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CBS beats Univision in Champions League Final TV ratings: Pod

In the NEW episode, number 1421, Christopher Harris is joined by special guest Felipe Cárdenas from The Athletic. We discuss:

• Our thoughts about Peter Drury replacing Arlo White,
• What Univision is looking for in the new MLS media rights deal,
• How CBS Sports scored more viewers than Univision for the Champions League Final,
• A discussion of whether CBS is pushing NBC Sports and other competitors to improve their soccer coverage,
• The difference between Spanish-language and English-language soccer commentators.
• And we answer the questions from you, the listeners.

Listen to the show via the player above or via this link.

Launched in 2006, the World Soccer Talk Podcast is the longest running podcast on the planet. Every week, we share the latest news about watching soccer on television and streaming, in addition to discussing what we like and dislike, and featuring your questions and feedback in our Listener Mailbag segment.

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  1. JP

    June 4, 2022 at 7:50 pm

    Great pod this week, very informative. It’s good to know at least one MLS television partner in Univision sees the problem with the crowded league schedule around “national” broadcasts. If MLS is smart they’ll listen and carve out more consistent match windows with dedicated slots for stand alone national TV matches.

    In regards to commentary style, I like the middle ground. The British style we get on UCL can be boring, but the Spanish language style can sometimes feel like too much and clownish at times. Have a few favorites over the years from Serie A world feed who I think thread the needle between seriousness and fun perfectly. Richard Whittle, Marco Palmieri, and Sheridan Bird was another one. He was more serious but his commentary also included some dry/sarcastic wit that wasn’t condescending towards the match. Fun in a different way.

    Agreed the American style is too focused on stats and filling every void in the match with words no matter how useful or not. Phil Schoen is very good, but never lets a match breath and is always musing out loud about various story line ancillary to the action going on. Twellman, you’ve heard the criticisms regularly. Andres Cordero is the best of the American commentators in my opinion. Doesn’t do too much, doesn’t take himself too seriously, and has a voice that doesn’t annoy you even when he’s calling a match solo.

  2. John Ketcham

    June 4, 2022 at 5:19 pm

    Great pod as usual, we’ve been talking about the MLS deal for so long but what I’d love to know is what’s the status of the EFL deal hopefully with ESPN+. Also is there any interest in the media world in an English language LigaMX package. Sadly I don’t have a talent for languages and the excitement of the broadcast is literally lost in translation for me

  3. dave

    June 4, 2022 at 2:59 pm

    Great episode with a fantastic guest! I especially enjoy the insights about how Univision seek to engage the rapidly increasing third-plus-generation Hispanic audience. A customer base that often speaks fluent English while enjoying Spanish language and Hispanic culture
    As Felipe and you talked, it resonated that TUDN often hit the sweet spot, having fun while focusing on the game. One of their many Liga MX kickoff lines is “the big 90-minute party starts now”. Broadcasts deliver on that promise, it is a bit like listening to a few experts talk shop while they barbecue. Makes even a bad game enjoyable. CBS are hitting their stride on this, happy to see it reflected in high viewer numbers
    Interesting also to hear the Univision perspective about MLS as shared by Felipe. To me, Univision create event atmospheres for soccer much like English channels do for NFL and NCAA football. Predictable times and channels, genuine rivalries, teams and games you want to watch as a neutral, clever use of scarcity, etc. I would love to be a fly on the wall when Univision and MLS discuss this topic

  4. Edwin

    June 4, 2022 at 2:34 pm

    Seems like MLS will end up making pretty well on this TV deal after all the drawn out press and some saying it will be a disaster deal. John Ourand reported last Wednesday on his podcast with Andrew Marchand there’s still a lot of moving pieces but in the end it’s looking like a 3x increase for MLS.

    That leads me to ask you and Kartik with that extra money and MLS no longer having to give a piece to USSF knowing MLS structure with DPs Allocation money and U-22s in that environment what changes would you guys make? Add more stars go more in the U-22 direction?

    I’m curious what you guys would do if MLS went and said hey Chris and Kartik these are your only constraints DPs,Allocation money and U-22. We’re struggling to find the best path to make this all work we won’t interfere with what you come up with?

  5. jason

    June 4, 2022 at 1:59 pm

    Why do Mexico national team play more games in the USA than in Mexico?

  6. jason

    June 4, 2022 at 10:54 am

    I think for next podcast it is worth talking about just how ANGRY the fandom is as Fox with their coverage in all facets. Not disapointment but dowright anger and hostility. And it is well deserved!

    • jason

      June 4, 2022 at 10:57 am

      More specifically the lack of coverage in some ways especially with Nations League. The nature of the soccer viewing landscape in the USA to watch UEFA internationals has fundamentally changed and been set back 20 years.

    • John Ketcham

      June 4, 2022 at 5:23 pm

      Could not agree more, I watched a lot of UEFA with the ESPN deal and I won’t even be able to watch every match in the EURO next time because I’m not cutting the cord for just a few games. Lochie Murdoch seem to contradict his cable primacy stance by entering into a deal with Fubo

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