July 25, 2022 at 9:08 pm

    EFL and FA competiations is a pretty good deal. Can get your fix of English football no problem with E+ still.

    Looks like the big change from last season to next with E+ is the loss of the Uefa international which stinks big time. Is Dutch Eredvise stil on E+ this season? It does not appear so far that E+ has any new soccer additions for this season so far.

  7. Cory

    July 25, 2022 at 9:03 pm

    What are the teams and players that folks should tune into for these matches this season? I always give QPR a shot. Who else thinks EVERTON will be on ESPN+ in EFL next season?!

    • jason

      July 25, 2022 at 9:10 pm

      I always cheer for bigger clubs to get relegated. Everton, Newcastle, Aston Villa, West Ham Utd you name it. Tired of Norwich, Fulham, and Watford wasting good relegation places for the names I mentioned. Thankfully Nor and Wat are in Division 2 now and hope they stay there. And Fulham does well this year. That will help out matters.

    • Christopher Harris

      July 26, 2022 at 7:22 am

      Hi Cory, we’re recording a preview of the English Championship season today on our podcast, and we’ll answer this very topic. Thanks for the question.

  8. Bill

    July 25, 2022 at 5:34 pm

    Yes the laegue is a war of attrition that usually goes right to the last weekend and then the 4 team playoff for the last promotion. The season as it prgresses is very dramatic and I just wish we could watch any of the matches like with the EPL but I get the club tv deals.

    Time to start the fun for 2022-2023!

  9. El Jefe

    July 25, 2022 at 2:48 pm

    I think teams are dropping off Ifollow. Im a huge US Millwall supporter and they left Ifollow this year. Hopefully ESPN (as much as I despise ESPN) will show all the games this year.

  10. UnitedFan 3478

    July 25, 2022 at 10:08 am

    So NBC won’t get the EFL? This is sad because they have the Premier League

    • locofooty

      July 25, 2022 at 10:30 am

      Oh well, get over it. ESPN needs properties too. Multicast!

      • UnitedFan 3478

        July 25, 2022 at 10:59 am

        Then ESPN should’ve got the EPL, but they didn’t. It makes more sense for Peacock/NBC to get the EFL.

        • locofooty

          July 25, 2022 at 12:58 pm

          It doesn’t make sense to NBC themselves. They have clearly shown they could care less about the league cup and the championship. They want the premier product. Give it a rest.

    • jason

      July 25, 2022 at 9:19 pm

      Speak for yourself. I am quite happy for the EFL and FA competitions to be on E+

  11. Tim Bhoy

    July 25, 2022 at 9:28 am

    The Championship is such a long war of attrition (46 league matches) but uniquely compelling. The single, BEST feature is a playoff system for the last oromotion spot.

    Add La Liga, the Dutch Eredivise & the Bundesliga, ESPN+ was a simple choice here.

  12. Eplnfl

    July 25, 2022 at 8:45 am

    I have enjoyed the ease and flexibility of connecting to ESPN+ and so most weekends would watch a Championship match. So this is good news for me. I will admit I would often try to watch Forest play but now they have moved on up!

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