USA-Japan is Most-Watched Soccer Match in U.S. History
Vancouver, B.C. – The USA’s emphatic 5-2 victory over Japan in the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2015™ final, America’s first Women’s World Cup championship since 1999, is the most- watched soccer match in U.S. history, according to Nielsen. The match posted a prodigious 12.9 household rating/share with 25.4 million viewers, and peaked at 30.9 million between 8:30-8:45 PM ET.
USA-Japan final highlights:
– The 2015 USA-Japan final is the most-watched soccer match in U.S. history, obliterating the previous mark of 18,220,000 set by USA-Portugal during last year’s World Cup group stage match (6/22/15) by +39%.
– USA-Japan also shatters prior mark for a women’s soccer match, the 1999 Women’s World Cup Final (17,975,000) by +41%.
– The match beat the audience for the 2011 Women’s World Cup Final, which also featured USA vs. Japan, by +89% (13.5 million).
– Last night’s match average audience exceeded every game of the NBA Finals, the 2014-15 broadcast season average of every show in primetime, including Sunday Night Football, and the primetime average of the Sochi Olympic Winter Games.
– Last night’s match delivered the most-watched telecast since the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament championship game on CBS (28.3 million, 4/6/15).
– 43.2 million viewers watched all or part of last night’s final.
– The audience began at 18.2 million viewers at 7:00PM ET and peaked at a tournament-high 30.1 million from 8:30–8:45 PM ET.
– FOX Sports GO set a new record with 232,000 unique streamers. This was the largest authenticated streaming audience in FOX Sports GO history, besting the previous mark set by the USA-Germany semifinal (166,000 unique streamers). Women’s World Cup matches now comprise FOX Sports GO’s top 5 most-viewed events ever.
– Top markets for USA vs. Japan: Kansas City (20.6), followed by St. Louis (20.5), San Diego (19.5), Denver (19.4), Austin (19.1), Seattle (18.3), Washington D.C. and West Palm Beach (18.2), San Francisco and Las Vegas (17.7). The rating in Kansas City is the highest for any individual market in this tournament. The previous high was set by Kansas City and St. Louis (9.3) for USA-Germany in the Semifinal.
Note: All comparisons based on single net English language viewership.
FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2015™ summary:
– The 2015 tournament averaged 1.824 million viewers per each of the tournament’s 52 matches across all networks (FOX, FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2), +21% over 1,511,000 averaged on ESPN and ESPN2 for the 32 matches played in 2011.
– Top markets for all seven USA matches: St. Louis (8.0), followed by Kansas City (7.5), Washington D.C. (7.3), Austin (6.6), San Diego (6.4), Richmond (6.2), Denver and Baltimore (6.1), Norfolk and West Palm Beach (6.0).
– Top markets for all 52 matches: St. Louis (1.94), Washington D.C. (1.85), Richmond (1.72), Kansas City (1.65), Sacramento (1.64), Baltimore (1.60), Orlando (1.56), Los Angeles (1.54), San Diego (1.51) and Las Vegas (1.50).
— FOX SPORTS —
THIS JUST IN: USWNT Joins FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY – THIRD STAR SPECIAL Tomorrow at 1:00 PM ET on FOX Sports 1 and available to all on FOX Sports GO
FOX Sports’ extensive coverage of the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2015™ concludes tomorrow with a special edition of FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY – “THIRD STAR SPECIAL” at 1:00 PM ET on FOX Sports 1. See below for highlights from today’s final match.
USA def. Japan, 5-2, to take the World Cup Championship
1:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY – “THIRD STAR SPECIAL.” FOX Sports 1 & FOX Sports GO
FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT Highlights:
Leslie Osborne says Carli Lloyd is the definition of a big game player:
“She’s worked incredibly hard to get to this point. Her fitness, her leadership – she’s the captain of this team for a reason. She just loves this chip on her shoulder and she wants to prove people wrong and she wants to come up big in every moment she can. She’s just worked incredibly hard and has embraced this leadership role, and the team can always count on her. Even when she wasn’t having a solid start to this tournament, she actually wasn’t playing well, you never can discount her because she’s always going to come up big.”
