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07-25-2011, 08:03 AM
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A good way of gauging interest is to check online versions of national newspapers. However, I'm fairly familiar with levels of interests for respective sports in European countries, so I thought I could shed some light. I'm only going to refer to team sports though, so I will leave out tennis, motor racing, cycling, and the like.

1. Football
2. Racing
3. Basketball?
4. Hockey?
Growth: Up?
Football is number 1, followed by basketball. Then, somewhere in the distance is handball. The rest are generally irrelevant. Hockey isn't even the mix here.

1. Football
2. Hockey
3. Basketball?
Growth: Average?
Football is number 1, with rugby union in second place. Then there is a second group of basketball and handball. Again, hockey isn't even in the mix here.

Czech Republic
1A. Football
1B. Hockey
Growth: Up
1A and 1B is a good way of describing it. I think these sports are equally popular.

1. Football
2. Cricket
3. Hockey?
Growth: Average?
Football is number 1, followed by international cricket. Then you have rugby union and rugby league. Those are the four team sports that have coverage and fan interest at a level where you can conclude that its popular. Hockey isn't in the mix here.

1A. Hockey?
1B. Football?
Growth: High
Another good use of 1A and 1B. Fortunately or unfortunately, while hockey should continue to grow, I think we'll see even bigger growth from football to a point where it could become outright number 1 in 15-25 years.

1A. Hockey
1B. Football
Growth: High.

1. Football
2. Hockey
Growth: Average.
I would swap those around. Football as 1A in Sweden, hockey as 1 in Finland.

Lithuania is basketball, then football. Latvia is hockey and football. Ukraine is football, but not sure what comes second here.

All in all, hockey is popular in Europe, but there are many popular sports in Europe. Whether its basketball, handball, tennis, cycling, Formula 1, football, rugby, cricket, or whatever, each has their own pockets of fervent support.

Mathers is offline   Reply With Quote