ESPN and ABC’s coverage of the UEFA Euro 2020 soccer championships that kicked off last week has grown by 12% in viewers over the Euro 2016 tournament through the first seven games, the networks said Wednesday.
Through those first seven matches of group play from Friday to Sunday, which included the opening Italy-Turkey game and the marquee England-Croatia matchup, the average U.S. audience was 961,000 viewers, up from 860,000 viewers from the comparable span five years ago.
ESPN and ABC said that Italy-Turkey averaged 700,000 viewers on ESPN, a 27% increase over the 2016 opener (France vs. Romania). The Saturday Belgium-Russia game on ABC averaged 1.4 million viewers, bettering the total for any Euro group stage match in 2016.
The overall stats do not include all the first-round group stage games. Those included the big France-Germany showdown on Tuesday, which by comparison drew more than 15 million viewers in France on M6. In Germany, 22.55 million viewers watched the first half of the match on ZDF, good for a 67.4 share.
Group play continues through June 23 before the tournament advances to the knockout round.