U.S.-Germany Soccer Match Draws 10.8 Million to ESPN

Germany’s 1-0 victory over the U.S. in soccer’s World Cup yesterday on ESPN was seen by 10.8 million viewers, Walt Disney Co.’s sports network said. Univision reported an audience of 3.4 million.

The game scored the network’s second-highest Nielsen rating and third-largest audience for the World Cup, according to an e-mailed statement today from the network. Viewing fell short of the record audience for the June 22 matchup between the U.S. and Portugal, a 2-2 tie, and the U.S.-Ghana match on June 16.

With many viewers having to watch the workday game on mobile devices or computers, some were unable to access the WatchESPN streaming service because of congestion, Variety reported yesterday. WatchESPN’s audience peaked at a record 1.7 million concurrent users during the match, while Univision Digital reported an equal number, a high for the company.

The U.S.-Portugal match on ESPN was the most-watched program on TV last week, attracting an audience of 13.8 million viewers, according to data from Nielsen. It was seen in 7.3 percent of the 115.8 million U.S. TV households.

The U.S. will play Belgium next week for a place in the quarterfinals after gaining a berth in the round of 16.

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