MLS decides to play with ESPN, FOX Sports, Univision

Major League Soccer and U.S. Soccer laid out details of their new media rights deals with ESPN, FOX Sports and Univision Deportes. The eight-year deals, reportedly averaging around $90 million per year, will see matches locked in through the end of 2022. For the first time in league history, all three television partners will feature an exclusive MLS Match of the Week, with ESPN and FOX Sports 1 offering back-to-back MLS matches on Sundays at 5p and 7p respectively. The Univision family of networks will offer the game on Friday evenings — primarily on UniMas as well as a wrap-up show on Sundays. Overall, more than 125 MLS matches will be televised annually on the three networks.

Meanwhile, MLS’ out-of-market package, currently serviced through the MLS Live and MLS Direct Kick packages, will now be available via ESPN3 and WatchESPN. The MLS out-of-market package will also be available via over-the-top services such as Google Play, iTunes Apple TV, Roku and others.

As for the U.S. Men’s and Women’s National Teams, all three networks will carry matches with ESPN and FOX Sports 1 splitting the English-language Men’s National Team broadcast package of approximately 10 games per year, as well as sharing the schedule of Women’s National Team games. Univision Deportes is the exclusive Spanish language home of U.S. Soccer, broadcasting all of the U.S. Men’s National Team games, and a minimum of four Women’s National Team matches each year during the term.

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