Women’s Soccer League and ESPN Announce Broadcast Agreement

 Diana Matheson (8) of the Washington SpiritThe National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) and ESPN announced today a one-year agreement to broadcast nine NWSL games this year. As part of the agreement, ESPN2 will air three regular-season matches and all three NWSL playoff matches, which includes the two semifinal games on August 23 and 24, and the championship game on August 31.

“We are very excited to announce our new agreement with ESPN,” NWSL Executive Director Cheryl Bailey said. “In the midst of our second season, we are striving to provide our fans with improved access to our league matches and airing our games on ESPN2 and ESPN3 will give us a broader platform to expose fans to the amazing caliber of women’s soccer in the NWSL. We also hope to create new fans who will appreciate the amazing athletes and personalities in our league.”

In addition, ESPN3 will also live stream three regular season NWSL games. Access to Live programming on the ESPN3 channel of multiscreen sports network is accessible online at WatchESPN.com on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app, and streamed on televisions through Xbox, Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV.

It is available to more than 92 million households nationwide at no additional cost to fans with subscriptions to participating high speed internet or video service providers. The network is also available at no cost to approximately 21 million U.S. college students and U.S.-based military personnel via computers, smartphones and tablets connected to on-campus educational and on-base military broadband and Wi-Fi networks.

“This agreement with the NWSL represents ESPN’s continued commitment to soccer and to top level women’s sports,” said Scott Guglielmino, ESPN Senior Vice President, Programming and Acquisitions. “We are excited to showcase this new league and feature some of the best female soccer players in the world leading in to the 2015 FIFA World Cup.”

Graham Hays will write a feature before every televised game for espnW.com, along with season predictions and breaking news throughout the season. In addition, espnW’s Julie Foudy, a FIFA Women’s World Cup champion in 1991 and 1999 and former captain of the U.S. Women’s National Team, will conduct a post-game question-and-answer with the star of each game.

2014 NWSL National Television Schedule*
Date     Home Team     Away Team     Time (ET)     TV
Sunday, July 20, 2014    Portland Thorns FC    Boston Breakers    5:00 p.m.     ESPN2
Wednesday, July 30, 2014    Houston Dash    Seattle Reign FC    9:00 p.m.    ESPN3
Sunday, August 03, 2014    Portland Thorns FC    Houston Dash    10:00 p.m.     ESPN2
Saturday, August 09, 2014    Houston Dash    Sky Blue FC    9:00 p.m.    ESPN3
Wednesday, August 13, 2014    Western New York Flash    Sky Blue FC    7:00 p.m.     ESPN2
Sunday, August 17, 2014    Portland Thorns FC    Seattle Reign FC    5:00 p.m.     ESPN3
Saturday, August 23, 2014    Semifinal     –     1:00 p.m.    ESPN2
Sunday, August 24, 2014    Semifinal     –     3/11 p.m.    ESPN2
Sunday, August 31, 2014    Championship     –     3:00 p.m.     ESPN2

The Washington Spirit is the professional women’s soccer team based at the Maryland SoccerPlex in Germantown, Md. Launched in 2012, the Spirit play in the National Women’s Soccer League, the premier women’s soccer competition in North America. For more information about the Spirit, visit www.WashingtonSpirit.com, follow the club on Twitter @WashSpirit and on Facebook at facebook.com/washingtonspirit.

The National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) is a nine-team Division-I women’s professional soccer league featuring players from Canada, Mexico and U.S. The eight founding clubs are the Boston Breakers, Chicago Red Stars, FC Kansas City, Houston Dash, Portland Thorns FC, Seattle Reign FC, Sky Blue FC, the Washington Spirit and the Western New York Flash.

Based in Chicago, the NWSL is supported by the United States Soccer Federation, Canadian Soccer Association and Federation of Mexican Football. For more information about the NWSL, log on to the league’s official website here.

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