You could argue that the USA is still finding its feet when it comes to the popularity of football (soccer) whereas the sport is embedded deeply within the cultures and history of other countries. The UK, for example, is obsessed with football with many arguing that England is the true home of football. Whether this is true or not is very much up for debate so we thought we would take a look at football and its popularity in the UK and beyond.
A Brief History of Football
As we mentioned, many will argue that England is the home of football and this can be attributed down to several key factors. The sport was first played in this country back in medieval times and there is evidence of football being played as far back as 1170! Indeed, the Football Association was set up in 1863 and it was around this time that the modern rules for the game were established. The first football club began even before this date in Sheffield in 1857.
Things then began to progress quickly and we soon had the first national competition which is the FA Cup which began in 1871. This prestigious competition remains to this day with the final played every year in May. The first national team was also formed by England with the first international football match having been England vs Scotland in 1872.
The Most Popular Game in the UK?
Football fanatics will tell you that their beloved sport is the most popular game in the world and there is a strong argument to support this. However, other games such as bingo are also considered some of the most popular games in the UK. Could you imagine football and bingo, the most popular games in the UK mixed into one game? Neither can we but what cannot be understated is that popular games are easy to play and football is easy once you have the hang of it.
The game is super accessible and all you need is a ball and some players. You can create goalposts or nets out of almost anything and then you and your friends can get started. Some will go as far as to say that money is destroying football but the English Premier League is now the richest and one of the most popular in the world. There are over 40,000 registered football clubs in England and even more in the UK as a whole when you consider Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.
Will the Popularity Remain?
Here at Dispensable Soccer, we enjoy discussing the history of the game as much as we do the modern game. Things are certainly looking up for US soccer but it cannot be understated that the game’s deep roots originate in the UK and specifically, England! The modernization of the game is not welcomed by all and you could argue that the game is more of a global business than anything else.
Some will rally against modern football and press the issue that the game has “lost its soul” but football is still a game that is open to all and we cannot see the popularity of it declining anytime soon. We hope you enjoyed our article and feel free to leave us a comment with your thoughts.