Ariane Hingst admits the U.S. defense surprised her:
“In the beginning of the tournament, we were talking about who are the favorites of the tournament, and we would always go, “Oh the defensive lines are the favorites.” Especially in that American line, there were doubts for all of us. They proved us totally wrong.”
Eric Wynalda on what coach Jill Ellis has accomplished after today’s win:
“When this team started to perform the way we were hoping they would and they came out of the gates, they didn’t buy into all of the cynicism that was being talked about, which I was a very big part of because I was frustrated with them. She [Ellis] was still the captain of this ship; she was still having those conversations with players, making sure that everyone was on board. That’s a tough thing to do, to have everybody on board. Now that it’s all over, we are getting to see that. There’s nothing disingenuous about what’s been said about this group. Jill Ellis built this group. She gets all the credit in the world for that. They’ve broken records today. We’ve never seen anything like that, that kind of final.”
Kelly Smith and Hingst on whether Carli Lloyd achieved her stated goal of establishing a legacy with tonight’s win:
Smith: “(Lloyd’s third goal is) the best goal of the tournament and may be the best goal in the history of women’s football. To have the audacity, to have the vision to turn just at the half goal line to see the keeper at the far line, and to have the strength and power in her leg to score that goal it’s such a fulfilling performance. You can see how much it means to her.”
Hingst: “At the beginning of the tournament we criticized her, we had to, because she wasn’t playing well. This is when a strong personality comes out, you step up when it really matters. She knew she wasn’t playing well but she progressed, got better and better and had her best performance in the final. This is how you do it.”
Eric Wynalda on what this win does for Abby Wambach’s status in the game:
“The fact that she had to take a secondary role, which she accepted completely, she made it all about her teammates…As a former athlete, there are a hundred different ways to handle that, and she handled it the right way.”
Fast National Audience Figure Due this Afternoon
Vancouver, B.C. – The USA’s emphatic 5-2 victory over Japan in the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2015™ final, America’s first Women’s World Cup championship since 1999, posted a prodigious 15.2/27 metered market household rating/share (7:00-9:00 PM ET), according to Nielsen. It is the highest metered market rating ever for a soccer game in the U.S. on a single network, surpassing the previous mark set for the Women’s World Cup final between the USA and China in 1999 on ABC (13.3 mm rating). Fast national figures are expected later today.
Additional metered market highlights for Japan-USA:
– Match rating +77% over the 8.6 recorded by ESPN for the USA vs. Japan Women’s World Cup final in 2011
– The match’s metered market audience peaked at 18.3/31 from 8:45-9:00 PM ET which included the USA’s winning celebration
– The top 5 local markets for the match: Kansas City (20.6/35), St. Louis (20.5/33), San Diego (19.5/41), Denver (19.4/36) and Austin (19.1/37)
For more information on FOX Sports’ comprehensive coverage of FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015™, visit FOX Sports Press Pass.
– FOX SPORTS –
USA-Germany is Most-Watched World Cup Semifinal Match Ever
Vancouver, B.C. – The U.S. Women’s National Team, driven by a tenacious defense that has posted five straight shutouts and not allowed a goal in 513 minutes, out-flanked top-ranked Germany, 2-0, last night in Montreal, Quebec, to return to the final of the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP™ for what is sure to be a star-spangled showdown against the winner of tonight’s England-Japan semifinal, on Sunday, July 5. The upward audience trend witnessed at each advancing stage throughout the quadrennial tournament continued as FOX set yet another record for soccer on the network, with an average audience of 8.4 million viewers, according to fast nationals issued today by Nielsen.
USA-Germany semifinal highlights:
– The match’s 8.4 million viewers breaks the recent mark set June 26 for the USA-China quarterfinal match (5.7 million) by 47%.
