The Top 5 Most Popular Sports By Country Based On 2021 Statistics

The Top 5 Most Popular Sports By Country Based On 2021 Statistics

Cricket is the heartbeat of India and is the feature in the headlines of every sports news platform. But do you know that only 106 counties play cricket at the national level? Similarly, some sports are famous in some countries and get more viewership, but are not known in other countries. It’s fascinating how sports can unite a country and grab the center stage, helping fans forget their troubles, sit back and have a great time. So which are the most popular sports by country in the world? Let’s find out.

The Top 5 Most Popular Sports By Country In 2021


Cricket is the most worshipped sport in India, with the highest media coverage in the sub-continent. It has over 2.5 billion fans across 180 countries. Although it has a great fan base, cricket is played only in 106 countries with 12 major national teams and 94 associate countries. The ICC makes 4.07 crore USD revenue with about 80% generated from BCCI alone. The India skipper Virat Kohli is the highest-paid cricketer with total earnings of $26 million.

Viewing Interest All months
Number of viewers 2.5 billion
Dominant Sport India, Pakistan
Huge Sport UK, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, West Indies
Indian Premier League (Cricket) Revenue  $6.3 Billion

Soccer (Association Football)

Soccer is the most popular sport globally, played in more than 200 countries located in Europe, South America, and Africa. It has around 3.5 billion fans around the world, with most viewership across various media viewership. Football players are the highest-paid athletes among all the international sports. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are the second and third wealthiest athletes in the world with earnings of $130 million and $120 million.

Viewing Interest All months
Number of viewers 3.5 billion
Dominant Sport Germany, France, UK, Italy, Brazil, Netherlands, Nigeria. S. Arabia, Poland, Thailand, Kenya, Argentina, Colombia, Algeria Russia, Mexico, Spain, Turkey
Huge Sport China, Japan, South Korea, South Africa, Sweden, Kazakhstan
Major Sport Australia, India, Canada, Pakistan,
Medium sport USA, Indonesia
English Premier League Revenue

La Liga (Spanish Football League) Revenue

Serie A (Italian Football League) Revenue

Ligue 1 (France/Monaco Football League) Revenue

$5.3 Billion

$2.2 Billion

$1.9 Billion

$1.5 Billion


Basketball is a massive sport in the USA, China, and many other countries in Europe and South America. This makes it the 2nd most popular sport in the world after soccer. About 213 countries and a minimum of 450 million people are playing basketball across various professional and national football leagues. The fan base for this popular sport is 2 to 3 billion. Lebron James and Kevin Durant are some of the highest-paid players with $82 million and $75 million placed in 5th and 10 on the list of wealthiest athletes in the world.

Viewing Interest Nov to June
Number of viewers 2-3 billion
Dominant Sport Philippines
Huge Sport US, China, Turkey
Major Sport Canada, Spain, Italy, Germany, France, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Poland, Argentina, Kenya, Russia, Brazil, Mexico South Korea
Medium sport Australia, Thailand, Sweden, Colombia, Algeria, Japan, Nigeria, Netherlands, South Africa
Minor sport UK, Kazakhstan
Fringe sport India, Pakistan
Major League Baseball (MLB) Revenue

National Basketball Association (NBA)

$10 Billion

$ 7.4 Billion


Tennis is the world’s most liked sport as it features in the top 7 sports in every country. The Wimbledon final is among the top 10 most-watched annual events in the world. The best tennis player, Roger Federer, is the 7th highest-paid athlete in sports with total earnings of $90 million. There are about 1 billion fans for tennis, and about 87 million people play the sport.

Viewing Interest May to September
Number of viewers 1 billion
Dominant Sport Philippines
Huge Sport US, China, Turkey
Major Sport Mexico, Australia, Pakistan Canada, Spain, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, France, Germany, Italy, UK, China, Brazil, India, Russia, Indonesia, Netherlands, S. Africa, Poland, Argentina, Colombia, Sweden, Philippines
Medium sport Japan, US, South Korea, Nigeria, Kenya, Thailand, Kazakhstan, Algeria
Wimbledon Total Prize money $48,240,317.64

Formula 1

Formula1 racing has a major following in Europe and Latin America and has a strong interest among the developing world countries. A total of 32 countries play this sport with annual revenue of $1.145 billion. The highest-paid racer in the world is Lewis Hamilton, with total earnings of $82 million.

Viewing Interest Feb to Nov
Number of viewers 433 million
Major Sport Spain, Brazil, Mexico, Netherlands, S. Arabia, Indonesia, Germany, UK, Italy
Medium Sport Japan, South Africa, Poland, China. India, France, Russia, Turkey, Argentina, Kenya, Sweden, Colombia
Minor sport Nigeria, Pakistan, Thailand, Philippines, Australia, Canada
Formula 1 racing Revenue $1.145 billion

Soccer has become the popular sport in the world country-wise in 2021 and will make headlines in sports news. In India, cricket is a religion and followed by a billion fans. Over the years, with social media exposure, many sports have generated a lot of interest worldwide, and in the future, we can see some new sports emerge as the most popular among the masses.

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