Seattle Sounders FC today announced its complete regional broadcast details for the 2021 Major League Soccer season. Fans of the club can continue to follow the Rave Green through one of the most diverse slates in Major League Soccer.
“Our broadcast partners have always worked with Sounders FC to provide unfalteringly excellent coverage of the team to our fans, and we’re happy be able to continue these relationships in 2021,” said Sounders FC Owner & President of Business Operations Peter Tomozawa. “While we look forward to welcoming fans back to Lumen Field this year, 2020 reiterated the importance of not only providing varied broadcast options to those who love the team, but also making sure that those offerings are the highest quality possible. With our partners Q13 and JOEtv, Amazon Prime Video, iHeartMedia Seattle and El Rey 1360 AM, we have no doubt that our fans will enjoy another season of Sounders soccer, no matter how they are tuning in.”
In regional television, the club’s home remains Q13 FOX (KCPQ-Channel 13) and JOEtv (KZJO-Channel 22), seeing JOEtv return as the dedicated television home for all regional broadcasts of the Rave Green throughout Western Washington for the fourth straight season. In addition to televising all home and away Sounders FC matches to in-market fans for non-nationally televised broadcasts, JOEtv continues to provide both a 30-minute pre-match show and 30-minute post-match wrap-up following each contest.
Q13 FOX is also airing two feature-length Sounders FC specials during the 2021 season, in addition to profiling the team during the weekly “Q It Up” sportscast each Friday throughout the year, shown on both Q13 FOX and JOEtv. Dating back to the first year of the partnership between the Rave Green and KCPQ in 2014, Sounders FC’s regional broadcast ratings have led Major League Soccer each season, including 2020 during the pandemic.
“We are delighted to continue our partnership with Sounders FC and for the opportunity to provide the most passionate supporters in MLS the coverage they deserve,” said Pam Pearson, Senior Vice President & General Manager of Q13 FOX and JOEtv.
Amazon Prime Video continues as Seattle’s official video streaming partner in 2021, following the landmark agreement last August that saw Sounders FC become the first professional soccer club to team up with the streaming service, as well as just the second sports franchise for which Prime Video secured regional broadcast rights (following Major League Baseball’s New York Yankees).
Prime Video is the exclusive streaming destination for the Rave Green, with all regionally televised Sounders FC MLS matches available with a Prime membership at no additional cost. The first match streaming on Prime Video is scheduled for May 12 vs. the San Jose Earthquakes. Sounders FC’s regional broadcast territory extends throughout the entirety of Washington State – inclusive of the traditional Seattle-Tacoma-Everett television DMA and key population centers like Spokane, Yakima, Tri-Cities and Vancouver, Washington. Simply put, fans everywhere in the Evergreen State are able to watch the Rave Green via Prime Video. Fans can watch at home or on the go across hundreds of compatible devices, including smart TVs, mobile devices, Fire TV, Fire tablet, Apple TV, Chromecast, game consoles, Comcast X1, or from the web.
Additionally, fans accessing the Rave Green through Prime Video can find club-specific content available via the dedicated Sounders FC team page, which houses live and archived regional Sounders FC matches, highlights, player interviews, press conferences and more.
“We know Prime members throughout the state of Washington love the Rave Green, with viewership for the first season of Sounders FC on Prime Video far exceeding our internal projections,” said Marie Donoghue, Vice President of Global Sports Video at Amazon. “Being able to watch locally broadcast Sounders FC matches on Prime Video has become a major membership benefit for customers throughout the state, and we look forward to delivering another championship campaign this season.”
Keith Costigan, Kasey Keller and Steve Zakuani all return to the booth in 2021, reprising their roles from past seasons. In his sixth year with Sounders FC, Costigan is once again set to call regional matches for the Rave Green, while maintaining his national duties with FOX Sports. Former MLS Sounders Keller and Zakuani return to their analyst duties, as the former United States Men's National Team goalkeeper and the 2009 first overall SuperDraft selection are set to work alongside a choice selection of rotating pre-match, halftime and post-match talent. Among this group are former Sounders Brad Evans, Marcus Hahnemann, James Riley and Lamar Neagle.
