Mexico vs. USA: ESPN’s Most-Viewed and Highest-Rated FIFA World Cup Qualifying Match

Categories: Network TV Press Releases

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March 27th, 2013


via press release:

Mexico vs. USA: ESPN’s Most-Viewed and Highest-Rated FIFA World Cup Qualifying Match
Last night’s 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying match between Mexico and the United States – a hard-fought 0-0 tie at the historic Estadio Azteca in Mexico City – was seen by an average 2.385 million viewers, 1.644 million households based on a 1.4 U.S. household rating (1.7 coverage rating), making it the most-watched and highest-rated FIFA World Cup qualifying match (or international friendly) telecast on an ESPN network, according to Nielsen Media.
Viewers for the Mexico-USA match doubled the audience for USA vs. Mexico (Feb. 11, 2009), which set the previous ESPN records for viewership – 1.191 million viewers, 795,000 households, based on a 0.7 household U.S. rating on ESPN2.
Five Most-Viewed World Cup Qualifying or International Friendly Matches on ESPN:
Date Match Network Rating P2+ (Viewers)
Tue, March 26, 2013 Mexico vs. USA (WCQ) ESPN 1.4 2,385,000
Wed, Feb 11, 2009 USA vs. Mexico (WCQ) ESPN2 0.7 1,191,000
Wed, May 30, 2012 USA vs. Brazil (Friendly) ESPN2 0.6 1,128,000
Wed, Feb 7, 2007 USA vs. Mexico (Friendly) ESPN2 0.6 1,091,000
Wed, Oct 14, 2009 USA vs. Costa Rica (WCQ) ESPN2 0.6 1,090,000
Birmingham, Ala. was the top market for the match telecast, delivering a 2.9 rating.  Rounding out the top five were: Austin, Texas (2.6), Seattle-Takoma, Wash. (2.4), Columbus, Ohio (2.4), and three markets – Los Angeles, San Diego, Hartford-New Haven, Conn., – were tied for fifth place (2.3).
In addition, ESPN’s unprecedented coverage earned critical acclaim as well as garnered praise on social media ranging from the depth of coverage, insightful analysis and reporting, through an outstanding three-person commentating team in the booth for live match telecast.  ESPN Front Row compiled a sampling of those comments.
ESPN Digital Media:
On digital platforms, fans followed the Mexico vs. USA match live via ESPNFC Match HQ and Gamecast online, spending a total of 1.3 million minutes. Viewers of the Mexico vs. USA match via WatchESPN on computers, smartphones, tablets and Xbox also logged the highest total live minutes consumed of any of this past week’s World Cup qualifying matches, generating 3.4 million minutes across platforms.  Additionally, the day after the match on Wednesday, Mar. 27th logged the most video starts ever for short form video on in a single day with over 1.5 million, in large part due to highlights and reaction to the Mexico vs. USA match.
  • romo

    LOL 0-0 zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

  • Fed

    There is hope for americans after all.

  • Das Ravenator

    Soccer is the giant of sports. The elephant has arrived in US.

  • AppleStinx

    Good result for the US team but it looked like it was going to to be a loss when I caught the game, so I switched to the Celtics vs Knicks game. The Celtics were losing big. Thus I jumped to GSN only to find this new program called ‘Family Trade’, where one of the guys looks like the offspring of Darrell Sheets (of ‘Storage Wars’) and Jerry Seinfeld: a younger mop-headed Darrell with Seinfeld’s voice. Too much. It was like being in the Twilight Zone all evening.

  • TN

    Romo: LOL 0-0 zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

    Ahh, only in America when working hard to earn something is boring. Romo you must certainly be from the land where mediocrity is given an award.

  • Sgc

    Other things to note about this one:

    * This rating was achieved for a game that didn’t end until 1230PM ET. I bet it won its timeslot for all of TV over the last 30 minutes.
    * This game was also on another channel (UniMas) that had twice as many viewers.

  • snoot

    Lol the elephant has arrived? Compare that 1.4 rating to the Super Bowl.

  • Ken

    Birmingham, AL had the highest rating of any market. I did not see that one coming.

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