Facebook to stream Major League Soccer matches this season

Facebook agrees live streaming deal with MLS

They will be broadcasted on Univision networks in Spanish but will be available on Facebook in English via Univision Deportes Facebook page.

The fact that Facebook is already widely used, whether via Sports Stadium, Groups or just the regular news feed, to follow sports news and discuss live games works in its favor.

Facebook is kicking at least 22 live Major League Soccer matches this season across its video platforms, under a pact with the league and Univision Communications' Univision Deportes, which owns US broadcast rights to the games.

The games will be streamed on the Facebook page of Univision Deportes, the multimedia sports business of Univision, while the shows will be available on MLS' Facebook page. MLS will also produce Matchday Live, a Facebook gameday show that'll preview upcoming MLS games and provide MLS highlights and analysis. Last month, Facebook inked a pact with Univision to carry 46 soccer matches from Mexico's Liga MX for users in the US with English-language commentary.

Sports deals are often tough because numerous leagues are locked into contracts with broadcasters that limit to what extent they can make their content available to newer platforms like Facebook Live.

"We're very excited for MLS and Univision Deportes to bring this same innovative, community-first spirit to the Facebook Live broadcasts of league matches this season". The terms of agreement haven't been disclosed yet.




Dan Reed, head of Facebook's global sports partnerships initiative, says that the social platform wants to try and capture the energy of the stadium fan experience online.

There are now 22 teams in the league, which began its 2017 season on March 3.

"Further engaging the more than 18 million English-language viewers that have watched soccer on Univision coupled with the continued success of our MLS broadcasts, including our record-setting season opener, is a natural path in this new era of content consumption", he continued.

What this mean for everyone else: easily consumable soccer if you so wish to watch.

The NFL previous year began streaming its 10 Thursday Night Football games live on Twitter. Previously most of its live videos were user-generated content.

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