– The 2015 USA-Germany semifinal is now the third most-watched women’s soccer match of all time, trailing only the USA-China 1999 Women’s World Cup Final (17,975,000) and the Japan-USA 2011 Women’s World Cup Final (13,458,000), dropping USA-China 2015 quarterfinal to fourth, followed by USA-Nigeria 2015 Group Stage (5.0 million, fifth place), Brazil-USA 1999 Women’s World Cup Semifinal (4.9 million, sixth), USA-Sweden 2015 Women’s World Cup Group Stage (4.5 million, seventh).
– The audience for USA-China on FOX (8.4 million) is +147% better than the audience for the USA’s semifinal match in 2011 vs. France on ESPN (3.4 million).
– USA-Germany is the most-watched World Cup semifinal match – men’s or women’s -ever in the U.S., breaking the mark set for the Germany-Italy 2006 World Cup semifinal (5.9 million).
– The audience began at 1.6 million viewers at 6:41 PM ET and peaked at a tournament-high 12.1 million from 8:30-8:45 PM ET. The previous peak audience for the tournament was 8.1 million, reached during the USA-China quarterfinal. The peak for USA-Germany beat the prior peak by +49% (12.1 million vs. 8.1 million).
– FOX Sports GO recorded a record 166,000 unique streamers. This was the largest authenticated streaming audience in FOX Sports GO history, besting the previous mark set by the USA vs. Colombia round of 16 match (121,000 unique streamers).
– USA-Germany is the most-watched broadcast on FOX since the April 1 edition of AMERICAN IDOL.
– The match provided FOX broadcast network its highest-rated program among Adults 18-49 (3.0) since the season finale of EMPIRE on 3/18/15.
– Top markets for USA vs. Germany: Kansas City and St. Louis (9.3), followed by Washington D.C. (9.0), Austin (7.8), Cincinnati and Columbus (7.4), Boston (7.1), Detroit (7.0), San Diego (6.9), and New York (6.8). The ratings in Kansas City and St. Louis for USA-Germany tie for the highest of any individual market in this tournament. The previous high was 7.8 set by Kansas City for USA-China in the Quarterfinal.
FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2015™ summary:
– The six USA matches on FOX and FOX Sports 1 have averaged 5.3 million viewers, +121% better than the 2011 tournament average through the semifinals (2.4 million) on ESPN.
– The four USA matches on FOX have averaged a 3.3 HH rating, with 6.0 million viewers. In the Adult 18-49 demo, the four matches averaged a 2.1 rating, which would place it in a tie for second for prime time programs in the summer season.
– The 2015 tournament is averaging 1.306 million viewers per match across all networks (FOX, FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2), +45% over 899,000 averaged on ESPN and ESPN2 through the first semifinal in 2011.
– Top markets for all six USA matches: St. Louis (6.0), Washington D.C. (5.6), Kansas City (5.4), Austin (4.7), Richmond (4.6), Baltimore (4.5), New York (4.4), Hartford, Milwaukee and Norfolk (4.3).
— FOX SPORTS —
SEMIFINAL HIGHLIGHTS – USA v. GERMANY
FOX Sports presents full coverage of the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2015™, including the USA’s dramatic 2-0 win over Germany in the semifinals tonight. Coverage continues tomorrow with the tournament’s second semifinal, as Japan faces England on FOX Sports 1. Coverage begins with FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY at 6:00 PM ET.
See below for highlights from today’s coverage:
USA def. Germany, 2-0
USA advances to final on Sunday, July 5, at 6:00 PM ET on FOX
Germany plays in third-place match on Saturday, July 4, at 3:00 PM ET on FOX
6:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY, FOX Sports 1
7:00 PM ET – Japan vs. England, FOX Sports 1
(Edmonton – Jenn Hildreth, Kyndra de St. Aubin and Julie Stewart-Binks)
12:00 AM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT, FOX Sports 1
USA v. GERMANY Semifinal Highlights:
Game analyst Tony DiCicco said this was the USWNT’s best performance:
“This was their best performance. I know there were some controversial calls, but the bottom line is the U.S. was the better team in this match.”
Game analyst Cat Whitehill credits the team’s defense:
“The United States back line and Hope Solo are winning this tournament for this team. The United States is peaking at the right time.
