FOX Sports on Tuesday announced its broadcast team for the World Cup in Qatar.
The competitions begins on Sunday, Nov. 20 with a majority of the group stage matches featuring 8 a.m., 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. ET start times through the final on Sunday, Dec. 18.
“We couldn’t be more excited with the talented team of announcers, reporters and analysts we’ve assembled for FOX Sports’ highly anticipated presentation,” FIFA World Cup producer and vice president of production for FOX Sports David Neal said in a statement. “Our goal was to build a well-rounded group who could collectively connect with viewers and cover the tournament at its highest level. The USMNT’s exciting return to the competition also gave us the opportunity to bring together some of the biggest household names to ever represent the U.S. on the world stage. With just under 50 days to go to the opening match, we look forward to bringing our preeminent roster of soccer commentators and experts to Qatar as they prepare to call every thrilling match and cover every amazing storyline.”
Five announcing teams comprise FOX Sports’ roster of play-by-play commentators and match analysts calling matches.
John Strong and former U.S. men’s national team midfielder Stu Holden anchor the lead broadcast booth. That pairing has called more than 250 soccer matches together since 2014 – more than any other English-language television duo – and will surpass the 300-match mark in Qatar.
Veteran play-by-play announcer JP Dellacamera pairs with former USMNT standout Cobi Jones, while former U.S. women’s national team star Aly Wagner partners with Derek Rae. The Rae-Wagner pairing reunites in Qatar after calling matches together for the men’s tournament in 2018.
Ian Darke makes his FOX Sports play-by-play debut alongside USMNT icon Landon Donovan. In 2010, Darke called Donovan’s memorable injury-time goal for the U.S. against Algeria, which boosted the Americans to a 1-0 win and into the knockout round.
Former England defender Warren Barton joins the esteemed Jacqui Oatley to round out the announcer pairings.
Match assignments will be announced before the tournament begins.
Lead studio analyst Alexi Lalas, along with former U.S. standouts Clint Dempsey, Carli Lloyd and Maurice Edu, headline list of former soccer stars on the analysis end. Former England women’s national team forward Eni Aluko and Kelly Smith join the studio analyst roster with their perspectives. Former NFL star Chad Johnson will make his FOX Sports debut as a contributing analyst.
Rob Stone returns as lead host. anchoring studio coverage throughout the tournament from the FOX Sports set in Doha, while Kate Abdo is back as lead host of FIFA WORLD CUP TONIGHT.
Reporters covering the World Cup action include Jenny Taft, Rodolfo Landeros and Geoff Shreeves. Tom Rinaldi, 17-time Emmy Award winning storyteller, joins as a reporter and feature correspondent for his first World Cup.
A pair of respected rules analysts, former referees Dr. Joe Machnik and Mark Clattenburg, also will be in Qatar.