A huge number of Irish fans tuned in to see Croatia soar over England on Wednesday night 2 years ago

A huge number of Irish fans tuned in to see Croatia soar over England on Wednesday night

Almost a million of us tuned in to see the Brits go home.

Despite legions of Irish fans doing the impossible and actually supporting the English team as a result of Ireland's glaring omission from the World Cup, it seems that a huge portion of us still take quite a bit of pleasure from seeing them lose, as a wild amount of Irish fans tuned in to see the Eastern European country with a disproportionately long coastline claim the crown over the Three Lions.

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Prior to Wednesday night's game, cries were heard on social media and in pubs across the world of England actually having to face their first good team in the noblemen of Croatia, despite the Brits having a slight advantage in the betting world.

Since the game, RTÉ has confirmed that 924,300 Irish viewers turned in to England's World Cup semi-final defeat to Croatia. And as well as that, there were another 200,000 people who watched the game on the national broadcaster's online section RTÉ Player.

Now, obviously, the World Cup semi-final in an age where we have access to telly/internet everywhere we go is going to be widely watched worldwide.

Especially when a sporting neighbour/rival (whichever way you look at it) is going against a tiny country which could easily be seen as the underdog.

So, to give this figure some context, the only three broadcasts in 2017 which garnered more viewers on RTÉ were:

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  • The second leg of the World Cup playoff with Denmark
  • The All-Ireland football final between Dublin and Mayo
  • and the Late Late Toy Show

Yes, it got more viewers than the Toy Show. Surely that's something that the Croatian lads can put on their CV.