A staggering 99.6% of TV viewers in Iceland tuned in to see their nation's first World Cup finals game on Saturday, a 1-1 draw against an Argentina side led by Lionel Messi.

According to electronic audience data collected by research firm Gallup, the game broke the previous record for a sporting event set during Iceland's run to the Euro 2016 quarter-finals in France.

"The 60% rating with a 99.6% share beats the previous record of 58.8% rating reached at the Euros 2016 in a game against England," Valgeir Vilhjalmsson, who is head of media research for public service broadcaster RUV, told Reuters.

"Its also interesting to know that last Saturday this game got a 58% rating among women and 62% among men - football has never been this popular with women."

Amazingly, the game did not break the overall viewing record, which is a 100% rating held by an annual New Year's Eve comedy show that was achieved in 2016.

As for the 0.4% that chose not to watch Alfred Finnbogason cancel out Argentina's opening goal and Messi miss a penalty, 0.3% of them watched a re-run of cooking programme 'The Great British Bake-Off' and 0.1% plumped for a repeat of weight loss show 'The Biggest Loser'.

Iceland's World Cup fever shows no signs of abating, with businesses announcing plans to close early for Friday's game against Nigeria.

Financial institution Landsbankinn announced on Tuesday that it will shut its offices and customer service centre at 2pm on Friday to allow staff an hour to get home to watch the game, which kicks off at 3pm.