Sportsnet Picks Up Canada’s World Cup Qualifiers
Sportsnet will be broadcasting thirteen Canadian men’s national team matches from the final round of the country’s FIFA World Cup Qualifiers, beginning with tomorrow’s match against Honduras.
The news was announced by the national broadcaster this evening, marking a landmark deal that finally sees the Canadian men’s national team return to traditional cable television.
The simulcast will be fully produced by MEDIAPRO Canada and OneSoccer, who have tasked Gareth Wheeler and Terry Dunfield with commentary duties with Adam Jenkins on the sidelines. In the studio, live matchday coverage will be presented by host Andri Petrillo with soccer analysts Kristian Jack and Oliver Platt.
OneSoccer previously held the exclusive rights to the men’s national team home matches, with Kristian Jack stating that the decision to open up the distribution rights was made in coordination with MEDIAPRO and Canada Soccer Business.
OneSoccer has made a tremendous investment in soccer in our country, and this is just another example of that commitment to build on the momentum for the growth of the game in Canada. We value this partnership and are pleased that they have expanded their distribution of these all-important matches to not only OneSoccer but also the largest possible audience for Canadian fans to enjoy from coast to coast.CSA President Dr. Nick Bontis
The men’s national team will undergo fourteen matches in the Final Round of 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifying action, which Les Rouges hadn’t qualified for since 1997. The team reached this final round following a comfortable win over Haiti in June.
Canada only qualified for the FIFA World Cup once, in 1986. It went winless in the competition.
Canada will play fourteen World Cup Qualifying matches in all, with the odd-match-out in terms of Sportsnet coverage likely being next week’s USA – Canada match that was picked up by TSN instead.
Sportnet’s acquisition of the thirteen matches isn’t just limited to its television channels, as the matches will also be available on its SN NOW streaming platform.
This evening also saw OneSoccer announce that it will stream 49 Concacaf World Cup Qualifiers in all, which includes the thirteen aforementioned men’s national team games. The streaming provider is still the only domestic option for the Canadian Championship and Canadian Premier League, which US-based views can watch via Fox Sports.
It appears that Sportnet will also be able to air highlights from the domestic league as part of its new partnership, however.
John Herdman has named a strong-looking squad ahead of this September’s World Cup Qualifiers, with Atiba Hutchinson returning to the fold while Scott Arfield remains on the outside looking in. Les Rouges will play at home to Honduras and El Salvador, with an away trip against the United States tucked in the middle.
Canadian sports fans wishing to tune into tomorrow’s match can now do so through Sportsnet or OneSoccer at 8:00PM.
The full terms of the distribution agreement were not disclosed by either party.