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The most popular sport in the United States is acquiring a dedicated following abroad. The NFL’s grassroots initiatives continue to expand football’s international footprint, fostering the development of a new global supporter base and inspiring athletes around the world to play the sport.
“American football is open to everyone. It’s a global game and an all-inclusive sport that allows people of all ages to appreciate the values, enjoyment, and competitive environment that are unique to football, according to the Executive Vice President of NFL Football Operations, Troy Vincent, Sr. “The NFL is committed to expanding NFL action to international fans in their home countries and to developing young athletes around the world.”
One-fifth of consumers worldwide indicate that the NFL is either somewhat interesting to them or one of their primary interests. This information is derived from YouGov Global Fan Profiles, which continuously compiles consumer data on sports and esports in over 40 markets. This article focuses on six distinct markets: the United States, Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Germany, the United Arab Emirates, and Australia.
In its native market, the NFL is the most popular division, with 38% of Americans indicating a moderate or strong interest in the competition. The league is also immensely popular in America’s northern neighbor, with 31% of Canadians indicating a significant interest in the league.
A third of Mexicans are interested in the NFL, which may be an indication that the NFL’s endeavors to expand its fan base in the country are bearing fruit. Mexico City hosted an NFL regular season contest each year from 2016 to 2019 and will do so again in the upcoming season.
In Britain, where the NFL competes for interest with a multitude of indigenous sports, nine percent of consumers say they are somewhat or extremely intrigued in the league. Over the years, London has frequently hosted NFL international series encounters, which attract large crowds.
In an effort to expand its fan base in Europe’s greatest economy, the NFL will introduce the International Series to Germany in the near future. Tickets for the country’s first-ever regular season match reportedly sold out within minutes. A tenth of Germans are intrigued in the league, with 4% citing it as one of their main interests, according to our data.
NFL is also gaining popularity at online sportsbooks outside of the North American market. Recently, an expert in the matter said there has been an uptick in betting on NFL games by about 22% in the last three years. This bodes well for fans of the game and sports bettors worldwide.