More people watched the Women's World Cup final than the NBA finals or Stanley Cup

Think women's sports aren't worth watching? It seems like 25 million Americans disagree

By Jenny Kutner
July 6, 2015 10:22PM (UTC)
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From left, United States' Megan Rapinoe, Lauren Holiday, and Carli Lloyd celebrate after Lloyd scored her second goal of the match against Japan during the first half of the FIFA Women's World Cup soccer championship in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Sunday, July 5, 2015. (AP/Elaine Thompson)

This year's Women's World Cup reinvigorated what appears to be an age-old (sexist) question: Are women's sports worth watching?

The answer, according to the record-breaking number of Americans who watched the U.S. women's national soccer team defeat Japan in the final game, is "yes."


TV By the Numbers reports that Fox saw 20.35 million viewers tune in for the final game, while others claim the average was closer to 25.4 million people. That's an insane number. According to SB Nation, the most-watched soccer event in American television history -- before Sunday night, that is -- was the U.S.-Portugal match at the 2014 World Cup, with 18.2 million viewers.

But the women's final also beat out other major sporting events that some would consider to be more worthwhile. As SB Nation also notes, the NBA finals had an average overnight rating of 13.9 compared to the Women's World Cup final's rating of 15.2, and just 7.6 million people watched the Stanley Cup this year.

So...what was someone saying about the merits of women's sports?

Jenny Kutner

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Fifa Nba Finals Sexism Soccer Sports Stanley Cup Television Women's World Cup