The final of European soccer’s UEFA Women’s Champions League (UWCL) set a new viewership record as a cumulative global audience of 3.6 million watched the match across sports streaming platform DAZN, its dedicated YouTube channel, and 11 free-to-air channels in Europe.
The figure represents a 56% increase in audience compared to last season’s final.
France’s Lyon beat Spain’s Barcelona 3-1 in the final at the Allianz Stadium in Turin last Friday (May 20) to secure their eighth UWCL trophy.
As well as DAZN and its YouTube channel, the game was shown by ITV in the UK and Ireland, TF1 in France, RTVE and TV3 (Spain), RTBF (Belgium), SVT (Sweden), NRK (Norway), Sport5 (Israel), and RUV (Iceland) after the streaming platform agreed sub-licensing deals with the 11 broadcasters.
The 2021-22 season was DAZN’s first as the exclusive global host broadcaster for the UWCL as part of the four-year deal it struck with UEFA last year.
DAZN’s agreement marked the first time that UEFA had centralized all UWCL matches globally. As part of this deal, DAZN also entered into a partnership with YouTube that has made the competition live and free for fans around the world for the first time.
According to DAZN, it generated 64 million views on its streaming service and UWCL YouTube channel from over 230 countries and territories throughout the season. Of that figure, 4.1 million live views were attributed to last Friday's final.
The company added that in the last three months of the season alone, more than 12.3 million unique viewers visited DAZN's UWCL YouTube channel to watch the knockout round fixtures, final, and original content.
Shay Segev, DAZN Group chief executive said: “This first season as the global broadcaster of the UWCL has been a tremendous success and reflects DAZN’s commitment to close the coverage gap between women’s and men’s sports.
“We are invigorated about year two and look forward to engaging even more audiences as we further contribute towards building popularity in women’s football.”
Nadine Kessler, UEFA chief of women's football, added: “Our first season of the revamped UEFA Women’s Champions League has been an amazing success story. We have seen clubs playing in their big stadiums, attendance records being broken across several clubs and countries – and even a world record for an official women’s match broken twice at the Camp Nou.
“Together with DAZN and YouTube, we managed to give the women’s game the exposure it deserves.”