Culture

It's show time

“It is craziness for 90 minutes, but organised craziness.” So says Nico Cantor, host of CBS Sports’ The Golazo! Show, which is giving US fans a new angle on the Champions League

INTERVIEW Simon Hart

Tell us about the transition from your previous job with the Spanish-language broadcaster Univision – and the highlights so far.

We wanted it to be even faster than the UK versions of the show for American television, and even faster than the versions I was doing in the US. Golazo was made for decision-day type of games, so Matchday 6 coming around and having a game here affect the result there and being able to go from here to there in the blink of an eye – it’s awesome as you see the immediate reaction. I remember Borussia Mönchengladbach had lost to Real Madrid and were waiting on a result [in the other group game]. They’re all huddled around the cell phone and we did the double screen to Inter tying Shakhtar at home. The moment it all went crazy for Gladbach was cool.

American aces Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie (below); Nico Cantoe (top left) and Gus Poyet in the Golazo! Studio


How do you go about building chemistry with your panellists in London, having moved from Miami for the show?

The first show was with Jamie Carragher and Alex Scott and they were so nice accepting me into this team. It’s like a rookie coming into a locker room – you have to win them over and show you’re here for a reason. They’ve accepted me into the CBS locker room. The next show was with Roberto Martínez and with his experience and knowledge, he breaks things down and gives you a perspective that very few people in the world can. I’m the biggest nerd with all of this stuff and he’s telling me the better way for a player to clear the ball, his body orientation. The analyst I did the show with most was probably Gus Poyet. I hadn’t met him before but culturally we understood each other so much, because my dad is from Argentina and he’s from Uruguay. We clicked very quickly. I was drinking maté, and he showed up with his maté, and I didn’t know where to find the loose leaf tea [in London]. The next day he brought me a whole kilo!

Christian Pulisic (right) and Weston McKennie are blazing a trail for US players

Tell us about the transition from your previous job with the Spanish-language broadcaster Univision – and the highlights so far.

We wanted it to be even faster than the UK versions of the show for American television, and even faster than the versions I was doing in the US. Golazo was made for decision-day type of games, so Matchday 6 coming around and having a game here affect the result there and being able to go from here to there in the blink of an eye – it’s awesome as you see the immediate reaction. I remember Borussia Mönchengladbach had lost to Real Madrid and were waiting on a result [in the other group game]. They’re all huddled around the cell phone and we did the double screen to Inter tying Shakhtar at home. The moment it all went crazy for Gladbach was cool.

American aces Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie (below); Nico Cantoe (top left) and Gus Poyet in the Golazo! Studio


How do you go about building chemistry with your panellists in London, having moved from Miami for the show?

The first show was with Jamie Carragher and Alex Scott and they were so nice accepting me into this team. It’s like a rookie coming into a locker room – you have to win them over and show you’re here for a reason. They’ve accepted me into the CBS locker room. The next show was with Roberto Martínez and with his experience and knowledge, he breaks things down and gives you a perspective that very few people in the world can. I’m the biggest nerd with all of this stuff and he’s telling me the better way for a player to clear the ball, his body orientation. The analyst I did the show with most was probably Gus Poyet. I hadn’t met him before but culturally we understood each other so much, because my dad is from Argentina and he’s from Uruguay. We clicked very quickly. I was drinking maté, and he showed up with his maté, and I didn’t know where to find the loose leaf tea [in London]. The next day he brought me a whole kilo!

Read the full story
Sign up now to get access to this and every premium feature on Champions Journal. You will also get access to member-only competitions and offers. And you get all of that completely free!

Which American players have stood out most in the Champions League this season?

