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FFS, Fox sent Gus Johnson (who?) and Warren Barton to Madrid to call the match. Total Fail.

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Johnson's a football/basketball/MMA commentator.

He hasn't been as bad as I was expecting. And watching for the possible trainwreck was the only reason I tuned in.

Warren Barton can **** right off, though.

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The Gus Johnson Tour continued today in London.

 

Gus: "What should we be looking for early on in this game?"

 

Well why don't YOU tell US, you're the announcer, you **** bonehead!

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Sure, I know he bothers a lot of people, but for a few years here, he was the only non-American announcer you could hear, so even on his worst day, he's still better than any American announcer/commentator.

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Sure, I know he bothers a lot of people, but for a few years here, he was the only non-American announcer you could hear, so even on his worst day, he's still better than any American announcer/commentator.

 

I don't, cannot believe that. He KFA but is still quite prepared to be rude to anyone who doesn't agree with him (same applies to me, but at least I do it for free and only on an internet forum, ha ha). He's a glory-hunting little sod who doesn't even pretend to be interested in any but the biggest clubs, and there must be 20 million people in the UK and Ireland who could do a far better job. Probably about the same number in North America.

Edited by CrackpotForeigner

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We can add Piers Morgan to this list. Twice now I've seen him on FSC for Arsenal games. It was amusing watching Warren Barton interrupt him over and over again. Morgan was getting a little hot under the collar, lol. 

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It's painful. It makes NO sense for FSC to drop the English commentators for a guy with limited football knowledge, and even less game calling finesse. It's so bad it's distracting. If they are committed to Johnson, they should just put him on USA matches, but leave him the f*ck away from everything else.

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It makes a lot of sense when you consider that FSC disappears this summer and what little (basically just the CL, EL, FA Cup, Concacaf CL & CWC) football Fox keeps rights to until they show the 2018 and 2022 World Cups will be folded into Fox Sports 1 (currently Speed Channel), which will target the general American sports fan.

(I just realized that a fraternity brother of my dad's (Kappa Sigma) was the guy responsible for hiring Warren Barton and FSC's cast of pundits, being the executive in charge of all non-game content on Fox Sports' cable channels...)

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Interesting...so who will have American rights to the Premier League?

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NBC

The English Premier League, home to storied clubs such as Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester United, has a new television partner in the United States.

NBC Universal formally announced Sunday night it has become the exclusive English- and Spanish-language media rights holder to all 380 Premier League matches across all platforms and devices in the U.S. Starting next August, the Premier League will appear on a variety of NBC properties including NBC, NBC Sports Network, NBCSports.com, as well as Telemundo and mun2 for Spanish-language coverage. Matches will also be live-streamed on the NBC Sports Live Extra platform across web, tablet and mobile devices.

A source with knowledge of the negotiations told SI.com that NBC Universal's winning bid was $250 million for a three-year agreement, a sum more than triple the $23 million per year that Fox currently pays for its deal. Sports Business Daily first reported that Fox and ESPN (who partnered for the rights) had been outbid by NBC Universal.

In an interview Sunday night with SI.com, NBC Chairman Mark Lazarus said NBC Sports Network will be the primary carrier of Premier League games and that Premier League fans will have access to every game on the schedule through an NBC platform. "It will not be unlike the Olympics where you saw programming on CNBC, Bravo, USA or MSNBC," Lazarus said. "We are working to make it a consistent schedule so fans know exactly where to find games. But the Premier League fan will be able to get to every game live."

Premier League clubs play 38 league matches over a 41-week period from August to May. The league has six traditional weekly broadcast windows, including three on Saturday, two on Sunday and one on Monday. According to Lazarus, broadcasts on those windows add up to about 200 games per season. Lazarus said the remaining 180 games will be made available "digitally or through some sort of arrangement with MVPDs (multichannel video programming distributors) on some sort of pay television package."

As part of the new deal, Lazarus said Premier League fans can expect a number of games to be broadcast on over-the-air NBC. Those matches will likely air Saturdays and be shown live. Lazarus predicted viewers might see up to 18-20 games on NBC during the season, which would be a significant increase from Fox's over-the-air broadcasts.

While offering few programming specifics, Lazarus said NBC will provide a "significant" amount of shoulder programming around live-event coverage of the Premier League, including pre- and post-match shows, as well as highlight and weekly wrap-up programs. "The quantity or quality of what is on today will not be compromised in any shape or form," Lazarus said.

Lazarus said NBC has already had early talks with BT (formally British Telecom), which acquired a set of the UK rights to the Premier League, and the two could partner on production. As far as broadcasting talent, a subject of fanatical concern for soccer fans, Lazarus said he thinks NBC has some talent on its roster that will translate well but he will be in acquisition mode. The network has an exceptional soccer play by play announcer in Arlo White and it's a near-guarantee he will play a significant role on Premier League broadcasts.

"We think Arlo fits very nicely, and we are working to see who fits this content," Lazarus said. "I don't think you can take someone calling an MLS game on a regional sports network, put them on an English Premier League game and have the same tone that the fan is accustomed to. We believe in the indigenous voice. And the fact we have Arlo doing our games speaks to that. We think that there is a tone and tact that the international soccer fan expects and we will not disappoint."

The Premier League has been the jewel in Fox Soccer Channel's programming, and much of the network's programming centers around commentary and news of the league. Fox Soccer has averaged about 136,000 viewers for live Premier League games this year, down from 142,000 viewers in 2011-12. The network still has the rights to World Cup programming, beginning with the Women's World Cup in 2015. They will also air UEFA Champions League, UEFA's Europa League, the F.A. Cup, the CONCACAF Champions League and Gold Cup. "FOX Soccer has been the primary US voice of Premier League for almost two decades, and has done much over the years to increase its popularity, value and availability," Fox Sports said last week in a statement. "We wish them well."

Swiping the Premier League gives NBC the most significant soccer portfolio among American broadcasters. Last year NBC signed a three-year media rights agreement with MLS to televise more than 40 matches per year and NBC-owned Telemundo will air the Spanish language coverage of the 2018 and 2022 World Cup. Clearly, NBC is counting on the Premier League to bring eyeballs (and affluent ones at that) to NBC Sports Network, which could use an infusion of high-caliber programming with the NHL on lockout and depressed MLS ratings.

Lazarus said when he took over for Dick Ebersol in May 2011, he and his executive team targeted the Premier League as a strong fit alongside other NBC international properties such as the Olympics, NHL, the IndyCar series and Tour de France. (NBC has since acquired the rights to F1.) "It's a good fit," Lazarus said. "We will do great things for them and they will do great things for us."

NBC has confirmed that they'll be using British commentators. If their coverage of MLS and basically every other sport that's not the Olympics is any guide, the Premier League on NBC/NBC Sports Network/CNBC will be far better coverage than we've got from Fox.

I would not be surprised to see a Red Zone-style stream or subscription service which bounces around the 3pm/10am games... NBC tried something like that for the MLS this weekend (and there's a similar service for the Bundesliga in Germany).

Edited by leviramsey

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Wouldn't FOX save money by just plugging into the English commentary though? Why pay some clueless American MMA announcer to ruin the occasion?

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Reading up on Johnson...this isn't just a temporary thing. They are grooming him to be THE guy that calls Champions League and World Cup matches for FOX. What a **** catastrophe. The stupidity is simply mind boggling. **** FOX.

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I just sent an email to FSC, protesting Gus Johnson. Pass it on...

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Add Alexi Lalas to the list. Absolute rocket polisher. The last guy you'd ever want for unbiased opinion.

 

And Taylor Twellman...such an obnoxious asshole

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