Soccer fanatics score with GolTV

ROB BRODIE -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 7:02 AM ET

How much soccer is too much?

Apparently, there's no such limit, say the owners of GolTV, a 24-hour soccer network which launched Nov. 1. A free preview is now under way for Rogers digital TV customers (Channel 428).

GolTV plans to air 1,500 soccer matches in a year (about 50 per week) -- most of them live. Premier leagues in Italy, Spain and Brazil will get the most attention.

Tomorrow, for example, GolTV viewers can watch Spanish La Liga giants Real Madrid and Barcelona tangle at 2 p.m.

Sunday at 9 a.m., Italy's Fiorentina and AC Milan take centre stage.

Insight Sports, which operates the channel in Canada (a U.S. network with the same title supplies content for its Canadian namesake), believes the focus on games will attract viewership to the channel.

"In this day and age, the fan is more discerning and demanding about what they watch," said Insight spokesman Chris Doyle. "A couple minutes of highlights isn't enough.

"They want the game, and that's what we provide."

Doyle added "the interest we've had on our website (www.goltvcanada.com) has been huge. The demand is there for this kind of live programming."

Insight also runs Casino and Gaming TV (Channel 288, Rogers digital), and will launch the World Fishing Network on Dec. 1.

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