What are the Most Watched Sports Events?

collage of various sport players

With the Sochi Winter Olympics coming up in less than three weeks, the event got us wondering. Plenty of people watch the Olympics when they come round…but what are the most watched events in the world? Certainly the Olympics is on that list, but what else?? Well, that’s what brings us here…

Top 5 Most Watched Sports Events

  1. UEFA Champions League: It’s undeniable that soccer is the world’s most beloved sport. The annual UEFA Champions League finals are somewhat like the Super Bowl of the non-U.S.A. part of the world. Last year, the estimated global average number of viewers was 150 million, with a possible reach of 350 million.

  1. Super Bowl: These numbers may be a little less that UEFA, but the Super Bowl is also virtually a non-entity outside of the U.S. Out of a population of 313 million, 2012’s Big Game—which pitted the New York Giants against the New England Patriots—saw an estimated average of 111.3 viewers—and an estimated 166.8 million total. Last year’s clocked in at an avg. 108.69 and 164.1 million total.
  1. ICC Cricket World Cup: Not soccer, but cricket. At first glance this may seem shocking. Then you have consider a major factor: Pakistan and India are major cricket countries, each with enormous populations.  The 2011 semi-finals between the two was viewed by at least a few hundred million people, based on data. Estimates though run as high as a billion.
  1. Olympics: This number is a little difficult to assess. The 2008 Bejing Olympics had the most overall viewers—up to 4.7 billion individual viewers watched at some part of the coverage. At any given moment, the average number of viewers tallied 600 million. The opening and closing ceremonies (not quite sport events since they’re not competitive) garnered 984 million and 778 million respectively.
  1. World Cup: When it comes to measurable data of a single event, the World Cup takes the cake. In 2006, over 600 million watched the game. By 2010’s final between Spain and the Netherlands, the number exceeded 700 million. One can only wonder how much this year’s will pull in, especially since it’s being held in the ‘football’ crazed land of Brazil.

There are plenty of other massively popular events that we didn’t feature. When it comes to racing, the 24 Hours of Le Mans has some die hard viewers numbering over 20 million. We also tried to pick general categories, for instance, “World Cup,” rather than listing each World Cup and its numbers. So forgive us if you find fault.

Dr. Sam Sadati is the owner and practitioner of The Sadati Center of Aesthetic Dentistry in West Palm Beach and a leader in the world of cosmetic dentistry and smile design. He is the only accredited cosmetic dentist in all of South Florida and is one of only forty dentists in the world to receive an Accredited Fellow honor from the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD).  Apart from creating beautiful smiles, Dr. Sadati enjoys photography, travel, and the opportunity to tell a good joke.  If you have a question or comment, dental-related or otherwise, connect with us on Facebook or Twitter. We always reply to our fans and followers!