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Soccer and Coverage by American Sports Media

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This study utilized a literature review and an analysis of Google Trends and Google News data in order to investigate the coverage that American men’s soccer gets from the media compared to that given to other major American sports. The

This study utilized a literature review and an analysis of Google Trends and Google News data in order to investigate the coverage that American men’s soccer gets from the media compared to that given to other major American sports. The literature review called upon a variety of peer-reviewed, scholarly entries, as well as journalistic articles and stories, to holistically argue that soccer receives short-sighted coverage from the American media. This section discusses topics such as import substitution, stardom, and American exceptionalism. The Google analysis consisted of 30 specific comparisons in which one American soccer player was compared to another athlete playing in one of America’s major sports leagues. These comparisons allowed for concrete measurements in the difference in popularity and coverage between soccer players and their counterparts. Overall, both the literature review and Google analysis yielded firm and significant evidence that the American media’s coverage of soccer is lopsided, and that they do play a role in the sport’s difficulty to become popular in the American mainstream.

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2021-05

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Major League Soccer and the English Premier League: Fan Gaps and How to Combat Them

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Soccer is considered one of the world’s most popular sports. In a 2017 Nielsen survey, 43 percent of people in 18 global markets said they were “interested” or “very interested” in the sport. However, multiple leagues across the globe allow

Soccer is considered one of the world’s most popular sports. In a 2017 Nielsen survey, 43 percent of people in 18 global markets said they were “interested” or “very interested” in the sport. However, multiple leagues across the globe allow for differences regarding fan bases.

Major League Soccer (MLS) was adopted as an official men’s soccer league on December 17, 1993, by the United States Soccer Federation. The league consists of 27 teams (24 in the US and 3 in Canada). By 2023, the league will expand to 30 teams. The season begins in March and play continues through mid-October, with a playoff bracket.

The English Premier League (EPL) was established on February 20, 1992 and is made up of 20 clubs. The season runs from mid-August to mid-May, with 380 matches across the league being played. There are no “playoffs”; instead, a winner is determined by a point system. Points add up throughout the season (three points for a win, one point for a draw, none for a loss).

The average attendance for the two leagues is fairly consistent. The most popular team in the EPL, Manchester United, averaged 57,942 spectators per game in 2019 (Statista). The most popular team in the MLS, Atlanta United, averaged 52,210 spectators per game in 2019 (Statista). Average television viewership between the two leagues is drastically different. The EPL is the most watched sports league in the world. In 2019, a Nielsen study found that the total audience delivered on NBC per match averaged 462,000 viewers (this number does not include Spanish language broadcasts or streaming data from NBC Sports Gold and Peacock Sports Group). Another Nielsen study found that the MLS’s 31-game schedule on ESPN and ESPN 2 had a total average audience of 246,000 viewers.

This website identifies the major differences in marketing and fan groups between the two leagues, and includes ideas on how to overcome these differences and make Major League Soccer have a larger presence in the United States, like the way the Premier League has a large presence in the U.K.

Website Link: https://fangapsinmlsandepl.wordpress.com

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2021-12