Shocking End for U.S. World Cup Bid a Blow to Fox, Sponsors

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The U.S. guys’s football team was eliminated from World Cup qualifiers Tuesday, a shocking result that could depart sponsors and media partners at the lurch for tens of thousands of dollars.

The U.S. fell 2-1 on the road to Trinidad & Tobago. The Americans were, removed by that result, coupled with wins Honduras and by Panama from contention for a spot in the 2018 World Cup in Russia. It’s the first time since 1986 that the U.S. staff failed to qualify for the most-watched sporting event on the planet.

Any reduction in interest by American enthusiasts may have effects for Fox Sports, which will be paying over $400 million to the domestic English-language rights to the two World Cups. Telemundo is spending roughly $600 million to its Spanish-language rights.

Those broadcasts — especially Fox’s — will probably observe a reduction in viewership without the U.S. in emptiness. Fox and Telemundo won the rights into the 2018 and 2022 World Cups after bidding roughly four times as much as the prior contract held by Walt Disney Co.’s ESPN and Univision.

The U.S. reduction “is a blow to Fox Sports’ football aspirations,” Steven Cahall, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets, said Wednesday at a note.  “’d the U.S. created it, Fox could have televised at least three group-stage games with potential for more if the group made it into further rounds. ”

Ratings on ESPN soared three decades back when the U.S. team advanced out of the group point, prior to falling to Belgium in additional time at the Round of 16. A reduction in interest would also affect FIFA’s top World Cup partners, such as Visa Inc.. and Coca-Cola Co.

Red Square

Fox Sports has stated its 2018 World Cup policy is going to be the production in the community’s 24-year history. The plan includes over 350 hours of programming, even more games on broadcast television than the last four World Cups combined and a studio set-up in Moscow’s Red Square.

#x 2019 & America;s television markets that are robust and advertising infrastructure make enthusiasts available for patrons and broadcasters. A number of the best European clubs, like FC Barcelona and AS Roma, are also pouring resources into courting U.S. fans.

U.S. Soccer’s corporate spouses additionally paid to host a group that will overlook the month-long event. Those firms include Coca-Cola Co., AT&T Inc., Anheuser-Busch InBev, Johnson & Johnson, Nike Inc.. , also Liberty Mutual Group Inc..

“Every World Cup sponsor would prefer to have the U.S. represented,” Jim Andrews, senior vice president at advisor IEG and ESP Properties, stated in an email. While the U.S. “lack is extremely unsatisfactory to all involved, it’s not a devastating blow to brand spouses’ plans. ”

The championship will lose casual fans “who’d only be curious if the U.S. staff were playing,” but “ardent U.S. fans of the game will still stick to the action,” he said.

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