NBC Sports has made a strong push into American soccer broadcasting with its coverage of MLS and the English Premier League in recent years, but now it appears as though MLS won't be a part of that equation in 2015.
Sources tell Goal USA that MLS is putting the finishing touches on a new TV rights deal and NBC Sports will not be a part of the new deal.
An announcement on the league's new TV rights partners could come as early as next week at the 2014 MLS Draft, which takes place on Jan. 16 in Philadelphia.
The NBC Sports Group took over for Fox Soccer in 2012 and impressed MLS viewers with crisp and high-quality coverage of MLS, but struggling ratings may have made MLS a less appealing partner for NBC, which has enjoyed considerable success since with its coverage of the English Premier League.
The NBC Sports Group featured MLS matches regularly on NBC Sports Network, as well as a handful of games on NBC. The 2014 season is the third and final year of a three-year rights agreement signed by the NBC Sports Group with MLS.
It remains unclear what network will step in to replace NBC Sports Group. ESPN is expected to remain a partner, while former partner FOX could be tempted to make a play for the league in order to boost its soccer holdings after losing the English Premier League.
- Sports & Recreation
- NBC Sports
- English Premier League