Sunday’s much-anticipated clash between Manchester City and Arsenal has broken the record for Premier League viewership of one game in American history. The scoreless draw was available on NBC, Peacock and digital platforms for English-language audiences. Additionally, it is the first game to hit a major viewership benchmark in the Premier League.

NBC reported that 2.12 million people watched English-language coverage of Manchester City against Arsenal on Sunday. This is the first time over 2 million people tuned into one English-language Premier League broadcast in US history. This game surpassed the Liverpool-Arsenal game from this past December as the most-watched game in Premier League history in the United States.

NBC noted that five of the six most-watched games in the United States for the Premier League have come this season. The only outlier is from January of last season, when Arsenal defeated Manchester United with both clubs in the top three. The fixtures ranking third to sixth have involved many of the biggest clubs in the Premier League, including Manchester City against Chelsea and Liverpool hosting Manchester United.

A new Premier League viewership record in the US

These are the top six games for English-language viewership in the United States.

  1. Manchester City vs. Arsenal — 2.12 million — March 31, 2024
  2. Liverpool vs. Arsenal — 1.96 million — Dec. 23, 2023
  3. Arsenal vs. Manchester United — 1.92 million — Jan. 22, 2023
  4. Liverpool vs. Manchester United — 1.77 million — Dec. 17, 2023
  5. Newcastle vs. Manchester City — 1.68 million — Jan. 13, 2024
  6. Manchester City vs. Chelsea — 1.51 million — Feb. 17, 2024

It is worth noting that these figures for viewership include both TV and streaming figures. For many of these games, coverage was simulcast on Peacock, NBC’s streaming service. While the majority of these English-language audiences watched on either USA Network or NBC, a strong proportion streamed the game on Peacock, but this figure incorporates both of those groups.

For example, Sunday’s Manchester City game against Arsenal broke the US viewership record for a Premier League game on Peacock. The Average Minute Audience of this game was 547,000 on Peacock.

When incorporating the Spanish-language audiences on Telemundo, NBC amassed a total audience delivery (TAD) of 2.59 million viewers. Consequently, this makes it the most-watched match when including Spanish-language viewership. Previously, the holder of the record was Arsenal-Manchester United in January 2023.

Premier League’s dominance is just the tip of the iceberg

by Christopher Harris

As World Soccer Talk reported last year, the English Premier League is now the most-watched soccer league in the United States. It has surpassed Mexico’s Liga MX in popularity. It will continue to grow as much of the competition (MLS and Liga MX) finds itself leaning more into putting many of its games behind a paywall (ViX and MLS Season Pass, respectively).

While the Premier League has won the battle to become the most-watched league in the United States, the Premier League’s invasion of the United States is just beginning.

League executives see the growth potential as far greater than just the hardcore and casual soccer fans in the United States. Instead, watch the EPL try to compete against the NBA, NHL, MLB, and NFL. It’s an enormous task, but the league has everything going for it partly due to broadcaster NBC. The exclusive TV and streaming rights deal runs through until the end of the 2027/28 season. Between now and then, the Premier League has the strength of the NBC Sports marketing machine behind it. Starting with the Summer Olympics this summer, expect NBC Sports and Telemundo to continue to cross-promote the Premier League.

Then this summer, almost half of the Premier League clubs play pre-season friendlies in the United States. Teams playing here include Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester City, Aston Villa and Chelsea. There’s also the possibility of four more Premier League clubs playing stateside this August.

With the Club World Cup in 2025 featuring several Premier League teams, as well as Premier League stars being featured in World Cup 2026, the future is bright for the Premier League.