Sure, soccer (football) has never been massive in the US, but just released figures have shown this year’s FIFA World Cup was particularly on the nose with American TV viewers.
Undoubtedly the biggest problem was that the Americans weren’t in the tournament in the first place, having been bundled out by lowly-ranked Trinidad and Tobago last October.
Just released Nielsen data showed 11.3 million Americans tuned-in for Sunday’s final between France and Croatia. That’s down a third who tuned in to 2014’s final between Germany and Argentina.
Overall, 2018 viewer numbers were down by about 20 per cent, according to Nielsen.
Again, not that it was to be unexpected. US broadcaster Fox had warned advertisers that a US team-free 2018 tournament wouldn’t deliver the eyeballs it had in 2014, yet the broadcaster had pinned its hopes that the increasing popularity of soccer in the US would deliver stronger numbers.
Back in 2011, Fox shelled out a whooping $US425 million ($A575 million) for the US broadcast rights for both the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.
It also comes on the back of last month’s news that the US would host the 2026 World Cup in a triumvirate with Canada and Mexico.