January 16, 2017 – A+E Networks International’s Executive Managing Director, Patrick Vien, is proud to announce a worldwide broadcasting first - the HISTORY OF FOOTBALL, a 14-day, 24/7, mega television event, running from May 28 to June 10, 2018. Set to broadcast on HISTORY®, the event will capture the anticipation and excitement of the 2018 World Cup." data-share-imageurl="">

History Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 17:15




January 16, 2017 – A+E Networks International’s Executive Managing Director, Patrick Vien, is proud to announce a worldwide broadcasting first - the HISTORY OF FOOTBALL, a 14-day, 24/7, mega television event, running from May 28 to June 10, 2018. Set to broadcast on HISTORY®, the event will capture the anticipation and excitement of the 2018 World Cup.  David Villa, World Cup Winner and one of the most decorated players in the world, is the global press spokesperson. 

HISTORY OF FOOTBALL will air in over 160 territories around the world including in Brazil, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom; as well as across Africa, Latin America and Southeast Asia.  Every major territory will present over 40 hours of content which will be a blend of global and local programming.

As part of the 14-day programming event, HISTORY will present a slate of original, globally-focused premium documentary series as well as short form specials, complemented by a careful curation of World Cup films. HISTORY channels around the world will also broadcast locally-sourced television series and documentaries that will offer a unique lens into each country’s particular passions for football. Supported by Villa and many other established players, coaches, journalists and experts, HISTORY OF FOOTBALL will be a deep exploration of the sport from multiple perspectives.

In addition, HISTORY OF FOOTBALL will give fans extraordinary opportunities to engage with HISTORY in new and exciting ways. Social media activations including polls, Q+A with experts, discussions, and interactions with local football brands will help inspire entire countries to join the conversation to debate and share opinions on some of the most influential players, managers and moments in the game’s history.   

Said Patrick Vien, “We conceived HISTORY OF FOOTBALL as a deeply immersive television event capitalizing on one of those rare moments in our global culture, The World Cup, when a huge segment of the world population becomes so passionately connected. HISTORY’s world-class storytelling has produced and curated a unique combination of global and local programming, long form and short form, to give viewers a wide swath of football content that, all combined, will tell the many phenomenal stories that define the game. It’s the biggest international programming initiative HISTORY has undertaken and I could not be more proud of our team and to have David Villa as our partner.”

Said Dan Korn, Executive Producer of History of Football and VP, Programming for A+E UK: “With opinions on football so strong amongst fans worldwide, HISTORY’s vast programming slate for this event will aim to engage and ignite an entertaining debate on exactly what were the ultimate historic moments of the sport, who stands as the best player in history, which coaches most shaped the game and so much more. For both the most intense and the more casual fans, History will present 14 days of nothing but the story of the game.”

Said David Villa, “As a passionate football player, I’ve been lucky enough to see first-hand how much football means to so many people and how it affects people’s lives.   HISTORY OF FOOTBALL, told so comprehensively by such a well-loved and highly respected global brand as HISTORY, is a remarkable initiative. I am thrilled and honored to work with HISTORY on this fantastic television event, because it gives my fellow players, coaches, and myself, an opportunity to talk about what the game means to us and also to re-live so many incredible memories.”


At the heart of HISTORY OF FOOTBALL are global, original, premium series, including:

History’s Greatest Moments in Football (5 x 60’) chronicles the teams and players in recent World Cup history, whose skills and achievements transcended their sport to represent something far greater to fans and non-fans alike, and fueled the sport’s unstoppable growth into the commercial behemoth we know today.  Episodes include: 1. Pele and the Boys from Brazil and Argentina; 2. Pavarotti, Gazza and the Lions of Cameroon; 3. The Three Musketeers, 4. Bring Me the Head of Diego Armando Maradona, and 5. Seven Goals That Shook the World. Each reveals the stories behind football’s most incredible and significant moments with the players, coaches and fans who made them happen. Episodes 1, 2 and 3 are produced by Goalhanger Films;  4 and 5 are produced by North One Television.

