World Soccer Talk

Most-watched Bundesliga games on US TV

With the 2019/20 Bundesliga restarting after the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, we’ve received several questions from readers on social media and e-mail about how the latest viewing figures compare to other matches. So, based on popular demand, here’s the list of the most-watched Bundesliga games on US TV from 2016 through 2020 (English-language TV only).

While we were disappointed with the recent numbers on FS1, the numbers are very positive when compared to previous Bundesliga matches that have aired on English-language U.S. television. In fact, the two big matches that aired recently are the most-watched Bundesliga viewing numbers on FS1 since we’ve begun tabulating the soccer TV ratings data from 2016 onwards.

Rank Game Date Broadcaster Avg Viewership
1 Bayern Munich-Dortmund 4/6/19 FOX 470,000
2 Dortmund-Bayern Munich 11/19/16 FOX 426,000
3 Bayern Munich-Frankfurt 5/18/19 FOX 413,000
4 Bayern Munich-Freiburg 5/20/17 FOX 395,000
5 Dortmund-RB Leipzig 8/26/18 FOX 395,000
6 Dortmund-Schalke 5/16/20 FS1 365,000
7 Union Berlin-Bayern Munich 5/17/20 FS1 361,000
8 Bayern Munich-Dortmund 3/31/18 FOX 352,000
9 RB Leipzig-Bayern Munich 5/11/19 FOX 348,000
10 RB Leipzig-Bayern Munich 5/13/17 FOX 339,000
11 Hoffenheim-Dortmund 5/12/18 FOX 329,000
12 Wolfsburg-Bayern Munich 4/29/17 FOX 308,000
13 Bremen-Leverkusen 10/15/16 FOX 296,000
14 Leverkusen-Bayern Munich 4/15/17 FOX 282,000
15 Gladbach-Leverkusen 8/27/16 FOX 248,000

With the Bundesliga moving to ESPN+ beginning next season, and ESPN promising to broadcast four matches per season on television, it’ll be interesting to see how the numbers from FOX Sports (who had the rights from 2015 to 2020) will measure up against ESPN.

SEE MORE: Listen to our interview with Soccer Made In Germany’s Toby Charles

Meanwhile, here’s the list of the top 8 most-watched Bundesliga games on US TV on FS1 from 2017 to 2020 for comparative purposes:

Rank Game Date Avg Viewership
1 Dortmund-Schalke 5/16/20 365,000
2 Union Berlin-Bayern Munich 5/17/20 361,000
3 Frankfurt-Gladbach 5/16/20 232,000
4 Bayern Munich-Dortmund 4/8/17 174,000
5 Koln-Mainz 5/17/20 167,000
6 Dortmund-Hertha Berlin 8/26/17 142,000
7 Bayern Munich-Frankfurt 3/11/17 124,000
8 Bremen-Bayern Munich 8/26/17 124,000