Sunday’s World Cup final, televised by ABC and Univisión, was the most watched soccer match in US television history. A total of 24.3 million viewers (15.5 million on ABC and 8.8 million on Univisión) tuned in to watch Spain defeat Holland to capture their first ever World Cup.
In fact, the Netherlands vs. Spain match garnered more viewers than did the deciding games of both the 2009 World Series between the Yankees and Phillies (22.3 million) and the 2010 Stanly Cup Finals (8.28 million). The numbers are also comparable to the 28.2 million pulled by Game 7 of the 2010 NBA Finals between the LA Lakers and Boson Celtics.
The top three most watched soccer matches in US television history (combined English- and Spanish-language broadcasts) are:
#1 – Netherlands vs. Spain, 2010 World Cup Final = 24.3 million viewers
#2 – USA vs. Ghana, 2010 World Cup Round of 16 = 19.4 million viewers
#3 – Brazil vs. Italy, 1994 World Cup Final = 18.1 million viewers
The 15.5 million viewers that tuned in to watch the 2010 World Cup Final on ABC were the most for any men’s soccer match in US television history, besting USA vs. Ghana (19.4 million).
I feel like this might be under-estimated, because I showed up 10 minutes late to watch it at Nellie’s for FP’s b-day, and every bar along the way was packed, as was Nellie’s. Like, Saturday night packed on a Sunday afternoon. It was so packed that they stopped letting people in at one point. I just like saying the words “packed” and “Nellie’s” in close proximity. Anyway, do they take those large group settings into account when making these estimates?
(Somebody posted this link, but can’t remember who because I clicked on the link before clicking reblog and when I hit the back button, the damage was done because I do endless scrolling and it lost the spot, so I apologize to whomever posted this and for this run-on sentence.)