Tim Howard signs multi-year deal to broadcast Premier League matches for NBC Sports
Everton/ Twitter/ @Everton
Tim Howard‘s goalkeeping at the 2014 World Cup this summer captured the attention and respect of media and fans alike. Now, Howard will not only be stepping back on the field in the Barclays Premier League as a player, but also into the broadcast booth as an analyst.
NBC Sports announced today that the United States Men’s National Team and Everton goalkeeper has signed a multi-year agreement to broadcast Premier League matches for the network. This follows several broadcasts Howard did for the network during last season.
“I am thrilled to continue the journey that I started last year and I’m looking forward to this new season,” Howard said in a conference call. “I’m excited not only to play, but also to continue to improve and try to master this thing we call television.”
“We’re thrilled to have Tim join our Premier League announcing team as an active player,” added Pierre Moossa, the coordinating producer of NBC Sports’ coverage of the Premier League. “He adds a unique perspective to our broadcast. We look forward to hearing his insight and commentary this upcoming season.”
Under the deal, the 35-year-old will work up to 10 top-tier matches for NBC Sports this season, working as either a game analyst in the booth or at an on-site studio for pre-game, halftime, and post-game. His broadcasts are planned to work around his schedule with Everton, with a focus on him being an analyst for some of the league’s biggest matches.
Howard worked as a game analyst on NBC Sports for six Premier League matches last season, as well as making one on-site studio appearance. His broadcast work had little effect on Everton’s performances, as the club won six of the seven matches that came immediately prior to Howard’s broadcasts.
“I didn’t know if television was something I wanted to do…I thought maybe I’d dabble in it,” Howard said of his initial thoughts on stepping into the broadcast booth. “I realized how difficult it was (last year), but I really enjoyed it. I got nervous in the games, but I tried to absorb and learn as much information as I could.”
Despite his initial misgivings and timidity, Howard was quick to point out the role that both Moossa and NBC Sports’ lead play-by-play broadcaster Arlo White had in helping him adjust to life behind the microphone. White returned the favor by saying that the network is “very, very lucky” to have Howard on board.
“This is biggest signing of the offseason in the transfer window,” White joked, in reference to the current global transfer window. “Tim was fantastic to work with last season. Just being there alongside him on the journey from the first game we did together at Chelsea in October to the end of the season, the progress he made was absolutely excellent.”
With a daily schedule during the season that runs along the lines of “eat, train, sleep”, Howard said that the broadcasting he did last season was actually a welcome filler for his free time, rather than a hindrance to his play with Everton. He typically would compile his research and game notes for the broadcast on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, before stopping to focus on Everton’s weekend opponent on Thursdays and Fridays.
“Pierre is very conscious about making sure that my day job, which is Everton Football Club, is paramount, first and foremost,” Howard said. “I think we got that right, looking at Everton’s results prior to myself doing a broadcast.”
One of the other big questions surrounding Howard following the World Cup has been in regards to his future plans for the national team, his club career, and beyond. Though he did not have an answer yet, Howard did say that broadcasting would “certainly be something that I would enjoy”.
“I’m a little bit closer to making a decision (on my future) but not much further,” Howard said. “I have to have some long, hard conversations with a few different people that I haven’t had yet.”