Football Godfathers (5 x 60’) presents five powerful documentaries delving into the minds and strategies of the world’s greatest and most revered club managers, revealing how they rose - often from relatively undistinguished playing careers - to become the global superstars of the sport we know today. Each of the five titans of our modern game is profiled in an intimate and honest portrayal of their achievements, both on and off the field using archival and interview material with the people and players who know them best.  Produced by Zig Zag Productions.

Football’s Greatest: Head to Head (5 x 30’) matches up the greatest players of yesteryear with the greatest of today, to find out once and for all, who is the greatest of them all.  Every generation has an opinion on who is the world’s greatest player. For the older generation, it’s Pele, Puskas, Eusebio, Di Stefano or Charlton. For today’s generation, it’s all about Cristiano Ronaldo vs. Lionel Messi or David Villa vs. Thomas Müller.  And for those of us in between, it’s a discussion of the respective talents of Maradona, Zidane, Gullit or Van Basten.  With an expert panel of World Cup players and winners, and using hard science of statistics, as well as the romance of style and passion, this series will set out to resolve the most vexing question in sport.  Produced by Goalhanger Films.


No matter where you watch HISTORY OF FOOTBALL around the world, there will be local programming particularly focused on that respective market.  The local content will hone in on the cultural nuances which drive the passion for the game for some of football’s most avid fanbases. Below is a small glimpse of the localized programming set to roll out:   


Germany will premiere an original special, with a local talent who will embark on a road trip throughout Germany to find out what makes people love this game so much.


To complement Italy’s vast array of premium docs, viewers will enjoy some locally curated specials, including the story of the most famous coach in Italian history: Vittorio Pozzo.   In this one hour documentary, viewers will experience the life, successes and defeats of Vittorio Pozzo, the first coach in the history of the Italian national football team to win the World Cup. 


Japan will be co-producing an original special, The History of Japanese Football, an in-depth look at Japan’s love for the game – and how it’s become more important to the country’s sport culture through time, across all ages and generations.


In Latin America content will be created and curated in support of HISTORY OF FOOTBALL. Among the projects to come, Argentina will air a feature bio, Messi, which tracks the journey of one of the greatest player today, from his childhood through his rise to international stardom.


HISTORY will also unveil short form original specials which will focus on everything but the game…from the origin of the ball to the insanity of the superfan, the acumen of photographers and so much more. The shorts will provide deeper insights into the sport of football.

Among the featured “Shorts” will be:

  • The Photographer – Gerry Cranham and Mark Leech have been widely credited as capturing some of football’s most memorable moments. From the ‘60s onward they have captured and immortalized the most incredible highlights from the greatest show on turf, many of which have never been seen before.  These are the World Cup’s forgotten images.


  • The Scout – Piet De Visser is considered one of the greatest football scouts in the world. He is credited with finding global footballing superstars such as Jaap Stam, David Luiz, Marc Overmars, Ruud Van Nistelrooy, Eden Hazard and Kevin de Bruyne.  Here, he reveals his secrets for the first time.


  • The Superfan – Manuel Caceres Artesero, better known as ‘Manolo el del bombo’ [Manolo the bass drummer…], is a national institution in Spain and a mega fan who wears a number 12 jersey every day and runs his own unique fans’ bar in Valencia, which doubles as a museum of Spanish football.   He came to international prominence when his famous drum was stolen last year. 


  • The Referee – Jawahir Jewels has been described as one of the most remarkable referees in England. At 23, she is the only FA-qualified female ethnic Muslim official currently working in the game, where she regularly tackles rowdy players at pitches on the infamous Hackney Marshes in East London.


  • The Prodigy – Four-year-old Marco Antonio might be young, but his football skills have many already calling him the next Neymar. His parents see his skill with the ball as a ticket out of one of Rio de Janeiro’s toughest favelas. But his promising future career hangs perilously in the balance due to severe intestinal problems that require medical expertise not available in his country. [end]