“They made Germany’s Célia Šašić, the tournament’s leading goal scorer, look like an average forward tonight.”
Former USWNT player Heather Mitts credits coach Jill Ellis for her personnel decisions:
“I want to give major credit to Jill Ellis for changing the formation and for the substitutions that she made tonight. Everybody has wanted to see this team play in a 4-3-3, and tonight the players were put in the best position possible to go out there and win.”
Alexi Lalas says the USWNT is poised to win its third World Cup:
“Jill Ellis got it right and deserves a tremendous amount of credit. She passed with flying colors, as did her team, and the colors are red, white and blue. Congratulations to her and her team. We saw Carli Lloyd at the end of the game give an interview and say she’s thinking about bigger things – go out there and win that World Cup. It’s been 16 years, and now, after having taken care of Germany, it is right there in the palm of your hand.
“If they go on to lose in the final, it would be an incredible disappointment considering who they just beat.”
Former German international Ariane Hingst says the USA was the better team:
“The USA definitely had the best tactics today. They showed the best performance, so they deserved to win.”
USWNT goalkeeper Hope Solo spoke with FOX Sports USWNT Insider Jenny Taft immediately following the game about her mindset defending the PK and her team:
“You do what you can. I did the stall tactic. It worked.
“Our back line is incredible. I can’t say enough good things about them. But it’s not just our back line. We have our two holding midfielders playing so much defense. You saw Morgan Brian go up on that set piece, take a hit to the head, almost concussed, and she saved that goal.”
Canadian goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc joined FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT and said Solo’s stalling was the reason Célia Šašić missed the PK:
“Hope did a great job stalling. The time between when she put the ball down and when she took it – she had too much to think about. For me, that was the difference. It’s part of the game. It’s gamesmanship, and as a keeper, you have to do it.”
Hingst says the German team ran out of ideas against the USA:
“Germany faced a U.S. team that was really good defensively, and I’m not just talking about four defensive players on the back line, I’m talking about 11 players on the field. Morgan Brian was essential. She closed the gap in the central midfield. The Germans were out of ideas. They created so many chances in the games before, but in this game they didn’t really have a big chance besides the one penalty kick.”
Lalas says Julie Johnston benefitted from the referee’s lenient yellow card call:
“This is a younger and less-experienced type of player that is having a phenomenal tournament. That looked to be that one moment that was going to live in infamy, and yet things just changed and the soccer gods act in strange ways. She is lucky to have stayed in that game because that was as clear of a red card as I’ve seen.”
– FOX SPORTS –
FOX Sports’ coverage of the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2015™ continues with four games on Monday, June 15. Pregame coverage begins at 3:00 PM ET on FOX Sports 1 and local FOX stations. The day wraps up with FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT at 10:00 PM ET on FOX Sports 1.
See below for the full schedule and for highlights from last night’s FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT.
3:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY, FOX & FOX Sports 1
4:00 PM ET – Thailand vs. Germany, FOX
(Group B, Winnipeg – JP Dellacamera, Tony DiCicco and Cat Whitehill)
4:00 PM ET – Ivory Coast vs. Norway, FOX Sports 1
(Group B, Moncton – Jenn Hildreth, Kyndra de St. Aubin)
6:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY, FOX Sports 1 & FOX Sports 2
7:30 PM ET – Netherlands vs. Canada, FOX Sports 1
(Group A, Montreal – John Strong, Danielle Slaton)
7:30 PM ET – China vs. New Zealand, FOX Sports 2
(Group A, Winnipeg – Glenn Davis, Christine Latham)
10:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT, FOX Sports 1
FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT Highlights:
Leslie Osborne on Abby Wambach’s comments suggesting that the U.S. would score more goals if their matches were played on grass rather than turf:
“I was surprised when I heard those comments, so I reached out to her for clarification, and she did say that she would have scored those goals if they had played on grass. However, she did say that she takes full responsibility and will do better in the games to come and will finish those chances. It’s a mental thing for her right now, and she said it to me today that she needs to get over [it].”
