BBC reveals on-air line-up for 2018 FIFA World Cup

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The BBC will provide comprehensive coverage of football’s greatest tournament this summer as the best players from across the globe descend on Russia for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Hot on the heals of terrestrial rival ITV’s World Cup team announcement, the BBC has announced details of its on-air talent line-up, including World Cup winners and some of the most experienced players to have appeared in the international game, who will be on hand to deliver analysis, insight, commentary and reports across TV, radio and online platforms.

Broadcasting from the iconic setting of Moscow’s Red Square throughout the tournament, BBC Sport will televise 33 live games across BBC One, BBC Two and BBC Four, all of which will be streamed live on BBC Sport online and BBC iPlayer.

Leading BBC’s TV coverage for a fifth consecutive World Cup is Gary Lineker, who will be joined in the studio in Moscow by former England stars Alan Shearer, Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard, Phil Neville, Jermaine Jenas, Alex Scott, Danny Murphy and Martin Keown, who between them have earned over 600 caps representing their country.

Bringing international experience to the studio are some of the best players to have graced the world stage, including former Germany striker and 1990 World Cup winner Jurgen Klinsmann, Ivory Coast’s all-time leading goal scorer Didier Drogba and Pablo Zabaleta, who starred for Argentina in the 2014 World Cup final.

A late addition to the BBC line-up is World Cup winner Cesc Fabregas. The Chelsea midfielder has won more than 100 caps for Spain and helped them win the World Cup in 2010.

Other members of the BBC presenting team in Russia will be Dan Walker, who will host a selection of the BBC’s live games, highlight shows and Football Focus specials; as well as Match of the Day 2’s Mark Chapman and Final Score’s Jason Mohammad.

Kevin Kilbane and Mark Lawrenson can be heard on co-commentary duties alongside BBC regulars Guy Mowbray, Steve Wilson, Jonathan Pearce, Steve Bower, Simon Brotherton and Vicki Sparks, who becomes the first-ever female to commentate on a World Cup game for British television.

Gabby Logan will deliver all of the updates, news and interviews from the England camp as the BBC’s dedicated reporter with the team during the competition and from their live games as England aim to top the group.

The BBC’s television coverage will begin with a World Cup preview programme on Wednesday, 13 June on BBC One at 10.45pm, followed by highlights and a full replay of the opening game between hosts Russia and Saudi Arabia on Thursday, 14 June.

Friday, 15 June, sees the first of 33 games broadcast on BBC One as Egypt take on Uruguay at 1.00pm. The BBC will also broadcast England’s opening two group games of the tournament against Tunisia (June 18) and Panama (June 24), which marks the first time that the corporation has shown the Three Lions’ first two games in a World Cup exclusively live.

A Match of the Day highlights show will be broadcast most evenings on BBC One throughout the tournament, while fans who missed a match or want to relive the action again can watch a selected replayed game on BBC Two throughout the competition, or catch up on all TV coverage via the BBC iPlayer.

Alongside BBC Sport’s television coverage, the corporation’s extensive digital service brings live HD video coverage of all BBC matches, featuring additional commentary and camera angles, news and analysis, as well as video highlights for every game and goal available at the final whistle via bbc.co.uk/worldcup.

Viewers can go back ‘live’ with BBC Rewind to watch England face current group opponents Belgium and Tunisia in the 1990 and 1998 World Cups, respectively. They can also personalise their experience – as well as rate the players’ performance in every match of the tournament – to receive all the latest news results and video highlights through My Sport – available online and on mobile devices.

BBC Sport’s social media channels will keep fans in touch with new content, news and action. Throughout the tournament, in-match updates and breaking news will be available on Twitter – via @bbcsport and @bbcmotd – highlights from every game on YouTube, daily World Cup stories available on Snapchat, a mixture of news and video action on Facebook, plus former England star and Arsenal Women player Alex Scott will host a series of Instagram stories ensuring fans never miss a moment of what’s happening both on and off the pitch.

On the eve of the Three Lions’ opening game, on Sunday, June 17, BBC Two will broadcast a special documentary – Managing England: The Impossible Job – which hears from England managers and decision makers who explain the unique role of being the manager, the pressures, prestige, glory and heartache that comes with having the hopes of the nation resting on their shoulders.

The BBC’s World Cup trail launched at half time of the FA Cup final on BBC One (see video below). Taking a look at some of the greatest historical moments of the World Cup the new promo uses a unique animation technique which incorporates nearly 700 individual pieces of tapestry to create the final film.

Commenting on the BBC’s World Cup coverage, Barbara Slater, Director, BBC Sport, says:

“The BBC prides itself on being the home of big sporting events and we are committed to delivering the best all round coverage across TV, radio and digital of the World Cup 2018.

“This event deserves expert comment, analysis and insight and our unrivalled line up of presenters, pundits and commentators are sure to engage viewers and listeners as excitement builds throughout the tournament. The opening set of fixtures on the BBC brings an impressive cast of world talent as we head towards England’s first game.

“History will be made at this summer’s World Cup and the BBC is there every step of the way to make sure audiences don’t miss a thing.”

