U.S. Women's World Cup Opener Shatters Viewership Records
According to broadcaster Fox, the viewership for the United States' Women's World Cup opener against Vietnam experienced a significant surge, nearly doubling from their 2019 kick-off match. The primetime slot contributed to a total of 5.261 million viewers.
The American team had a strong start to their quest for an unprecedented three-peat, defeating World Cup newcomers Vietnam 3-0 in Auckland on Saturday. The English-language broadcast of the match reached its peak with 6.552 million viewers.
This remarkable figure represented a 99% increase compared to the 2.649 million viewers who watched the U.S. team's 13-0 victory in their opening game of the 2019 campaign, which was aired during mid-day on the U.S. East Coast.
Furthermore, the current numbers showed a 59% increase from their equivalent match in 2015, when the U.S. team faced Australia in Canada at around 7 p.m. on the East Coast. That particular match was broadcast on Fox's FS1 channel.
Although the primetime slot in 2023 provided an advantage over the 2019 airing time, the match had to contend for attention with Lionel Messi's highly anticipated debut in Major League Soccer. Messi, one of the biggest stars to join the North American league since David Beckham 16 years ago, scored a stoppage-time victory in front of a star-studded crowd, with the match starting about an hour before the U.S. team's game.