Alexi Lalas addresses Wambach’s comments:
“It’s weak. It’s completely weak and irritating to be quite honest … To blame the turf for her not scoring goals is ridiculous … If she is pulling punches, that is a problem. That is a problem for the United States. And if the United States does not win the World Cup, I hate to break it to you Abby, but it’s not going to be because of artificial surface.”
Angela Hucles adds her thoughts:
“You don’t want to be in a position to be concentrating on the turf. It becomes a mental issue. Abby is used to scoring goals and what this says to me is that Abby is feeling a little bit of the pressure.”
USWNT star midfielder Megan Rapinoe joined the show and answered questions from the panel:
Is the team satisfied so far?
“I think so. We’re taking a little bigger picture look. After the game, we don’t like to lose, and sometimes when we tie we feel like it’s a loss. Looking back, by far, I think we have the toughest group… Coming out of there [with] four points, we’re in the driver’s seat, and looking forward to Nigeria.”
How are you feeling after getting a couple of goals?
“Someone’s got to do it. Right? Might as well be me.”
How has it been for you playing on turf?
“It’s tough. I don’t think anyone can say it’s easier to play on turf than grass. It’s tough. The game’s played a little differently, but that’s what it is now, and everyone is playing on it and everyone has to deal with it.”
Rapinoe on Megan Klingenberg’s header to deny Sweden a goal in their last match
“Kling, little Mini Me getting up there, she’s such a warrior. She’s so intense.”
The Women’s World Cup Tonight crew gave updated power rankings of their top 10 teams in the tournament so far:
– FOX SPORTS –
FOX Sports presents four FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP 2015™ games today on local FOX stations and FOX Sports 1, beginning with France, one of the tournament favorites, taking on England at 1:00 PM ET. Coverage begins at 12:00 PM ET on local FOX stations with FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY live from FOX Sports’ state-of-the-art Vancouver studio.
FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015™
12:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY, FOX
1:00 PM ET – France vs. England, FOX
(Group F, Moncton – Justin Kutcher, Aly Wagner, Julie Stewart-Binks)
3:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY, FOX & FOX Sports 1
4:00 PM ET – Colombia vs. Mexico, FOX
(Group F, Moncton –Kutcher, Wagner, Stewart-Binks)
4:00 PM ET – Spain vs. Costa Rica, FOX Sports 1
(Group E, Montreal – John Strong and Danielle Slaton)
6:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TODAY, FOX Sports 1
7:00 PM ET – Brazil vs. Korea Republic, FOX Sports 1
(Group E, Montreal – Jenn Hildreth and Kydra de St. Aubin)
11:00 PM ET – FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT, FOX Sports 1
FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP TONIGHT Highlights:
Leslie Osborne on Alex Morgan getting into the game:
“There’s nothing like getting back in the game and getting game fit. She played 11 minutes; she had some great touches today, and even had a great left-footed shot.”
Monica Gonzalez adds:
“The question coming in was at what point will she be 100 percent? The fact that she played even just 10 minutes says that she’s 100 percent. That’s good news if you’re a United States fan because Jill Ellis was prepared to not play Alex until the second or third game.”
Angela Hucles on Hope Solo’s performance:
“Hope Solo is on her A-game. She came into this tournament focused and she had an outstanding game. She had at least three crucial saves that could have determined this game and could have gone the other way for the United States. Hope Solo was playing like the Hope Solo we know she can be.”
Eric Wynalda on the different options the USWNT has:
“I like the balance of this team because they can change it up on the fly and beat you in several ways.”
Gonzalez says the entire U.S. team is accountable for giving up Australia’s goal:
“This is a team goal that was given up. There were about four or five different players that could have done one thing to prevent the goal.”
Hucles on what the U.S. can take away from its performance today:
“The United States got better throughout the game. They had a couple moments defensively where they were exposed a little bit, but this allows them to go ahead and make sure that they’re shoring things back up and getting on the same page.”
Wynalda on Nigeria’s strengths:
“The team speed that they have and their willingness to use it and a coach who is not afraid to change the game and turn it on its head – I like them, I think they can beat anybody.”
