Watchdog

Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

Did Fox score with Gus Johnson?

Fox Sports broadcaster Gus Johnson.

Fox Sports broadcaster Gus Johnson. (Credit: Fox Sports)

In soccer terms, Real Madrid versus Manchester United speaks for itself, but Wednesday’s Champions League match came with an added layer of fascination for fans in the United States.

It was the world soccer debut of Gus Johnson, the latest Great American Hope for a play-by-play voice of the sport in this country.

How did it go? Pretty well, considering his lack of experience and the famously demanding standards of soccer fans, who based on formal reviews and social media chatter gave him generally passing grades.

It went well enough for Fox not to regret its way-outside-the-box idea and to stay the long course toward using Johnson for the 2018 World Cup.

If he erred it was on the side of caution, dialing back on his trademark frenzied calls and keeping it simple. That was wise under the circumstances, and eased some fears of the soccer cognoscenti.

But next time it would be nice to hear soccer Gus sound at least a little more like basketball Gus. Rise and fire!

Tags: fox , gus johnson , soccer

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Neil Best on Twitter

advertisement | advertise on newsday