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Saturday, April 7, 2007

ABC/ESPN Raises The Bar For MLS Coverage

ABC/ESPN's coverage of today's game between the Colorado Rapids and DC United was quite impressive. I had criticized their recent format and play-by-play commentators; however, I could not find anything negative today. With the exception of the "Famous Freds" segment. Either I missed something in the past, or the directors made some visible and audible improvements.

Dave O'Brien and Julie Foudy were an excellent team. Rob Stone provided very good pre-game and half-time analysis. The sideline commentary was also first-rate. There were fewer non-soccer related discussion items, and Julie Foudy, a World Cup champion, added her great insights into the proper flow of the game. Dave O'Brien called an intelligent game, and his commentary did not deviate too frequently from the theme of soccer. As had been the problem in the past. This was the most balanced coverage that I have heard in a long time by a domestic English language network.

The game was won, 2 to 1, by the Rapids, who were making their first appearance at their Soccer Specific Stadium. Its dimensions would rival the best pitches in the world: 80 x 120 meters. Along with a sell-out crowd of close to 20,000 despite a temperature of 30 degrees (F).

In the end, the viewer was the true winner today. Well done, ABC/ESPN.


wilablog said...

I watched this game and was reasonably pleased with the coverage as well. Maybe Wynalda should just stay away for a while. I do have to say that the Fred comparison graphic was completely useless. It would have been much better to educate the viewers with who Fred is, rather than with Fred Flinstone. Just my 2c.

Steve Amoia said...

I agree about the Fred graphic, but they are still learning how to present a soccer production. Less is more, don't you think?

I was quite impressed with Julie Foudy.

Wynalda will return, but hopefully wiser.

Thank you for your comments.

wilablog said...

Wynalda was on the LA Galaxy broadcast last night and I think "wiser" is _not_ how I would describe him :-)

I really think he has something against Landon. It was great to see Landon get an assist right at the very moment that Eric was bashing him.

Steve Amoia said...
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