ESPN, heading into Thursday's kickoff of the quarterfinals with the Czech Republic taking on Portugal and Cristiano Ronaldo, has netted major gains with its coverage of UEFA European Football Championship 2012.
Through the 24 matches in the group stage of Euro 2012, ESPN's live presentations averaged 784,000 households and just over 1 million viewers, according to Nielsen data. Those daytime deliveries represented advances of 79% and 82%, respectively, from its 2008 group-stage marks of 439,000 households and 552,000 viewers.
Thus far, the June 10 Group C match between Spain and Italy that resulted in a 1-1 draw on June 10 has scored the worldwide leader's largest audience: 2.11 million. That performance exceeded any of the 2008 tourney's 31 matches, save for the Spain-Germany final that scored with 3.76 million viewers.