PROGRAMMING

June 05 2018

Eurosport commissions original Cantona World Cup series - The King’s Road

June 05 2018

- Football legend Eric Cantona to star in Eurosport documentary series exploring the relationship between soccer and society

- Three-part series to take fans on a journey of a football lifetime in three nations preparing for this summer’s FIFA World Cup – Iceland, Senegal and Peru

- Original programmes to premiere across Eurosport’s channels and digital platforms on Thursday June 7 at 20:30 CET

He is the King yet-to-be-overthrown and now fans across Europe can watch former Manchester United icon Eric Cantona as he embarks on a unique journey exploring the deep-rooted relationship between football and society in new original Eurosport series, The King’s Road.

With the 2018 FIFA World Cup on the horizon, the exclusive three-part documentary will take fans on a journey of a football lifetime. Through every person he meets, every place he visits, Cantona will tell the story behind the passion – beyond the 90 minutes – that makes football the most popular game in the world.

Cantona kicks-off his voyage in Iceland, a country that will compete at its first ever World Cup this summer. The King rubs shoulders with the country’s President and Iceland’s biggest fan, the current World’s Strongest Man title-holder, Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, who is also known for playing Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane role in popular TV show, Game of Thrones.

In episode two, Eric heads to Africa for a memorable trip to Senegal, the country which caused one of the greatest shocks in World Cup history in 2002 when they defeated the defending champions, France. Cantona meets Senegal’s greatest football star, El Hadji Diouf, and world-renowned Senegalese singer songwriter, Youssou N'Dour, to better understand why Senegal has not performed better on the world stage since it’s breakthrough at the 2002 tournament in Japan and South Korea.

Cantona completes his journey in Peru, a team whose iconic red striped jersey captured his imagination in his youth. This year they’ll be competing in their first World Cup for 36 years and The King wants to know how a country so passionate about football has missed the sport’s greatest competition and celebration for so long. He meets legendary former players, current administrators and a shaman in his quest to understand what lays ahead for Peruvian football.

The King’s Road premieres across Eurosport’s channels and digital platforms on Thursday June 7 at 20:30 CET with all three episodes running back-to-back on Eurosport 1*. The episodes will be simulcast on Eurosport digital platforms with the full series available on-demand on the Eurosport Player, via eurosport.com and the integrated Eurosport app.

Eric Cantona is excited to take fans on his voyage, exploring the bond between football and society in three of the nation’s preparing for this summer’s World Cup.

He said: “My journey starts in Iceland and ever since I witnessed this little ice cube of 350,000 habitants crush England at the Euro 2016, I have been wanting to find out the reasons behind the Icelandic football revolution. Especially now that the Vikings have done it again and qualified for the world Cup in Russia.

“In Senegal, kids and grown men are playing football everywhere; streets, beaches, vacant lots. Barefoot, in soccer boots, sneakers, or flip-flops. That’s the way I love our sport: when pleasure rules everything and scores are forgotten in a matter of minutes.

“The final episode focuses on Peru. My first memories of the country are from the sticker albums that I used to fill before the World Cup: the jersey with a red stripe across the chest. I want to understand how a country so passionate about football could miss the sport’s greatest competition and celebration for 36 years?”

Eric Cantona has been synonymous with Eurosport since assuming the role as the self-appointed Commissioner of Football during the European Championships in France two years ago. Cantona’s hilarious sketches, commenting on everything and everyone involved in football - from Messi to Mourinho and Ronaldo to Zlatan - have captivated millions of fans across the world. The King’s Road will give fans the opportunity to see Cantona in a different light – the sight of a cult figure keen to learn more about the beautiful game’s myths and traditions.