Keith Edelman has been telling us that Arsenal’s fan base has been increasing tremendously in recent years and he did not mean only in the UK.
Although it is true that there is an extremely long queue for a season ticket at the Emirates (figures mentioned are that it is as large as 45,000) no one really knows how popular Arsenal is outside the British shores.
Well now we have an idea thanks to German sports Marketing agency SPORT+MARKT. They surveyed around 9,600 football fans in 16 European markets with an average of 600 respondents per country.
Arsenal have been placed fourth most popular in a list of 20 European clubs.They estimate that about 23 million people support Arsene Wenger’s young gunners.
One would have expected Manchester United to be at the top of the pile due to the traditionally large image coverage that it enjoys. But it is lying in third place with 32.8 million fans.
Chelsea (19.7 million) are in seventh and Liverpool (19.4 million) in eighth. Chelsea in particular has increased its fan base by over five times while Real Madrid has lost 11 per cent support but is nevertheless second overall with 45.9 million.
“Top of the pops” however is another Spanish club, Barcelona with 50.3 million.
The Top 20 Most Popular European Clubs
6.FC Bayern Munich
10.Zenit St. Petersburg
11.FC Spartak Moscow
Although English clubs have a larger domestic fan base Spanish clubs attract far more supporters from outside their country. They are supported by an estimated 103.5 million across Europe while English clubs by an estimated 99.2 million.
Hartmut Zastrow, Executive Director of SPORT+MARKT estimates that concentrating on Europe might pay more dividends:
“there is a booming market of over 225 million football fans right on clubs’ doorsteps” he said.