The biggest impact so far has been Weston McKennie at Juve. At first you were like, “Wow, he’s a great player, but is he going to be able to keep up among these people that have been playing at that elite level for so long?” Weston McKennie has kept his own. He’s not only a regular starter but a solid contributor in the Juventus midfield and that’s awesome to see. There’s a before and after now in contemporary American football, with that Trinidad and Tobago loss, that doesn’t permit the United States to qualify for the World Cup as there’s been a movement by so many youngsters going to Europe and developing. Now we’ve got an American playing with Messi in Barcelona – Sergiño Dest – and [at Barcelona B] Konrad de la Fuente, Miami born and raised. Christian Pulisic has the No10 at Chelsea. Tyler Adams at Leipzig scoring a goal to qualify his team for the semi-final last season. Gio Reyna at Dortmund.


What impact does this have on the audience back in the States?

The fact the US is such a patriotic country, when you see a line-up and you see Leo Messi and somebody flying the American flag giving him assists, that’s got to make you feel something in your heart. To see them get to this level, you’ve got to feel something for these kids. They’re not even in their prime yet.

You are the son of Andrés Cantor, who’s a soccer broadcasting legend in the US. How has he influenced you in your career?

I was naturally bred into this! I was going to the TV studio when I was five or six years old, sitting next to him when he was broadcasting games on a weekend. The advice and the guidance, I don’t think you can get that anywhere else – my dad sees every single moment of air time from my shows and he is critical. Sometimes his critiques are the hardest to swallow but that is what makes you stronger as a broadcaster. When it comes from my dad and he says, “Hey, do this better, say this in this way,” it only helps.

Christian Pulisic (right) and Weston McKennie are blazing a trail for US players

Tell us about the transition from your previous job with the Spanish-language broadcaster Univision – and the highlights so far.

We wanted it to be even faster than the UK versions of the show for American television, and even faster than the versions I was doing in the US. Golazo was made for decision-day type of games, so Matchday 6 coming around and having a game here affect the result there and being able to go from here to there in the blink of an eye – it’s awesome as you see the immediate reaction. I remember Borussia Mönchengladbach had lost to Real Madrid and were waiting on a result [in the other group game]. They’re all huddled around the cell phone and we did the double screen to Inter tying Shakhtar at home. The moment it all went crazy for Gladbach was cool.

American aces Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie (below); Nico Cantoe (top left) and Gus Poyet in the Golazo! Studio


How do you go about building chemistry with your panellists in London, having moved from Miami for the show?

The first show was with Jamie Carragher and Alex Scott and they were so nice accepting me into this team. It’s like a rookie coming into a locker room – you have to win them over and show you’re here for a reason. They’ve accepted me into the CBS locker room. The next show was with Roberto Martínez and with his experience and knowledge, he breaks things down and gives you a perspective that very few people in the world can. I’m the biggest nerd with all of this stuff and he’s telling me the better way for a player to clear the ball, his body orientation. The analyst I did the show with most was probably Gus Poyet. I hadn’t met him before but culturally we understood each other so much, because my dad is from Argentina and he’s from Uruguay. We clicked very quickly. I was drinking maté, and he showed up with his maté, and I didn’t know where to find the loose leaf tea [in London]. The next day he brought me a whole kilo!

It's show time

Christian Pulisic (right) and Weston McKennie are blazing a trail for US players

Culture

It's show time

“It is craziness for 90 minutes, but organised craziness.” So says Nico Cantor, host of CBS Sports’ The Golazo! Show, which is giving US fans a new angle on the Champions League

INTERVIEW Simon Hart

Tell us about the transition from your previous job with the Spanish-language broadcaster Univision – and the highlights so far.

We wanted it to be even faster than the UK versions of the show for American television, and even faster than the versions I was doing in the US. Golazo was made for decision-day type of games, so Matchday 6 coming around and having a game here affect the result there and being able to go from here to there in the blink of an eye – it’s awesome as you see the immediate reaction. I remember Borussia Mönchengladbach had lost to Real Madrid and were waiting on a result [in the other group game]. They’re all huddled around the cell phone and we did the double screen to Inter tying Shakhtar at home. The moment it all went crazy for Gladbach was cool.

American aces Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie (below); Nico Cantoe (top left) and Gus Poyet in the Golazo! Studio


How do you go about building chemistry with your panellists in London, having moved from Miami for the show?

