Abuja, Nigeria. September 23rd, 2014 – The latest Football Special Edition poll results released by NOIPolls Limited have revealed that 54% of the English Premier League (EPL) fans tipped Chelsea FC to win the 2014/2015English Premier League. This was followed by 21% of respondents who picked Manchester United to win and 19% that selected Arsenal FC. Furthermore, an assessment of the EPL clubs supported by fans shows that Chelsea FC has the largest fan base in Nigeria (42%) followed by Arsenal FC and Manchester United with 24% each.
Additional findings show that 75% of football loving Nigerians do not follow the Nigerian Premier League (NPL) compared to 70% that follow the English Premier League. Finally, Kano Pillars has the largest share of supporters in the Nigerian Premier League (40%) followed by Enyimba with 21% of supporters. These were some of the key findings from the Football Special Edition Snap Poll conducted in the week of September 15th 2014.
The 2014/2015 Premier League is the 23rd season of the English Premier League since its formation in 1992. Manchester City has started the season as defending champions of the2013/2014 season while a total of 20 teams will contest the league. As the 2014/2015 Premier League season progresses, the league table will reflect the actual performance of the teams when compared with ratings criteria and predictions.
Against this background, NOIPolls conducted its Football Special Edition Poll with a focus on the English and Nigerian Premier Football Leagues to explore followership and perceptions about these leagues. This is the third in the annual Football Special Edition Poll series traditionally conducted by NOIPolls at the start of the English Premier League season following on from previous polls conducted in 2012 and 2013.
English Premier League
To ascertain the proportion of Nigerians who follow the English Premier League, respondents were asked the question: Do you follow the English Premier Football League? Responses show that 70% of adult Nigerians surveyed acknowledged that they followed the English Premier League while 30% of respondents indicated they do not. More male respondents than female follow the EPL (79% compared with 60%), while a comparison of respondents across geo-political zones revealed that the North-East had the highest proportion that followed the English Premier League. Additionally, followership of the EPL is highest among respondents in the 22 – 29 year age-group (82%).
In order to ascertain the current fan base for EPL clubs, respondents were asked: Which Premier League club do you support? Responses to this question revealed that the largest share of respondents (42%) support Chelsea FC followed by Arsenal FC and Manchester United with 24% respectively.
In addition, respondents were asked: Why do you support your club? The findings revealed that the highest percentage of the respondents (40%) reported they supported their club because they ‘admire their playing pattern’; this reason cut across all geo-political zones. Furthermore, 21% mentioned ‘star players in the team’ , 12% indicated that ‘they just like the club’ and 8% stated ‘support for African players’.
Analysis by gender indicated that more male than female respondents (41% compared to 33%) ‘admire their club’s playing pattern’, whereas more female than male respondents (29% compared with 15%) support their club because of ‘star players in the team’.
Finally on the EPL, respondents were asked: Which English Premiership club would you pick to win the 2014/2015 season? The outcome revealed that slightly more than half of the respondents interviewed (54%) picked Chelsea FC to win the 2014/2015 English Premier League. Chelsea was the most popular choice by a considerable margin followed by 21% that picked Manchester United while 19% picked Arsenal FC.
Further analysis based on geo-political zones revealed that the South-East zone had the highest number of Nigerians who picked Chelsea FC to win the league whereas the North-West zone had the largest ratio of respondents who picked Manchester United and Arsenal FC with 33% and 31% respectively. In addition, 92% of the respondents aged 61 years and above picked Chelsea FC to win the league.
Nigerian Premier League
To determine the percentage of respondents who follow the NPL, respondents were asked: Do you follow the Nigerian Premier League? Three quarters of respondents surveyed (75%)stated that they did not follow the Nigerian Premier League (NPL) while 25% indicated that they followed the Nigerian Premier League. The highest proportion of respondents who followed the NPL were aged 61 years and above (48%) though followership is also high in the 18-21 years age group. Additionally, followership of the NPL was highest in the North-East zone (41%).
Respondents who confirmed that they followed the NPL (25% of the total) were further asked:Why do you follow the Nigerian Premier League? Result findings showed that ‘patriotism’(42%) topped the list for reasons for why respondents follow the NPL. Other reasons include‘they enjoy it’ (17%) and ‘players play well’ (14%) amongst others.
Further analysis revealed the highest proportion of respondents (72%) aged 61 years and above follow the NPL due to ‘patriotism’; 57% of the respondents aged between 46 – 60 years said they followed the NPL because “they enjoy it”; while 82% of respondents aged between 18 – 21 years were of the view that ‘the players play well’.
Respondents who follow the NPL (25% of the total) were further asked: Which Nigerian Premier League club do you support? The outcome revealed that the largest share (40%)disclosed they support Kano Pillars as far as the NPL was involved, followed by 21% that support Enyimba, while 8% each support Enugu Rangers and Gombe United.
More female respondents (44%) support Kano Pillars whereas more male respondents (27%)support Enyimba. Not surprisingly, the vast majority of the NPL fans in the North-West zone(84%) support the region’s indigenous club; Kano Pillars, while support for Enyimba is highest in the South-West (40%) and the North-Central zones (38%)
In conclusion, results revealed that the majority of respondents surveyed (70%) acknowledged that they follow the English Premier League (EPL) on the other hand the minority of respondents (25%) follow the Nigerian Premier League. Additionally, the largest share of Nigerians (42%) support Chelsea FC followed by Arsenal FC and Manchester United with 24%each. The findings revealed that the highest percentage of the respondents (40%) support their club because they ‘admire their playing pattern’, while 21% indicated ‘star players in the team’. Furthermore, when asked what club they would pick to win the 2014/2015 English Premier League, 54% of respondents interviewed picked Chelsea FC to win the 2014/2015English Premier League, 21% picked Manchester United while 19% selected Arsenal FC.
More findings revealed that ‘Patriotism’ is the top reason that Nigerians follow the Nigerian Premier League while 17% indicated ‘they enjoy it’ and 14% claim ‘players play well’. Finally, the largest share of respondents (40%) disclosed that they supported Kano Pillars followed by Enyimba (21%), Enugu Rangers and Gombe United (8% each).
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The opinion poll was conducted in September 15th to 16th 2014. It involved telephone interviews of a random nationwide sample. 1000 randomly selected phone-owning Nigerians aged 18 years and above, representing the six geopolitical zones in the country, were interviewed. With a sample of this size, we can say with 95% confidence that the results obtained are statistically precise – within a range of plus or minus 3%. NOI Polls Limited is Nigeria’s leading opinion polling and research organisation, which works in technical partnership with the Gallup Organisation (USA), to conduct periodic opinion polls and studies on various socio-economic and political issues in Nigeria. More information is available at www.noi-polls.com
This press release has been produced by NOIPolls Limited to provide information on all issues which form the subject matter of the document. Kindly note that while we are willing to share results from our polls with the general public, we only request that NOIPolls be acknowledged as author whenever and wherever our poll results are used, cited or published.
NOIPolls hereby certifies that all the views expressed in this document accurately reflect its views of respondents surveyed for the poll, and background information is based on information from various sources that it believes are reliable; however, no representation is made that it is accurate or complete. Whilst reasonable care has been taken in preparing this document, no responsibility or liability is accepted for errors or fact or for any views expressed herein by NOIPolls for actions taken as a result of information provided in this report. Any ratings, forecasts, estimates, opinions or views herein constitute a judgment as at the date of this document. If the date of this document is not current, the views and content may not reflect NOIPolls’ current findings and/or thinking.