ESPN Deportes plans extensive 2014 football programming slate ahead of World Cup
Gabriel Miramar-Garcia | 17-05-2013

ESPN Deportes is putting a major focus on second-screen and original programming going forward, it said at its upfront event, including more content around football leading up to the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

The network will soon launch ESPN Sync, a second-screen experience for sports fans available on, iOS, Android and Windows devices via a Web portal. ESPN Sync is synchronised with live sports events, while also supporting ESPN Deportes' news and information shows before, during and after events. The interaction features live streams focusing on live sports, a timeline that allows users to interact synchronously with the event, and videos, polling/trivia, and access to stats and information available in numerous ways, all while connected to social media.

In anticipation of the World Cup, ESPN Deportes is developing a special content slate. That will include Destino Brasil, a pre- and post-match analysis dedicated to the World Cup Qualifying matches on the road to Brazil will continue to air on FIFA WCQ dates with the latest news and analysis around CONCACAF, CONMEBOL, UEFA Confederations and the Mexican National Team.

ESPN Deportes will continue to air qualifying matches on every FIFA date, primarily featuring UEFA teams including Spain, France, Italy, Portugal and Netherlands. The network will also continue presenting FIFA friendly matches.

Destino Futbol is a 16-episode documentary series profiling players like Lionel Messi, Chicharito and Diego Maradona, amongst others, and travels to countries all over the world, including Scotland, England, Brazil, Spain, Colombia and Argentina.

After its successful first two seasons, and in anticipation of the World Cup, Capitales del Futbol returns with profiles of some of the most popular soccer cities that have seen World Cup stars rise. The new edition of Capitales features London, Guadalajara, Medellin (Colombia), Montevideo (Uruguay) and Rome. The series captures the world's passion for the sport and provides a cultural perspective.

Gringos at the Gate is a documentary that takes viewers inside the rivalry between Mexico and the US, tracing its origin and influence among the fans, the rising opportunity for the sport in the US and the influence the rivalry has on the evolving cultural identities and team loyalties of the growing Mexican-American population.

Dream Job: El Reportero is returning for its third instalment later this year. The nationwide casting tour will again give the opportunity to aspiring sportscasters across the nation to compete for a chance to serve as a reporter and join the ESPN Deportes staff travelling to Brazil in 2014.

On the live sports front, ESPN Deportes also recently acquired the rights to more Mexican soccer matches. Under the new agreement, the network now televises over 120 Liga MX and Copa MX matches through each season. In addition, both properties are also available on ESPN Deportes+, the ESPN3 broadband extension available on ESPNdeportes.com.

ESPN Deportes also recently acquired the rights to more Mexican soccer matches. Under the new agreement, the network now televises over 120 Liga MX and Copa MX matches through each season. In addition, both properties are also available on ESPN Deportes+, the ESPN3 broadband extension available on ESPNdeportes.com.

Outside of football, starting this season, ESPN Deportes will televise the NBA finals, marking the first time that any Spanish-language cable network will offer live coverage of the championship games. According to the ESPN Deportes Sports Poll, 55% of Hispanic sports fans are NBA fans, ranking the sport in the top five most followed leagues by Hispanic fans. The 2012 NBA finals delivered record-breaking audiences on ABC that were boosted by 12% Hispanic viewership (P2+).

Turning to baseball, as part of ESPN's multi-platform rights extension with MLB, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Deportes+, the ESPN3 broadband extension available on ESPNdeportes.com, will carry more games throughout the week, including Sunday, Monday and Wednesday night games starting next season. In addition, the network will televise opening night, a game from Opening Day, holiday games and the Home Run Derby.