The first show was with Jamie Carragher and Alex Scott and they were so nice accepting me into this team. It’s like a rookie coming into a locker room – you have to win them over and show you’re here for a reason. They’ve accepted me into the CBS locker room. The next show was with Roberto Martínez and with his experience and knowledge, he breaks things down and gives you a perspective that very few people in the world can. I’m the biggest nerd with all of this stuff and he’s telling me the better way for a player to clear the ball, his body orientation. The analyst I did the show with most was probably Gus Poyet. I hadn’t met him before but culturally we understood each other so much, because my dad is from Argentina and he’s from Uruguay. We clicked very quickly. I was drinking maté, and he showed up with his maté, and I didn’t know where to find the loose leaf tea [in London]. The next day he brought me a whole kilo!

Penalty Pedigree

Etiam erat velit scelerisque in dictum non. Dictum non consectetur a erat nam at. Scelerisque felis imperdiet proin fermentum leo. Nibh tortor id aliquet lectus proin nibh nisl. Nulla at volutpat diam ut venenatis. At urna condimentum mattis pellentesque id nibh tortor id aliquet. Leo a diam sollicitudin tempor id eu nisl nunc mi. Dui vivamus arcu felis bibendum ut. Pharetra convallis posuere morbi leo urna molestie. Adipiscing at in tellus integer feugiat scelerisque. In arcu cursus euismod quis. Dictum non consectetur a erat nam at lectus urna duis. Facilisi nullam vehicula ipsum a arcu cursus. At tempor commodo ullamcorper a lacus vestibulum sed arcu non. Ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur adipiscing elit pellentesque habitant. Vitae sapien pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus. Eget nullam non nisi est sit amet facilisis. Ipsum consequat nisl vel pretium lectus quam. Elit sed vulputate mi sit amet mauris commodo quis. Pretium fusce id velit ut tortor pretium viverra suspendisse potenti.

Tell us about the transition from your previous job with the Spanish-language broadcaster Univision – and the highlights so far.

We wanted it to be even faster than the UK versions of the show for American television, and even faster than the versions I was doing in the US. Golazo was made for decision-day type of games, so Matchday 6 coming around and having a game here affect the result there and being able to go from here to there in the blink of an eye – it’s awesome as you see the immediate reaction. I remember Borussia Mönchengladbach had lost to Real Madrid and were waiting on a result [in the other group game]. They’re all huddled around the cell phone and we did the double screen to Inter tying Shakhtar at home. The moment it all went crazy for Gladbach was cool.

American aces Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie (below); Nico Cantoe (top left) and Gus Poyet in the Golazo! Studio


How do you go about building chemistry with your panellists in London, having moved from Miami for the show?

The first show was with Jamie Carragher and Alex Scott and they were so nice accepting me into this team. It’s like a rookie coming into a locker room – you have to win them over and show you’re here for a reason. They’ve accepted me into the CBS locker room. The next show was with Roberto Martínez and with his experience and knowledge, he breaks things down and gives you a perspective that very few people in the world can. I’m the biggest nerd with all of this stuff and he’s telling me the better way for a player to clear the ball, his body orientation. The analyst I did the show with most was probably Gus Poyet. I hadn’t met him before but culturally we understood each other so much, because my dad is from Argentina and he’s from Uruguay. We clicked very quickly. I was drinking maté, and he showed up with his maté, and I didn’t know where to find the loose leaf tea [in London]. The next day he brought me a whole kilo!

Read the full story
Sign up now to get access to this and every premium feature on Champions Journal. You will also get access to member-only competitions and offers. And you get all of that completely free!

Which American players have stood out most in the Champions League this season?

