Taylor Twellman, Liam McHugh Part of Apple, MLS’ First Talent Squad

As Major League Soccer and Apple prepare for their first season in a new broadcast partnership, the companies announced an initial group of incoming announcer talent Tuesday.

Taylor Twellman headlines a collection of English-language analysts that also includes Maurice Edu, Kyndra de St. Aubin, Lori Lindsey and Danielle Slaton. Twellman was previously ESPN’s lead soccer analyst.

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Max Bretos, Steve Cangialosi and Jake Zivin have been added as play-by-play callers after previously handling similar duties for Los Angeles Football Club, the New York Red Bulls and the Portland Timbers, respectively, in addition to having national TV chops.

MLS Season Pass will deliver the best viewing experience that MLS fans have ever had, in large part due to these incredible announcers, who will be calling the matches and bringing their passion, energy, and know-how for this league, these clubs, and this sport each and every week,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of services, as part of the announcement.

Announcer pairings are likely to emerge over time, though MLS may also experiment with different talent combinations as it produces every match.

MLS Season Pass will also include weekly whiparound coverage of key match action, with that show cohosted by Liam McHugh. McHugh currently hosts Turner Sports’ NHL coverage; before that he anchored many of NBC Sports’ Premier League presentations.

Jillian Sakovits will serve as a pregame studio host, joined by studio analysts including Sacha Kljestan and Bradley Wright-Phillips (who will make his debut on the whiparound program).

The league and Apple also announced a number of Spanish and French-language additions, including Pablo Ramirez, Frederic Lord, Tony Cherchi, Marcelo Balboa, Sébastien Le Toux and Diego Valeri. Across languages, the league spoke to over 500 people as it narrowed down its announcer pool.

“This talented group of men and women has taken part in the biggest moments across the soccer and sports landscape for the past decade; whether covering them on air or taking part in them as players, they have been at the center of building our sport in North America,” MLS commissioner Don Garber said as part of the announcement. “We are excited to see how their diversity of experiences will elevate our coverage and storytelling across our live matches and studio shows, bringing our sport to fans around the globe like never before.”

More talent announcements are expected before the season begins on Feb. 26, as well as news about who will be responsible for behind-the-camera roles.

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