UPDATE, 1:31 PM: When you win 7-1, you win big. Like Germany’s big semifinal win over Brazil yesterday at the World Cup, ESPN had a very good game. With a 4.2 rating and 6.643 million viewers watching the afternoon game on the sports network, the match was both the highest-rated and most viewed World Cup semifinal in American TV history. In fact with the exception of games where the now departed TeamUSA played, yesterday’s match is the highest- rated World Cup ever on ESPN/ESPN2. It beat the 4.0 that Mexico’s loss to the Netherlands on June 20 pulled in, which was the previous non-USA participating record. Over on Univision, the stunning blow-out game drew 5.8 million viewers to be the top World Cup semifinal ever on the Spanish language network. Germany will face the winner of today’s semifinal between the Netherlands and Argentina on July 13.
PREVIOUS, 2:34 AM: Is a spoiler alert really necessary on what’s already such a historic game?…
In the highest-scoring semi-final match in the 84-year history of the World Cup, Germany crushed Brazil 7-1 on Tuesday. We do not yet have viewing figures from Brazil, but in Germany, the historic triumph drew an all-time record audience. An average of 32.57M viewers watched from 10 PM local time on ZDF. The previous record was set by the 2010 World Cup semi-finals in South Africa which drew 31.1M. A staggering 87.8% of the country was tuned in last night — and that of course does not account for group viewings in bars and elsewhere. That share, however, was a hair lower than the 87.9 of the 1990 World Cup final that saw Germany defeat Argentina. On Twitter, the Brazil-Germany meet-up became its most discussed sports game ever, with 35.6M tweets. That handily bested the previous record of 24.9M set by this year’s Super Bowl — further proof of the global impact of the football played without shoulder pads and helmets.
On the pitch, the match was record breaking in many ways. The previous record for goals scored during a semi-final was from the 1930 World Cup when both Argentina and Uruguay won their respective bouts 6-1. It took Germany just 29 minutes to score a staggering five goals last night, the fastest ever at the World Cup. Adding one goal to his boot, Germany’s Miroslav Klose also became the biggest World Cup scorer in history with 16 total points. According to The Guardian, this was also the first time in 94 years that Brazil lost a game by a six goal margin. The host team, forced to do without its star player Neymar after his injury in the quarters, will now head to the match for 3rd place. Germany might have some compassion for Brazil’s plight: It was the World Cup host country in 2006 and was booted out in the semis (against Italy in a 2-0 match). The side went on to win the 3rd place crown, however. Brazil will face off on Saturday with the loser of the Netherlands-Argentina semi which takes place later today, and Germany will meet the victor on Sunday. Brazil’s defeat at the Estádio Mineirão in Belo Horizonte spurred President Dilma Rousseff to take to Twitter and say that like all Brazilians, she was “very, very sad.” But she urged the country to get up, shake off the dust and make a comeback.
Elsewhere in Europe, BBC One averaged 11.52M viewers for a 51 share during the match and peaked with 13.98M and a 57.8 share. In France, where the home team fell at the feet of the Germans last Friday, 10.59M tuned in to TF1 for a 50.7 share. We’ll be back later with ratings updates from the U.S.