World Cup: France's Draw Pulls Record Ratings

4:44 AM PST 06/26/2014 by Scott Roxborough
AP Photo/Bernat Armangue

Wednesday's 0-0 tie with Ecuador drew 14.7 million viewers on France's TF1 and won the night across Europe.

The France versus Ecuador 0-0 draw was a rare goal-less tie in the free-scoring festival that has so far been the 2014 World Cup. But European viewers didn't seem to mind.

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The Wednesday night match pulled an audience of 14.7 million, or a 62 percent share, for France's TF1, the high-water mark in France for the tournament so far. After two dramatic wins in their first matches, the draw against Ecuador was enough to see France through to the second stage of the Cup. If Team France continues its winning ways, expect viewership to keep climbing.

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In neighboring Germany, 9.26 million, or just under 40 percent of the TV audience, tuned in to the France versus Ecuador match. That figure was topped only by the 9.84 million Germans who watched the three-minute broadcast of the final moments of the Honduras versus Switzerland, which German pubweb ARD switched to after the final whistle in France versus Ecuador.

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Across Europe, the match ruled the ratings roost, though figures in most neutral nations were considerably lower. In Britain, 5.2 million, or 27 percent of the audience, caught the match on the BBC, with a peak viewership of 6.1 million (28.2 percent). In Italy, 3.5 million watched on Rai, a 17.1 percent share, and 2.2 million Dutch fans tuned in, 39.2 percent of the audience.

It's no surprise that viewership in Holland, France and Germany — whose teams are all still in the running — remains strong, while the World Cup is losing some of its appeal for fans in eliminated countries, including England and Italy.

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