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The popularity of soccer has grown rapidly in the United States over the past three decades.

Soccer is now the fourth most popular sport in the United States, behind soccer, basketball, and baseball. Thirty-one percent of Americans say they are soccer fans, an all-time high, according to a 2019 Gallup poll. Between 1990 and 2017, the number of Americans who named soccer their favorite sport increased sevenfold.

So why are more Americans playing and watching soccer?

World Cup provides a spark

Caroline Foscato, president and co-founder of the Soccer Unity Project, a Boston-based youth soccer nonprofit, said the United States’ hosting of the 1994 FIFA Men’s World Cup and the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup were “huge launching pads” that launched the popularity of football in the country.

Lucas Richardson fell in love with soccer as a 10-year-old watching the World Cup on TV in 1994. Read also : Philly’s streak of sports wins boosts morale throughout the Delaware Valley. “I remember watching those games and I think that’s when it started,” said Richardson, now a member of the group Soccer without borders, which uses this sport to promote global justice.

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U.S. women’s team’s success

While the U.S. men’s national team struggled to catch up with the biggest powers in Europe and Latin America, the success of the U.S. women’s national team helped increase the sport’s popularity in the United States. See the article : Barnhart, Feamster inducted into the Kentucky Sports Hall of Fame Class of 2022. The women’s team has won four World Cups and four Olympic gold medals, starting with the inaugural FIFA Women’s World Cup in 1991. In 1999, 40 million American viewers watched the women’s national team beat China.

“The reality is, nationally and internationally, it’s the woman who really pushed the sport here,” Foscato said.

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Schools see greater participation

In 2021 and 2022, more than 800,000 students played on high school football teams, putting football in fourth place behind track and field, basketball and football, according to the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS). In 1969 and 1970, football was ranked 11th in popularity, with fewer than 50,000 students playing high school football. See the article : Trinity Thomas Among The Collegiate Women Sports Award Top 3.

Tim Bazzle, a Boston-area father, told ShareAmerica that he enrolled his 8-year-old son in soccer because of the values ​​it instills and the relative safety compared to American football.

“You get a lot of the same sportsmanship, teamwork and supporting each other, the same values ​​in soccer that you get in football,” he said.

NFHS says the number of female high school soccer players has increased from 23,475 in the 1978-79 school year to 374,773 in 2021-22. The increase followed the passage of a 1972 law called Title IX, which banned gender discrimination in education funding and required publicly funded colleges and universities to support athletic programs and scholarships for girls and boys equally.

With more young people playing soccer, attendance at professional games in the U.S. is also increasing. Both the men’s and women’s leagues set attendance records in 2022, with Major League Soccer surpassing 10 million viewers and the National Women’s Soccer League surpassing 1 million.

Soccer “is becoming part of our mainstream culture in a way that it certainly wasn’t when I was a kid,” Richardson said, recalling his introduction to the sport in 1994.

Learn more about soccer in the United States in our video on ShareAmerica’s Instagram feed.

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Which states play the most soccer?

In the end, Washington State came out on top for its love of football, while Alabama came in first for its total general disdain for the sport.

Which country has the most soccer players? Many factors affect these numbers {including NCAA rules and regulations}, but the best youth soccer is played in California. New Jersey & DC are next, producing the most national team players year after year for the men’s and women’s teams.

Where is soccer played the most in the US?

Overall rankingCityTotal result
1Los Angeles, CA56,87
2Seattle, WA51.68
3Portland, OR50.3
4Orlando, FL43.28

Where is the soccer capital of America?

Kansas City is the soccer capital of America.

Which US city has most soccer fans?

Los Angeles, which boasts two MLS clubs, topped the rankings. Meanwhile, Portland ranked third, according to the study.

How many soccer fans are there in the US?

Is soccer more popular in the US?

Soccer is now the fourth most popular sport in the United States in terms of participation [behind football, baseball, and basketball]. Although there are still more men than women who play soccer in high school and college, female participation has increased every decade since the 1980s.

Where are the most soccer fans?

China. It is interesting that the beginnings of football go back to China more than 2000 years ago. Today it is the most populous country in the world and has the most football fans (187 million).

Who has the nicest football stadium?

The 10 Best NFL Stadiums in 2022

  • SoFi Stadium – Los Angeles Rams and Chargers.
  • U.S. Stadium Bank – Minnesota Vikings. …
  • Lambeau Field – Green Bay Packers. …
  • Mercedes-Benz Stadium – Atlanta Falcons. …
  • Allegiant Stadium – Las Vegas Raiders. …
  • AT&T Stadium – Dallas Cowboys. …
  • Lumen Field – Seattle Seahawks. …

Which football club has the most beautiful stadium? 1. Soccer City, South Africa. First National Bank Stadium, built in 1989, called Soccer City, is one of the most popular in the world. This football arena is located in Johannesburg.

Which NFL stadium has the most comfortable seats?

Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis Colts The seats are some of the widest and most comfortable in the league, and almost every one of these seats is properly angled to give fans a great view of the field.

Who has the nicest football stadium in college football?

1. Ohio Stadium, Ohio State Buckeyes â The best college football stadium.

What is the least watched sport in America?

Hockey: The Most American Sport Americans Won’t Watch.

What is the sport no. 1 in America? 1. American football. American football is the most popular sport in America and is the favorite sport in 37% of the country. The NFL is also the most popular league, supported by 55% of Americans.

What is the most viewed sport?

Football is the most popular sport in the world and the UEFA Champions League final is one of its biggest events.

What is the most watched sport in America?

Sports are an important part of the culture in the United States. Historically, the national sport has been baseball. However, in recent decades, American football has been the most popular sport in terms of broadcast viewership.

What is the least watched sport?

Roller hockey, chess boxing, indoor kabaddi are the least popular sports among fans around the world.

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