With Thursday marking 100 days until the full start of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar on Nov. 21 (although it’s now actually going to start on Nov. 20 with a match featuring hosts Qatar against Ecuador), Telemundo Deportes has announced more of the figures that will be joining their Spanish-language commentary team. Telemundo, Universo, and Peacock will combine to carry live coverage of all 64 matches, with all matches featuring dedicated teams of announcers calling games from inside the venues. Here’s more from a release:
“This is a year that will be a total game-changer for the biggest sporting event in the world, and we’re thrilled to celebrate this milestone by introducing and welcoming an impressive roster of legendary figures joining us in Qatar in 100 days,” said Ray Warren, President of Telemundo Deportes.
Former Mexican national team head coach Miguel “Piojo” Herrera, Real Madrid and Spanish national team legend Fernando Hierro, World Cup champions Mauro Silva of Brazil and Claudio Borghi of Argentina, and 2010 FIFA World Cup Golden Ball winner Diego Forlán of Uruguay are some of the iconic soccer personalities joining Telemundo Deportes to provide an “on-the-pitch” perspective and expert analysis.
…“This is our most ambitious World Cup presentation yet with the largest onsite presence the network has ever had, and we’re proud to have a world-class team of experts and on-air talent at the helm of our coverage,” said Eli Velazquez, Executive Vice President of Sports Content, Telemundo Deportes. “This group reflects our commitment to deliver deeper coverage, unique perspectives, relevant storylines, and more excitement than ever before.”
The roster combines diverse soccer legends and experts who bring unique experiences from all facets of the game to complement Telemundo Deportes’ renowned award-winning commentary team. Coverage will be anchored by soccer Hall of Famer, six-time Emmy award-winner and chief commentator Andres Cantor alongside Emmy-award winning sports journalist Miguel Gurwitz, Telemundo’s Emmy-nominated sports and entertainment host Ana Jurka, Premier League host Carlota Vizmanos and Mexican soccer icon Carlos Hermosillo as the official hosts, leading the pre- and post-game analysis from Telemundo’s presentation studio located at the center of the cultural Souq Waqif Marketplace.
Telemundo Deportes’ production will feature the largest onsite footprint ever with in-venue presence at all 64 games and dedicated commentary teams calling the games from within the stadium. The experts join Telemundo Deportes announce teams to serve as analysts and join the announce teams for relevant matches. Former Mexican National Team and Chivas player Manuel Sol will join Cantor as lead analyst; network play-by-play veteran Copán Álvarez, two-time Emmy award nominee Sammy Sadovnik and accomplished Spanish-language sports broadcaster Jorge Calvo will provide play-by-play alongside experienced sports analyst Eduardo Biscayart, who has four World Cups and nine Champions League finals under his belt.
This is going to be a unique World Cup thanks to its fall dates, and Telemundo is covering it in a big way with this massive on-site presence. They’ll have figures like Cantor working on both game broadcasts and studio coverage, and they have a wide range of analysts joining both their game and studio coverage. This fits with many of Telemundo’s recent sports pushes, including a Sunday Night Football expansion and Olympics, Super Bowl, and Premier League coverage, and it’s notable to see them continuing with this World Cup.
All of these World Cup matches will be available live on TV (same as in 2018, where all matches aired live on Telemundo or Universo), but a new aspect this time around sees Telemundo Deportes coverage of all matches airing live on parent company NBCUniversal’s streaming service Peacock as well. That streaming service will also feature a 24/7 World Cup channel with exclusive coverage. And it’s notable that all of these matches will feature in-venue commentary, as there’s been a pronounced shift towards remote broadcasting for many soccer matches in recent years. We’ll see how this kind of bet on extensive on-site coverage turns out for Telemundo.