The reasons for the fall in TV football odds

© vitaliy_melnik – stock.adobe.com

The last game of the Corona season has ended with the relegation, the numbers are available: After the forced break, fewer people watch football on TV. Bayern boss Karl-Heinz Rummenigge uses this for an attack.


The special game operation has cost the Bundesliga soccer fans – also in front of the television. The numbers of the “Sport Show” and the “Current Sports Studio” dropped significantly after the Corona break, and even drastically during the live broadcasts of the DFB Cup. The final relegation was an exception, with more fans watching than a year ago.

The most noticeable was the waning interest at the “sports show”, which lost more than a million spectators per game day. Until the interruption, 4.814 million switched on the classic ARD and ensured a market share of 21.9 percent. From the 26th matchday, the values ​​were 3.782 million and 15.2 percent.

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge had his own interpretation. “In some ARD broadcasts, soccer was talked to rubble and ashes during the lockdown. Now they are surprised that the ratings are unsatisfactory, ”said the Bayern boss a few days ago in the“ Handelsblatt ”. “There were enough talk shows in which the concept of the DFL and the plans to restart the game were presented very negatively. That could have been discussed more seriously and fairly in some cases. “

ARD naturally sees it differently. Surprisingly, sports coordinator Axel Balkausky does not want to comment on Rummenigge’s attack – and offers other explanations. “There are still people who disagree,” said Balkausky of the special game company. And there are TV viewers who “do not like games without a spectator in the stadium.” The ARD man basically pointed out that football in Corona times “obviously does not have the meaning for some people as usual.”

The waning interest was also evident in the DFB Cup. “In the semi-finals and the final there were significantly fewer spectators than in previous years,” said Balkausky. On average, only 7.01 million saw how Bayern Munich won the next title in the final against Bayer Leverkusen (4-2). That is around 30 percent less than usual. More specifically: The 2019 final between Bayern and RB Leipzig had watched 9.958 million (34.9 percent).

The “Current Sports Studio” also recorded a minus: ZDF watched an average of 2.21 million in the second half until the Corona break, after which only 1.90 million. Against the trend, the second in the second division relegation. The two games saw a total of 5.84 million Ingolstadt against Nuremberg, which were obviously more attractive than Ingolstadt against Wehen-Wiesbaden with 4.45 million last year. DAZN and Amazon do not publish quotas.

The numbers of the conference call that Sky had shown free of charge on the 26th and 27th match day were also interesting. The first time 2.45 million fans watched the free TV offer, the second time only 1.65 million. More than 30 percent of the new viewers were therefore no longer interested. While the number of Sky customers who opted for the conference even increased slightly.

The trend of waning interest doesn’t seem to apply to hardcore fans who spend money on their passion. Sky explained: “The average reach was three percent above the previous year’s level and an average of 4.22 million viewers.” On Saturday afternoon, the number of viewers even increased by twelve percent to around 1.8 million. “We were able to achieve some reach records at Sky, especially after the restart,” commented Head of Sports and Marketing Jacques Raynaud.

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