Osborne on Nigeria:
“This is the best Nigerian team I’ve seen play. They took their strengths and made Sweden look not very good today. I do think they are going to go far, however, they do not have the depth that the U.S. and France and Germany have. I think they will go farther than they have before, but they’re not winning the World Cup.”
– FOX SPORTS –
Emmy Award-Winning Producer Jennifer Pransky
Leads Unit Telling More than 60 Unique and Compelling Stories
Think fast: Which member of the U.S. Women’s National Team (USWNT) is the youngest of seven children? Which player turns 40 years old during the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP™ 2015?
FOX Sports answers these questions and many more about the players comprising the 24 international teams competing in this month’s FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP™ 2015 with more than 60 features airing throughout the tournament on FOX, FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2. Every feature – including extended “director’s cut” versions for many – is available on demand on www.FOXSports.com and distributed across FOX Sports Digital social media accounts. During its nearly 200 hours of FIFA Women’s World Cup™ programming, FOX Sports offers more comprehensive human interest coverage of players and teams than any other network in the event’s history, beginning with FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP SPECIAL, a live one-hour preview show airing on the eve of match play, Friday, June 5 (7:30 PM ET) on FOX Sports 1.
Spearheading the production of the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP™ 2015 features is Jennifer Pransky, Coordinating Producer for the Features Division. Pransky, a multiple Emmy Award-winner, plays a central role in creating features and vignettes for FOX Sports’ expansive coverage of the tournament and is charged with telling the athletes’ stories in unique and compelling ways. In her daily role outside of women’s soccer, Pransky produces specialty features, projects and shows across all sports for every FOX Sports outlet, including broadcast and cable television and digital.
“The level of athleticism and training these women put into the FIFA Women’s World Cup is astounding, but their stories don’t end with the endless hours on the field,” said David Neal, FIFA Women’s World Cup™ on FOX Executive Producer. “FOX Sports is delving deep into each team to unearth the most interesting aspects of who these superstars are. Jen Pransky and her group have done an outstanding job of painting these players not only as world-class athletes but as human beings. Their personal triumphs are as compelling as their professional ones, and fans will be able to identify with the athletes as they cheer them on.”
One prime example of the work Pransky’s unit has produced is the feature focused on USWNT midfielder Megan Rapinoe. The piece shows that she is as much an artist off-field as she is an athlete on-field. We learn that she is an avid guitar player, a style aficionado and loves the diverse community that is her home in Seattle. Openly gay, Rapinoe shares her personal story, including her use of art and music to express her individuality while growing up as a teenager who struggled to reveal her true self. Watch a preview of the feature here.
“I love soccer, I always have and I always will, but there is more to me than just soccer, more that I love, more that I am proud of, more that I am passionate about and more that I want to be,” said Rapinoe. “I have and will always live my life by a simple rule: always be yourself.”
“We’ve spent over a year coming to know many of the women playing in this tournament, and we can’t wait for America to learn more about them through the work of the talented people in our unit,” said Pransky. “Our piece on Megan Rapinoe is a great example of what viewers can expect. She’s honest, unique, and has tons of moxie! Megan reminds us that being different is cool, which is one of the many positive messages that will come from getting to know her and the remarkable women playing in the FIFA Women’s World Cup.”
Highlights of the 60-plus features include:
Japan – Four years ago, Japan shocked the world by beating the United States in an unforgettable World Cup final. Players from the 2011 championship team recount that fateful match and how it changed their lives.
Carli Lloyd – By virtue of her regimented training and meticulous eating plan, Lloyd is considered one of the hardest working players in the game today. However, she wasn’t always as dedicated. Lloyd reveals the challenges she faced when graduating to the national level and the realization she no longer was the best on the field, which prompted her to make drastic changes in her mindset and daily training.
Dzsenifer Marozsan – The German midfielder describes herself as quiet on the field but cheeky off of it. Soccer is in her DNA. Born in Hungary, her family moved to Germany when her father had the chance to play for FC Saarbrϋken. Meet the rising star of the No.1-ranked team in the world.
