The expanded Copa America Centenario, with the U.S. playing the best teams in South America, happens this June. For soccer fans (and media), that means a very hectic schedule when those tournaments overlap.
Copa America begins June 3rd. Euro 2016 begins June 10th. For five days from June 10-14, the group stages overlap. From the 11th to the 13th that will mean five matches per day. The Euro matches will begin at 9am, noon, and 3pm ET. Presuming the Copa will opt for an evening double header, that’s soccer from 9am to 11pm.
Those who enjoy “ratings talk” will have a field day. It will be an ESPN (Euro 2016) vs. Fox Sports (Copa America) battle. One could frame it as a battle between the “Eurosnob” and “Domestic” wings of U.S. soccer fandom. Soccer will also be going head-to-head with the NBA Finals and the Stanley Cup Finals.
We’ll also have the inevitable discussion about whether this has a knock-on effect for MLS when the regular season gets back rolling on June 18. Spoiler: No.