Newcastle Play In The Most Popular Sports League On The Planet

The league that Newcastle play in,  and are currently 4th from the top in,  is the most popular sports league in the world.

The report on the Premier League was commissioned by the Sport+Markt group in Germany, and the report has revealed some profound statistics about the English Premier League.

The report shows the following results that we have collected:

  • TV coverage of the Premier League reached 643M homes last season — a rise of 11% over the previous season
  • 70% of all football fans worldwide now watch the English game
  • The overall TV audience in homes is now 3.9B
  • The number that watch the games in pubs and bars is 777M
  • The biggest market for the English game is in the Asia and Oceania region with 1.3B viewers
  • 64% of all Chinese fans now support a Premier League club
  • 50% if viewers in the USA have a favourite English team
  • The Premier League accounted for 185,000 hours of global TV coverage last season
  • In the UK, 629M viewers watched live or highlighted coverage of games last season
  • In the rest of Europe, 761M watched the games
  • Newcastle United are the most popular side in the Premier League

OK – so I made the last one up 😀

Andrew Walsh is the Sports and Marketing head of International Affairs at the Sport+Markt group, and he had this to say about the results:

“The explanation for these remarkable figures lies largely in the redistribution of international rights for the start of the new three-year broadcast term last year.”

“One main driver of the rise was the switch of the League’s broadcast rights in China from pay TV over to terrestrial coverage.”

“That has burst open the floodgates in terms of the Premier League’s popularity in the world’s biggest and fastest-growing market.”

A Premier League spokesman also commented on the results:

“Our international fan base and success is helping develop English football at all levels, something we should all be pleased about.”

“Whether they are at the ground in person or watching all around the world on TV, fans know what they will get from a Premier League game.”

They’ll see some of the world’s best talent in thrilling matches played at packed stadiums.”

Of course there is also news today that Liverpool’s Managing Director, Ian Ayre,  has said the Merseyside club is interested in negotiating their own overseas television rights deal,  and moving away from the existing Premier League agreement that is in place.

It seems that Liverpool are unhappy at having to share the income equally among the other 19 PL  clubs, some of which are small, and Bolton Wanderers is is one that Ayre has referenced. He says viewers tune in to see the big clubs like Liverpool but not clubs like Bolton.

Liverpool want to keep pace with the two Spanish giants Barcelona and Real Madrid who already sell their own overseas TV rights.

That’s a dangerous move,  because it simply means the rich clubs in England  will get richer, and down the road there will only be  a few clubs who will completely dominate English football, and it’s almost like that  now.

If that happens the English Premier League will be in danger of becoming like the  Spanish League,  where  Barcelona and Real Madrid completely dominate the  league, and there’s little real  competition that exists in La Liga.

As an example of that, Barcelona won the league with 96 points last season,  followed by Real Madrid on 92, Valencia on 71 and Villareal on 62 points,  with Sevilla in 5th place on 58 points.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

17 comments so far

  • FoxtrotOscar

    Oct 12, 2011 at 8:20 PM

    Comment #1

    TV Money has already had a negitive inpact on our game

  • dmac

    Oct 12, 2011 at 8:59 PM

    Comment #2

    Tv money is not having as negative effect as allowing ridiculous owner ship rules allow arab sheikhs to buy the premier league. Thts the main problem. In the past decade we have seen chelski buy the title and in the future we will probably see man city buy it. Not long ago chelsea were average and man city were in the second division. Something needs to be done about that. Teams that come up to the prem us included in that rely on the tv money to stand a chance fighting the oil rich clubs.

  • mattnufc

    Oct 12, 2011 at 9:24 PM

    Comment #3

    Anyone else wish their was a service to just watch the Newcastle games? I guess that would be too simple!

