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Americans Don’t Care About Soccer, Huh? TV Ratings Disagree

Michael Steele, Getty Images

More Americans watched the U.S. team’s valiant fight against Belgium on Tuesday than the NBA final and the World Series final. And that game was in the middle of a workday afternoon. Pretty good for nobody caring.

I hate soccer. I watch no sports, really. They bore me. A little football is the only exception. But apparently I’m weird. The Nielsen company that tracts TV ratings said about 21.6 million people watched the World Cup game against Belgium. And 24.7 million watched the game against Portugal (a weekend game).

For contrast, the NBA Finals between the Spurs and Heat averaged 15.5 million viewers (18 million watched the final game). The world series in 2013 only saw 14.9 million with just over 19 million watching the final game.

So all those jokes about Americans going back to not caring about soccer are just dead wrong. Americans care about soccer.

In 2011 the final home game for the Seattle Sounders saw more than 64,100 people.

Major League Soccer as a league had the fourth best attendance record of all professional sports and third best in just the U.S. (excluding Canada).

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