NBC Sports Executive Wants Opening-Day Premier League Games Played in the US

NBC Sports executive Jon Miller told The Athletic he is continuing to push for the Premier League to have the first games of a season played in the United States.
Scenes from the Premier League Summer Series between Chelsea and Fulham in 2023
Scenes from the Premier League Summer Series between Chelsea and Fulham in 2023 / Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

NBC Sports executive Jon Miller spoke with The Athletic saying he will "continue to push" for Premier League matches to be played in the United States.

NBC holds the exclusive broadcast rights to the Premier League in the United States, with its latest six-year contract beginning back in 2022. Miller said to The Athletic that he is supportive of having league matches in the United States, and there have already been conversations. "Very much so. And this is a point that we've had conversations with the Premier League and they've been very open and receptive to listening to me," Miller said.

Last summer, the Premier League Summer Series gave stateside fans a chance to see league teams compete for a pre-season trophy. Chelsea, Newcastle United, Fulham, Aston Villa, Brighton and Hove Albion and Brentford played nine games across seven days in five different American cities.

"At some point in the future, I would love to see a couple of Premier League games open the season here in big stadiums on our opening weekend. And I know that's something that we'll continue to push for because I think there's an American audience here that would like to see regular season games...," Miller said.

Major European clubs have held pre-season US tours including the likes of Bayern Munich, Arsenal, Manchester City and United, Liverpool and many more. Having official Premier League games in the US though would be a major step.

American sports leagues like the NFL have held regular season matches in other countries. While pre-season matches give American fans a great opportunity to see their favorite teams in the summer without having to travel abroad, having regular season matches is another level and might come with its own issues to sort.

How would the Premier League decide which teams go abroad? Which stadiums would they play in? How does it affect the season's schedule? Would the league want to create a similar atmosphere for clubs? Lots of questions to figure out, and something Miller will continue to push for regardless.

Miller also said to The Athletic that he's constantly looking at how he can improve the viewer experience through access and audio specifically. "...People love to hear what Jurgen Klopp is saying to his team or what he's saying on the sidelines." Miller does acknowledge there have to be some protections and guidelines put in place.

Miller goes on to say that while the Premier League has been responsive to those conversations, it's not his place to, "try and tell the Premier League what makes a good product. Their product is spectacular. But much like we do with the NFL, and golf, we constantly have conversations with our partners and brainstorm on things we can do to make the games better and more appealing to try and grow our audience."

Max Mallow