Amazon Prime Video UK is becoming an increasingly essential service for sports fans. In the first of a two-part series, FinalBoss dons its kit to take a look at some of the best Amazon Prime Video UK sports documentaries and live events.
Note: This article was updated in April 2020
And It’s Live! What’s Live on Amazon Prime Video UK?
In December, Amazon Prime broadcast live Premier League football for the first time.
This hyped-up performance showcased 20 matches across 2 rounds – and will do so again in each of the next two seasons. The coverage was well received, with each match treated as a big event. There was an onsite presentation team at every venue and they seemingly had their pick of personnel, borrowing many faces and voices familiar to football fans from their work with the likes of BBC, ITV and BT. There’s no doubt they could go all out, because they only had two rounds to cover. Who’s knows if that would be sustainable if they were to win a bigger chunk of matches, but it was certainly a positive start.
Football was not Amazon Prime Video’s first foray into live sport. In 2018 they became the exclusive broadcaster of US Open Tennis, one of the four biggest events on that sports’ calendar. In 2019 they began a four-year deal to provide live coverage from 37 men’s tennis events (the ATP Tour) and added to that from 2020 with a similar four-year deal to show women’s tennis (the WTA Tour) which includes a minimum of 49 events per year. Tennis has one of the longest seasons in all of sport, with play spanning the first 11 months of the year and Amazon will have live action nearly every week. The best thing about the coverage is instant access to full match replays which they provide without displaying the score so you can watch spoiler-free.
For tennis and football fans, Amazon Prime Video is a must!
The Best Amazon Prime UK Sports Documentaries
Speaking of tennis, Andy Murray Resurfacing debuted on the service at the end of November in one of the best Amazon Prime UK sports documentaries available on the platform. The cameras followed the Scot during 2019, as he made his way back from potentially career-ending hip surgery. If you want an insight into the kind of battles top-level athletes face when injured, then this is the Amazon Prime Video sports documentary for you. There’s plenty of pain on display as Murray fights through the rehabilitation programme with support from his family and coaching team.
All Or Nothing is an Amazon Prime Video original sports documentary series that follows one team through a season. It initially began with NFL teams and has covered the Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, Dallas Cowboys and the Carolina Panthers. The behind the scenes of this Amazon Prime Video sports documentary is fascinating. Whilst everyone knows about the on-field practice and gym time, the amount of time spent studying and in meetings is astounding. The series shows the level of detail that coaches and players go into during their match preparation.
The Amazon Prime Video sports documentary has spread its wings to follow a college football team (Michigan Wolverines), a rugby team (New Zealand) and a Premier League team (Manchester City). The Amazon camera’s are with Tottenham Hotspur for the 2019/20 football season. As a Spurs fan, I have mixed feelings about this. I crave as much information about my team as possible but given the turmoil of recent months, I have no doubt it will be uncomfortable viewing at times.
Update: Since this article was originally published two more series of All Or Nothing have been released. The first follows the Philadelphia Eagles through an injury-hit and ultimately frustrating 2019 season. Then comes the Brazil national football team. The cameras follow them through their victorious 2019 Copa America campaign. Despite missing the event through injury, there’s still plenty of Neymar!
Football fans are well served by Amazon Prime Video UK documentaries. Take Us Home covers Leeds United in the Championship in 2018/19. A giant of English football trying to get back into the top tier, they appointed a high profile manager, Marcelo Bielsa, and invited in the cameras to capture their return to the Premier League. Shame it didn’t quite work out.
During the same season, another Amazon team was making Inside Borussia Dortmund. The Bundesliga club have a history of developing young players before they move onto bigger things and are currently the home of English wonderkid Jadon Sancho. The show mixes the diary of a season format with club history so you get a feel for where the club is now in relation to its past. If you don’t mind subtitles or are a German speaker, it’s a worthwhile watch. This Is Football is another Amazon Prime Video sports documentary series that looks at the impact of the global game all around the world.
If international football is more your thing, then One Night In Turin chronicles England’s run to the semi-finals of the 1990 World Cup with Gary Lineker and Paul Gascoigne starring at that tournament. Similarly, Don’t Take Me Home charts Wales journey to the semi-finals of Euro 2016, the first tournament the team had qualified for in 58 years.
Update: A great time-filler recently added to the service is the Official FIFA World Cup videos. Currently on offer are editions going all the way to 1954. At around two hours each, that’s a real treasure trove of football content.
With the NFL now really taking off in the UK, it’s a good time to enrich your knowledge of the history of the game, and Amazon Prime Video has plenty of episodes of the NFL films produced A Football Life. Episodes are dedicated to notable names from the leagues past and profile the impact of that person on their team(s) and the sport as a whole.
Update: As of April these seem to have been pulled from the service but no doubt they’ll return at some point.
For cricket fans, The Edge is a recent addition to the Amazon Prime Video sports documentary catalogue. It’s a talking-heads style documentary with insight from many of the key players as the England Test side rose to be the number 1 team in the world.
Update: Even better than The Edge is new cricket addition The Test. Through eight episodes the series follows the Australian team over eighteen months. It begins with the appointment of Justin Langer as coach in 2018 and goes through until the end of the 2019 Ashes series in England. As always it’s the dressing room viewing that’s riveting. You get to see the preparation and team talks, and even better the reaction of coaches and players to the team’s on-field performance.
Building Jerusalem does something similar with the English Rugby Union team, charting the journey to success at the 2003 World Cup.
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