After the English Premier Season begins, and broadcasts begin on NBC Sports, the LA Galaxy will have at least two NBC Sports broadcasts (could be more pending playoffs) that will have EPL matches as lead ins. Looking at the schedules for those days, it's clear how much NBC is investing in soccer for the end of the year schedule. (link)
Saturday, September 21 (all times Pacific)
4:45 a.m.: Norwich City vs. Aston Villa (NBC Sports Network)
7:00 a.m.: Cardiff City vs. Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool vs. Southampton, West Ham United vs. Everton, West Bromwich Albion vs. Sunderland, Newcastle United vs. Hull City, Crystal Palace vs. Swansea City (TBA)
9:30 a.m.: Chelsea vs. Fulham (NBC Sports Network, mun2)
7:30 p.m.: Los Angeles Galaxy vs. Seattle Sounders (NBC Sports Network)
Here the Galaxy don't get the direct benefits of the EPL matches, due to the nighttime west coast start, but but there's still an opportunity for ad blasting during the Chelsea match. Not sure how many east coast neutrals are going to stay up and watch MLS just because of 30 second ad, and not sure how many west coasters are gonna get up early to watch Norwich City vs. Aston Villa.
Sunday, September 29
5:30 a.m.: Stoke City vs. Norwich City (NBC Sports Network)
8:00 a.m.: Sunderland vs. Liverpool (NBC Sports Network)
12:30 p.m.: Portland Timbers vs. Los Angeles Galaxy (NBC)
This one works out much better for two reasons. Shorter gap between the Liverpool tilt (lets be honest, Sunderland isn't an eyeball grabber in the US) and the Galaxy tilt. It's also great that the Galaxy are going to be on regular old, over the air, NBC. The broadcast networks have the highest carriage of any channel since it's free to anyone with a tv and an antenna. I expect September 29th to be the highest rated match for the Galaxy this year.
This and That
The United States victory over Panama in the Gold Cup final tied the 2011 UEFA Champions League final for highest rated soccer match ever on Fox. The game posted a 1.4/4 household rating/share (for comparison's sake, Monday night's ABC broadcast of Mistresses in primetime got a 1.2/4). It also shows how young soccer skews as the broadcast averaged 2.4 million viewers (while the aforementioned Mistresses, while it got a lower rating in the key demo, averaged 3.96 million).
Univision is also touting its Gold Cup final numbers, drawing almost twice the number of total viewers (4.9 million, okay so soccer appeals to the older generations as well in the Spanish speaking community) and a 1.3 in the key demo. That's right everyone, you won't see it happen that often, but the English speaking broadcast narrowly beat out the Spanish broadcast in the key demo.
The top market for the English speaking broadcast was Kansas City, perhaps due to All Star Game fever promoting the game. Los Angeles was a top performer in the Spanish speaking market.
The Gold Cup was also ranked the most social broadcast on Sunday, so keep tweeting cause someone is counting.