SPECIAL TO NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM
Veteran announcer Joe Tolleson has called a host of sports events in his career, from the Olympics to the NHL. However what he may be known best for is his work in soccer, which will be amplified this spring and summer as he takes the reins as the first TV voice (along with partner Ian Joy) of New York City Football Club on the YES Network. Before moving to NYCFC, the University of Maryland grad has called games for the Red Bulls and the New York Power, as well as ESPN International work with the UEFA Champions League, CONCACAF Champions League, Serie A, La Liga, Eredivisie, and the FA Cup. He is also very familiar to fans of the playoff bound New York Rangers, serving as their public address announcer since 2002.
As the inaugural MLS season takes shape for NYCFC, we caught up with Tolleson to talk soccer The Broadway Blues, and time in the booth at Yankee Stadium.
NYCFC presents a great opportunity for MLS to capture a fan base that has been elusive for the league in terms of the casual New York sports fan who would not venture to Harrison. Are you making any effort more than usual to educate fans new to viewing to the nuances of the game?
There is a delicate balance of educating newcomers and insulting the fans who have been following the game for years. Hopefully, Ian Joy and I can present the game in a way that diehards appreciate, but also allows the new fan to learn about the rules and tactics. In the long run, the quality of play is what will keep fans around and with players like David Villa that part should take care of itself.