  • SwedishMagpie

    Oct 12, 2011 at 9:24 PM

    Comment #4

    “Newcastle United are the most popular side in the Premier League” haha 😀

  • lordjoesnow

    Oct 12, 2011 at 10:03 PM

    Comment #5

    Slightly related. The news that Liverpool want a private TV coverage package for mega bucks has really enraged me. They justify it by saying that Barcelona and Real Madrid do it and to compete we, the most popular league, must follow suit. Why would we want to copy a league which FAILS in comparison? La Liga is terrible! No thank you Liverpool. The other 16 teams in the Premiership will never allow you to ruin this league with this attempt to widen the gap between us and you 4 and at the cost of the standard of this league

  • Chaz

    Oct 12, 2011 at 10:13 PM

    Comment #6

    I want my Premier League… Dire Straits

    Money for nothing and the kicks are free…

  • solano

    Oct 12, 2011 at 11:17 PM

    Comment #7

    Liverpool’s stance is perfectly understandable from their business/free trade/greed is good point of view and totally reprehensible in the interests of competitive sport.
    Just as there was some good news last week re:the break up of the Sky monopoly when the landlady won her case…. Liiverpool are using the very same argument to pursue their own self-interest.
    The point is, that the elite clubs have formed their own “Gentleman’s Club” and self-engrandisement has been watched over by an incompetent and ineffectual FA, who have enjoyed the financial kickbacks of TV executive schmoozers for too long.
    Liverpool point to Spain – a terrible example of how a 22 team league has been won by one of only 2 teams in all but a handful of the last 50years! Good grief….our very own league has morphed into much the same situation! Liverpool, if they have their way, may indeed break into the elite few who can win/buy a title, but at what furhter damage to the game in this country? Grabbing more money at the expense of others is a sad microcosm of the wider world, where inequality in wealth is causing huge problems.
    A “socialisation” of football – not unlike what has happened in Rugby Union or indeed, on a more radical scale in the U.S. with American football, would be more in order and may indeed help to save the clubs lower down in the leagues and the pyramid system. However, that would take proper, motivated, regulated and skilled administration – not the bunch of old duffers and incompetents we have in charge at present.

  • normag

    Oct 12, 2011 at 11:31 PM

    Comment #8

    It may be understandable in the short run, but not in the long. Like Ed says, PL might end up like La Liga. Its not just poor competition there, its not interesting to watch. If PL becomes like this, less people will watch leading to less money for everybody.

    Good luck with your treatment Ed! Love your blog:)

  • NUFC_Yao

    Oct 12, 2011 at 11:41 PM

    Comment #9

    Proud to be a Toon fan from China! Love the one you made up,Ed.

  • Sav

    Oct 13, 2011 at 1:28 AM

    Comment #10

    Dogleash’s crew want to qualify for the Champions’ League before they start rearranging things to suit themselves. The ‘Director of Whatever’ had no sense of his own hypocrisy with the crass excuses (straight out of the Fat Freddie Shepherd ‘I’m alright, Jack’ school ) for this poisonous, self-serving BS.

  • connor_nufc

    Oct 13, 2011 at 7:52 AM

    Comment #11

    newcastle shud make their own tv deal because i dont want samll clubs like liverpool who arnt in the top 4 stealing r money. lets be honest who wants to watch a small team like liverpool 🙂

  • BigKirky

    Oct 13, 2011 at 8:57 AM

    Comment #12

    Sir John hall always spoke of having a tv channel for us. Id like to watch the deserve games if they were shown like Man U’s channel, especially with the good crop of youngsters we’re rapidly accumulating.

  • BigKirky

    Oct 13, 2011 at 8:58 AM

    Comment #13

    Sir John hall always spoke of having a tv channel for us. Id like to watch the reserve games if they were shown like Man U’s channel, especially with the good crop of youngsters we’re rapidly accumulating.

  • BigKirky

    Oct 13, 2011 at 8:59 AM

    Comment #14


  • Dannyo

    Oct 13, 2011 at 9:06 AM

    Comment #15

    “Duplicate post. You seem to have already said this” 😉
    But ye, an own Tv channel would be nice, although there has to be money to earn for MA.

  • ShanghaiMag

    Oct 13, 2011 at 10:35 AM

    Comment #16

    Can anyone explain how clubs selling their own individual rights works?

    Does each club just sell it’s home games and get nothing from away? or do foreign broadcasters have to pay 2 clubs different amounts for each game they show?

  • ShanghaiMag

    Oct 13, 2011 at 10:38 AM

    Comment #17

    Also only 3 games out of 8 can be shown on a Saturday. Individual bargaining would let TV companies would play clubs off against each other to get games for cheapest amount. Everyone would lose out.


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