ESPN, FOX, and TNT owner WarnerBros Discovery this week announced a major joint venture to stream sports, including soccer, on one app. ESPN is the home of a litany of club competitions in Europe, including the Bundesliga and LaLiga. FOX has provided a home for international soccer on United States television. The Gold Cup, European Championship, Copa America, and the World Cup come through FOX’s channels. Then, US Soccer has a deal with TNT that brings friendlies and select competitions involving the USMNT and USWNT to American screens. But what’s missing of importance for most soccer fans?
Much of the draw for this joint venture comes from the array of other sports. ESPN announced that this app, which is coming in the fall of 2024, would have an impressive list of channels. ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, SECN, ACCN, ESPNEWS, ABC, FOX, FS1, FS2, BTN, TNT, TBS and truTV are all available on this app. Moreover, any subscription will include ESPN+ access. Those channels have content from many sports, so this is far from just a soccer-specific offering.
However, there is no price point that the three companies have settled on yet. It is hard to estimate what that may be upon release, but it will likely hover around $50/month. Again, that is no guarantee. That raises the question of whether it is worth it for soccer fans to subscribe. Even with so many channels, considerable soccer content is not available in this mega app.
Top soccer competitions not on ESPN, FOX and TNT app
The biggest competition that is unavailable for American audiences is the Premier League. The most popular soccer league on American TV goes through NBC, Peacock and USA Network. Therefore, Premier League viewers will still need a different pay-TV subscription, or at least Peacock Premium, to not miss games from the English top flight.
Secondly, a big miss on the ESPN/FOX/TNT app is the lack of availability of Liga MX games from Mexico. There’s no Univision, TUDN or Telemundo on the app. In fact, the list of channels available on the new app is very English-language with no mentions of trying to appeal to the Spanish-language audience in the United States.
Then, CBS has several top-tier competitions that have strong followings in the United States. Look no further than the UEFA Champions League, Europa League, and Europa Conference League. Not only does the Champions League determine the best club in Europe, but it is the best opportunity to see the biggest clubs in the world go head-to-head. While this will include some of the clubs available on the ESPN, FOX, and TNT app, such as those in the Bundesliga or LaLiga, the Champions League is the pinnacle for many players.
CBS also has coverage of Serie A, which is of particular note for American supporters. Christian Pulisic, Yunus Musah, Weston McKennie, and Timothy Weah are four of the best players for the USMNT, and their entire club schedule is available through Paramount+.
The final pivotal channel for soccer fans not available in the joint venture is beIN SPORTS. The home of Ligue 1, the Turkish Super Lig, and the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations remains a player in the soccer TV market. However, these competitions will require an outside subscription as they are not in this app.
Extensive list of leagues and competitions not on the mega app
In terms of all the leagues that would not be covered in this joint venture, here is a list of what requires a different pay-TV or streaming subscription.
- AFC Asian Cup TV schedule
- AFC Champions League TV schedule
- Africa Cup of Nations TV schedule
- Argentine Primera División TV schedule
- Brasileirāo TV schedule
- CONCACAF Nations League TV schedule
- CONMEBOL Copa Libertadores TV schedule
- English Premier League TV schedule
- English Women’s Super League TV schedule
- French Ligue Un TV schedule
- Italian Coppa Italia TV schedule
- Italian Serie A TV schedule
- Liga MX TV schedule
- Select games available on FS2
- MLS TV schedule
- Select games available on FOX
- NWSL TV schedule
- Select games available on ESPN
- Portuguese Primeira Liga TV schedule
- Scottish Premiership TV schedule
- Turkish Super Lig TV schedule
- UEFA Champions League TV schedule
- UEFA Europa Conference League schedule
- UEFA Europa League TV schedule
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