Sports field has been one of the most biggest entertainment base across the globe. They also play a very important role in our daily life, from childhood to the later stage in life in turns out to be a Hobby, or sometimes even as Profession.
Today in every part of the world some sport is passionately followed. People take their sporting heroes as their role models and often have an emotional attachment with their favourite sports stars and sports teams. People in different regions of the world have different favourite sports. This makes ranking sports quite a challenging and difficult job. This is exactly why it is hard to ascertain the reliability and accuracy of different sports lists out there.
It’s very important to know what do we mean by the most popular sports. The word “Popular” could mean “Most watched sports”, “Most played sports”, or “Most revenue generating sports”. Based on this criteria I’ve listed the top 5 sports played across the globe.
HERE IS THE TABLE OF THE TOP 5 POPULAR SPORTS ACROSS THE GLOBE
Rank sport Estimated fans Regional popularity
Soccer 3.5 Billion Europe, Africa, Asia, America
Cricket 2.5 Billion Asia, Australia, UK
Basketball 2.2 Billion USA, Canada, & Philippines
Field Hockey 2 Billion Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia
Tennis 1 Billion Europe, America, & Asia
Below are the Detailed statistics & facts about popular sports across the globe.
MOST POPULAR SPORTS ACROSS THE GLOBE
Association of football or popularly known as soccer, is a game played between 2 teams where each tem consist of 11 players. It is played by 250 million players across 200 countries, making it the most popular sport across the world. The game is played in a rectangular field with a goal post on each end. The objective of the game is to score from any part of the body besides the arms & hands to get the ball inside the goal post of the opposition goal post.
Soccer has the biggest FAN BASE AUDIENCE across the globe making it the No1 popular sports in the world.
Viewership on TV- When it comes to streaming the game at your place, soccer is definitely the King. International football games are said to draw the most streaming base across the globe.
Popularity on the Internet: The popularity of soccer on the Internet is quite evident. Every major search engines see hundreds of millions of searches related to the sport, different teams, and different athletes of the sport.
The biggest competition of Football is the World Cup that is held after every four years. According to reports, more than 3.2 billion people watched the FIFA World Cup 2018. It is by far the most watch sporting event in the world.
Access to the General Public: Perhaps the most accessible sport in the world, soccer-only requires a ball and two goalposts to play. So it doesn’t matter if you are rich or poor, you can afford to play this exciting sport. This is the reason why soccer is popular in some of the richest countries of the world, like the US, the UK, Germany, Japan, France, Denmark, etc. as well as in some of the poorest countries in the world like Somalia, Ethiopia, Congo, and Liberia.
2) CRICKET 2-3 Billion Fan Base
Cricket takes the second position with the fan base of 2-3 Billion across the globe.
Cricket has three different formats i.e. Test, ODIs, and T20. After the introduction of the T20 format, the popularity of cricket has been increasing drastically. Cricket is very popular in India, Pakistan, Australia, England, South Africa, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, West Indies, Bangladesh, and Zimbabwe.Global Fan Base and Audience: The fan base of Cricket is limited to some countries. It is not a major sport in the US, most of Europe and Africa. However, some of the biggest countries in the world play this sport.Overall, with about 2 to 3 billion fans, cricket has the 2nd highest number of fans in the world.
Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of 11 players on a field at the center of which is a rectangular 22-yard long pitch. The two competing teams take turns to bat, attempting to score runs. While one team is batting, the other team fields. Each turn is known as an innings.
Presence on Social Media: The presence of Cricket on social media is confined to the countries where it is played. For example, in India, cricket related pages and social media profiles enjoy the highest number of following.
The prominence of cricket in sports headlines on different media outlets varies a great deal from country to country. For example, in the cricket playing nations like India, Pakistan, Australia, and New Zealand, cricketing news is the most prominent news out there and in non-cricket playing nations like Germany and the US, it would be hard for you to find any cricket related news.
3) BASKETBALL (NBA) 2-3 Billion Fan Base
With approximately 2-3 billion fans in the US, Canada, China, and the Philippines, Basketball is the 3rd most popular sport in the world.
Basketball is a sport played by two teams of five players on a rectangular court. The objective is to shoot a ball through a hoop 18 inches (46 cm) in diameter and 10 feet (3.0 m) high mounted to a backboard at each end. A team can score a field goal by shooting the ball through the basket during regular play. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins. Basketball is The 3rd Most Played and Watched Sport in the World.
Global Fan Base and Audience: The number of Basketball fans ranges from 2 to 3 billion. Most of the fans are concentrated in the US, Canada, China, Japan, and the Philippines.
Popularity on the Internet: When it comes to Internet searches, Basketball players are among the most searched athletes in the world. They are highly searched in the US, China, and other basketball-playing countries, like Canada, Japan, and the Philippines. Despite being very popular in the US, Basketball lags behind in popularity in other countries. It is not a major sport in the majority of the countries in the world. Still, it is widely played and followed in many countries.
4) HOCKEY 2.2 Billion fan base
Hockey is a family of sports in which two teams play against each other by trying to manoeuver a ball or a puck into the opponent’s goal using a hockey stick. In many areas, one sport typically field hockey or ice hockey is generally referred to as hockey. Both forms of hockey are popular in the world. Field Hockey is the National game of Pakistan as well as India.
Global Fan Base and Audience: Hockey has more than 2 billion fans in the world. These fans include both the fans of field hockey as well as ice hockey.
Hockey enjoys a moderate level of popularity on the Internet. The number of hockey-related searches varies by country and by season.
When we combine the two forms of hockey i.e. field hockey and ice hockey, the number of countries in which the sport is popular is quite impressive. There are more than 80 countries where the sport is moderately popular.
5) TENNIS 1 Billion fans
At No 5 in This List is Tennis. with around 1 billion fans in Europe, the Americas, and Asia.
Tennis is a sport that people usually play individually against a single opponent (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Each player uses a racket that is strung with cord to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt over or around a net and into the opponent’s court. The object of the game is to play the ball in such a way that the opponent is not able to play a good return.
Tennis has a pretty good fan base all over the world. Although it is more popular in developed countries than developing countries. The Tennis superstars like Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are known widely around the world and have hundreds of millions of fans throughout the world.
The major competitions of Tennis, the four grand slams, are watched by more than 400 million people around the world.
There are national tennis federations in almost all the countries of the world. Regular tournaments are held both at the international level as well as at the national level every year. Almost all countries have their own national tournaments of Tennis.
Tennis players enjoy a pretty good presence on social media. The superstars like Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Venus Williams, Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova, etc. have millions of fans following them on social media networks.