World Cup Scores Major Growth Ratings For Networks

Boosted by its over-achieving U.S. soccer team, ESPN’s World Cup ratings are now up 44% in viewership versus the previous 2010 event.

Through 56 telecasts on ESPN, ESPN2, and ABC, the games have also achieved over double-digit demographic growth among all key viewing groups -- 18-34, 18-49 and 25-54.

The U.S.-Belgium round of 16 teams game earned 16.5 million viewers on Tuesday, the second-most-viewed soccer match ever on ESPN. Univision added another 5.2 million viewers for the Spanish-language TV network -- some 22 million overall.

Previously, the record was held by the USA-Portugal game on June 22 -- with a total of 25 million viewers, 18.2 million viewers on ESPN and 6.5 million on Univision.

ESPN’s WatchESPN app delivered an average minute audience of 1,107,000 viewers -- which ESPN says amounted to a 7% gain on its overall TV viewership. WatchESPN also averaged 3,500,000 unique viewers and 190,200,000 minutes viewed during the match -- both records.

The best-rated TV markets are Washington, D.C., New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

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