World Cup: FOX Sports is SLAMMED by US soccer fans as TV coverage drops out multiple times

Author: Yuvi November 21, 2022


US soccer fans have blasted FOX Sports for its coverage of the World Cup after its live footage cut out on the second day of the tournament.

FOX Sports, which has the sole English-language rights in the US, was broadcasting its pre-match buildup ahead of the USA’s Group B rivals England’s game against Iran as part of its double-header before Gregg Berhalter’s team kicked off at 2pm ET.

However, its live feed went dark multiple times, including when it cut to commentators Ian Darke and USMNT legend Landon Donovan for their pre-match analysis.

Soccer supporters who had gotten up early to watch the 8am ET game were quick to rip into the broadcaster, branding it ‘Mickey Mouse’ coverage.

On social media user claimed: ‘This is the second glitch that Fox Sports has had in their #WorldCup broadcast so far in this hour. @IanDarke cut out there while he was talking.

One fan questioned: ‘Who allowed FOX SPORTS to get the rights to the World Cup?’

US soccer fans have blasted FOX Sports for its World Cup coverage ahead of Group B games

The broadcaster's coverage cut out multiple times before England's game against Iran

The broadcaster’s coverage cut out multiple times before England’s game against Iran

FOX Sports has the sole English-language rights to broadcast the tournament in the US.

FOX Sports has the sole English-language rights to broadcast the tournament in the US.

‘What just happened on fox sports 1 lol,’ another added, before one fan blasted the channel for having a nightmare, writing, ‘Mickey Mouse production @FOXSoccer.’

FOX agreed to pay more than $400 million to broadcast the men’s and women’s World Cups from 2015 to 2023, according to the New York Times, beating out ESPN for the rights.

ESPN had the English-language rights to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and the 2014 tournament in Brazil, reportedly paying around $100m.

Following FOX’s technical difficulties, many soccer viewers claimed they missed ESPN’s coverage.

‘Fox Sports are s**t,’ said one Twitter user. ‘I freaking miss ESPN coverage. #FIFAWorldCup.

Another added: ‘Hey @FOXSports @FOXSportsPR figure out your coverage! ESPN never pulled this nonsense #FIFAWorldCup’

Fans slammed the broadcaster on social media, with some claiming they missed ESPN

Fans slammed the broadcaster on social media, with some claiming they missed ESPN

Qatar Airways, the state-owned airline, is serving as a major sponsor of FOX’s coverage, which means its production in Qatar is essentially being underwritten by the Qatari government, according to The Washington Post.

In October, FOX insisted it would focus on soccer not the controversial tournament’s host country and its human rights record or treatment of migrant workers.

However, before England kicked off, FOX showed a segment with the Supreme Committee’s Sustainability and Environmental Senior Manager, Dr. Talar Sahsuvaroglu.

Many slammed the clip as an ‘advert’ for the host nation amid criticism of the tournament’s ‘sportswashing.’

One user wrote: ‘Fox Sports running a “Discovering Qatar” slot. It’s helmed by the Supreme Committee’s head of sustainability, and it will all be carbon neutral/net zero. Hurrah!

It had emerged that FOX's broadcast is notably sponsored by state-owned Qatar Airways.

It had emerged that FOX’s broadcast is notably sponsored by state-owned Qatar Airways.

One social media user highlighted a segment which featured the Supreme Committee's Sustainability and Environmental Senior Manager, Dr.  Talar Sahsuvaroglu

One social media user highlighted a segment which featured the Supreme Committee’s Sustainability and Environmental Senior Manager, Dr. Talar Sahsuvaroglu

While FOX has the exclusive English-language rights in the US, Telemundo was handed the rights to broadcast in Spanish, reportedly paying around $600m for the four tournaments.

But Telemundo has provided a different stance on the Qatari disputes, with President Ray Warren insisting the broadcaster will not ‘ignore the geopolitical issues that might arise.’

After FOX Sports’ coverage cut out, unhappy fans claimed they would switch to Telemundo for the game.

One fan posted: ‘Looks like it’s a Telemundo day. That’s alright, no Stong, Holden or Lalas for me since Fox Sports lost their feed.’

Other soccer fans claimed they were switching to Telemundo, who have the Spanish rights.

Other soccer fans claimed they were switching to Telemundo, who have the Spanish rights.

FOX faced further criticism when the game eventually got underway with many fans slating Donovan’s commentary.

One viewer posted: ‘Is Landon Donovan the most boring man alive? Is he Michael Owen in disguise? He sounds tranquilized.

Another added: ‘There’s no way a broadcast executive had a conversation with Landon Donovan and thought “this guy needs to be on TV”‘

Some were slightly kinder, saying: ‘I mean this respectfully, Landon Donovan was not meant to be a color commentator.’ While one said: ‘Landon Donovan on color commentary is unbearable. Hello Telemundo.

FOX faced more criticism during the game with many fans slamming Donovan's commentary.

FOX faced more criticism during the game with many fans slamming Donovan’s commentary.

21 November, 2022, 9:39 pm

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