Taylor Twellman Replacing John Harkes In ESPN's Soccer Booth Next Year
Taylor Twellman will replace John Harkes "as ESPN's lead analyst in the booth for MLS and U.S. Soccer broadcasts in 2012," according to sources cited by Grant Wahl of SI.com. Harkes was "recently informed that his contract would not be renewed." Twellman has "spent this season working in ESPN's studio coverage and as the analyst for local broadcasts of the Philadelphia Union." Ian Darke will "continue to be ESPN's lead play-by-play voice for the U.S. national team, the English Premier League, Euro 2012 and select MLS broadcasts," while Alexi Lalas will stay in his position as a studio analyst. Adrian Healey is "expected to continue calling MLS games when Darke is not involved." Meanwhile, NBC Sports is "currently pursuing" MLS Sounders broadcaster Arlo White and Fox Soccer's Kyle Martino as its "targets for broadcasts that could begin as soon as January." JP Dellacamera "will stay at Fox Soccer while continuing to work as the local voice of the Philadelphia Union" (SI.com, 11/21). In Seattle, Joshua Mayers noted White in May said that his contract "was for three years and that, at that point, he planned to stay." White took over for Kevin Calabro on the Sounders call before the '10 season (SEATTLETIMES.com, 11/21).
NOT A DRAW: USA TODAY's Michael Hiestand writes under the header, "Major League Soccer Title Game Fails To Draw." The league's final between the Galaxy and Dynamo Sunday night "had its best-known players" in Galaxy F Landon Donovan and MF David Beckham playing on ESPN "on TV's most-watched night." The 0.8 overnight rating for the game was "about half what Fox drew that afternoon for taped English soccer" (USA TODAY, 11/22). MLS Cup drew a 2.8 rating in the Houston market (CHRON.com, 11/21).