Soccer (or football, as it is known all over the world except in the US) is a way of life for millions of people. Watching their favorite team play is a lot more than just a pastime or a social activity, but a part of their lifeblood, online betting is another thing fans of soccer are crazy about, as they can both enjoy the game and make money while watching it. Betting also makes you learn more about the game, as you have to study teams, rosters, and other stuff to be successful.
So, why is soccer the world's most popular sport? There are a lot of factors to consider, but the most significant one is its decentralization. In other words, it is played internationally rather than only in a certain region. Other factors, such as low cost to play and simplicity, make it even more popular. Let’s take a look at all the reasons.
It’s Cheap to Play
You don't need any costly equipment to be able to play soccer. Unlike basketball, ice hockey, and many other sports, soccer can be played at practically any place. A group of friends can buy and play a cheap football almost wherever they like. You can go down the park, somebody's backyard, an indoor sports courtyard, a parking lot- almost any spot is a fertile ground for playing it.
Goal posts can be marked by rocks, shoes, sweaters, sticks, or whatever that is visible. You can also play in any types of sneakers, or even barefooted, without having to wear any additional safety equipment (wearing shin guards would be a big plus, but it’s not a must by any means).
This make soccer truly fantastic, as you can use your imagination to play in any corner of the world and do so without wasting a cent. Soccer balls are not too expensive either, and you can easily find a durable one for as low as $10. And if you are a creative type of person, you could try to make a football yourself.
An International Playing Field
International competition is a key part of any sport, and soccer is no different. Although other sports have competitions that pit their teams against the ones from other countries, nothing in that matter is even close to soccer international events. Soccer is played in every part of the world, and no sport can compete with it. Billions of people around the world watch the World Cup and UEFA Champions League on TV. For example, there were 3,5 billion people who watched the 2018 World Cup, which is truly an incredible number (more statistics here: https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/premier-league/2018-russia-world-cup-england-france-croatia-final-fifa-viewing-figures-numbers-a8694261.html).
Such events can inspire real national pride in the participating countries, lift the mood of whole nations, and manage to connect cultures with profound differences. International soccer tournaments provide a chance to shine for countries that are smaller, weaker, and less known than others. Soccer makes you forget about all of your problems for at least 90 minutes.
Easy to Learn
Soccer rules are fairly easy to learn: two teams move the ball from one end of the field to another and try to score the ball into their opponent’s goal. Its simplicity is why people of all ages, races, and countries can play soccer. Any group of people could break into two groups and start playing this fantastic game.
The key principles of soccer can be explained to anyone, even the ones that have never heard about this sport (if people like that actually exist) : all you have to do is move the ball with your feet, and you can’t touch it with your hand (unless you are the goalkeeper or doing a throw in). You can read more on penalty cards, offsides, and other rules on this site: https://www.rulesofsport.com/sports/football.html. It shouldn’t take you much to study all the rules.
If you are a big fan of NBA or basketball in general, you know how frustrating timeouts can be. At times, it feels like it’s taking hours with both teams stopping the clock whenever they have their hands on the ball, and then there are also intentional fouls that stop the game.
Timeouts are also used to interrupt the opponent’s momentum. Advertising is another reason, especially when it comes to NBA. And there is only 15-minute break in soccer.
Most sports require you to have specific physical characteristics. Think of American football, where players need to be athletic, strong, and capable of taking heavy contact as part of the game. Then there are sports like swimming and running, that require a fantastic physique. As for basketball, taller players have major advantage, and shorter people will struggle to play the game.
Soccer is not as restrictive. The most important factors are pace, stamina and ball control. Your height and athletics don’t matter as much. This doesn’t mean that it’s easy to play, or everyone would be a millionaire by now, but it’s far more accessible compare to other sports.
You have no idea how serious people are about soccer. Cities break into two teams and, due to the results of some matches, there may be riots. This is because of the competitiveness that soccer has.
Everything about this sport is competitive: running, aggressiveness, emotions, rapid development, etc. The more people play it, the more interesting and competitive it gets, and the more it attracts others.
Soccer is undoubtedly the sport with the most fans. In fact, this sport is like a religion for some of them. The second they choose the team, soccer fans are loyal to it for the rest of their lives.
Traditions are another thing that make soccer incredibly popular. For example, some people don’t even get to choose the team to root for, because once they are born, their parents buy them a certain jersey and make them visit matches of their favorite time. They then support the team together with their parents. In case you are interested, you can read about most loyal soccer fanbases here: https://bleacherreport.com/articles/1405588-ranking-the-12-most-loyal-soccer-fan-bases#slide0.
Pretty Safe Compared to Other Sports
There's always an amount of danger when playing any sport. Soccer is a really fast game, and an injury can happen very quickly. However, it is still a lot safer compared to other popular sports, like basketball, American football, baseball, etc. Thus, it’s not most low-risk sport out of all, but definitely safer than the most.
Passion and soccer are two synonyms. It surrounds you everywhere when you play them. You can see it when somebody scores the winning goal, it's seen everywhere in leagues, and also on the biggest stage. There is no other sport like it. And that's what passion is all about. It brings everyone together and helps people to enjoy the sport they love.
No Such Thing As Offseason
This is one of the best things about this beautiful game. Most European seasons run from August to May, with games going around once a week, and there are Champions League matches and other Cup games to be played in between. In addition, there are major tournaments every 2 years, known as the Euro Cup and the World Cup.