Turner Sports will have US National Team goalie Tim Howard as an analyst for its Champions League studio coverage beginning this fall, sources have told The Post.
Howard, 39, will not work all the broadcasts, as he is still an active player with MLS’ Colorado Rapids. Howard previously called Premier League games on NBC Sports Network during his days at Everton.
The Turner studio programs will be hosted by Kate Abdo, who also works for Fox and could have one of her World Cup TV teammates joining her. Fox has granted permission to its lead game analyst, Stu Holden, to discuss a deal with Turner to be in its studio, according to sources.
Holden has performed much better on games than in studio over his short broadcasting career.
Holden is good friends with Steve Nash. Nash will be a part of Turner’s coverage, as well. Nash has ownership stakes in the MLS’ Vancouver Whitecaps and Spanish club Mallorca. He is a huge Tottenham supporter in the English Premier League.
His father and brother were both professional soccer players. His brother, Martin, earned 38 caps for the Canadian National team.
Turner took over the rights to the Champions League and Europa from Fox Sports in part to boost its new B/R Live, over-the-top streaming service. The network announced Tuesday all 340-plus matches will be available through the new B/R paid service. An individual game will cost $2.99, while it will be $9.99 monthly and annually will be $79.99. This cost is specific to B/R’s soccer content.
By comparison, ESPN+ is $4.99 per month for all its content, but it does not yet have any unique programming that compares to professional club soccer’s highest competition.
There will be 46 Champions League games on TNT, as well as the Europa League Final.
NBC Sports Network is a great soccer model for Turner/B/R to follow, as it treats the sport as if viewers actually know the game and are choosing to watch it. On the World Cup, Fox was spotty in that department.
Furthering that point, NBC Sports will have its studio team at Old Trafford for opening day of the Premier League on Aug. 10, giving it a bigger feel. Rebecca Lowe, Robbie Mustoe, Robbie Earle and Kyle Martino will start the coverage for Manchester United vs. Leicester City at the event. … American football kicks off Thursday night with the Hall of Fame, as NBC will have referee Terry McAulay making his debut, joining its coverage that is led by Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth.
Clicker Consulting: How come every professional sports team does not have someone who mines through every player’s social media upon drafting to delete old tweets? Braves starter Sean Newcomb, Brewers reliever Josh Hader and Nationals shortstop Trea Turner had inexcusable homophobic and racist tweets as teenagers that were found after they came into the national spotlight for their performance on the field. They should’ve never said the things they said, but were evidently too dumb to know better. That said, their teams or they should have have made the old tweets disappear; especially if they are to be believed that the players don’t feel that way anymore.
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