Super Bowl delivers record 100m US audience

Nearly 100 million people in the United States watched the Super Bowl on Sunday night, making it the second most watched TV programme in American broadcasting history and the highest for a sporting event.

According to Guardian Unlimited, an average of 97.5 million viewers tuned in to the Rupert Murdoch-owned Fox network as the New York Giants sealed a last-minute 17-14 victory over the favourites, the New England Patriots.

Only the 1983 series finale of M*A*S*H has drawn a higher audience – 106 million viewers on CBS.

The Super Bowl post-match show also drew 69 million viewers. The day’s bumper ratings brought in more than £125 million in revenues for Fox.

As with sports audience figures in the UK, the ratings do not include the many people watching in bars and pubs.

The previous record for a Super Bowl was the 94.1 million who tuned in for the 1996 contest, which was shown on NBC. Last year’s match drew 93.2 million to CBS, the third highest Super Bowl audience of all time.

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