The Super Bowl vs. The World Cup: What Is The Real Football?


What is football? The answer depends on who you ask. As Neymar (and you should know who that is!) said in a Taco Bell ad during the Super Bowl, "Real Football" -- or "Real Fútbol" -- involves kicking a round ball!

Whereas American football is restricted to a few countries (while it has originated in America, the NFL is making an attempt at expanding), futbol leagues were formed in many countries around the world.

Britain has the English Premier League. Germany has the Bundesliga. And there is the French Liga 1, Spanish Primera Division, and Italian Serie A. Yes, Americans have Major League Soccer. But no one really thinks the MLS is "Major". Major soccer is played elsewhere, and it is played in more than one league.

How big is "major" soccer around the world? In October of 2014, Real Madrid and Barcelona -- of the Spanish Primera Division -- played a game. The game was the 229th edition of el Clasico and featured such players as Cristiano Ronaldo (for Real Madrid) and Neymar (for Barcelona). And how many people watched? The global audience was 400 million.

Put that in perspective. The Super Bowl between the Seahawks and Broncos in 2014 had a global audience of 160 million. Yes, a single game between two teams in the Spanish Primera Division attracted 250% more fans world wide than the Super Bowl.

And what if we talk World Cup? The final of the 2014 World Cup attracted 900 million fans worldwide. Take a look at the graph provided below so you can wrap your mind around the comparison:

Man, look at those views for the World Cup. The Cup has approximately 909.6 million viewers whereas the Super Bowl has roughly 160 million viewers. Oh you know, just a minor difference. It is also viewed in more countries than the Super Bowl.

This difference can also be illustrated just by talking trophies. The NFL annually spends $25,000 on the Vince Lombardi trophy. Each year Tiffany & Co creates the trophy out of sterling silver and it weighs about 6.7 pounds. Cool right? Hell yeah! A 20 inch tall trophy! Don’t get me wrong, winning a Super Bowl can’t be easy, but don’t these hard working, billionaire athletes deserve a better trophy? Well, travel to a country that heavily participates in the World Cup and you might catch a glimpse of a real trophy.

Alright, the World Cup trophy happens to be much smaller, about 14.5 inches, but good things come in little packages, right? Right. When the first trophy was awarded back in 1930, the trophy was just a gold plated statue of Lapis Lazuli and it wasn’t too spectacular. Now, the infamous Fifa World Cup trophy stands short and weighs little. However, it costs about $10 million. Yeah, if I just won a prestigious tournament, that’s the trophy I would want. Not some cheap, silver football. Ok, so I don’t have $25,000 or a nice trophy, but you get my point. The World Cup's trophy’s price tag has jumped from $96,000 in 2006, to $188,000 in 2010 and then in 2014 to $10 Million USD. The following graph shows the comparison for the two trophies (the Super Bowl’s Vince Lombardi trophy price tag is so minuscule it barely shows up on the graph -- how pathetic!):

The Super Bowl trophy is about $25,000 and the World cup trophy costs $10,000,000, all in USD.

When it comes down to it, soccer players are tougher (yeah, I said it!), the event is watched around the world, and the game just happens to be a lot more interesting. Plus, the trophy... how could you ignore a gold trophy?

So, don’t take my word for it, join the rest of the world and start watching soccer. Or as Neymar says, the "Real Fútbol."

You can follow the author of this article on Twitter at @AwkwardAmanda_.


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