Sport is a global thing. Every country in the world does sports but some sports are more popular in some countries than others.
While some sports are loved and played in some countries, the same sport could be unknown and unpopular in another country.
Below we provide a list of the most popular sports by country.
|United States of America||American Football, Baseball, Basketball|
|China||Basketball, Table Tennis|
|United Kingdom||Soccer/ Football|
|Saudi Arabia||Soccer/ Football|
|Israel||Soccer/ Football, Basketball|
|Iran||Wrestling, Horse racing|
|Ivory Coast||Soccer/ Football|
|D.R Congo||Soccer/ Football|
|Jamaica||Athletics, Cricket, Soccer/ Football|
|Mongolia||Archery, Wrestling, Horse Racing|
|North Korea||Soccer/ Football|
|South Korea||Soccer/ Football|
|Thailand||Muay Thai, Soccer/ Football|
The Most Popular Sports by Country
United States of America
American Football, just known as Football is the most popular sport in America with the Super Bowl being the biggest sports event in the USA.
But it’s not only professional football that makes a lot of noise. College football is also very popular with millions of people turning out every year to support their favorite college football programs.
Apart from football, basketball is the most played sport among young people in the streets and neighborhoods.
This is because basketball doesn’t need a lot of gear and accessories like football.
Baseball is also a traditional American sport, especially among the older generation.
It is also very popular in many Latin American countries such as Venezuela, Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic.
Ice Hockey is a quintessential Canadian sport. Some of the greatest hockey players in the world such as Wayne Gretzky, Bobby Orr, and Sidney Crosby are all Canadians.
Canada has been present in all winter Olympic games and has hosted three of them; Montreal (1976, Summer), Calgary (1988, Winter), and Vancouver (2010, Winter)
Another sport that is also very popular in Canada is Lacrosse which is played mostly in the summer.
Lacrosse was declared Canada’s national game in 1859, however, in 1994 it was changed by the Canadian Parliament.
Now, lacrosse is the national summer sport, and hockey is the national winter sport.
Central and South America
Brazil is known worldwide as a football/soccer nation. Football is the biggest and most popular sport in the country.
Brazil boasts of a long list of legendary football players such as Pele, Garrincha, Romario, Ronaldo, Roberto Carlos, Ronaldinho, Kaka, and Neymar.
Having been present in every single FIFA World Cup tournament, Brazil has won 5 World Cup trophies, something not many countries can boast of.
Apart from football, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a popular Brazilian martial art that is also quite popular around the world.
Most of Latin America is into baseball. Countries such as Venezuela, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic have produced some of the greatest baseball players in the Major League.
Hall of Famers Vladimir Guerrero and David Ortiz are from the Dominican Republic, Carlos Beltrán, Edgar Martinez, and Ivan Rodriguez are from Puerto Rico while Bobby Abreu is from Venezuela.
Even though other sport such as football is popular in Latin American countries, baseball is clearly the number one.
Much of Europe is into soccer/football. The sport that originated in England is not only the most popular sport in the world but also the most played sport in the whole world.
Europe is also home to some of the biggest football clubs in the world such as FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester United, Chelsea FC, Bayern Munich, Juventus FC, and A.C Milan.
The UEFA Champions League which brings together the best football clubs in Europe to compete is one of the most-watched sports events in the world with over 300 million viewers annually.
Apart from football, Motosports is also very popular in Europe with multiple teams competing in the Formula One car race.
Cycling is also another popular sport with the Tour de France being the number one most viewed sports event in the world.
Cricket is the most popular sport in the Indian subcontinent. This sport which originally started in England is presently the most played sport in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal.
The Cricket World Cup is organized every four years and is currently one of the most-watched sporting events in the world.
India has won the World Cup twice and Sachin Tendulkar, one of the greatest cricket players of all time is from India.
Apart from cricket, kabaddi is also a popular sport in India as well as football, badminton, and tennis.
Traditionally, Martial arts originated from the East and have been present in China for ages. However, as China became open to the world, the people embraced other sports disciplines.
Presently, basketball is the most popular sport in China with millions of Chinese tuning in to watch the NBA games every year.
The biggest NBA star from China so far has been Yao Ming who played for the Houston Rockets in the 2000s.
Badminton, table tennis, and racket are also very popular sports in China.
Just like in Europe, football/soccer is the most popular sport in Nigeria and other African countries.
Even with poor infrastructure and sports academies, there’s no shortage of athletic talent in Africa.
The biggest sports event in Africa is the African Cup of Nations which brings together over 30 African nations to compete with each other leading to an eventual winner.
Some of the biggest football legends in Africa are Jay-Jay Okocha from Nigeria, Samuel Eto’o from Cameroon, Didier Drogba from Ivory Coast, Sadio Mane from Senegal, and Mohammed Salah from Egypt.
South Africa is a nation that loves the game of rugby. Also known as The Springboks, they won the first rugby world cup trophy in 1995 and the second in 2007.
The South African national team is one of the best rugby teams in the world and they’ve produced Hall of Fame players such as Francois Pienaar, Naas Botha, and John Smit.
Football/soccer is also very popular in South Africa. In 2010, they were the first African nation to host the FIFA World Cup competition which Spain won.
Cricket is also very popular in South Africa as well as golf.
While sport is a global thing, every country does it differently from another.
Indians go crazy for cricket. Hockey is a Canadian thing.
In most of Europe, fans spend billions of dollars supporting their favorite football clubs.
However, in America Super Bowl Sunday is one of the biggest days all over the USA.