Whiparound shows are becoming increasingly important soccer shows for American audiences. With more games at similar times, it is hard for the average soccer fan to truly keep track of everything happening at once. Whiparound shows at least provide the opportunity to get the latest updates as they happen from around the grounds.

American soccer fans have several to choose from. Of course, none of these consist of several leagues. The nature of American soccer coverage is dispersed across a number of networks. That being said, NBC, Apple, CBS and TUDN run whiparound shows for soccer.

Here those are, and what each one does well, and not so well:

Soccer whiparound shows on TV

MLS 360

MLS 360 is the whiparound show on MLS Season Pass. As one can tell by the name, it exclusively covers Major League Soccer games. This airs every Saturday, and covers almost every single MLS game. There are, occasionally, games before MLS 360 starts. Then, there are games on the Sunday after.

MLS 360 is the key focus of MLS Season Pass. In previous seasons, games featured on different broadcasters at different times. Now, all MLS games are in one spot and, generally speaking, at the same time. You do not even need a subscription to MLS Season Pass. All Apple TV+ subscribers have access to MLS 360.

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The great thing about MLS 360 is simply how long it is. Each matchday provides over four hours of coverage as the studio crew follows along with each game happening. Plus, Apple’s production quality is almost unmatched. It is professional, and it has come a long way since a rocky start in its debut week in February. With the length of the Apple deal (10 years), it continues to improve, and it must for MLS Season Pass to have its expected success.

Goal Rush

Goal Rush on Peacock applies to the Premier League. Like MLS 360, it happens on Saturday’s during the EPL campaign, and is mostly shown in the 10 a.m. ET kickoff window. Of course, this can change, as it did during Championship Sunday to conclude the season, when all games are on at one time.

Goal Rush differs heavily from MLS 360 and the others to follow. Goal Rush focuses on one game, but then provides live updates from other games as they happen. This is both a good and a bad thing.

Starting with the good, there is the chance that NBC puts a different game on USA Network from the one that is on Goal Rush. Premier League Productions controls which game is on Goal Rush, not NBC. However, if those games are different, Premier League fans can watch one game on one screen, and another on a different screen. Even then, if the USA Network game is the same as the one on Goal Rush, it means every game in the 10 a.m. kickoff window is available on Peacock.

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Also on the good, Goal Rush allows you to at least follow along with one game. The commentators, which tend to be Joe Speight as the host and Don Hutchison as the analyst, provide commentary and updates as they happen.

That being said, whiparound shows should do more than just show goals. A game can end 0-0 and still be exciting. However, with Goal Rush, there would be almost no way to know. Sure, Goal Rush does occasionally show close calls, big saves or dramatic moments like a red card. However, the focus is in the name: goals. If other games have goals, one game could easily be forgotten.

Golazo Show

On CBS, we have the Golazo Show, not to be confused with the CBS Sports Golazo Network. The Golazo Show pops up on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays on European nights in the UEFA Champions League, Europa League and Europa Conference League. Crews for the show differ between the days, but it is good to get the variety. One major consistent is the always-vibrant Nico Cantor, who does well to show emotion to audiences tracking multiple games.

Unlike Goal Rush, the Golazo Show does not focus on just one game. It rotates around the grounds regardless of the moments. If the game currently being shown dies down, producers jump over to another game where something may be happening. The Golazo Show provides a good mix in-game commentary from CBS and the World Feed. However, audiences also get to listen to Cantor and the other members of the studio crew in between games to provide commentary and analysis of their own.

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As an added benefit, the Golazo Show is incredibly useful during the last days of the group stage when simultaneous kickoffs come into play. Seeing one result impact another make the whiparound show must-see TV. However, that is not fair to the other whiparound shows that focus on domestic leagues. After all, Goal Rush was pivotal in the dramatic end to the 2021/22 Premier League.

One area that the Golazo Show can improve on is increased emphasis on in-game commentary. There is definitely value in listening to the hosts and pundits talk about the games happening at the time. However, fans may want to, as literally as possible, jump between the grounds. A small introduction to what is happening is great. But the hosts can trust the in-game announcers to break down the action they have been watching.

Zona Futbol

The Spanish-language whiparound show Zona Futbol is available on TUDN. Funnily enough, Nico Cantor from CBS used to host this show before making the switch to the Golazo Show. Zona Futbol, just like the Golazo Show, works for the broadcasts of the UEFA Champions League. Of course, given the primary language of TUDN, Zona Futbol is in Spanish.

To be fair, CBS’ Golazo Show is very similar to Zona Futbol. The format and production of the show are almost identical.

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The pros for Zona Futbol are just like the Golazo Show. However, audiences also hear a little chime when someone scores a goal. So, if you’re Spanish is a little rusty, you will at least know when a goal goes in. Also, broadcasts are commercial free, so you do not miss any of the action. MLS 360 had some commercials and advertisements, which crept into the enjoyment.

The biggest drawback for most audiences is that it is in Spanish. Commentary can help the understanding, especially when results in one game impact what happens in another. However, Spanish-language commentary is arguably more entertaining than most of the English content.