ESPN FC – ESPN’s multi-language, multi-country and multiplatform soccer brand – celebrates its one-year anniversary on digital platforms today, and soccer fans have made ESPNFC.com and ESPN FC on mobile a top destination for soccer coverage year-round. The anniversary coincides with the premiere week of ESPN FC on ESPN2 in the U.S., which airs its one-hour editions on Sundays at 12 a.m. ET and 30-minute editions on weekdays at 5:30 p.m. The show is also televised on ESPN’s networks in the Caribbean, Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.
No. 1 soccer-specific site in the U.S. logs best consecutively trafficked months in site’s history, double-digit percent growth across metrics globally.
“Our commitment and dedication to ESPN FC to cover the world’s most popular sport globally and across all screens remains as strong as ever,” said Bimal Kapadia, senior director, ESPN FC. “We look forward to serving fans a unique show and new digital products and services in the coming months leading up to the biggest event in football, the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.”
“The numbers over the past year show how fans have come to know ESPN FC as a trusted source of information for the latest news and coverage from around the world of football,” said James Martin, deputy editor, ESPN FC. “We have made and continue to make a concerted effort to hire a high-caliber group of global contributors to join our already stellar editorial newsroom.”
Record-Breaking Traffic on Digital Platforms
In just one year, ESPNFC.com has grown to be the no. 1 soccer-specific site in the U.S., consistently leading the way in terms of audience (comScore, Aug. 2012-Jul. 2013). Globally, the site has also logged its best consecutively trafficked months in the site’s history, averaging 5.1 million unique visitors per month (Aug. 2012-Jun. 2013), up 11 percent compared to the same time period the previous year. Other highlights:
• ESPN FC mobile Web – generated double-digit percent growth globally, up 22 percent in both page views and visitors compared to the previous year (Adobe SiteCatalyst, Aug. 2012-Jul. 2013)
• Video – reached 23.2 million video starts on ESPNFC.com in July, marking four consecutive months of record-breaking video traffic on the site
• ESPN FC Blog Network – generates roughly 8 million page views per month, representing 6.1 percent of total traffic and about 23 percent of all editorial traffic when combining blogs and stories, more than five times that of what it was the previous year (1 percent and 4 percent, respectively)
Other highlights from the past year include the addition of influential voices and quality coverage from renowned international soccer journalists Gabriele Marcotti, Roger Bennett, Iain Macintosh, James Horncastle, Michael Cox, Jeff Carlisle, Fernando Duarte, Tim Vickery and others. Enterprise features and breaking news have also been a focus for the site, which included collaboration with ESPN The Magazine and senior writer Wright Thompson for his story “When The Beautiful Game Turns Ugly” as well as breaking news from Doug McIntyre on Clint Dempsey’s return to Major League Soccer after spending six years of his career with the Barclays Premier League.
New Contributors and Blogs
Kicking off ESPN FC’s second year will be new additions to the ESPN FC Blog Network, including Americans Abroad, Bundesliga, Champions League, Hull City, Cardiff City and Crystal Palace. An all-new ESPN FC TV blog will also launch with extras, extended interviews with guests and on-camera reaction pieces from the daily soccer TV program.
Additionally, joining ESPN FC’s strong stable of writers and contributors heading into year two will include:
• John Crace – feature writer for The Guardian, Crace will write for ESPN FC’s Tottenham Hotspurs blog.
• John Cross – a leading expert on the Gunners, Cross will join Andrew Mangan on the Arsenal blog.
• Kelly Davitt – creator of the popular Kickette blog, Davitt will author a new off-the-pitch blog on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
• Raphael Honigstein – a German journalist and top English-language expert, Honigstein will cover Bundesliga and the German national team.
• David Mooney – creator and host of the Blue Moon Podcast, Mooney joins ESPN FC for coverage of Manchester City.
• Rory Smith – a strong voice in the soccer world, Smith will contribute to coverage on the Barclays Premier League and European football.
• Dave Usher – founder and editor of The Liverpool Way, Usher will join Kristian Walsh as writer for the Liverpool blog.
Working Members of the Media:
If you are a member of the media and have questions regarding ESPN’s content, businesses or products in the UK or around the world, contact:
Director, Communications, ESPN — EMEA, APAC & X Games
o: +44 (0)208 222 2104
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