This year’s World Cup Final, in which France beat Croatia, yielded the smallest audience since 2002 -- which spans the last five World Cup final matches.
Fox and Fox Sports 1 pulled in Nielsen 11.3 million linear TV viewers -- and 552,000 for live streaming -- looking at average minute audience viewers.
This is sharply down from 2014’s total English-language linear TV network viewership -- on ABC and ESPN -- of 17.3 million. The event was also streamed on WatchESPN -- posting 657,000 average minute audience viewers.
Telemundo grabbed 5.3 million linear TV viewers (and live 232,000 live streaming average minute viewers). In 2014, Univision posted 9.2 million linear TV viewers. For 2010 World Cup, Univision was at 8.8 million linear TV viewers.
The 2018 World Cup combined U.S. network viewership was down significantly from the 26.5 million viewers for Germany-Argentina World Cup Final in 2014; the 24.3 million viewers for the Spain-Netherlands World Cup in 2010; and the 18.9 million Italy-France World Cup in 2006.
All three of those contests aired on ABC and Univision.
Fox notes live streaming was higher for three earlier round matches this year than the finals: Croatia-England semifinal, 830,000; France-Belgium semifinal, 657,000; and Brazil-Belgium quarterfinal, 615,000.
This year’s World Cup final posted a 8.3 Nielsen overnight household rating for Fox down from a 9.7 in 2014 on ABC. In 2002, where Brazil beat Germany, ABC posted a 4.1 rating.