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1.4m watch Chelsea-Man Utd & Arsenal-Reading on NBC & FOX


The viewing numbers are in for the broadcasts by NBC and FOX over-the-air networks for last Saturday’s simultaneous live coverage of Chelsea’s Premier League game against Manchester United and Arsenal versus Reading in the FA Cup semi-final.

NBC’s live broadcast of Chelsea against Manchester United netted 1.011 million average viewers. The game posted a 0.66 US HH rating.

Meanwhile, over on FOX, the Arsenal-Reading game on the over-the-air network drew a 0.32 US HH rating with an average of 456,000 viewers tuning in.

For FOX, its ratings number was 41% lower than FOX’s 2014 FA Cup average, while NBC’s number was 27% greater than its Premier League average compared to the second quarter of 2014.

Collectively, on both networks, over 1.4 million people watched the English soccer games on Saturday.

By virtue of both matches playing at practically the same time (Arsenal-Reading kicked off 10 minutes earlier), the broadcasts cannibalized what could have been a greater audience if there was only one game on national television during that timeslot.

Speaking of the two games being shown on national TV in the United States, CBS Los Angeles caught a lot of flack and negative PR by tweeting “what the hell happened to this country?” after realizing there were 2 soccer games being shown live on 2 of the 5 over-the-air networks. Hopefully they learned their lesson that the sport is growing by leaps and bounds in this country.


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  1. mark williamson

    April 23, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    CBS.s boo-boo. They need to realize that futbol is here to stay and will compete against the stand-bys-basketball, baseball. How can a glorious sport like futbol not catch on, even with the potential fans that dissed the sport as a flash-in-the-pan. I know this just from my work place where more and more customers are talking to me about the weekends games.

  2. StellaWasAlwaysDown

    April 23, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    Wenger talked about the scheduling booboo. Too bad the FA Cup didn’t get the respect it deserves as far as not having a competing match on at the same time.

  3. garwilly

    April 23, 2015 at 11:02 am

    It’s fox that’s why they only get a 0.4 million, NBC on the other hand promoted the match…fox is allergic to promoting.

    • San Fransiscan

      April 23, 2015 at 11:39 am

      Or the fact that Chelsea vs. United is a bigger game than Arsenal vs. Reading.

      • Tim

        April 23, 2015 at 12:33 pm

        Bingo…Casual fan does not care about Arsenal v Reading when Chelsea v Man U is on.

    • CTBlues

      April 23, 2015 at 12:38 pm

      With that article yesterday saying that Arsenal was the most popular team in the US you would have though the ratings of the FA Cup semifinal would have been better. lol

      • Blues Guy

        April 23, 2015 at 12:45 pm

        True, but it’s the FA Cup, and it’s Fox. Premier League is where it’s at.

  4. Kei

    April 23, 2015 at 10:35 am

    How many viewers did the entire MLS slate get this weekend?

    • Christopher Harris

      April 23, 2015 at 11:18 am

      Timbers-NYCFC FS2 77K
      Union-Revs ESPN2 243K
      Red Bulls-Earthquakes UNIMAS 166K

      Not apples to apples comparison however.

    • CTBlues

      April 23, 2015 at 12:36 pm

      Ya, the NYCFC game got pushed to FS2 because of the NASCAR rain delay on FOX proper was moved to FS1.

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