February 1st, 2024, Christien Pheby

How local are Premier League fans? It depends

It’s a common jibe that the fans of successful football clubs don’t necessarily have the strongest connection to the areas where their favourite teams play. But how true is this? We’ve looked at where football fans in Great Britain are based in relation to their favourite clubs. 

YouGov Profiles data can show that Manchester United fans are the least local in the top division: while a quarter (23%) live in the North West, three-quarters (77%) live elsewhere. But this is also true of arch-rivals Liverpool and Manchester City, who are more likely to reside outside the region than within it.

Just a quarter (27%) of Liverpool fans are based in the North West – while three-quarters (73%) live outside the region. And while two in five (38%) Sky Blues are based in the same region as the club, three in five (62%) are not. 

On the other end of the spectrum, the clubs with the most local fanbases in the Premier League are Brighton & Hove Albion – with seven in ten (71%) fans living in the same region as the club – Nottingham Forest (70%), and Newcastle United (69%).  

For London clubs, we have included the Home Counties in our definition of “local”. While just 23% of West Ham fans technically live in London, it feels unduly strict to describe the 26% who are based in Essex as out-of-towners. This applies to the above chart only; the map below breaks down each club's support by region.

With that caveat, the London club with the largest proportion of local supporters is Brentford (67%), followed by West Ham (67%), and Crystal Palace (66%). And while glory-hunting may be commonly associated with more successful clubs, a majority of Arsenal (58%), Chelsea (57%), and Spurs (52%) fans live in London or the Home Counties.  

Want to find out how local your club's supporters are? Check out our map of each club's support by region below.