More people watched the England football team than most of the Six Nations 4 years ago

More people watched the England football team than most of the Six Nations

But The People's Game still prevailed in the end.

RTÉ released the viewing figures for the midweek World Cup semi-final and it's safe to say that there's an awful lot of people on this island who love the prospect of England failure.


Over one million Irish people tuned into RTÉ on Wednesday night to see Croatia defeat Gareth Southgate's men and to witness the end of It's Coming Home once and for all.

England v Croatia viewers

Peak: 1.12m
Average: 924,300

It means that more people watched that than they watched Ireland's playoff with Denmark or the game in Wales that sent the country to the playoffs in the first place.

It also means that, for the most part, way more people watched that World Cup semi-final than they watched Ireland themselves playing in the historic Six Nations campaign.


For four of those five Grand Slam-winning games, less people were tuned into TV3 than they were RTÉ for a football match between Croatia and England.

Six Nations viewers (average)

France v Ireland: 572,000

Ireland v Wales: 647,000


England v Ireland: 951,000

It's not unheard of for football to trump the rugby. In 2016, more people watched Portugal v Wales than they did any rugby match that year, as the stats showed.

The success of the Six Nations saw a massive and steady increase throughout the tournament as Ireland got closer and closer to a third Grand Slam in their history.

Whilst everyone loves a good bandwagon, almost as many people were just as intrigued to see the wheels come off the England bandwagon with an average number of 924,300 watching Croatia v England.


More people, in fact, watched that than they did the All-Ireland hurling final in 2017.

Top shows in Ireland 2017

  1. The Late Late Toy Show - 1.35m
  2. Mayo v Dublin - 1.14m
  3. Ireland v Denmark - 1.04m
  4. Galway v Waterford - 916,500
  5. Wales v Ireland - 866,100


You can read the full list of the most popular and most viewed shows in Ireland for the whole of last year right here.