The first several days of Group Stage action at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar has been engulfed in controversy off-the-pitch but has also delivered some incredibly compelling action on-the-pitch. When it comes to FOX and Telemundo’s World Cup coverage, it’s been a mix of good and bad so far.
US rights-holders FOX Sports (English) and Telemundo Deportes (Spanish) have taken different approaches to the presentation of the competition. Both broadcasters have strengths and weaknesses we’ve seen thus far in the tournament through eight matches.
FOX Sports’ coverage of World Cup 2022
Let’s start with English-language broadcaster FOX Sports. Despite intense coverage of the controversies connected with Qatar and FIFA from US-based media outlets ranging from ESPN to Netflix and the New York Times, FOX has made the editorial decision to ignore these controversies.
That is all good and well and can be defended as keeping the sport and competition in focus. However, FOX’s decision to spend much of its 90 minute pregame program on Sunday promoting Qatar left a very bad taste in the mouths of many. Rob Stone and Alexi Lalas were so over the top in their faux enthusiasm for Qatar that it appeared they were either “working” for the Qatari government or tourism board.
Stone, who was isolated due to COVID two weeks ago, has not appeared on the FOX since the pre-match coverage of Qatar-Ecuador. He’s been replaced by Jenny Taft, Kate Ad and Tom Rinaldi – all doing a credible job. Taft, in particular, has proven smooth and sharp as a presenter.
Lalas has stood out among studio commentators for his willingness to challenge conventional norms and give some useful defensive tactical analysis. His break-down of Saudi Arabia’s defensive solidity and strategy in their stunning 2-1 upset of Argentina was a high point for FOX’s coverage. Eni Aluko has continued her strong performances in past tournaments both on UK and US television with…
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Author : Kartik Krishnaiyer
Publish date : 2022-11-23 21:00:00
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