The Other Field of Play

Football on social media

Authored by: Boris Helleu

Routledge Handbook of Football Marketing

Print publication date:  March  2017
Online publication date:  March  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138289321
eBook ISBN: 9781315267203
Adobe ISBN: 9781351972369


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Favored by broadcast schedules adapted to Europe, the matches of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil generated an unprecedented number of viewers. In France, the five most watched television broadcasts of the year were the matches of the French national team in Brazil. The quarter-final against Germany, broadcasted at 18:00 on TF1, garnered 16.9 million viewers. Germany, the winner of the competition, broke two records right after the other for the largest amount of viewers. Their victory over the host country attracted 32.6 million viewers (87.8% were a part of the audience). Following that, there were 34.7 million viewers for the final against Argentina. According to Médiamétrie, about 90% of French, German, Spanish and English ages 4 and older watched at least 1 minute of a game live. 1 This World Cup was also the first of the post-digital era. Fans were not only in stadiums or in front of a television, but they were also on social media. According to Twitter, this mega sporting event has become the most commented on with 672 million tweets related to the event. The semi-final of Brazil–Germany holds the record for the most commented on sporting event with 35.8 million tweets. 2 Facebook also set a record for a sporting event: 88 million people generated 280 million interactions (“likes” and comments) related to the final. From June 12 to July 13 Facebook counted 350 million people who generated 3 billion interactions in relation to the competition. 3

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