Behind The ScenesSoccer

If it happens in soccer, ESPN FC on TV has it covered; news and analysis program kicks off Sunday on ESPN2

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The ESPN FC global soccer news and information television show is gearing up for its Aug. 11 (10 p.m. ET, ESPN2) launch with studio rehearsals at ESPN’s Bristol, Conn., campus.

An extension of ESPNFC.com, the new television show is unique in its online-to-on-screen approach, incorporating several elements of the digital platform’s content via contributors, social media, data analysis and more.

Front Row caught up with Coordinating Producer Steve Palese to discuss the ESPN FC launch.

What should fans expect from ESPN FC on TV?
The soccer audience in the United States is incredibly diverse, and our idea was to assemble a team of experts to reflect that diversity. No matter what the story and where in the world it happens, we feel that we will have the right talent to cover it. Each show will feature five to nine analysts/reporters reacting to the day’s top stories from the United States and around the world.

How will you integrate ESPNFC.com content on television on ESPN FC?
ESPNFC.com journalists will feature prominently in the show, and content from the show will feature prominently on ESPNFC.com. Gabriele Marcotti, Roger Bennett and Raphael Honigstein are among the highly respected journalists from the site who will be regularly featured on ESPN FC on TV.

Each day we will continue the televised conversation from the show online as soon as we go off-air. There will also be a special “ESPN FC TV” blog with additional content from the show and extended interviews with guests and more.

ESPN FC hosts and pundits will also be working with the ESPN FC digital team to produce on-camera reaction pieces throughout the day for the site.

How will ESPN FC engage soccer fans via social media?
Social media will help dictate some of the conversation in the show. We will be using a lot of Twitter polling (via @ESPNFC) and viewer interaction. Each day there will be an extra TV segment posted online, answering viewer comments and questions from the show.

Note: The Sunday edition (12 midnight ET) of “ESPN FC” on TV will be a one-hour program — wrapping up the best highlights, news, reactions and opinions, from the weekend’s soccer action while looking ahead to what the results mean to the teams and their respective leagues. Monday through Friday (5:30 p.m., ESPN2), the program will air for 30-minute editions each day, highlighting the biggest news and issue of the day in soccer.

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