THURSDAY night football continues to engage fans across the country with last night's game between the Geelong Cats and Collingwood at Optus Stadium averaging 1,137,059 national viewers, becoming the fifth-most watched game of the 2020 Toyota AFL Premiership Season. 

Thursday night football continues to return outstanding ratings – averaging 1.15 million fans per game – a 13 per cent increase compared to 2019 figures. 

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00:00 Mins
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Highlights: Geelong v Collingwood

The Cats and Magpies clash in round seven

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Last night's game was the third-largest Thursday night television audience for the 2020 season, behind the Round Two game between Collingwood and Richmond (1.63m viewers, the first game of the season restart), and the Round One season-opener between Richmond and Carlton (1.37m viewers). 

The support and the interest from fans in the broadcast of AFL games continues to be extremely strong

- Travis Auld

The average audience in Perth last night was 115,186, the second highest Thursday Night audience in Perth for the 2020 season.

Overall, average audiences per game are up a staggering 22 per cent on 2019, reflecting the increased interest in the game and the closeness of the competition.

02:37 Mins
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Five-star De Goey explosive on his return

Jordan De Goey conjures a special performance in his return to footy, with five goals to easily claim best-on-ground honours

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Viewership in New South Wales and Queensland continues to rise, up 30 percent on free-to-air television against 2019 figures.

AFL General Manager of Clubs and Broadcasting Travis Auld expressed his thanks to all football fans across the country who are tuning in to the game, and thanked broadcast partners - the Seven Network, Foxtel and Telstra. 

"I want to acknowledge the continued challenges facing so many Australians, in football and in the broader community," Mr Auld said.

"Despite yet another unique week in our game, the support and the interest from fans in the broadcast of AFL games continues to be extremely strong this year. 

"I thank the clubs, players, coaches, umpires, staff, and corporate partners for their contribution in ensuring the season continues for our fans.

"I also want to thank our long-term broadcast partners, the Seven Network, Foxtel and Telstra, for their ongoing support and commitment to Australian football at all levels of the game." 

Top Five Highest Rating Games for 2020:
1. Round 2 Collingwood v Richmond (Thursday night - 1.63m viewers, the highest ever Thursday night home-and-away television audience)
2. Round 1 Richmond v Carlton (Thursday night - 1.37m viewers)
3. Round 2 Geelong Cats v Hawthorn (Friday night – 1.28m viewers)
4. Round 5 Collingwood v Essendon (Friday night – 1.14m viewers)
5. Round 7 Geelong Cats v Collingwood (Thursday night – 1.14m viewers) 
 
Thursday Night Football – Geelong Cats v Collingwood, Round Seven of the 2020 Toyota AFL Premiership Season:
1,137,059 national viewers – up 13 per cent on the 2019 home-and-away Season Average for Thursday Night:

  • 694,711 metro free-to-air television viewers
  • 202,683 regional free-to-air television viewers
  • 239,665 pay-tv viewers

115,186 average free-to-air audience in Perth – the second-largest Thursday Night television audience in Perth for the 2020 season only behind the first game of the season restart in Round Two between Collingwood and Richmond.