Two Bruins pictured above - Carlos Bocanegra (in his blue Captain's armband) and Jonathan Bornstein (12) (along with Benny Feilhaber (22) played huge roles in one of the most epic Ws for the Red, White and Blue). Photo Credit: AP
Having a hard time falling asleep this Sat early am out in the East Coast. So I thought I might as well set up the soccer open thread for today. Here are some numbers that should get everyone's attention (via Market Watch at the WSJ):
The USA team's matches against England, Slovenia and Algeria have averaged 11.1 million viewers on ABC, ESPN and Univision, Nielsen said, compared with the average of 6.6 million viewers that watched the 2006 squad's games with the Czech Republic, Italy and Ghana. [...]
The first USA World Cup game of the year, a 1-1 tie with England on June 12, remains the most-watched of the three games, with 17.1 million viewers.
Against Algeria on Wednesday, the USA team won 1-0 on a dramatic injury-time goal by Landon Donovan. That match drew 8.6 million viewers.
"The numbers [from these three games] are even more impressive when you consider that two of these games were played on weekday mornings, when many viewers are at work," said Stephen Master, vice president of Sports at Nielsen. "Although more people than ever chose to watch live, streaming video of the games from their computers and mobile devices, TV viewing climbed even higher."
Per our SBN colleague from Sounder at Heart (Seattle Sounder's blog), the audience for USA/England match was bigger than Games 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 of NBA Finals and all of NHL Finals.
I am sure there are number of ways to break down these stats but any way you slice them up, they are impressive. Soccer is more than just a fad and it is especial for BN, given the role UCLA has played over the years in terms of make up Team USA and supplying pro talents to professional leagues on both sides of the pond.
It doesn't take a lot of build up to set up today's game against Ghana. You all should know the deal here on. This is all about winning and advancing just like the NCAA hoops tournament, as the Red, White and Blue happen to find themselves in the Sweet-16 of the entire World. Wrt to Ghana, USA of course has some payback to take care of dating back to the results from 2006.
In other match that gets things started this am, South Korea takes on Uruguay (7:00 am PST start). Winner of that match takes on the winner of USA v. Ghana (11:30 am PST start).