The Most Popular Sports in the World

Sports are enjoyed across the globe, whether it’s a career, hobby, or merely a fitness regime. Several sporting games have managed to grow exponentially in popularity along with a massive following around the world. Most of the sports listed below are included in the prestigious Olympic Games, allowing countries from across the globe to compete against each other. Each sport also generates billions in revenue, especially when it comes to developed countries. Below you will find the most popular sports from around the world.

1. Association Soccer (Football) – 4 Billion Fans

Association soccer, of football, is undoubtedly the most popular sports across the globe. It’s estimated that over half of the population in the world see themselves as association soccer fans. Association soccer has a following of more than 4 billion people which is remarkable on a global scale. Ancient soccer can be traced back to China during the 2nd century, while the Japanese, Greeks, and Romans can also be considered as the first countries to play the sport. Contemporary soccer started in England where it spread to other corners of the earth at a rapid pace.

2. Cricket – 2.5 Billion Fans

Cricket has an estimated global following of more than 2.5 billion fans and is primarily influenced by Commonwealth countries and the United Kingdom. The origins of cricket can be tracked back to the 16th century in England where it was eventually turned into a national sport during the 18th century. Cricket consists of two teams where each team has 11 players, and the main objective is to score more runs than the other team. Cricket is tremendously popular in British colonies, including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, India, and South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand.

3. Field Hockey – 2 Billion Fans

Field hockey boasts with a global following of around 2 billion people and is extremely popular in Australia, Asia, Africa, and Europe. Contemporary field hockey was initially played in England during the 1800’s and is very similar to soccer. However, players use hockey sticks to control the ball as oppose to their feet.

4. Tennis – 1 Billion Fans

With an estimated following of just over 1 billion fans, Tennis is believed to originate from the Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians. However, modern-day tennis was first played in France. Thereafter, it spread across Europe and then eventually across the globe. In tennis, two players will hit a ball over a net while using tennis rackets. You earn points when your opponent is unable to return the ball.

5. VolleyBall – 900 Million Fans

Volleyball is overwhelmingly popular in North America and Western Europe with an estimated following of around 900 million people. Volleyball was initially invented in the United States by William G. Morgan in the late 1800’s. Morgan was an instructor for the Young Men’s Christian Association and was influenced by baseball, handball, tennis, and basketball when he initially formed volleyball. Volleyball has evolved over the years and is now played with six players on either end of the net.

Greatest Athletes of the 21st Century

A couple of days into the new century, a teenager from Switzerland managed to win his first Grand Slam. A couple of months thereafter, Tiger Woods burst onto the golfing scene and began to dominate the sport. Just days after that, a doughy, unheralded quarterback was selected as an afterthought during the draft for a faceless franchise that hardly had a footprint in the world of football. A 15-year-old Baltimore swimmer managed to stun the world when he qualified for the Olympics during his first training camp.

With so much talent in the 21st century when it comes to sport, we decided to look back on the last 18 years and provide a list of the greatest athletes in the 21st century.

1. Michael Phelps

Michael Phelps was initially in third position on our list but that changed. Phelps went to Rio where he won 5 gold medals and 1 silver and had the 4th best Olympic performance in swimming history. Phelps also won 6 gold medals and 2 bronze medals in 2004, 8 gold medals in 2008, and 7 golds in Munich, This placed him as the greatest athlete in the 21st century with a total of 23 gold medals in his career.

2. Roger Federer

Roger Federer is a professional tennis player from Switzerland and is currently ranked 2nd in the world of tennis. He managed to win 20 Grand Slam titles, which is the most for a male player in the history of the sport and has held the number 1 position in the world for 310 weeks. After starting his career as a professional tennis player in 1998, Federer has ranked in the top 10 from 2002 to 2016. He managed to re-enter the top 10 list after his 2017 victory at the Australian Open.

3. Tiger Woods

As one of the most popular athletes in the 21st century, Tiger Woods is also the highest paid athlete for several years. Woods was only 20 years old when he turned pro in 1996. By April 1997, Woods won 3 PGA Tour events as well as the 1997 Masters. Throughout the 2000’s, Woods dominated the sport of golf, winning the 2000 US Open by a whopping 15-shot margin. Woods was the world’s top-ranked player from 1999 to 2004 and again from 2005 to 2010.