The biggest impact so far has been Weston McKennie at Juve. At first you were like, “Wow, he’s a great player, but is he going to be able to keep up among these people that have been playing at that elite level for so long?” Weston McKennie has kept his own. He’s not only a regular starter but a solid contributor in the Juventus midfield and that’s awesome to see. There’s a before and after now in contemporary American football, with that Trinidad and Tobago loss, that doesn’t permit the United States to qualify for the World Cup as there’s been a movement by so many youngsters going to Europe and developing. Now we’ve got an American playing with Messi in Barcelona – Sergiño Dest – and [at Barcelona B] Konrad de la Fuente, Miami born and raised. Christian Pulisic has the No10 at Chelsea. Tyler Adams at Leipzig scoring a goal to qualify his team for the semi-final last season. Gio Reyna at Dortmund.


What impact does this have on the audience back in the States?

The fact the US is such a patriotic country, when you see a line-up and you see Leo Messi and somebody flying the American flag giving him assists, that’s got to make you feel something in your heart. To see them get to this level, you’ve got to feel something for these kids. They’re not even in their prime yet.

You are the son of Andrés Cantor, who’s a soccer broadcasting legend in the US. How has he influenced you in your career?

I was naturally bred into this! I was going to the TV studio when I was five or six years old, sitting next to him when he was broadcasting games on a weekend. The advice and the guidance, I don’t think you can get that anywhere else – my dad sees every single moment of air time from my shows and he is critical. Sometimes his critiques are the hardest to swallow but that is what makes you stronger as a broadcaster. When it comes from my dad and he says, “Hey, do this better, say this in this way,” it only helps.

Christian Pulisic (right) and Weston McKennie are blazing a trail for US players

Tell us about the transition from your previous job with the Spanish-language broadcaster Univision – and the highlights so far.

We wanted it to be even faster than the UK versions of the show for American television, and even faster than the versions I was doing in the US. Golazo was made for decision-day type of games, so Matchday 6 coming around and having a game here affect the result there and being able to go from here to there in the blink of an eye – it’s awesome as you see the immediate reaction. I remember Borussia Mönchengladbach had lost to Real Madrid and were waiting on a result [in the other group game]. They’re all huddled around the cell phone and we did the double screen to Inter tying Shakhtar at home. The moment it all went crazy for Gladbach was cool.

American aces Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie (below); Nico Cantoe (top left) and Gus Poyet in the Golazo! Studio


How do you go about building chemistry with your panellists in London, having moved from Miami for the show?

The first show was with Jamie Carragher and Alex Scott and they were so nice accepting me into this team. It’s like a rookie coming into a locker room – you have to win them over and show you’re here for a reason. They’ve accepted me into the CBS locker room. The next show was with Roberto Martínez and with his experience and knowledge, he breaks things down and gives you a perspective that very few people in the world can. I’m the biggest nerd with all of this stuff and he’s telling me the better way for a player to clear the ball, his body orientation. The analyst I did the show with most was probably Gus Poyet. I hadn’t met him before but culturally we understood each other so much, because my dad is from Argentina and he’s from Uruguay. We clicked very quickly. I was drinking maté, and he showed up with his maté, and I didn’t know where to find the loose leaf tea [in London]. The next day he brought me a whole kilo!

Penalty Pedigree

Etiam erat velit scelerisque in dictum non. Dictum non consectetur a erat nam at. Scelerisque felis imperdiet proin fermentum leo. Nibh tortor id aliquet lectus proin nibh nisl. Nulla at volutpat diam ut venenatis. At urna condimentum mattis pellentesque id nibh tortor id aliquet. Leo a diam sollicitudin tempor id eu nisl nunc mi. Dui vivamus arcu felis bibendum ut. Pharetra convallis posuere morbi leo urna molestie. Adipiscing at in tellus integer feugiat scelerisque. In arcu cursus euismod quis. Dictum non consectetur a erat nam at lectus urna duis. Facilisi nullam vehicula ipsum a arcu cursus. At tempor commodo ullamcorper a lacus vestibulum sed arcu non. Ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur adipiscing elit pellentesque habitant. Vitae sapien pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus. Eget nullam non nisi est sit amet facilisis. Ipsum consequat nisl vel pretium lectus quam. Elit sed vulputate mi sit amet mauris commodo quis. Pretium fusce id velit ut tortor pretium viverra suspendisse potenti.

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