Proof soccer is growing here in the US, the network NBC is all set to show the English Premier League. In a $250 million three-year deal, they will start showing it next season. NBC will be broadcasting every important match from the league which, to date, is the most popular soccer league in the world.
NBCs interest in soccer stems back at least a year. They made a point of picking up Major League Soccer last year. Not to mention their coverage of the soccer games at the London Olympics were a big hit with audiences who looked away from gymnastics, partycasino.com and Mad Men to tune in.
It goes to show that we love soccer, whether it be the US teams or those spread worldwide. However, NBC Sports Group chairman Mark Lazarus has assured soccer fans, the network will not tape delay the league, like they did with the Olympics. A decision which gained a lot of criticism.
“The Barclays Premier League is the pre-eminent soccer league in the world, and is on the cusp of exponential popularity growth here in the U.S.,” he said. “We think we’re acquiring a set of assets that has unique affluent male appeal that’s very attractive to advertisers and attractive to cable operators.”
NBC will televise six live games a week on their English-language channels, according to reports. Alongside NBC Sports Network, it’s thought that a couple of their other channels will also be used for broadcast.
Lazarus thinks live sports are the best way for the network to expand their audience, and with soccer growing in popular every day, what better time than now to expand soccer coverage?
The English Premier League is likely to be broadcast alongside the NHL which is their biggest sports broadcast.