Premier League on USA Network TV ratings start well

We love watching the Premier League games on NBC Sports. That’s no secret. So, we were inquisitive when NBC Sports PR sent out a press release this week. It screams how USA Network is a success in its opening weekend of Premier League games. We decided to take a closer look to see what the numbers tell us.

The headline is that the Premier League on USA had a 27% increase. That’s compared to the New Year’s Day weekend on NBCSN last year.

In fact, the five Saturday-Sunday matches on USA Network averaged a Total Audience Delivery of 570,000 viewers. During the comparable weekend last year, NBCSN averaged 449,000 over four games.

Which four games were they in 2021?

• Spurs vs. Leeds
• Crystal Palace vs. Sheffield United
• Newcastle vs. Leicester
• Chelsea vs. Manchester City

This 2022 year was certainly different. First, the comparable games featured heavyweights Chelsea-Liverpool and Manchester City-Arsenal. Second, the other games were Watford-Spurs, Crystal Palace-West Ham and Everton-Brighton.

So, no doubt, the 2022 fixtures were far more attractive and featured bigger fanbases. Crystal Palace against Sheffield United, in particular, would not have been a ratings extravaganza.

For the 2022 games, USA Network delivered the highest average cable viewership for a “Festive Fixtures” weekend since Boxing Day in 2015 (12/26/15).

Sunday’s Chelsea-Liverpool on USA Network averaged a TAD of 1.04 million viewers to rank as third-most watched Premier League match ever on cable. Saturday’s Manchester City-Arsenal game averaged a TAD of 476,000 viewers. That match marking the most-watched game to kick off before 8 a.m. ET since Oct. 20, 2018 (Chelsea-Manchester United).

In conclusion, the USA Network numbers show promise but we would like to see continued improvement before calling it a ratings success. After all, USA Network is in far more homes than NBCSN (90 million compared to 79 million).

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13 Comments

  1. Rich January 5, 2022
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