More than 3.8 million Australians (19.1%) regularly watch football of one sort or another on television, be it the A-League, the EPL or the World Cup, and the favoured viewing experience is the World Cup, which is watched regularly by more than 3 million Australians (14.9%), according to Roy Morgan Research.

When the World Cup Finals roll around every four years football viewership spikes significantly, and in 2014 over 4.2 million Australians (21.9%) watched the tournament in Brazil.

We already know that this year's World Cup has been a ratings success for SBS-TV - helped by the Optus' technical failure - and even greater total numbers are expected compared with four years ago. 

But who watches it the most?

According to Roy Morgan Research, the World Cup is “considerably more popular” among men than women, with more than 2.1 million men watching regularly compared with 900,000 women. 

Age group also makes a difference, with Gen X (born between 1961 and 1975) marginally out-watching Millenials (born 1976 to 1990), 870,000 to 770,000. One quarter of all men in the Gen X and Millenial age groups watch the World Cup on TV, compared with 19.6% for Gen Z (born 1991-2005).   

The youngest of the Gen Z viewers would only have been nine years of age at the 2014 World Cup, and may well still be devleoping their interest in the game. 

It is Gen X women who also lead the way amongst women viewers with more than 10% of Gen X women watching, followed by girls/young women who may well be their daughters at 8.6%. The comparably higher viewing figures for Gen Z are also consistent with participation data in the game.

A state breakdown of viewing data also shows that the most interest is in NSW and Victoria with 17.1% and 16.8% of people from those states watching the World Cup. Tasmania, which failed in its bid for an A-League license last week, has the smallest viewership with only 9.5% of Tasmanians tuning-in. 

FIFA World Cup intended viewing by Generation and Gender

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), April 2017 – March 2018 (n=15,067).

Photo of Tim and Hudson Cahill courtesy of Tim Cahill

Categories: News | Football Business | World Cup

2018 world cup, tv viewership

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