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Friday 30th of September 2022

Nairobi, Kenya

Top 10 Most Watched Football Leagues In The World

Posted On : February 10, 2022

Oscar Alochi

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These competitions invite the biggest crowds in the Stadiums, Online and TV viewers.

Football is arguably the most-watched sport in the world. It invites huge crowds inside the stadium and much more through live broadcasting and streaming across the globe. The sport is massively popular, as more than 200 countries play it as their major sport. Some of the biggest league competitions across the globe invite huge viewership because of the quality of players and teams in them.

Here we rank the top 10 most-watched football leagues in the world in terms of viewership in the stadium and audience watching on TV and other streaming platforms:

1. English Premier League

The English Premier League is the undisputed leader in viewership across the globe. Considered the toughest league competition in the world, it also surpasses all others in terms of financial might. Some notable clubs that play in the league like Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal FC, Chelsea FC, Liverpool FC, and Tottenham Hotspur, bring in millions of viewers every year.

The league enjoys an attendance of 38,181 people, reaches 643m viewers per game, and has a worldwide television audience of over 3.2 billion people. Manchester United has won the competition 20 times, more than any other team.

The Premier League, also known exonymously as the English Premier League or the EPL, is the top level of the English football league system. Contested by 20 clubs, it operates on a system of promotion and relegation with the English Football League. Seasons run from August to May with each team playing 38 matches.

2. Spanish La Liga

The second most-watched league in the world is La Liga. It includes legendary clubs like Real Madrid and FC Barcelona that have traditionally dominated the competition.

The Los Blancos are the most successful club in the league’s history, winning it 34 times. Atletico Madrid is the reigning champions of the competition, which enjoyed 76m viewers per game last season.

The Campeonato Nacional de Liga de Primera División, commonly known simply as Primera División in Spain, and as La Liga in English-speaking countries and officially as LaLiga Santander for sponsorship reasons, stylized as LaLiga, is the men’s top professional football division of the Spanish football league system.

3. French Ligue 1

Famously known for being imbalanced in favor of the financial might of Paris Saint-Germain, Ligue 1 is one of the most-watched football leagues in the world. However, before their takeover by rich owners, the league was a very unpredictable competition. Interestingly, AS Saint Etienne remains the most successful club with 10 league titles, followed by PSG and Olympique de Marseille, who have nine each.

LOSC Lille is the defending champions after winning it last season. The average stadium attendance is 22,484 coupled with 10.5m viewers per game, worldwide. The ratings have seen a boost since the arrival of Lionel Messi.

Ligue 1, officially known as Ligue 1 Uber Eats for sponsorship reasons, is a French professional league for men’s association football clubs. At the top of the French football league system, it is the country’s primary football competition.

4. Liga MX Apertura

The first division in Mexico is called the Liga MX Apertura and is the strongest North American football league. It bears a close resemblance to Spain and Brazil in the style of gameplay.

Club America is the record title winner with 13 trophies, while CD Cruz Azul is the defending champion of the competition. According to official figures, the average stadium attendance is 25,557 people. The TV viewership of the competition has observed a rise lately, reaching 3.7m households overall.

The Liga MX, officially known as the Liga BBVA MX for sponsorship reasons, is the top professional football division of the Mexican football league system

5. Italian Serie A

The first division of the Italian league system includes iconic clubs like AC Milan, Inter Milan, Juventus, and more. The league enjoys 24.7k average viewers from the stadiums and reached over 2m viewers, while Cristiano Ronaldo was playing in the competition. Juventus have won the league 36 times and Inter Milan is the reigning champions of the competition.

Serie A, also called Serie A TIM for sponsorship reasons, is a professional league competition for football clubs located at the top of the Italian football league system and the winner is awarded the Scudetto and the Coppa Campioni d’Italia.

6. Major League Soccer

Major League Soccer is the premier league competition in the United States of America. The division has 27 teams in it, divided into Eastern and Western conferences because of the size of the country.

The reigning champions are Columbus Crew, while Los Angeles Galaxy has won the competition the most (five times). Average stadium attendance currently stands at 21,310. It has had about 2m viewers per game in recent times, making it one of the most-watched football leagues in the world.

