Blyth Spartans and Wrexham have an FA Cup tie that has TV coverage plans for American audiences. Yes, a pair of non-league teams are on US TV.
It stems from the Welcome to Wrexham program airing on FX (available on Sling Blue). As ESPN carries the FA Cup, this is an opportunity to broadcast their games for American audiences. This is something not currently available for the National League side.
Blyth vs Wrexham coverage plans
Kickoff time: 8 a.m. ET / 5 a.m. PT – Saturday, Oct. 15
Watch now (in USA): Live on Sling Orange
Commentators: Guy Mowbray and Alan Smith
US TV: Match is on ESPN2 (available via Sling Orange)
This game actually changed time slots just to accommodate the American audience. Previously, the Blyth vs Wrexham game had minimal coverage plans. After all, these are two non-league teams just trying to get to the first round proper of this season’s FA Cup. However, with the rise in popularity of Wrexham AFC, the FA bumped the game up by two hours for the American audience.
This game is actually at Blyth, meaning that many Americans are seeing the side for the first time. In terms of Wrexham, many fans may be used to the Racecourse Ground and the players. This is something entirely new for them.
Blyth hosts Wrexham
As stated, Wrexham AFC is now a household name for many Americans. A fair few of these fans are not even soccer fans. They might just be followers of the owners of the club, Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney.
Streaming rights and viewership in the United States is a major focus for the two owners. Both Reynolds and McElhenney expressed interest in allowing American audiences to watch their club. However, this is something that the National League, EFL and FA failed to allow.
However, the national tournament in England has exclusive rights in the United States that belong to ESPN. Therefore, this is a rare opportunity to broadcast the game. The movement to broadcast the game on one of ESPN’s main channels is a welcome sight for soccer fans.
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