D.C. United and Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic announced the television schedule today for United’s 2012 MLS season. The local sports channel will be broadcasting 15 regular season MLS games, which sounds pretty good. Except that it’s less than last year. And less than every other MLS team.
In 2011, we were largely satisfied with the amount of television coverage that United received. Although less than 100% of the games were available on TV, at least all of the road matches were televised, meaning that a die-hard United fan had the ability to watch every single game either on his television set, or from the stands at RFK Stadium.
That won’t true this year though. Five road matches – Sporting Kansas City on 8/11, Montreal Impact on 8/25, Real Salt Lake on 9/1, Portland Timbers on 9/29, and Toronto FC on 10/6 – will have no television coverage in the D.C. area. Fans will be forced to resort to watching on their computers by paying for MLS’s Match Day Live.
There’s time to salvage this though. I hope that it isn’t just a coincidence that all of the untelevised road matches are late in the season. This leads me to believe that there’s a good reason why CSN hasn’t yet picked up any of these games. Maybe they’re waiting for the Capitals preseason schedule to be released. Or anything else. CSN adding games to the schedule late in the year isn’t unprecedented. It’s happened before. It could happen again. Let’s hope that it does.