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England’s Women’s Euros final triumph hits 17.4m peak viewers – a new high

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By John McCarthy | Media editor

August 1, 2022 | 4 min read

At least 17.4 million people watched England’s triumph over Germany at the Women’s Euro final at Wembley on Sunday – one of the biggest events of the year and a real display of the pulling power of the sport.

Lucy Bronze

England’s women’s team won the Euros – and enjoyed a bump in viewing figures as they progressed through the competition / Nike

According to data from Barb, live plus same-day viewing on BBC One peaked at 17.419 million, with overall reach hitting 21.2 million. With the game going into extra time at 1-1, viewers had more time to onboard and view the dramatic conclusion to the tournament. It now sits as the most-viewed show of the year.

For context, Eurovision in May was previously the most-watched show of the year. On BBC One, entrant Sam Ryder’s second-place rally attracted an average 9.2 million people, just trumping January’s 9.2 million on the final episode of The Tourist.

The figures for the women’s Euros will trend upwards as Barb calculates the people who watched a recording of the game up to seven days later (which is less common with sports events than dramas due to a lot of value being in the uncertainty and drama of the unfolding result).

Throughout the tournament, more and more fans came aboard the journey. The semi-final against Sweden took a peak audience of 9.3 million viewers (which was at the time a tournament record). That game also generated 2 million streams across the BBC’s digital channels, the iPlayer streaming service and the BBC Sport platform. You could reasonably expect more for the final. The quarterfinal against Spain mustered an audience of 7.6 million, which was also a record at the time.

With the World Cup in Qatar coming later this year – creating conundrums for media buyers used to buying these campaigns in summer – it’s possible the England men’s team could knock their female counterparts off the top viewing spot, should they progress far into the tournament. Their Euro 2020 (hosted in 2021 due to the pandemic) final defeat mustered an average UK audience of 29.85 million people across public service broadcaster the BBC and commercial network ITV. It hit a peak of 30.95 million. This game went to penalties, creating an even longer viewing window than the women’s final.

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