Some competitions are growing in global popularity and gaining millions of new fans every year
Football is arguably the world's most popular sport by every means, from fan engagement to the amount of money involved. According to various analyses, football is watched by more than 4 billion people worldwide, which is half of the world's population.
Competitions like World Cup, Euros, and Copa America are some of Football's prestigious international mega-events, which can put the whole world on hold. Apart from international events, which mostly happen after 4 years, football is mainly dominated by club football. With more than 200 countries involved, each country has its domestic league structure and finding out the most popular one is a difficult task.
Mainly, European leagues dominate football, and each league has its superstars. Leagues like the English Premier League and Spanish League are old workhorses in popularity. Some old leagues like Serie A and Brasileiro Serie A have suffered a decline in viewership. Let’s take a look at the five most-watched leagues around the world.
5. Italian Serie A - 2 Million
Serie A, or the Italian top division, was once the epitome of European football, and greats like Diego Maradona, Roberto Baggio and Maldini were the faces of the league. However, in the last decade, it has suffered a considerable decline in viewership and popularity due to less competitiveness, a lack of superstars, and the decline of famous clubs like AC Milan.
Clubs like Juventus, AC Milan, Inter-Milan, and Napoli are the leading teams in the league. However, in the last decade, Juventus has emerged as the biggest force with 9 consecutive titles, but the rejuvenation of AC Milan and Inter Milan has again ignited the spark, and viewership is starting to improve. Superstars like Paulo Dybala, Lautaro Martinez, and Zlatan Ibrahimovic are the main attraction points for fans.
4. Mexican Liga Apertura - 3.7 Million
At number 4 is a league that no one saw coming. Liga Apertura is the top division league of Mexico and, over the years, has emerged as one of the world's most exciting leagues. Mexico is one of the biggest footballing nations in North America, and the average attendance of matches is 25,000, which is more than some European Top-tier leagues.
The league isn't cash-rich, but fans are the biggest pillar of their dominance. Their average viewership of the league is 3.7 Million which is a big number.
3. French Ligue 1 - 10.5 million
French League, better known as League 1, is another surprising name. The French top division league has enjoyed a big hike in viewership over the years mainly because of high profile players like Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Lionel Messi, Neymar, Sergio Ramos, and Edison Cavani.
The latest viewership of the league is around 10.5 million, and it is not only because of big names, but the level of competition has also hiked in recent years. It is often regarded as the backyard of Paris Saint Germain who dominates this league. Still, clubs like AS Monaco and LOSC have provided perfect fairytale stories that have drawn great attention recently.
2. Spanish La Liga - 75 million
Spanish Football is home to entertaining football and has been a perfect junction for fans since its inception. It has produced some biggest superstars of the game over the years, like Lionel Messi, Ronaldinho, and Zidane. The league has never failed to give high-class football to fans, and because of this, Spanish football is one of the strongest in the world.
On top of their rich legacy, they are home to two of the biggest football clubs in the world, Real Madrid and FC Barcelona. The viewership of La Liga has suffered a decline in the last few years due to the departure of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo but still is 2nd on the list with 75+ million viewers around the world.
1. English Premier League - 650 million
At number one comes the English Premier League, better known as Premier League. The Premier League is the ultimate junction of football for fans worldwide. It leads the chart in every term, whether viewership or financial muscle power. The viewership of this league is mammoth 650 million, which is almost 10 times the 2nd placed league. Even no leagues from different sports come nowhere near to competition.
The most significant selling point of the Premier League is their highly competitive league structure because of the enormous size of almost every club. Some of the biggest clubs in the world like Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool, and Tottehenum Hotspurs belong to this league and every player dreams of being part of their prestigious competition.
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