4. Tom Brady

As a quarterback for the New England Patriots, Tom Brady is one of the only players to win 5 Super Bowls and the only football player to win them all while playing for the same team. Tom Brady has also been honoured with 4 Super Bowl MVP’s which is the most any NFL player has received in the history of the sport. He also has 3 League MVP awards, has been selected for a total of 13 Pro Bowls, and managed to lead his team to 15 division titles. After 2017, Brady is ranked 4th in total career passing years, 3rd in career touchdown passes, and 3rd in career passer rating.

The Highest Paid Athletes in 2018

Three professional footballers, one NFL quarterback, two basketball superstars, a tennis player, and two boxers have made it to the 2018 highest paid sports athletes in the world. Here’s a look at each of them, including bonuses earned, salary, and prize money since June 2017 to June 2018.

Floyd Mayweather

The number 1 earning sports star in the world is also the oldest to make it on our list. In his fight against Connor McGregor, the world-class boxer managed to take home a staggering $285 million along with $10 million in endorsements. In 2017, Christiano Ronaldo took the number 1 spot with only $93 million.

Lionel Messi

The superstar from Argentina has managed to edge out his rival when it comes to endorsements, winnings, and salary which totals $111 million. The salary for Messi is considerably higher than Ronaldo, $84 million compared to $61 million. However, when it comes to endorsements, the Barcelona forward makes significantly less, $27 million compared to $47 million.

Christiano Ronaldo

The Juventus superstar comes in at number 3 this year, just below his rival. There will always be a debate on who is the best between Messi and Ronaldo, but as you can see from the rankings, Ronaldo is the second highest paid footballer on our list which tells you everything you need to know.

Conor McGregor

The transition McGregor made from MMA fighting to boxing against Mayweather last year produced a massive paycheck for both these fighters. The Irish boxer managed to take home a cool $99 million from the fight even though he lost. Most of McGregor’s earnings are primarily made from winnings and salary, while only $14 million is made from endorsements.


The time Neymar spent at PSG has been extremely fruitful for the Brazilian football star. He’s combined endorsements, and salary comes in at a staggering $90 million. With rumours going around that he might join Real Madrid, Neymar can easily increase his overall income when he joins the world-class squad.

LeBron James

There’s no doubt that LeBron James is the best NBA player at the moment and his salary and endorsements prove it. The professional basketball player took home a gorgeous $85.5 million over the course of a year.

Roger Federer

This incredible athlete needs no introduction as he is an 8-time Wimbledon champion who managed to make most of his earning from endorsements that accumulated to $77.2 million. He also managed to rake in $12.2 million from his wins.

Steph Curry

Steph Curry’s sensational basketball career started when he was the seventh overall pick during the first round. Playing for the Golden State Warriors, his highlights include 2 NBA championships in 2017 and 2015, 2 MVP Awards and the Scoring Championship Award which he received in 2016. Curry made a total of $76/5 million in the last year which is quite impressive for the second highest basketball player on our list.

Matt Ryan

As the Atlanta Falcons starting quarterback, Matt Ryan recently signed a 5-year extension to continue playing for his team. He managed to rake in a wonderful $67.3 million in the last year and is the only American football player to make it on our list this year.

Sports Movies That Inspires

Sports are a great way to enjoy both physical and mental health and while these facts should be more than efficient in motivation every human to get active, sometimes that extra push to give us the last bit of motivation often comes from the most unexpected. Several great films have inspired many to get into active gear, while some movies have inspired some of the top sports stars to reach new levels. Here are some of the most inspirational sports films well worth watching:


For many, this film finally answered their wish to see an A-listed film based on martial arts. Director Gavin O’Connor succeeds in following up his inspiring triumph of the film Miracle with a film created with equal motivation and emotional tug in Warrior, a film in which he solidifies himself as probably one of the best sports movie creators. Brilliant directing allows him to take a relatively marginal ordinary sport in MMA and make it into an embracing and engaging experience for all viewers, whether they’re sports enthusiasts or not. Released only on the 9th of September it is already classed as one of the Top Inspirational Sports Films.


A small-time boxer from Philadelphia and the telling of his classic tale of how he was given a chance to fight in the heavyweight championship of the world, shows anyone in sports that once in a lifetime chance can materialize when you least expect it. For many sports professionals and viewers, Rocky remains at the top of the list when it comes to inspiration in any sports. Therefore, there is no denial that Rocky is the most inspirational film of all times.

