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Euro 2016 seen by 2 billion on TV; 600m watch final

Boosted by Cristiano Ronaldo's title run and Iceland's feel-good story, the 2016 European Championship attracted two billion people to watch live on television.

The total live audience for the expanded 24-team, 51-match tournament grew to almost 5bn viewers, according to UEFA research published on Thursday.

The research says 600 million viewers watched some of Portugal's 1-0 extra-time win over host France in the final.

The final attracted 284.4m as an "average in-home global audience" -- the industry-standard audit tracking viewers minute-by-minute.

The 20 extra matches created by having eight more teams added 1.1bn viewers to the overall TV audience.

The 2bn individual viewers was an increase of 100m on the Euro 2012 figures, UEFA said.

Bigger audiences in Brazil and China helped raise the totals.

"The newly created [1300 GMT] match slot had the biggest impact on Asian audiences," UEFA said, which scheduled the earliest Euro 2012 kickoffs at 1600 GMT.

Among matches kicking off in a prime 9 p.m. slot in China, the peak audience there was 17.6 million for France's 2-1 win over Ireland in the round of 16.

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