Sports has gained fame over time as a leisure activity, and also at a professional level. Whenever these sports are played, their viewership on television, social media, and the internet is overwhelming. Discussed below are the top five most popular sports globally.

Soccer/ Association Football

Soccer is the most popular sport with an estimated following of 4 billion, which is half of the world’s population. FIFA World Cup is the biggest tournament of association football held every four years. There are also local leagues and the prestigious top-flight leagues like Premier League, MLS, La Liga, and Serie A.


Cricket has a global estimated fan following of 2.5 billion. It is more popular in the UK, Australia, Asia, and commonwealth countries. ICC Cricket World Cup is the most popular cricket tournament held every four years. Here also, local and international leagues are organized.


With an estimated following of 2.2 billion fans globally, basketball is more popular in the US, China, Canada, and the Philippines. FIBA Basketball World Cup is the international basketball tournament held every four years with the last one held in China. The NBA is the creme de la creme, although there are other leagues in Europe and the rest of the world.


Both ice and field hockey have become very popular, and boast an estimated following of 2 billion fans. Field hockey is played by ten members and a goaltender for each team. Ice hockey, on the other hand, consists of two teams of five players and a goaltender each.


Tennis has a 1.2 billion world fan following, and it is more popular in the US, Australia, Europe, and Asia. This racket sport can be played by single-player each team (singles) or by two players each team (doubles). The most prestigious tennis tournament is Wimbledon.

Other popular sports in the world include volleyball with an estimated following of 900million and table tennis with 850 million estimated fans.