NBC Scores Record Overnight Rating of 2013/14 Premier League Season Thus Far

NBC’s live coverage of the South Wales derby between Swansea City and Cardiff City posted the network’s best overnight rating of the 2013/14 Premier League season thus far, with a 1.0 overnight rating.

The 1.0 metered rating beat the previous record overnight rating, which was 0.79 for Arsenal against Liverpool that was played on November 2, 2013. For that match, an average of 991,000 viewers watched the game, so the number for the Swansea-Cardiff game is expected to surpass one million viewers. But the national rating and viewership numbers won’t be known until later this week.

The South Wales derby between Swansea and Cardiff benefited from a few factors: (1) Most importantly, the game was anchored by NBC’s coverage of the Winter Olympics, so viewers who were watching the coverage from Sochi earlier in the day may have stay tuned to the Premier League game, which was then followed by more coverage from Sochi. (2) The sacking of Michael Laudrup earlier in the week made this a more fascinating than usual match to watch. And (3), many soccer fans — even if their clubs are not involved — love watching derbies, particularly a heated one between Swansea and Cardiff, which is fueled by so much passion, hatred and tension. The first half match may have been nervy, but those viewers who watched the second half will have enjoyed seeing Swansea’s three goals against the Bluebirds.

7 thoughts on “NBC Scores Record Overnight Rating of 2013/14 Premier League Season Thus Far”

  1. Is NBC going to release the numbers for the matches that they are reairing on NBCSN that originally air on USA because those reairs are also coming off of Olympic coverage.

  2. NBC spent a lot of money to get these rights and it would be interesting to know what their expectations were when they spent the money and if those expectations have been exceeded/attained/disappointed.

    1. It’s very rare that corporations will publicly share that information. But from what I hear through the grapevine, NBC Sports are very pleased with the numbers.

    2. Ken, NBC have been shocked by how good the ratings have been. This season NBC have had 7 of the highest viewing figures for a BPL games in the US in history. They have also been surprised by the number of viewers using the streaming service.

      NBC compared to the Asian, African, South American and European markets doesn’t pay much for the rights and NBC know BPL rights are cheap and undervalued in the USA. They also know it has low costs to them because they just use the pictures the UK broadcasts. In fact the rights value is set to increase now it has proven to get viewers in the USA.

      I think the high rating for the Swansea and Cardiff game might be because they were two Welsh teams. In England they often say Americans would rather acknowledge their Scottish, Irish and Welsh roots and ignore their English roots, so maybe Welsh Americans tuned in for the game.

  3. It could be considered positive news that ratings keep getting better as the season begins to wind down. It shows the U.S. interest in the BPL is not just a new fad but is retaining viewers beyond the pre-season hype and publicity.
    I just hope casual American viewers don’t get disappointed when they realize ‘play-offs’ don’t exist.

  4. It’s particularly impressive considering it wasn’t a ‘big 4/6’ match up that would normally attract big audience numbers

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