Chelsea UCL Win Over Man City Averaged 2 Million Viewers in U.S.

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The 2021 UEFA Champions League Final, in which Chelsea beat Manchester City 1-0, posted an average of 2.095 million viewers in the United States on Saturday, according to Nielsen. CBS Sports claims that this match was the most-watched UEFA Champions League Final in six years (2015) for an English language broadcast in the United States.

The network further pats itself on the back, boasting in a press release that their coverage drew the second highest English language audience for a UCL Final over the past decade. The real story though, is how much better this final did, ratings wise, than the last all-England Champions League final.

Boosted by the presence of two American players, one of which (Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic) became the first USA international to feature in a men’s UCL Final, the numbers show a viewership increase of +39% versus the 2019 UEFA Champions League Final (Liverpool vs. Tottenham Hotspur, June 1, 2019).

That statistic certainly shows a significant amount of growth (at least Stateside) in just a short period of time.

Viewership for the match peaked in crunch time, with 2.553 million viewers recorded from 4:45 to 5:00 PM, ET. Chelsea got a lone goal from Kai Havertz in the first half, and that was enough to deny City their first ever UCL title and get Blues boss Thomas Tuchel his first trophy with his new club.

The other American international, Manchester City No. 2 Zack Steffen, didn’t play, but just being on this stage was massive for him and the rest of the USMNT ahead of what will be a crucial summer and fall period for the national team.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports IllustratedChicago Tribune and SB NationFollow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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