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AP to grow Major League Soccer coverage with automated stories

The Associated Press announced today that it is using automation technology from Data Skrive and data from Sportradar to produce data-driven text previews of all Major League Soccer games.

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Los Angeles Galaxy's Sebastian Lletget (17) kicks in a goal against Minnesota United goalie Vito Mannone (1) and defender Ike Opara (3) during an MLS first-round playoff soccer match, Oct. 20, 2019, in St. Paul, Minnesota. (AP Photo/Andy Clayton-King)

AP provides coverage of all 408 regular-season MLS games and playoff games each season but has never before offered game previews.

The news agency began providing MLS game previews this summer and recently implemented the same technology to assist with MLS game recaps.

“With growing interest in the MLS nationwide, we’re glad we can now provide insightful previews through this collaboration with Data Skrive and Sportradar,” said Barry Bedlan, AP’s director of vertical products.

AP Sports editors worked closely with the automation team at Data Skrive to craft the preview and recap templates, using game, seasonal and historical data from Sportradar.

The automation technology enables the previews to be produced directly from data without the intervention of editors. AP reporters add details and context to the automatically generated recaps.    

“We’re thrilled our platform will provide MLS fans broader coverage of their favorites teams and players,” said Brad Weitz, Data Skrive CEO. “It’s also exciting to continue expanding our relationship with the AP and a privilege to work with such an acclaimed organization.”

Data Skrive uses automation to generate previews and other content for all levels of nearly every competitive sport, ranging from Division III college lacrosse to the NFL. It generates automated previews of MLB, MLS, NBA and NHL games for AP using Sportradar data. 

“With the interest in MLS continuing to grow, we see this as a tremendous opportunity to utilize our data to build even more fan engagement around the league,” said Brian Josephs, vice president of digital sport at Sportradar. “Working together with the highly-respected AP, we are confident that the MLS automated game previews will effectively reach MLS fans and provide them with the depth of information that they desire between games.”

Sportradar is AP’s primary sports data provider and holds official data partnerships with top U.S. leagues, including the NFL, the NBA and the NHL.

Data Skrive is AP’s preferred automation provider for sports and gambling content.

The AP Sports report first tapped automation technology in 2012 and now provides most of its sports agate to subscribers through automation, primarily from Sportradar.

AP also uses automation technology from Automated Insights to produce previews and recaps of most men’s college basketball games and nearly 4,500 stories covering U.S. corporate earnings each quarter.

AP continues to explore ways to use automation to expand its content offerings and enhance its news coverage.


About AP

The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. Founded in 1846, AP today is the most trusted source of independent news and information. On any given day, more than half the world's population sees news from AP. On the web: www.ap.org

About Data Skrive

Data Skrive is a SaaS technology platform producing contextually relevant, ready-to-publish content. Whether audiences want text, infographics, slide shows, or interactive content, the Data Skrive platform drives engagement. The Seattle-based company, also known as HERO Sports, generates additional media-rich content for the Associated Press, large media companies, college athletic departments, regional publishers, and more. For more information, please visit https://www.dataskrive.com.

About Sportradar

Sportradar is the leading global provider of sports data intelligence. The company serves leagues, news media, consumer platforms and sports betting operators with insights and strategic solutions to grow their businesses. Sportradar is the trusted partner of more than 1,000 companies in over 80 countries and serves as the official partner of the NBA, NFL, NHL and NASCAR as well as FIFA and UEFA. It is also the only provider entrusted to work with the U.S. sports leagues in an official capacity to distribute sports data (NBA and NHL) and AV rights (MLB) for betting purposes. The company monitors and delivers insights from more than 400,000 matches annually across 60 sports categories, having developed the industry’s most proficient software while setting standards for speed and accuracy. For more information, visit www.sportradar.com.

Contact

For sponsorship or revenue opportunities:
Barry Bedlan
Director of Vertical Products
The Associated Press
972-677-2270
bbedlan@ap.org

For media inquiries:
Lauren Easton
Director of Media Relations
The Associated Press
212-621-7005
leaston@ap.org

Patrick Maks
Senior Communications Associate
The Associated Press
212-621-7536
pmaks@ap.org

Sportradar
comms@sportradar.com