Maren Mjelde – Mjelde has lived and played abroad for many years but is always honored to play for her home country of Norway. She takes FOX Sports to her picturesque home to meet her family. Mjelde’s mother is battling cancer, but through supporting her, the family has become stronger than ever.
Alex Morgan – Morgan, one of the most high-profile players on the USWNT, takes viewers behind-the-scenes of what it means to be an ambassador for the sport and role model for younger, aspiring players. Cameras follow Morgan through commercial and promotional shoots to learn more about the responsibilities of being a team member both on and off the field, as well as the woman who was virtually unknown in the last FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP™ but whose face now is everywhere.
Christie Rampone – Rampone, a longtime captain of the USWNT, is participating in her fifth and final FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP™, and turns 40 years old during the tournament (June 24). Rampone, also a soccer mom to two children, takes viewers through a day in her life as a mother, wife and world-class athlete.
Pia Sundhage – One of the great players in women’s soccer history, Sundhage was born in Sweden, but coached the USWNT from 2008-12. Now coaching for her home country, she looks to deliver glory to her native Sweden after leading the USWNT to two Olympic gold medals and a second-place World Cup finish. FOX Sports soccer insider Grant Wahl goes one-on-one with the head coach.
Abby Wambach – One of the biggest names in the history of the USWNT, Wambach’s mother checked out a library book on soccer because one of her seven children wanted to play. Wambach, lucky number seven of her siblings, heads home to Rochester, N.Y., with FOX Sports to introduce viewers to her dozens of family members, including many boisterous nieces and nephews, at her parents’ home. The group reminisces and shares interesting stories about life growing up as a Wambach.
Women’s Soccer – Equality between men’s and women’s sports has always been a topic of discussion in the United States, and the conversation is reaching global levels. Many of the top players in the world grew up playing on boys’ teams because there were no girls’ teams. FOX Sports talks to players around the world about how women’s soccer has changed in their lifetimes, and what steps the sport still needs to take to become the global force it has the potential to be.
FOX Sports plans the most expansive and comprehensive multi-platform coverage ever of the FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP™, including an unprecedented 16 matches airing live on FOX broadcast network, when the tournament commences on Saturday, June 6. FOX Sports televises all 52 games in the expanded tournament from six cities across Canada between June 6 and July 5, live on FOX, FOX Sports 1, America’s fastest growing sports network, and FOX Sports 2. All games are available on tablets and mobile devices via the FOX Sports GO app and online at www.FOXSportsGO.com.
For more information on FOX Sports’ comprehensive coverage of FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015™, please visit FOX Sports Press Pass.
— FOX SPORTS —
1999 Women’s World Cup Champions to Appear on SportsCenter, ESPN FC, espnW and Other Platforms
espnW’s Julie Foudy, captain of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team that captured the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup, will be joined by two of her 1999 teammates Kristine Lilly and Kate Markgraf to headline ESPN’s comprehensive analysis, news and information coverage of the 2015 Women’s World Cup in Canada.
The three are among the most accomplished and decorated players in international women’s soccer, collectively with five World Cup titles and six Olympic gold medals among them and combined 825 international appearances for the USWNT.
Foudy will provide analysis for ESPN’s news and information programs including SportsCenter and ESPN FC, and offer previews, reports and commentary for espnW.com.
Lilly and Markgraf will join ESPN FC beginning Saturday, May 30, from Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J., the site of the USWNT’s final send-off match before the World Cup, against South Korea.
Additionally, ESPN digital anchor Antonietta “Toni” Collins will join the rotation as a host of ESPN FC during the Women’s World Cup. ESPN reporter Bob Holtzman will follow the U.S. team throughout the tournament, providing updates for SportsCenter.
espnW will be onsite providing original content for all 52 games of the tournament – with a collection of veteran writers from espnW, ESPN FC and ESPN.com, including Andrea Canales, Jim Caple, Jeff Carlisle, Kate Fagan, Ben Gladwell, Graham Hays, Doug McIntyre, D’Arcy Maine, Elizabeth Merrill, Graham Parker and Sarah Spain. espnW will provide comprehensive coverage of the Women’s World Cup at espnW.com/WWC, which will include automated stats, rosters, game previews and recaps powered by ESPN FC.