A huge opening World Cup weekend on the BBC features Egypt v Uruguay, Spain v Portugal, Germany v Mexico and France v Australia. Fans will get a first look at Mohammed Salah, Luis Suarez, Cristiano Ronaldo, Andres Iniesta, Paul Pogba and defending champions Germany as they set the tone for what is sure to be a thrilling tournament.

All of this is before Monday, June 18 where group rivals Belgium take on Panama ahead of the game the nation will be waiting for: Tunisia v England.

There will also be comprehensive live coverage from every World Cup game on Radio 5 live, led by Mark Chapman and Kelly Cates, who will cover the on-field action and bring tournament news as it happens.

Which channel will be showing which World Cup matches? Full details of the BBC Sport’s live matches on BBC One and BBC Red Button can be found below, or visit SOTB’s dedicated FIFA World Cup listings page for the full BBC and ITV match schedule.

LIVE MATCHES on BBC TV                    CLICK HERE for ITV coverage

FRIDAY 15th JUNE

EGYPT v URUGUAY
Group A – Ekaterinburg

13:00

PORTUGAL v SPAIN
Group B – Sochi

19:00

SATURDAY 16th JUNE

FRANCE v AUSTRALIA
Group C – Kazan

11:00

PERU v DENMARK
Group C – Saransk

17:00

SUNDAY 17th JUNE

GERMANY v MEXICO
Group F – Moscow Luzhniki

16:00

MONDAY 18th JUNE

BELGIUM v PANAMA
Group G – Sochi

16:00

TUNISIA v ENGLAND
Group G – Volgograd

19:00

TUESDAY 19th JUNE

COLOMBIA v JAPAN
Group H – Saransk

13:00

RUSSIA v EGYPT
Group A – St Petersburg

19:00

WEDNESDAY 20th JUNE

PORTUGAL v MOROCCO
Group B – Moscow Luzhniki 

13:00

URUGUAY v SAUDI ARABIA
Group A – Rostov-On-Don

16:00

THURSDAY 21st JUNE

ARGENTINA v CROATIA
Group D – Nizhny Novgorod

19:00

FRIDAY 22nd JUNE

NIGERIA v ICELAND
Group D – Volgograd

16:00

SERBIA v SWITZERLAND
Group E – Kaliningrad

19:00

SATURDAY 23rd JUNE

BELGIUM v TUNISIA
Group G – Moscow Spartak

13:00

SUNDAY 24th JUNE

ENGLAND v PANAMA
Group G – Nizhny Novgorod

13:00

JAPAN v SENEGAL
Group H – Ekaterinburg

16:00

MONDAY 25th JUNE

SPAIN v MOROCCO
Group B – Kaliningrad

19:00

IRAN v PORTUGAL
Group B – Saransk

19:00

TUESDAY 26th JUNE

NIGERIA v ARGENTINA
Group D – St Petersburg

19:00

ICELAND v CROATIA
Group D – Rostov-On-Don

19:00

WEDNESDAY 27th JUNE

SOUTH KOREA v GERMANY
Group F – Kazan

15:00

MEXICO v SWEDEN
Group F – Ekaterinburg

15:00

THURSDAY 28th JUNE

JAPAN v POLAND
Group H – Volgograd

15:00

SENEGAL v COLOMBIA
Group H – Samara

15:00

SATURDAY 30th JUNE

Winner Group C v Runner-up Group D
Round of 16 – Kazan

15:00

TBC
Winner Group A v Runner-up Group B
Round of 16 – Sochi

19:00

TBC
SUNDAY 1st JULY

Winner Group B v Runner-up Group A
Round of 16 – Moscow Luzhniki

15:00

TBC
Winner Group D v Runner-up Group C
Round of 16 – Nizhny Novgorod

19:00

TBC
MONDAY 2nd JULY

Winner Group E v Runner-up Group F
Round of 16 – Samara

15:00

TBC
Winner Group G v Runner-up Group H
Round of 16 – Rostov-On-Don

19:00

TBC
TUESDAY 3rd JULY

Winner Group F v Runner-up Group E
Round of 16 – St Petersburg

15:00

TBC
Winner Group H v Runner-up Group G
Round of 16 – Moscow Spartak

19:00

TBC
FRIDAY 6th JULY

Winner R16 1 v Winner R16 2
Quarter-Final – Nizhny Novgorod

15:00

TBC
Winner R16 3 v Winner R16 4
Quarter-Final – Kazan

19:00

TBC
SATURDAY 7th JULY

Winner R16 5 v Winner R16 6
Quarter-Final – Samara

15:00

TBC
Winner R16 7 v Winner R16 8
Quarter-Final – Sochi

19:00

TBC
TUESDAY 10th JULY

Winner QF1 v Winner QF2
Semi-Final – St Petersburg

19:00

TBC
WEDNESDAY 11th JULY

Winner QF3 v Winner QF4
Semi-Final – Moscow Luzhniki

19:00

TBC
SUNDAY 15th JULY

FIFA WORLD CUP FINAL 2018
Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow

16:00

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