Sorry, La Liga fans. No Ray Hudson as a color commentator on ESPN’s list of announcers for its La Liga telecasts this 2021-22 season.
Hudson was well known as the La Liga analyst, along with his broadcast partner, Phil Schoen, on beIN for years, especially during the Lionel Messi-Cristiano Ronaldo era.
ESPN Monday announced its roster of play-by-play commentators, hosts, analysts and reporters for its upcoming English and Spanish-language coverage of La Liga. The lineup of personalities combines more than 30 current ESPN announcers with new faces from across Latin America, Europe and the United States, including former world-class players.
English-language play-by-play commentary for LaLiga on ESPN+ and ESPN networks will be led by broadcasters Ian Darke, Derek Rae, Adrian Healey, Rob Palmer and Sebastian Salazar.
Fernando Palomo, Jorge Ramos, Ricardo Ortiz, and Mauricio Pedroza will headline Spanish-language play-by-play coverage on ESPN+ and ESPN Deportes.
Last week ESPN announced a team of six analysts who were former LaLiga players. Former Atlético Madrid’s Luis Garcίa, Real Madrid’s Steve McManaman, and RCD Espanyol’s Pablo Zabaleta will share lead roles as English-language analysts. Former Atletico Madrid’s Diego Forlán, former Valencia CF’s Mario Kempes, and Real Madrid legend Hugo Sánchez lead the team of Spanish-language analysts. Also joining as Spanish-language analysts will be ESPN Deportes’ versatile voices Andrés Agulla, Carolina De Las Salas, Alex Pareja and Hernán Pereyra, Former U.S. Men’s National Team goalkeeper and the first American goalkeeper to play in LaLiga with Rayo Vallecano Kasey Keller, Former Venezuelan National Team player Alejandro Moreno, and former professional soccer player Stewart Robson, will contribute as English-language analyst.
ESPN’s English-language studio hosts are Dan Thomas and Kay Murray. The duo will co-host ESPN FC, ESPN’s signature soccer program with news, analysis and highlights show. Andrés Agulla, Cristina Alexander, and Ricardo Puig will serve as Spanish-language studio voices on Fuera de Juego.
Six Spain-based reporters will handle coverage from site throughout the season, including LaLiga insiders Martin Ainstein, Rodrigo Faez, Moises Llorens, Sid Lowe, Manu Martín, and Gemma Soler. London-based football reporter Alexis Nunes will also report from site.
When La Liga returns for its 91st season Friday, ESPN+ will be the new home of coverage in the U.S., with content and select matches appearing throughout the season across ESPN, ESPN Deportes, and ABC platforms. Opening weekend will kick off with Valencia CF at home against Getafe CF on Friday, August 13, with a live pre-show at 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPN+.
On Sunday, August 15, FC Barcelona hosts Real Sociedad at Camp Nou in Barcelona, live on ABC, with coverage beginning with a 30-minute pregame show at 1:30 p.m. It will mark the first time ever that a LaLiga match will air on broadcast television in the U.S. The Spanish-language telecast of the match will be on ESPN Deportes, and ESPN+ will stream the English- and Spanish-language presentations of the match.
La Liga 2021-22 season-opening weekend will cover four days (Friday, Aug. 13 – Monday, Aug. 16) featuring 10 matches streaming live in English and Spanish on ESPN+.