Through 2021, the television broadcast for all matches, both home and away, will continue to be produced in Seattle. This method was adopted in 2020 due to COVID-19 health and safety protocols, and the club is continuing the trend in 2021 out of an abundance of caution. As with last season, fans can expect to see the same look and feel that they are familiar with from their usual high-quality Sounders FC broadcasts. Even for away matches featuring a “world feed” provided by the away team, from which the game is called by talent at home, Sounders FC’s production staff will continue to supplement the coverage with a controlled camera that is operated onsite while directed from Seattle.
In radio, Sounders FC continues its flagship partnership with iHeartMedia Seattle for the fourth consecutive season. All home and away Sounders FC MLS matches are being carried on Sports Radio 950 KJR AM or 1090 KJR AM, including a dedicated 30-minute pregame and 30-minute postgame show surrounding each contest. Additionally, the station is continuing its hour-long Sounders Weekly program, hosted by Jackson Felts and airing at 7:00 p.m. PT every Tuesday evening throughout the season.
“We’re extremely excited to bring Sounders FC fans another year of club programming on Sports Radio KJR!” said Rich Moore, Senior Vice President of Programming for iHeartMedia Seattle. “As opportunities for fans to see the Rave Green in-person remain limited, we’re proud to provide the club’s passionate supporters a way to hear all the action via 950 KJR AM, 1090 KJR AM and the iHeartRadio App.”
New this year, match action audio for regionally televised games is being simulcast between television and radio, with radio listeners now able to take advantage of the exceptional crew that the Rave Green has in Costigan and Keller. For nationally televised matches, Costigan, Keller and Zakuani are calling Sounders FC games exclusively for the radio broadcast. As mentioned above, dedicated pregame and postgame shows will continue to bracket every radio broadcast, with Jackson Felts leading those efforts and working alongside Pete Fewing, Danny Jackson and Wade Webber.
“We’re proud of our broadcast product and believe we’ve created one of the most dynamic talent lineups in North American soccer. We know our fans appreciate the great work that Keith, Kasey and Steve have been doing, and we’re excited to showcase their abilities across both linear television and radio in 2021,” said Sounders FC Vice President of Broadcast Ryan Schaber. “All three of them welcome this opportunity, including the ability to bring our fans standalone radio calls, beginning on Friday with 950 AM KJR’s airing of the club’s home opener. When coupled with our robust talent lineup for pre-match, halftime and post-match coverage, we are very much looking forward to what we will bring fans in 2021.”
The club also continues its partnership with El Rey 1360 AM as the Spanish-language home for Sounders FC matches in 2021. With play-by-play voice "Zuper" Mario Rodríguez alongside Carlos Tapia and Felipe Maqueda on the call, El Rey 1360 AM is set to carry all 34 Sounders FC matches during the 2021 regular season. El Rey 1360 AM also provides 30-minute pre-match and post-match shows as part of their matchday coverage, as well as a 30-minute weekly radio show, Somos Sounders FC. The latter is hosted by Felipe Maqueda, and he is joined by Carolina Antipolo, Carlos Tapia and Marlo Vilela, airing Saturday mornings at 10:30 a.m. PT.
In addition, Sounders FC is in active conversations with longtime partner Univision-Seattle (KUNS-TV) to air a select number of match broadcasts and Sounders FC Fútbol en Vivo programs throughout the year. More information will be released in the coming weeks.
Seattle's 2021 MLS campaign begins this Friday, April 16, as the Rave Green host Minnesota United FC in a rematch of last year’s dramatic Western Conference Final comeback victory. That match kicks off at 6:30 p.m. PT inside Lumen Field and is being nationally televised on FS1.