Major League Soccer is a men’s professional soccer league sanctioned by the United States Soccer Federation, which represents the sport’s highest level in the United States. The league comprises 28 teams 25 in the U.S. and 3 in Canada and plans to expand to 29 teams by the 2023 season.

7. German Bundesliga

The Bundesliga is one of the most-watched football leagues in the world because of its attacking gameplay. Bayern Munich has won the competition 31 times and is also enjoying a nine-year winning streak.

In addition to a global audience, the league also observes 43,458 average attendance, being one the best-supported leagues by fans. It also has an average viewership of 361,000 per game reaches over 1.7m households.

The Bundesliga is sometimes referred to as the Fußball-Bundesliga or 1. Bundesliga is a professional association football league in Germany. At the top of the German football league system, the Bundesliga is Germany’s primary football competition.

8. Brasileiro Serie A

The first division of Brazil is the Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A. The league is heavily popular in Europe, as it constantly produces incredible young players. Figures like Neymar, Vinicius Jr, and more have come to Europe from the league.

Palmeiras are the most successful club because of their nine trophies and the reigning champions are Flamengo. The league has an average attendance of 43,458 and a viewership of 1.4m across the globe.

9. Dutch Eredivisie

The Eredivisie, the premier league in the Netherlands is popular for its total football philosophy and producing incredible young players.

There is an average stadium attendance of 18,010 for matches in the Dutch Eredivisie and the league also enjoys a large audience from broadcasts and recently had 1.2m viewers for the Ajax vs PSV Eindhoven clash. However, the average viewership is less due to the low popularity of the rest of the teams.

The Eredivisie is the highest level of professional football in the Netherlands. The league was founded in 1956, two years after the start of professional football in the Netherlands. It is considered one of the best European leagues and widely regarded as one of the better leagues in the world.

10. Chinese Super League

The Chinese Super League became a part of the global discussion after the competing clubs started offering huge contracts to attract big stars from Europe.

An average stadium attendance of 24,107 people is the highest in the whole of Asia, with more than a million viewers from across the planet. The league involves 16 teams and the reigning champions are Jiangsu Suning.

The Chinese Football Association Super League, commonly known as Chinese Super League or CSL, currently known as the China Ping An Chinese Football Association Super League for sponsorship reasons, is the highest tier of professional football in China, operating under the auspices of the Chinese Football Association

11. Portuguese Primeira Liga

The Portuguese league is considered one of the best in Europe. However, in this case, they fail to be in the top 5 because they have weak goal-scoring compared to others, An average stadium attendance is 31,738,191 people is the highest in the whole of  Portugal.

The Primeira Liga, also known as Liga Portugal Bwin for sponsorship reasons, is the top professional association football division of the Portuguese football league system. It is organised and supervised by the Liga Portuguesa de Futebol Profissional, also known as Liga Portugal

Brazilian Serie A

Brazil is home to football. So, it is not a surprise that a lot of young talented players come from this country. Most of the players go on to play for European clubs. Neymar Junior, one of the best players in the world, hails from Brazil, An average stadium attendance is 55,191 people is the highest in the whole of Brazil.

The Campeonato Brasileiro Série A, commonly referred to as Brasileirão, is a Brazilian professional league for men’s football clubs. At the top of the Brazilian football league system, it is the country’s primary football competition.

12. Argentine League

Another interesting league is the Argentine League, It is one of the oldest football leagues in the world and has produced many iconic footballers like Lionel Messi, a magician footballer referred to as the greatest of all time, Higuain, Lautaro Martinez, Aguero, Hernan Crespo, Zanetti, Cambiasso, and so on.

The league is popular among clubs in Europe for their prominence in producing top strikers, and history backs that claim through the examples already mentioned, It is quite hard to imagine the financial stability of this league, considering the fact that it has very low viewership compared to many other leagues in the world.

The league however attracts attention with its representative teams in the Copa Libertadores, including the likes of River Plate, Boca Junior, Santa Cruz, and many others, This league is however expected to be displaced by the MLS in the coming years due to its stagnated growth in the last few years.

The Primera División. The Primera División is the country’s premier football division and is the top division of the Argentine football league system. It operates on a system of promotion and relegation with the Primera Nacional (Second Division), with the teams placed lowest at the end of the season being relegated.

Content Courtesy of NFH Digital Team 

Oscar Alochi

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