Yesterday, July 12, should have been the final of the UEFA 2020 soccer tournament in London, had it not been for the coronavirus hiatus. But, rather than commiserating with fans, ESPN is putting a more positive spin on the year-long delay.
An ad out of Preacher, running across all ESPN social properties as well as on ESPN.com, puts forward all the upsides for the championship being given "extra time" and running next year instead. For example—it gives Portugal more time to bask in its victory from last time, and it allows players a chance to practice, relax, recover from injuries and maybe even make a baby or two. Pros like Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe, Harry Kane, Gareth Bale all feature in the spot, which is aimed at building anticipation for American soccer fans ahead of ESPN's coverage in 2021.
"As fans ourselves, it was important to us to empathize with the bummer news but not to wallow in it. When we landed on the idea of reframing the year-long postponement as 'extra time,' it felt like a genuine, relatable way to raise interest and intensity," said Preacher CSO Seth Gaffney in a statement.