Sports journalists have been facing this conundrum of ranking sports for some time now. Every now and then we see contradictory rankings of most popular sports alleviating whatever confidence we had in those reports. For ranking any sport’s popularity it is imperative that we set the criteria for ranking first. If TV viewership of any sports is the criteria then Beijing Olympics 2008 was by far the most watched sporting event with over 1 Billion people tuning in at some point during the Olympics event. For us TV viewership isn’t the only criteria for a sports popularity rather it should be the number of other factors combined to get the best popularity ranking. From totalsportek.com
With over 4 billion followers of football, it is by far the most popular sport in the world. Considering all of our criteria factors football top most of them we have discussed major factors which makes football’s popularity unmatched.
Football’s dominance over the globe is so obvious that it really shouldn’t be a surprise for anyone to see football’s name at the top of the list. The Beautiful Game, as they call it, has fans in as east as Japan and as West as America but nowhere on earth is this game more popular than in Europe. For most European nations, it’s not just a game rather it’s a way of life. FIFA World Cup is the most iconic event of this sport which is not only the most watched team event but also one of the highest paying competitions in the whole sports world.
Football is one of the most accessible sport in the world and there is hardly anyone in this world who has not kick a ball at some point in their life. Football dominate sports headlines in some of the major countries in the world including almost all European nations like United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain etc. In South America football is more than just a game, it represent dreams and joy for kids in Brazil, Argentina and other latin countries. Lets take a look at some of the statistics which will put every argument to rest that Football is the biggest and most popular sport in the world.
Most watched competition in the world: Football World Cup is by far the most watched sports competition in the world. 3.9 billion people tune in at some point during the FIFA World Cup 2014 making it by far the biggest sport competition. While the final of 2014 world cup was watched by as many 700 million people all around the globe.
Highest paying sports competitions: $1.5 Billion is awarded in prize money and bonuses every year in UEFA Champions league, which is the european elite club competition where clubs from 54 countries participate. in fact four of the top 5 competitions with highest prize money are football events (Champions League, FIFA World Cup, Europa League, UEFA Euro)
Most expensive sports TV rights deal: English Premier League (English top football division) is the most watched professional sport league in the world. it broadcast in 212 territories across the world with over 5 billion viewer tuning in to live action at some point every season. SkySports and BT Sports paid over £5.3 billion to get premier league rights in the UK for three years while another £3 billion will be generated from international rights.
Most professional leagues: Football can boost most professional leagues in the world with over 50 top countries have established professional leagues, in most case multiple tie based leagues.
Biggest sport kit deals: Adidas pay £75 million a year to Manchester United to be their official kit suppliers which is the biggest kit deal in the world. most of the top teams has lucrative kit deals with big sports brands.
Highest Paid Athletes: Top players like Ronaldo and Messi are paid around £300,000 a week in salary by their respective clubs while Ronaldo and Messi also feature in the top 5 of the most endorsed athletes in the world.
Richest Sports Teams: If we talk about the richest sports team in the world, around 30 clubs feature in the top 50 list of most valuable sports teams.
Football international federation called “FIFA” is the biggest and most power federation in sports. Over 200 national federations and over 6500 professional clubs from around the world are registered with FIFA. FIFA also has the biggest sports database of players and teams from around the world.
Most popular Sports teams on social media: Real Madrid and Barcelona are by far the most followed teams of any sport on social media with over 100 million followers each.
Most Followed Athlete: Cristiano Ronaldo is by far the most followed sports athlete with around 150 million followers on Facebook and twitter.
We can go on and on about how popular football, you can compare sports on any scale and Football will come triumph in popularity. If there is no doubt in what is the biggest sports in the world, we will always be in never ending debate about the second most popular sport ? so which one is it ? lets take a look.