A total of 10.8 million viewers watched Spain play Costa Rica at the World Cup on Wednesday on Spanish national broadcaster TVE and pay television's Gol Mundial, according to data from audience measurement firm Barlovento.
It compares with 15.1 million viewers who tuned in to Spain's opening match against Portugal in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Spain thrashed Costa Rica 7-0 for their biggest ever World Cup win in a match that took place at 5 p.m. local time, when many people were still at work. The team's opening match in 2018 was broadcast at 8 p.m.
The data, compiled by Kantar Media for Barlovento, takes into account homes, second residences and guests, but does not measure viewers from bars and mobile platforms such as tablets or mobile phones.The most-watched match in Spanish history was the 2010 World Cup final, when Spain beat the Netherlands 1-0 in South Africa. A record 16.7 million viewers were glued to their screens when Andres Iniesta scored the winning goal.