October 26 – The National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) completed its rearranged 2020 schedule reporting record breaking broadcast numbers with its new CBS TV deal.
When the pandemic hit the US. the NWSL reformatted its season to start play with the NWSL Challenge Cup in July which saw all teams located in Salt Lake City. They followed that up with a Fall series of league games.
Prior to launching the Challenge Cup, the NWSL signed a landmark television and streaming contract with CBS Sports and Twitch.
Overall NWSL is reporting year-over-year domestic television audiences up by nearly 500% and including a record 653,000 viewers for the final of the NWSL Challenge Cup.
The NWSL fall series games on CBS averaging 383,000 viewers.
The profile of the NWSL was also boosted in other media with the league reporting a 152% year-over-year increase on social media, and coverage in news media up 55%.
“Our players are the best in the world, adapted to the challenges of 2020 like you would expect, and delivered a product on the field that audiences flocked to. I’m so incredibly proud to be associated with our players,” said NWSL Commissioner Lisa Baird.
“At the league level, we had to innovate to make it work this year and I’m truly grateful for the support of our owners and the staff at each club for contributing to an unqualified success in unprecedented times.”
As well as its new broadcast partnerships, the NWSL signed new deals this season with Verizon, P&G and Secret, and Google.
As part of its season revamp and fall series, the NWSL launched the Verizon Community Shield competition which saw each of the nine clubs playing on behalf of local small businesses in a bid to show support and help them during the covid crisis.
The 2020 Expansion Draft is scheduled for November 12 and will for the first time feature Racing Louisville Football Club, who will become the league’s 10th team when the debut in 2021.
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