Economic Importance of Soccer in Africa
Africa and football are inseparable. From the boy in the village using a few cents to go and watch a football match to the big African born football stars who rake in million of dollars football brings them together. However, it is the economics of football that has the continent moving. Football starts like Didier Drogba, Toure brothers, Victor Wanyama, Samuel Etoo and Senegalese Sane are paid millions of dollars and are known to run successful academies and humanitarian programmes in their countries. Playing for big clubs like Barcelona, Real Madrid, Chelsea, Arsenal and other European leagues has brought in substantial investments in Africa with these stars being adored.
Equally, there is a booming local economy whereby business people set up soccer watching dens where people pay as little as 10 US cents to watch a match. This cumulatively is a sustainable business model feeding thousands of people in Africa.
The economic impact of football on Africa rests in the billions. Football in Africa is also a boom for betting firms as well as TV cable organisations. For example, DSTV, GoTV, ZUKU, Kwese and Star Times are employing hundreds of people generating revenue in Africa as they stream football both at the club level as well as international football.
The biennial Africa Cup of Nations is the single largest sporting event spanning the continent that drives billions in sponsorship and enables the likes of sporting scouts to search for star players. From a purely financial perspective the event alone drives nearly billions in revenue via advertising and cable operations.
Betting firms are also ploughling back revenue by supporting both real football development in Africa but also supporting CSR activities that make them a darling of many in Africa.
Why is this important for Africa and why is soccer the most popular sport on the continent?
The popularity of soccer game in the world is unquestioned. It is a favorite game in Europe, but what is more interesting – it is the most popular sport in Africa too. Having been brought to this sunny continent over 100 years ago, the first football clubs appeared there about 50 years later. Now, many of them compete for the African Club Champions Cup, while ordinary adults and kids enjoy playing this game outdoors as well as try their luck in sports betting. You may wonder what made soccer so popular with so much African population. In fact, there are many reasons for this.
Minimum of time and resources
At the time, when many other games require special equipment, facilities, and much time to play, football is much more flexible. It is enough to find a flat and empty piece of land and a ball to be able to start playing. You may make goalposts of any natural material lying on the ground – whether these are stones, poles, or sticks. The time of playing can vary and is determined by participants.
There are games where learning of the rules requires from players much time and effort, but it is not soccer, of course. Everyone can easily remember rules of this sport, since the main goal for every player is win the opponent team by scoring goals not touching a ball with hands. The winner is a team that scored more goals. Of course, there are more complex rules like penalties, red and yellow cards, off sides too, but they turn out to be absolutely clear after the first explanation.
Team spirit vs focus on player
Football is one of few games where you should not only cooperate with other team members to become a winner but also can shine like a star personally. Even the only skillful player can help the whole team to score such a desirable goal. At the same time, it is also important to pass the ball to others for the opponent team not to take it back.
Branding and marketing
What has made football matches the most popular events in the world? It is a powerful marketing campaign that is worth billions of dollars. Where else can you find a kind of sport or a game that attracts hundreds of thousands of spectators, let alone those ones who bet money on it? African population has also been influenced by this advertising, but there is one more reason why they follow many international championships – many players from Zimbabwe, Tanzania, and South Africa are members of the world-renowned soccer clubs, so they are supported by locals too.
World recognition and love
People play football on every continent of the planet unlike baseball, rugby, or cricket. Over 200 countries are members of FIFA, so each of them has a chance to win the cup and become known all over the world. Being a finalist or winner of the world’s cup opens many opportunities for the whole country, not only the team that represents it. So soccer is an excellent possibility for many African countries to improve their positions in many ratings. For example, sports betting in Tanzania could tell you more about that.
These and many other reasons prove that soccer popularity on all continents including Africa is incredibly high and this game deserves the title of ‘the world’s beloved one’.
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