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Major survey reveals true global appeal of the Premier League

By 23rd October 2020 No Comments

Chile and Columbia are the biggest international markets for the league.

A major international study on viewing trends among 14,000 sports fans in 10 countries across Europe, North and Latin America has revealed a range of insights into how people view the English Premier League.

The 2020 Global Sports and News Survey, from strategy consulting firm Altman Solon, showed, perhaps unsurprisingly, that 72% of UK sports fans are interested in the Premier League.

Chile and Colombia are the biggest international markets for the league, with 56% of respondents expressing interest in English clubs.

Around a third of sports fans in Germany, France and Italy follow the Premier League and 20% of sports fans in the US are interested in the league overall, although this rises to 28% for younger fans (18-24 years old).

When it comes to how Premier League fans are accessing content, 80% of regular sports viewers subscribe to pay TV in the UK, compared with 55% of non-viewers.

Football is the number one ranked sport watched on TV among all age groups; followed by rugby and tennis for older age groups, and cricket, car racing, and athletics for younger viewers.

75% of UK sports fans are as interested in watching live sports as they were pre-pandemic, with 17% even more interested than before.

The interest in other leagues by UK sports fans reveals Spain’s La Liga and Germany’s Bundesliga are the most popular, with 22% and 20% of interest respectively.

Meanwhile, the survey indicates interest in NFL, NBA, and MLB is low in the U.K. (10%, 9%, and 7% respectively), despite games played in Wembley Stadium since 2007 every year.

Christian Esser, partner at Altman Solon and co-director of the 2020 Global Sports and News Survey, said: “Major European sports markets are dominated by national football leagues compared to the multi-sport model in the U.S. What the UK and Germany share is the success in ‘exporting’ their leagues: English Premier League and Bundesliga.

“The strategy to host British games and tournaments across the US in summer is paying off. While the English Premier League has a lucrative deal with NBC Universal to broadcast matches in the US through the 2021-22 season, a direct-to-consumer streaming platform could extend its international fan base even further.”

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