Canales covers Liga MX and Mexico National Team for ESPNFC.com.
Caple is an award-winning columnist and senior writer for ESPN.com, who has reported from 17 World Series, nine Olympic Games and six continents.
Carlisle has covered MLS and the U.S. national teams for ESPN since 2005, and provided on-site coverage from the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups, as well as the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup. He began his soccer journalism career in 2002 when he wrote for QuakeMagic.com, covering the San Jose Earthquakes and the WUSA’s San Jose CyberRays.
Collins joined ESPN in 2013 as a digital anchor. She played for the Mexican Women’s National Team’s under-19 squad and has previously reported on MLS’ FC Dallas, among other assignments. Collins also contributes to various platforms for ESPN Deportes.
Fagan has been a columnist for espnW.com since 2012 who has covered a variety of sports for the site, including college and professional basketball, women’s soccer, the NFL and more. She spent three seasons reporting on the Philadelphia 76ers for the Philadelphia Inquirer from 2009 – 2012 and played women’s basketball at the University of Colorado from 1999 – 2004. Last October, she wrote the in-depth profile “After the Storm” about USWNT star Abby Wambach for espnW and ESPN The Magazine.
Foudy is one of the most accomplished female soccer players in the world. She joined ESPN in 2005 as women’s soccer and FIFA World Cup analyst. Following her work during the 2006 FIFA World Cup, Foudy’s role at ESPN was expanded to include serving as a features reporter and a spokesperson for select company initiatives. She served as a host, analyst and reporter for ESPN’s productions of the the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups and was an analyst during ESPN’s presentation of the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup. In 2015, Foudy was named espnW’s primary representative at major sporting events.
Gladwell is a writer for ESPNFC.com, covering international soccer.
Hays began his career with ESPN in 1999, and has since become one of the preeminent women’s college sports writers in the country, covering basketball, soccer and softball for espnW. In 2015, Hays was honored with the Mel Greenberg Media Award from the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association for his women’s college basketball writing.
Holtzman joined ESPN in November 2000 as a Cincinnati-based reporter. He primarily covers stories that are featured on the network’s award-winning news and information shows including SportsCenter, Sunday NFL Countdown, Monday Night Countdown, Outside the Lines and Baseball Tonight. A seasoned international sports reporter, Holtzman has covered the U.S. National Soccer Teams for SportsCenter and other shows.
Lilly is the most-capped player in international soccer history, appearing 352 times for the USA. A midfielder, she scored 130 goals in her career – good for fourth-most all-time — and played in five Women’s World Cups. Lilly is a three-time U.S. Soccer Female Athlete of the year. She was inducted into the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame in 2014.
MacIntyre is a staff writer for ESPN The Magazine and a U.S. Soccer Insider for ESPNFC. He has covered American and international soccer since 2002.
Maine is a staff writer for espnW, covering culture and sports, and highlighting some of the top trending sports social media topics the espnW’s The Buzz. She previously served as SportsNation’s mobile correspondent, hosting chats from some of the biggest sporting events in the country.
Markgraf was one of the best defenders in U.S. Women’s National Team history. Though she was the least experienced starter in 1999, having joined the team a year earlier, Markgraf helped anchor the defense for the United States’ 1999 Women’s World Cup winning team. Markgraf played in 201 international matches from 1998 – 2008, the seventh-most in the U.S. women’s team history. She previously served as an analyst for ESPN during the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
Merrill is a senior writer for ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine who has written extensively on the NFL and several Olympic sports. She previously wrote for The Kansas City Star and The Omaha World-Herald.
Parker is a soccer columnist for ESPNFC.com and Grantland where he writes “The Designated Player” column, and serves as the chief U.S. soccer writer for The Guardian US
Spain is the co-host of espnW Presents: Spain & Prim on ESPN Radio, a SportsCenter anchor for ESPN1000 and has been an espnW columnist since 2010, covering a variety of sports including the NFL, NBA and soccer.
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