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Rebecca Lowe will host NBC’s coverage of the Premier League

Mar 26, 2013, 8:14 AM EDT

The FA England Awards 2013

Rebecca Lowe, a reporter and presenter for ESPN UK, has been hired by NBC as the lead host for the network’s coverage of the English Premier League.

American audiences will remember the West London-born Lowe as one of ESPN’s studio team hosts for the stateside coverage of UEFA Euro 2012 and the critically acclaimed and Sports Emmy-nominated presentation of the FIFA Women’s World Cup Germany 2011.

Lowe began her career in England in 2002 by working at talkSPORT, a football-heavy, 24 hour sports radio service broadcast from London to the United Kingdom. She broke into sports television by winning the 2002 BBC Talent Search for a football reporter, outlasting a field of 650 candidates. She thereafter spent the next five years at the BBC where she was a critical contributor to the network’s key football programs. Between reporting for Final Score and Football Focus, she presented a “Football in the Community” feature every Sunday morning on Match of the Day and served as a regular contributor for Match of the Day 2. Lowe also served as a reporter for BBC Two’s coverage of the 2004 African Cup of Nations and as the England team reporter for BBC One’s coverage of the 2005 Women’s European Championship.

In 2007 Lowe moved to Setanta Sport where she served for two years as a presenter and reporter, in addition to her duties co-hosting Football Matters, Setanta’s Premier League studio program. She joined ESPN in 2009 as co-host of ESPN UK’s live coverage of the Premier League, working alongside Ray Stubbs, with whom she also co-anchored Between the Lines, ESPN UK’s weekly debate and opinion program on all aspects of football.

A pioneer of female television broadcasters in world football, Lowe became the first woman to host the FA Cup Final in the 2012 contest between Chelsea and Liverpool at Wembley Stadium. The highly-rated Lowe is believed to have had more than one offer from a number of networks, with both ESPN and BT Sport eager to retain her services.

After confirming the deal, Lowe was asked what she wanted stateside Premier League fans to know about her. “Just that I’m excited to bring them the best possible coverage, all the storylines and EPL sagas with a committed team who love the game,” Lowe said. “We hope to be authentic but fresh. I should probably also admit now to my allegiance to Crystal Palace FC. We have a good chance of promotion to the Premier League this season but I promise to be totally neutral if I do end up presenting the Eagles!”

In addition to her promise of balanced coverage, Lowe pledged to maintain her English vernacular. “I will still call it football, I’ll still say a penalty not a PK, and a fullback and not an outside back,” Lowe said. “If I start trying to translate in my head, it could get messy. Having said that, living in America will no doubt rub off on me and I’m sure a few Americanisms may creep into my vocabulary over time. I certainly don’t want to use words or phrases that the U.S. fans don’t understand but I’m sure I’ll be told if no one knows what I’m meaning!”

Lowe’s deal with NBC runs for three years, covering the length of the network’s rights agreement. She will be based at NBC’s new headquarters in Stamford, Conn. where she will anchor five live games over a Premier League weekend.

With the hiring of Lowe, NBC has answered the first question regarding the talent it will utilize to cover the Premier League. From all accounts, it looks to be an incredibly saavy hire. Not only will Lowe’s hiring please old school Premier League fans who prefer Anglo-influenced coverage but it will also bring a young, vibrant, enthusiastic feel to the broadcast that reflects the nation’s insatiable hunger to grow both the men’s and women’s game.

  1. sluggo271 - Mar 26, 2013 at 10:46 AM

    Really?? SWEET!! I am so excited with this hire. She was fantastic with the EURO coverage.
    Great job NBC!!

  2. footballer4ever - Mar 26, 2013 at 2:35 PM

    NBC, can you allow or not force the British reporters call/refer our sport , “soccer”? Arlo White has stopped using football and everytime he says/repeats “soccer” it sends a screeching sound thru my ears. We understand you want it your American version to be the only “football”, but Iet British reporters call it Football for us real football fans. Thank You.

    • danielofthedale - Mar 26, 2013 at 3:00 PM

      In the US its called soccer. I mean you don’t go ask for Chips with your Big Mac instead of fries or go around asking for Oreo biscuits instead of cookies do you?

      • Michael Prindiville - Mar 26, 2013 at 3:14 PM

        The battle between what to call ‘it’ – soccer or football – rages on in America but I think there’s a fairly simple solution.

        I talk about ‘football’ when discussing the game outside the United States (Premier League, Euros, Champions League, etc.). I talk about ‘soccer’ when discussing the game inside the U.S. (MLS Soccer, US Soccer, etc.). Seems fair, right?

      • gfbhwo - Mar 28, 2013 at 6:22 PM

        Well it should be supplied by context.

        I mean if someone is presenting a Premier League show, or commentating a Premier League game, and use the term “football” it’s pretty obvious they are not talking about the NFL, innit?

        Or just call it “footy” :-)

  3. jessedinner - Mar 26, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    I am a big fan of this move as well.

  4. footballer4ever - Mar 26, 2013 at 6:08 PM

    Bob Ley, American ESpN sportscaster, calls it football during football matches; Therefore, why would NBC not allow/force British reporters to call it soccer. It sounds so hideous and makes no sense to hear in British accent for a football loving audience no matter the background one is from

  5. pjbowmaster - Mar 26, 2013 at 9:18 PM

    Football/Futbol/Soccer. Here in the United States we use all three words interchangeably. Just depends what part of the country you are standing in, and who you are talking to. There is no reason to argue about this…….

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