Supplementing its coverage of the English national team's quest to reach the 2006 World Cup in Germany in 2006, Fox Soccer Channel has acquired exclusive rights to televise 20 European zone qualifying matches this year.
The schedule -- beginning with a live doubleheader March 26 featuring Romania vs. Holland, followed by Bulgaria vs. Sweden -- will carry into October.
France, currently ranked second in the world by Fédération Internationale de Football Association, the sport's international governing body, and Spain, ranked fifth, are among the other national teams that will be featured during the network's coverage of European zone qualifying.
"We are excited to kick off the final stages of FIFA World Cup qualifying with these outstanding matches from Europe," Fox Soccer executive vice president and general manager David Sternberg said in a prepared statement.
"Together with our exclusive coverage of the England national team's qualifiers, these games will give Fox Soccer Channel's viewers unparalleled access to the European qualifying campaign for Germany 2006," he added.