2021 AFL TV Ratings News

AFL Preseason

Fox Footy has hit the ground running with the pre-season 2021 AFL AAMI Community Series averaging 131,000 viewers, the highest rating pre-season tournament since 2013 (average 147,000 over 30 matches).

The 9-match 2021 tournament was up +51% on the first nine matches of the 2020 tournament and up +53% on the entire 2020 tournament average.

Foxtel audiences grew 26% on the first nine matches Year on Year, and 29% on the 2020 tournament average, while streaming on Kayo grew 142% on the first nine matches YoY, and 134% on the 2020 tournament average.

The Collingwood v Richmond blockbuster on Friday night was the highest rating game with an audience of 197,000 across Foxtel & Kayo.

This is the largest AFL pre-season audience since 2016 (Geelong v Collingwood) and the 6th highest pre-season game on record.  Saturday night’s Geelong v Essendon game was the #2 most viewed, followed by Carlton v St Kilda on Thursday night.

AFL Round 1

The opening round of the 2021 AFL Premiership Season on the Seven Network was a very welcome return for sports fans, winning its timeslots and cementing the AFL’s standing as the #1 winter sport.


The four blockbuster games on Channel 7 and 7mate reached 3.8 million viewers nationally, including 2.84 million in the capital cities.

Seven’s live and free coverage on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and yesterday ranked #1 in its timeslots among all people and 25 to 54s, and captured 77% of all AFL TV viewers.

Seven’s average national audience of 713,000 included solid increases in the northern states. In Brisbane, the number of people watching Seven’s coverage jumped 15% year-on-year. Across regional Australia, Seven’s audience was up 3%.

Overall: The total average TV audience for Round 1 was 4.53M made up of 2.38M for Metro, 761K for Regional and 1.39M for Pay TV.

Brisbane audience: Up 54 per cent compared to Round One in 2019. Up 59 per cent compared to the 2015 – 2019 five year average for Round One.

Sydney audience: Up 17 per cent compared to the 2015 – 2019 five year average for the Thursday night season-opener.

Melbourne audience: Friday night footy was up 16 per cent in Melbourne compared to the 2019 season average. Saturday night’s Essendon v Hawthorn match was up seven per cent compared to an average Saturday night game in 2019.

Foxtel Media released viewing details for round 1, which saw an average audience across Foxtel Platforms and Kayo of 238,000, broadly in line with 2020 and up 6% on 2019.

  • Last Thursday’s Richmond v Carlton season opener, which saw an average audience of 365,000, was the second-best average audience for a season opener in subscription television history.
  • Adelaide v Geelong was the number two game of the round with an average audience of 335,000 and the highest rating clash for this fixture since 2016.
  • Saturday night’s Essendon v Hawthorn and Brisbane v Sydney games had a cumulative audience of 365,000, up 15% on the cumulative audience of Round 1 Saturday night in 2019 (Bulldogs v Sydney and Brisbane v West Coast) and up 46% on Round 1 Saturday night last year (GWS v Geelong and Gold Coast v Port Adelaide).
  • Sunday night’s West Coast v Gold Coast game had an average audience of 239,000, up 18% on 2019 Round 1 Sunday night average (Fremantle v North Melbourne) and up 9% on last year (West Coast v Melbourne).

AFL Round 3









AFL Round 4