NBC Sports broke the record for the greatest average viewership of Premier League matches on US television when it averaged 479,000 viewers per game for the 2014/15 season. That was 9% greater than the 2013/14 average of 438,000. And the 2013/14 average was 114% greater than the 2012/13 average of 220,000 viewers when the games were on FOX Sports, ESPN and ESPN2.
From 2012/13 when FOX Sports and ESPN had the Premier League rights, NBC Sports has grown the average viewing audience by a whopping 1178 to its current 479,000 average.
Other milestones that NBC Sports hit this season included:
1. NBC aired 3 of the 4 most-watched live Premier League matches in U.S. TV history this season, including Manchester United-Arsenal on Saturday, Nov. 22, which averaged 1.41 million viewers to rank as the most-watched live Premier League match in U.S. history.
2. In just two years televising the Premier League, 12 of the 15 most-watched PL matches in U.S. TV history have aired on NBC and NBCSN, including seven during the 2014-15 season.
3. NBCSN has televised 4 of the 5 most-watched Premier League matches in U.S. cable history, including Manchester United-Manchester City on Sunday, April 12, which averaged 1.13 million viewers to rank as the most-watched Premier League match in U.S. cable television history.
4. NBCSN’s Liverpool-Manchester United match on Sunday, March 22 averaged 950,000 viewers to rank as the most-watched early morning (before 10 a.m. ET) Premier League match in U.S. television history.
5. NBC’s Arsenal-Crystal Palace match on Saturday, Aug. 16 averaged 885,000 viewers, ranking as the most-watched opening weekend match in U.S. history.
6. Viewers consumed a record total of 317 million minutes of live Premier League action via NBC Sports Live Extra during the 2014-15 season – up 22% from last season.
7. Coverage on Wednesday, March 4, set a single-day Premier League live-streaming record for minutes NBC Sports Live Extra (7.7 million) and included seven matches.
8. Chelsea’s 1-0 win against Manchester United on Saturday, April 18, ranks as the most-streamed weekend PL match in history, with more than 85,000 uniques on NBC Sports Live Extra.
Plus, now that the 2014/15 Premier League season has wrapped up, we can look back at the many benchmarks and new additions that NBC Sports added, which included:
“Tactical Cam” — NBC Sports Live Extra’s high-sideline camera showing all 22 players on the pitch at the same time — enabling fans to see formations and evaluate each team’s attacking and defending tactics — was introduced for the Monday, Aug. 25, Manchester City-Liverpool match.
The 2 Robbies “Football” Show — NBC Sports Radio’s weekly digital and terrestrial program starring NBC Sports Group analysts Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe premiered Saturday, Oct. 25. The show focused on the Premier League and international soccer, with commentary and analysis from Earle and Mustoe. The Robbies took calls, answered listener questions, and interviewed top names in the sport.
New Year’s Day Premier League Breakaway — A special two-hour show featuring RedZone-like live look-ins on the best action from all eight Premier League matches in the 10 a.m. ET window on Jan. 1. Rebecca Lowe guided the program as it cut from match to match, and was joined by analysts Kyle Martino and Robbie Mustoe. Premier League Breakaway also streamed live on NBC Sports Live Extra.
“Super” Premier League Weekend in Arizona – The Saturday, Jan. 31, and Sunday, Feb. 1, Premier League Live shows originated live, on-location from “Super Bowl Central,” NBC Sports Group’s primary home for studio programing during Super Bowl week in downtown Phoenix. Host Rebecca Lowe was also featured in a Premier League segment on NBC’s Super Bowl XLIX Pre-game Show on Feb. 1.
“Road Trip” to U.K. — From April 11-13, for the first time since NBC Sports Group kicked off its Premier League coverage in August 2013, the entire Premier League team worked together on-location in the United Kingdom. Lowe and analysts Earle, Martino and Mustoe joined NBC’s U.K.-based team of Arlo White, Lee Dixon, Graeme Le Saux and Steve Bower for more than 18 hours of live on-site coverage. The presentation featured dual on-site studios for pre-match, halftime and post-game shows, including pitch-side locations for the first time in the history of Premier League coverage in the U.S.
Special Relegation Breakaway – On the season’s penultimate weekend, NBCSN presented a special Relegation Breakaway show at 10 a.m. ET on Saturday, May 16 featuring RedZone-like live look-ins on the best action from relegation-threatened 16th-place Sunderland v. 15th-place Leicester City, Tottenham v. 18th-place Hull City and Queens Park Rangers v. 17th-place Newcastle. Relegation Breakaway also streamed live on NBC Sports Live Extra.
Most-Watched Live Premier League Matches in U.S. History:
Following are the 15 most-watched live Premier League matches in U.S. television history:
Most-Viewed Premier League Matches on Cable in U.S. History:
Following are the five most-watched live Premier League matches in U.S. cable history:
Local TV Ratings
Following are the U.S. TV markets with the highest average season-long ratings on NBCSN and NBC combined, and NBC only (note: all NBC games, other than on “Championship Sunday,” started at 12:30 pm ET/9:30 am PT or later, while some NBCSN games kicked off as early as 7 am ET/4 am PT):
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