The most popular top-flight football clubs across 48 international markets
December 7th, 2023, Christien Pheby

The most popular top-flight football clubs across 48 international markets

Which football clubs do fans of the sport like the most? YouGov Global Profiles data allows us to explore the attitudes that football fans across 48 international markets hold towards the top-flight clubs in each of Europe’s “Big Five” leagues: La Liga, the Premier League, the Bundesliga, Serie A, and Ligue 1. 

Before we dig into the data, a quick caveat.

 The question asked in YouGov Global Profiles is: “Which, if any, of the following football teams do you support?” – and ideas about what constitutes “support” can vary heavily. For example, Manchester United fans, as a general rule, do not like Liverpool or Manchester City – but when you ask United fans across all our global markets, 48% say they support the former and 43% say they support the latter. Among British United fans, this falls to 9% for both Liverpool and Manchester City (perhaps we’ve finally identified the people who buy those half-and-half scarves). So we’re saying “most popular” instead of “most supported”.

La Liga

Across our international markets, the most popular club in La Liga – and, in fact, overall – is Real Madrid: 42% of football clubs say they like Los Blancos, with Catalonian rivals (and current champions) Barcelona a little further behind (38%). 

There is a wide gap between these two clubs and the rest – perhaps befitting the dominance these two clubs have had over Spanish football. Real’s crosstown rivals Atletico are in third place, with 16% of football fans saying they like the Colchoneros, with Sevilla (9%) and Valencia (8%) taking fourth and fifth respectively. 

Premier League 

The Premier League’s two most successful clubs are its two most popular: 36% of fans across our international markets like Liverpool, and 34% like Manchester United. Current champions Manchester City, who have won three successive league titles, are hot on their heels with 34%, while Arsenal – who ran them a close second last year – came in fourth (24%). 

Chelsea, who finished 12th last year, rounded out the top five with 18%. 


Bayern Munich have dominated the Bundesliga for decades, and so they dominate our popularity tables: 34% of fans like the club, with runners-up Borussia Dortmund claiming 21%. Again, there is a wide gap between the top two and the rest. 

We have a two-way tie for third, with 9% of fans saying they like Bayer Leverkusen and Eintracht Frankfurt; a two-way tie for fourth, with 8% of fans saying they like Union Berlin and RB Leipzig; and a three-way tie for fifth, with 7% saying they like Schalke 04, Borussia Monchengladbach, and VFB Stuttgart. 

Serie A 

Serie A’s top three clubs come from Northern Italy: AC Milan top the table (30%), with Turin-based Juventus coming in second (27%), and Inter Milan ranking third (25%). 

The remaining two spots are taken by Roma (15%) and Napoli (13%). 

Ligue 1 

Current Champions Paris Saint-Germain also dominate in terms of global popularity: 30% of fans like the club, with 13% saying they like Marseille, 12% saying they like Monaco, and 11% saying they like Lyon. There is a five-way tie for fifth place between Lille, Nantes, Montpelier, Toulouse, and Lorient. 

YouGov Global Profiles is a globally consistent audience dataset with 1000+ questions across 48 markets. The data is based on continuously collected data from adults aged 16+ years in China and 18+ years in other markets. The sample sizes for YouGov Global Profiles will fluctuate over time, however the minimum sample size is always c.1000. Data from each market uses a nationally representative sample apart from India and UAE, which use urban representative samples, and China, Egypt, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Morocco, Philippines, South Africa, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam, which use online representative samples. Learn more about Global Profiles.