- ESPN Major League Soccer
Infobox Television | show_name=ESPN2 Major League Soccer
runtime = 2 or 2.5 hours
starring = "Various personalities" (see below)
country = USA
last_aired = Present
"ESPN Major League Soccer" is a promotion of
Major League Socceron ESPN2and ESPN on ABC, with simulcasts on ESPN2HD and ABCHD. Major League Soccer on ESPN2 debuted in the leagues first season, 1996and is guaranteed to stay on the network till at least 2014. From 1996to 2006, the weekly soccer match on ESPN2was called " MLS Soccer Saturday", but in the new contract, that was replaced by " MLS Primetime Thursday."
August 4, 2006, ESPNreached a comprehensive multimedia agreement with Soccer United Marketing (SUM) for the rights to Major League Soccer through 2014. As part of the eight-year agreement, ESPN2 will televise 26 regular-season and three playoff MLS matches each year, all in primetime on Thursdays. ABC will present the league's three marquee events — season-opening match, All-Star game and the MLS Cup.
Highlights of the agreement include:
*ESPN2 will televise 26 regular-season MLS matches, primarily on Thursday nights
*ESPN2 will televise three MLS playoff matches on Thursday nights
*ABC will broadcast one regular season match and MLS Cup, and has the option of airing the All Star Game.
*Televised coverage of the first round of the MLS Draft.
*ESPN2 and ABC's MLS telecasts can be re-aired in full or abbreviated versions on any ESPN media platforms
*Extensive footage rights for all ESPN media platforms such as "
SportsCenter", ESPNEWS, ESPN Motion, ESPN360, etc.
*ESPN will also produce and be solely responsible for the content, whereas, they had not been able to do that in the past.
2007, ESPN2's coverage of the MLS included new on-screen scoreboards, similar to those used on other sports telecasts. In 2008, another new score graphic was debuted, this time in the upper left hand corner of the screen.
In addition, ESPN2 has numerous production enhancments to the telecasts. They include:
*SkyCam: A common element during ESPN's NFL and MLB telecasts, SkyCam will return after making it's debut in
2005on select ABC and ESPN2 telecasts. The device provides an aerial view of the field, giving the viewer a unique angle to appreciate the development and speed of match action.
*MLS Wired: Telecasts feature use of the unobtrusive microphones, worn by select coaches and/or players, to capture some of the compelling in-game interactions and conversations.
*HD: Beginning in 2007, all games air in high-definition.
Assignments are based on the
2008MLS season and ESPN's broadcasts of U.S. men's national soccer team games.
Julie Foudy: (studio analyst, 2007-present)
Rob Stone: (studio host, 2008-present)
JP Dellacamera: (play-by-play, 1996-2006; 2008-present)
John Harkes: (color commentary, 2008-present)
*Allen Hopkins: (sideline reporter, 2007-present)
*Glenn Davis: (play-by-play, 2003-present)
Tommy Smyth: (color commentary, 2007-present)
Rob Stone: (play-by-play, 2007-present)
Phil Schoen: (1996-1999)
*Jack Edwards: (2000-2002)
Dave O'Brien: (2006-2007)
Ty Keough: (1996-2003)
Eric Wynalda: (2004-2007)
Veronica Paysse: (2002-2003)
Lorrie Fair: (2004)
Brandi Chastain: (2005-2006)
Heather Mitts: (2005-2006)
MLS Soccer Saturday"
*ESPN2 MLS broadcast teams
MLS Primetime Thursday"
* [http://web.mlsnet.com/mls/schedule/2008/national_tv/ 2008 MLS ESPN2 Schedule]
* [http://soccernet.espn.go.com/section?id=mls&cc=5901 MLS at ESPN.com]
* [http://media.espn.com/ESPNToday/2006/Mar_06/mls_team.htm Press Release: DAVE O'BRIEN JOINS ABC SPORTS AND ESPN2 MLS BROADCAST TEAM]
* [http://media.espn.com/ESPNToday/2006/Aug_06/MLSRights.htm Press Release: ESPN ACQUIRES RIGHTS TO MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER]
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