Cardiff Devils ranked as one of the UK’s most loved sports teams

Ice Arena Wales, home of Cardiff Devils
Photo: Dave Williams

Elite League side Cardiff Devils are one of the UK’s most loved sports teams, with Guildford Flames also featuring in the top 10.

The study by sports retailer Sports Direct placed Premier League football giants Arsenal at the top, ahead of Liverpool and Chelsea.

Cardiff Devils bagged 6th place by ranking highly (4th place overall) when it comes to having some of the most engaged fans within the study, due to its Ice Arena Wales almost at capacity (96%) for every game.

As a comparison, Chelsea FC – the third most popular sports team in the UK – had an average stadium capacity of 90% at the time the study took place.

READ MORE: Elite League Takeaways: Devils’ Shootout Win Blows Title Race Open

The study looked at teams associated with leagues across eight sports in the UK.

Various metrics were then used  to whittle down the list to the top 15 most loved, including social following, online mentions, engagement rate, percentage of stadium capacity and online merchandise searches.

It covered all sports, including football, rugby union, rugby league, cricket and netball.

Guildford Flames made the top 10, ahead of Harlequins rugby union, in ninth.

Belfast Giants placed in 21st, narrowly ahead of Sheffield Steelers in 24th.

Steelers (1.96% engagement rate) and Nottingham Panthers (2.5%) ranked highly for their social media engagement.

Cardiff Devils boasted a total of 194,000 online searches and a total social following of 105,674.

Ice hockey was placed as the fourth most loved sport, behind football, rugby union and rugby league.

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