Fox missed an opportunity to reel in casual American fans because of its "appalling" coverage, says Aaron Timms in The Guardian, pointing to the decision to have the Ryan Seacrest-like Rob Stone as the leading studio analyst. "OK, that’s maybe not entirely fair," says Timms. "The coverage has not been quite as horrendous as it promised to be before the tournament. But it’s still been poor. The network has had plenty of time to get things right too: Fox secured the rights to the 2018 and 2022 tournaments in late 2011, and the following year hired David Neal, a veteran producer who worked on nine Olympic Games for NBC, to oversee its coverage. This is perhaps when the rot began to set in: Fox insiders told the Guardian that Neal mostly staffed his World Cup team with the network’s existing roster of baseball, Nascar and NFL producers, whereas Fox’s soccer group – which handles year-round coverage of the sport, including the Champions League and MLS – was left in a largely peripheral support role."