ESPN has entered into an exclusive agreement with the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) for the worldwide rights to the league’s regular-season and playoff matches.
ESPN, which already holds the rights to NWSL broadcasts in the U.S. via a separate agreement, will now provide international coverage of the league in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and parts of Asia. The matches will be available to be streamed live and on-demand via ESPN Player.
The 2019 NWSL season, which commences August 21, features stand-out soccer players from around the world, including U.S. Women’s World Cup stars such as Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride), Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC) and Megan Rapinoe (Reign FC). International stars include Canadian captain Christine Sinclair (Portland Thorns FC), Australia’s Sam Kerr (Chicago Red Stars) and Brazil’s Marta Vieira da Silva (Orlando Pride).
NWSL President Amanda Duffy said: “This is an important step for NWSL to strengthen the league’s reach through ESPN’s international network. Our partnership with ESPN has already brought NWSL’s world-class competition into more homes and to more fans here in the United States. Expanding the network’s distribution internationally will continue to elevate the profile and visibility of NWSL around the world.”
Scott Guglielmino, senior VP of programming and acquisitions for ESPN, added: “The National Women’s Soccer League is home to many of the world’s top female players, and as a brand, ESPN leads the way in delivering world-class soccer content to fans around the world. We are thrilled to be able to leverage ESPN’s global reach to bring NWSL’s regular season and playoff matches to soccer audiences worldwide.”