The TV ratings are in for ESPN2′s opening game of the 2009/2010 Premier League season, which featured Chelsea against Hull City. And the results are pretty decent especially considering that EPL Talk didn’t break the news until 7:46pm ET on the night before the game. Plus, the fact that the game kicked off at 7:45 ET on a Saturday morning.
According to an ESPN spokesperson, the game scored a 0.2 rating with 159,948 household impressions and a total viewing audience of 164,485.
This is a far better number than Fox Soccer Channel’s average number of viewers per Premier League match of 90,000. And it’s better than the number of people who watched the FA Cup Final on Fox featuring Chelsea against Everton.
In comparison to similar coverage on ESPN2, the network’s previous Thursday night rating for Major League Soccer games fell recently and averaged a 0.2 rating, which was watched in an average of 251,000 homes weekly.
ESPN2′s impressive Premier League debut this season is an encouraging beginning for the Disney-owned network. And with this Saturday’s featured match between Wigan Athletic versus Manchester United at a more convenient time of 10am ET, we’ll see whether the ESPN soccer juggernaut can continue to impress especially on the back of a massive United fanbase in the United States.
What are your thoughts regarding the TV ratings that the Chelsea versus Hull City game garnered? Were they higher or lower than you anticipated? Click the comments link below to share your feedback.
One more thing. Here’s a video of ESPN UK’s opening to the Premier League season from last weekend to give you a taste of how ESPN is presenting football to the public in the United Kingdom. ESPN had the good fortune of featuring Everton against Arsenal as the opening game of their 46-game package this season. Over to presenter Ray Stubbs:
In other news, I missed Fox’s launch of their Champions League coverage today due to business meetings, so head on over to our sister Major League Soccer Talk for a review of Fox’s Champions League debut penned by Kartik Krishnaiyer.