Mainstream sport and eSports continues to mix and intertwine. While eSports continues to become one of the world’s fastest growing sports and indeed industries, 2016 saw a mainstream emergence.
Firstly eSports divisions were established among professional sports teams while Sports stars such as former NFL Player Chris Kluwe, LA Laker hall of famer, Shaquille O’Neal and Magic Johnson and former baseball star Alex Rodriguez all invested their hard earned bucks into eSports businesses.
The appetite for eSports is understandable – clubs see it as a way to reach younger generations whilst opening up new sponsoring and broadcasting opportunities.
English clubs, Manchester City and West Ham United both have eSports players on their roster however no English club has fully immersed themselves in eSports to date with a dedicated division and multiple teams across games.
The same can’t be said in Europe however where the likes of PSG, Schalke, Wolfsburg and Valencia have all ventured into this space. It is only natural therefore that these new divisions would have their own social presence and thanks to data provided by Result Sport we can reveal which eSports team has the largest community.
Before that though, let’s look at who is number 12 on the 12 team list. Legia eSports, a division of Polish side Legia Warsaw are new to the market, reaching 666 followers on Facebook and Twitter. Above them is LaLiga side RCD Espanyol, showing more ambition than their illustrious neighbours, Barcelona, to enter the market first in December 2016. They have a social audience of 713 followers, over less than Helsinki Reds, a division of IFK Helsinki, a top tier Finnish Hockey team.
After the Reds, the audience sizes start to increase with the likes of Valencia and Sporting Lisbon boasting a reach of 16k and 26k respectively.
Reaching the top 4, German side has a reach of 46.8k, over 45% of which is on twitter. It is interesting to note that Schalke along with Sporting Lisbon are the only teams to offer their own Twitch channel.
PSG eSports are third with a social reach of 76,924. The French outfit grew by an impressive 9k from the previous month, while top of the pile is Santos FC Dexterity team with an impressive 132k audience, the majority of which (106k) is on Facebook.
Overall, Twitter was the biggest growing platform across the teams with 10,334 new followers with Facebook adding 8,946 likes. Exciting times…
Follow Result Sport on twitter to see the next report and if check out the Celtic eSports League, an exciting offering with football teams and eSports players from Ireland and the UK.