Being a casual soccer fan at best and a non-fan at worst, I wasn’t up to speed on the implications for Manchester United and Manchester City Sunday. I soon found out when I tuned into the United game on FX. The telecast showed highlights of the Man City game, but it never told me where to find the actual game.
I then spent several minutes frantically trying to locate the right Fox outlet. Finally, I realized Man City was on ESPN2. Even though I wrote about the coverage, I was so conditioned to think that Survival Sunday was a Fox extravaganza, I completely forgot about the ESPN2 component; Fox channels had 9 of the 10 games.
Fox should have told viewers the Man City game was on ESPN2. Even after the United game ended, Fox still didn’t direct viewers to ESPN2 so they could catch the final minutes of the Man City game. I wonder how many people missed that unbelievable comeback. I almost did.
This wasn’t about ratings for Fox Sunday. This was about building interest for soccer and the Premier League in the U.S. Fox needs to reconsider that policy if it does this again.
GOOALLL: Having said that, the fact that I tuned in shows the power of presenting something in a package. Usually, my Sunday mornings are spent watching the news shows.
But all the promotion and the idea that this day was unique in the Premier League piqued my curiosity. I’m sure I wasn’t alone.
I found myself getting into the games, and marveling at the passion of the English crowds. It feels like an outdoor version of Duke’s Cameron Indoor.
So mission accomplished, Fox, ESPN and the Premier League. Expect an encore next year.