How Many People Watch Soccer?

A lot.

A combined audience of 3.572 billion meant that roughly half the world’s population tuned in to watch this summer’s soccer World Cup, according to new audience data. FIFA said 3.572 billion viewers - more than half of the global population aged four and over - watched some part of the official coverage, which was broadcast live in every territory worldwide from June 14 to July 15.

On a widely circulated list of popular sports based on fans, soccer is rightly so in the top position. The FIFA World Cup held every four years has a huge TV audience - an accumulated audience of over 30 billion people watched the 2006 World Cup in Germany. That's more than the world's population, this figure is an 'accumulated' audience, meaning if people watched more than one game, which most people did, they were counted each time. When you talk of most-viewed sports, the TV and now online audience greatly grows the number of viewers compared to those who physically go to watch sporting events.

With 3.5 billion fans around the world, soccer is the one sport that pretty much the whole world can agree upon can be claimed as the most-watched sport in the world. With its combination of adrenaline-pumping excitement, man-on-man aggression, tough competition, it’s no wonder it comes on top.

Soccer is worth astronomical sums of money to different leagues around the world through television rights as its leagues boast more TV viewers than any other sports league, and its flagship event, the World Cup, outshines every other major event without question. December 21 Reuters - A record audience of more than 3.5 billion people watched this year’s World Cup in Russia, with the final between France and Croatia attracting 1.12 billion viewers, the world soccer’s governing body said on Friday.

The global in-home TV audience watching at least one minute of the coverage accounted for almost 3.3 billion viewers, a 2.2 percent increase on the 2014 edition hosted in Brazil, according to FIFA’s audit of audience data published on Friday.

A further 309.7 million caught the action on digital platforms, public viewing areas, or in bars and restaurants.

France’s 4-2 victory in the final, which gave them their second World Cup title following their triumph in 1998, was the most-watched game of the competition.

It was followed by England’s semi-final defeat to Croatia and the other last-four clash between France and Belgium.

These figures do support the claim that Russia 2018 was the best World Cup ever, said FIFA’s chief commercial officer, Philippe Le Floc’h.

The fact that half the world’s population watched the FIFA World Cup reflects not just the high quality of our award-winning live coverage, but also that fans everywhere are insatiable for world-class football.

The World Cup coverage reached around 1.6 billion individuals in Asia, with 655.7 million viewers 18.4 percent of the global total in China, who failed to qualify for the tournament.

 When you talk of most-viewed sports, the TV and now online audience greatly grows the number of viewers compared to those who physically go to watch sporting events.


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