Despite airing on tape delay and facing competition from the NFL, Sunday’s English Premier League match on FOX managed to carve out a fairly healthy 1.6 million viewers.
Sunday’s Chelsea/Manchester United match, the first regular season EPL telecast on American broadcast television, drew a 1.0 final rating and 1.6 million viewers on FOX Sunday afternoon.
Depending on the market, the match aired either before (2 PM ET) or after (4:30 PM ET) NFL coverage on FOX.
For some perspective, the UEFA Champions League final drew a 1.4 and 2.6 million viewers on FOX in May.
Sunday’s match aired live on Fox Soccer and Fox Deportes, attracting approximately 886,000 viewers across the two networks. Overall, the FOX, Fox Soccer and Fox Deportes telecasts combined for 2.486 million viewers, the largest audience ever for a Premier League match in the United States.
New Orleans (10.2) was the top market for Sunday’s telecast, towering above second-place market Raleigh-Durham (3.7). Greensboro, NC (3.3), Richmond (2.8), Birmingham (2.6) and Washington, DC (2.6) rounded out the top five.
(This week’s numbers from Fox Sports Media Group press release via TV By the Numbers)