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USA-Ghana Nets Highest World Cup Ratings Ever on ESPN

The United States scored a 2-1 victory, cable net averaged a 7.0 overnight rating

Team USA and ESPN are both celebrating Monday victories.

The Ghana vs. USA telecast on Monday — the U.S. Men’s National Team’s opening match of the 2014 FIFA World Cup — averaged a 7.0 overnight rating in the 56 metered markets, the highest overnight rating for a men’s World Cup match on ESPN or ESPN2. ESPN started receiving local ratings for World Cup in 1998.

The previous best for the ESPN networks was 2010’s USA vs. Algeria match — the famous Landon Donovan extra time goal game — which earned a 4.4 metered market rating. Donovan, who was cut from this year’s team prior to the trip to Brazil, now works as a World Cup analyst for the so-called Worldwide Leader in Sports.

See video: Landon Donovan’s EA Sports Commercial Is Perfect Revenge on Team USA

Washington, D.C. led the Top 10 metered markets Monday with an 11.8 rating. New York was second with a 10.2, Hartford-New Haven pulled in a 10.1, edging Boston’s 10.0. Columbus, Ohio rounded out the first five with an 8.9. Here is the full Top 10:
1. Washington, D.C. (11.8)
2. New York (10.2)
3. Hartford-New Haven (10.1)
4. Boston (10.0)
5. Columbus, Ohio (8.9)
6. Baltimore (8.7)
7. Providence (8.4)
8. Orlando (8.3)
9. San Francisco (8.0)
10. Norfolk (7.8)

Also read: Univision Tops ESPN in Viewers for World Cup Opener

Boston’s 10.0 is the highest overnight ever in the market on any network for the men’s World Cup, ESPN boasted. Actually, 16 markets recorded their highest overnight ever for a World Cup group round match on any network, including Washington, New York, Hartford, Baltimore, Providence and Orlando in the Top-10.

Fast national ratings are expected to be available this afternoon.

Also read: World Cup Announcer Jonathan Pearce’s Gaffes Set Off Twitter Storm

With 14 matches in the books, the Top-10 highest-rated World Cup markets on the ESPN Networks are: Washington (5.0), San Francisco (4.4), New York (4.1), Boston (3.8), Orlando (3.7), Los Angeles (3.7), Miami (3.7), Hartford (3.7), Atlanta (3.6) and (all tied) Seattle, West Palm Beach and San Diego (3/4).

ESPN’s FIFA World Cup coverage continues Tuesday with three matches: Belgium vs. Algeria (11:30 a.m. ET, ESPN), host nation Brazil vs. Mexico (2:30 p.m., ESPN) and Russia vs. South Korea (5:30 p.m., ESPN).