The Karate Kid

Daniel LaRusso needs to adapt to a new school in Los Angeles after he and his single mother move cross-country. He instantly becomes a victim as the new kid of bullying and is targeted due to his affection for the most popular girl. Eventually, he forms a bond with Mr Miyagi, his neighbour who gives him lessons. In the end, it is LaRusso that triumphs over his challenger in the karate tournament even when the bully’s mentor encourages unethical and cheap tactics. The film is both an inspiration to kids been bullied as well as motivating youngsters to participate in sports.


Miracle is based on America’s biggest sports moments in history, starting off with the Winter Olympics of 1980, where the American team was clearly the underdogs and the Soviets dominated. It about a nation inspired their home-team to pull off one of the biggest upsets in sports history on their way to the gold medal. It is one of the films that shows the power of teamwork and being supported.

The Rookie

It is based on a true story and tells the tale of the baseball coach and science teacher who would never have a chance of playing baseball due to circumstances when they were younger. Encouraged by the students and small community, Kim Morris, now 35 years-of-age tries out at the camp of the Major League and is offered the opportunity to pitch for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, empowered to follow his dreams he gets the change to spend no less than two seasons in the MLB.

Sports Documentaries Most Favoured Audience Pleaser

Non-fiction films regarding sports or athletics are referred to as documentaries and by connecting to pastime favourites in a more profound way remains the most viewed. BT Sport and BBC in the UK have made several efforts to catch-up although when it comes to exceptional documentaries, it is ESPN that leads and have major success with over 100 films broadcasted across BT sports channels.

When it comes to sports-documentary excellence, the Esquire line-up includes three 30 for 30 films, as well as the OJ: Made in America, Oscar and Bafta 2017 winners and Hillsborough. What grabs the attention most is that no matter how many individuals think they know the full story, film-directors, writers and producers get to step back in time, do all the research and then offer all the reasons surrounding the event.

1995 Jean-Claude Bragard Hit

One of the most watched and loved documentaries is that of Jen-Claude Bragard called Kicking and Screaming. The six-part BBC history is difficult to locate on YouTube, especially if you wish to view the full series of English football. This series is a masterpiece and draws the line when it comes to unregulated ball games to the birth of the Premier League. Many see it as a classic and so it should as it offers a wide variety of never seen before footage as well as an understated great sense of humour. It is one of the documentaries that will remains a favourite now and, in the future, and to mention just one of the amazing episodes it is Denis Law from Scotland that tells how he was enjoying golf in Manchester, as he added unlike Manchester it was raining that day and only two where on the golf course him and the awful guy that beat him. He remembers as they turned they became aware of all the members at the window of the clubhouse, it was the day that England enjoyed a 4-2 won and Law thought the world had come to an end.

Ken McGill 1994 Impossible Job

It remains popular for many and one of the most watched sports documentaries. Tributes included that the pundit and former managers were a true football nice guy after Graham Taylor passed away, it was at this time the group that almost managed to ruin him could recall Taylor’s good nature. After the filming of the English World Cup in 1993, they were banned by from filming, by the Dutch FA. However, it was Taylor who smuggled them into the pitching side in tracksuits used by England while hiding their gear in team kit bags. These are all part of the moments captured in the documentary, as well as shots on the touchline of Taylor as England loses their opportunity to qualify for the poignant. What made Taylor a laughing stock was his openness, phrases such as “can we not knock it” or “Do I not like that” both became catchphrases and what this documentary did was killing the fly-on-the-wall documentaries.

Asif Kapadia’s 2010 Senna

If you a racing fan you know Senna and have probably watched this documentary several times, there is no doubt that Asif Kapadia raised the documentary-biopics standards with just one. Senna is recounting the life of the legend Ayrton Senna and uses lots of archive footage, and without the use of talking heads or captions he captivates the audience and make them fit into the seat of the racing driver while sharing in his public and private moments. It is one of few films where the audience is no longer onlookers they at the moment. There are no pauses no analysis and, also no after-the-fact context it is about Senna’s life that was really special and then also so tragic. This documentary is enthralling from the first second to the very end. The talented Kapadia is made quite a few documentaries after Senna including one about the life of Amy Winehouse and that of Diego Maradona, both exciting prospects, yet none able to match the intense brilliance of that of Senna 2010.