Now that the 2015 MLS regular-season has concluded, the number crunching has begun. We’ve already determined that attendances have increased 12.8% compared to last year. Plus, Univision averaged 244,000 total viewers per MLS game on its UniMás and Univision Deportes networks in the first of its 8-year TV deal.
Now it’s time to look at the progress made by the English-language networks.
The bottom line is that MLS broadcasts in 2015 averaged 244,970 viewers on games televised by ESPN, while FOX Sports averaged 196,545 viewers, according to numbers reported by blogger Ryan Brister.
FOX Sports’ average of 196,545 is an increase of 38% over last year’s average of 142,000 viewers on NBCSN.
During the regular-season, FOX’s highest viewing numbers were:
- Orlando vs. DC United, 378,000 (June 14)
- Seattle vs. Portland, 371,000 (June 28)
- New York Red Bulls vs. New York City FC, 315,000 (August 9)
ESPN’s average for this season is an increase of 2% over last year’s average of 240,000 viewers. This was based on 34 games that ESPN / ESPN2 televised in the 2015 MLS regular-season. Last season, ESPN/2 had 18 games, so the Bristol, Connecticut-based company was still able to see a 2% increase even though it showed 16 more regular-season games.
During the regular-season, ESPN/2’s highest viewing numbers were:
- LA Galaxy vs. Seattle Sounders, 549,000 (August 9)
- Orlando vs. New York City FC, 539,000 (March 8)
- LA Galaxy vs. New York City FC, 452,000 (August 23)
What are your thoughts about the TV ratings? Share your opinions in the comments section below.