Spanish study finds 15m fans go to bars to watch live matches

January 27 – More than 15 million football fans in Spain will watch matches live in public venues every season, according to new research findings released by Mediapro.

“Venue goers are mostly young, very gender balanced, with similar behavior in rural and urban areas, and spend an average of €13 per person,” said the research.

The research – titled ‘Study of football consumption in public venues’ – was carried out in bars and public venues across Spain with a view to analysing the impact showing LaLiga matches had on their trade. Data showed that 5.2 million people regularly (at least once a month) watch a match at a public venue while 2.6 million go every weekend.

It is the social aspect of watching the match at a bar that is key with the report finding “75% of fans who go to these establishments to watch football, do so in the company of friends, and the average group size is of five people who come together to watch the matches. These groups spend an average of 2 hours and 20 minutes.” 53% of respondents highlighted ‘socialization’ as the main attraction of watching a match in a public place, and 45% said they went for the atmosphere.

“Although the numbers are very good and show that football is a dynamic activity in bars, we have to continue polishing this specific content for public establishments. It is our responsibility to give audiences the best product and protect them against pirate venues engaging in unfair competition by stealing football, ” said Javier Tebas, president of LaLiga (pictured centre).

With such large numbers watching in bars LaLiga and Mediapro emphasised their commitment to prosecuting bars airing games that have not bought a content license allowing the live retransmission of games, saying that the piracy is unfair on those that have acquired legal licenses.

Jaume Roures (pictured left), managing partner of the Mediapro Group, said “the challenge we’re facing is continuing to work together with the hospitality sector to make the product more and more attractive.”

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