This is a definitive guide on how many professional soccer teams are there in the world. Almost everyone loves football, some love to play the game while some love watching their favorite players and teams in action.
With football uniting and bringing everyone together, I know you would have wondered about the number of football teams in the world.
In this post, aside from learning about football teams in Europe, I will dig deep into some countries like the United States of America, London, Europe, England, and Canada. So there, you will learn about the number of soccer teams in those countries. Let’s have fun.
The Number Of Professional Soccer Teams in The World
According to FIFA, the international governing body for soccer, the world boasts a staggering number of professional soccer teams.
Currently, there are 3,903 professional soccer teams actively operating across 201 different countries. These teams are important components of officially recognized soccer leagues, each comprising a minimum of two or more teams.
The diversity of professional soccer teams worldwide highlights the global reach and passion for the game.
From the clubs in Europe to Asia, the soccer world is a dynamic dosser of teams competing at various levels. However, Europe stands out as a soccer powerhouse, housing several teams across its numerous leagues.
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Established leagues such as the English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, German Bundesliga, and Italian Serie A attract much more attention and feature some of the most prominent teams in the sport.
Beyond these top-tier leagues, each country in Europe has its pyramid structure with multiple divisions, ensuring a robust presence of professional soccer teams across the continent.
Countries like Brazil and Argentina boast passionate fan bases and many teams competing in their respective leagues. The Brazilian Serie A and the Argentine Primera Division are just two examples of the soccer culture found in the region.
North America is another thriving soccer country, with Major League Soccer (MLS) being the top professional league in the United States and Canada. Today, Asia, Africa, and Oceania also play a major role in soccer.
Also, countries like China, Japan, and South Korea have invested heavily in their domestic leagues, leading to the emergence of competitive teams.
In Africa, nations like Egypt, Nigeria, and South Africa have passionate followings for their local teams, while Australia and New Zealand display their talent in the A-League and the New Zealand Football Championship, respectively.
How Many Professional Soccer Teams Are In Europe?
When it comes to professional football, Europe has it all as it is full of different teams and leagues. Some professional soccer divisions, a total of 40, represent over 1000 clubs across 34 countries, making Europe a hot for football and passion.
The top-tier leagues in Europe have won the hearts of supporters like you and me with their rich histories and intense rivalries.
The English Premier League, often considered one of the most watched leagues in football, features 20 teams renowned for their quality and competitiveness.
Spain’s La Liga, home to iconic clubs like Barcelona and Real Madrid style of playing also interests some fans who love technical players.
It is more of the balls than strength, unlike the English Premier League. The German Bundesliga, the Italian Serie A, and the French Ligue 1 also contribute to European soccer, each boasting its uniqueness.
However, European soccer is not confined to these top leagues alone. Each country in Europe has its domestic league system, typically consisting of multiple divisions.
For instance, England’s pyramid structure includes the Championship, League One, League Two, and numerous non-league divisions.
Similarly, countries like Germany, Spain, Italy, and France have their multi-tier systems, ensuring a broad range of professional teams.
Even Lesser-known leagues in countries such as Scotland, the Netherlands, Portugal, Belgium, and Switzerland also contribute to European football.
These leagues often produce talented players. Moreover, Europe’s continental competitions, such as the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Europa League, bring together the best clubs from across the continent to compete for glory.
These competitions provide opportunities for teams from smaller leagues to prove their skills and challenge the bigger teams.
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How Many Professional Soccer Teams Are In London?
London, the capital of England boasts a remarkable number of professional soccer teams, with a total of seventeen teams competing across various leagues.
In the Premier League, seven teams represent London. These clubs include Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, and West Ham United.
The battles between these London-based Premier League teams often ignite fierce rivalries. London maintains a strong presence in the Football League, with six teams competing in its divisions.
Clubs like Brentford, Charlton Athletic, Fulham, Millwall, Queens Park Rangers (QPR), and Wimbledon add to the city’s soccer, providing fans with exciting matches and intense local derbies.
In the National League, the non-league football in England includes Leyton Orient, Barnet, Dagenham & Redbridge, and Bromley.
On matchdays, the streets come alive with passionate supporters wearing their team colors, converging on stadiums to cheer their clubs.
However, London’s football is not limited to the men’s game alone. The city also boasts successful women’s teams, including Arsenal Women and Chelsea Women, who compete at the highest level in the Women’s Super League.
How Many Professional Soccer Teams Are In Canada?
Canada has experienced a rise in professional football, with a notable increase in the number of teams competing at various levels.
As of the present, Canadian football comprises a total of 18 professional clubs, with a strong representation in both the Canadian Premier Division and Major League Soccer (MLS).
The Canadian Premier Division, the top-tier professional league in Canada, shows the country’s homegrown talent and fosters local rivalries. Within this division, eight clubs take the field, each vying for the opportunity to lift the league title.
These clubs are Cavalry FC, FC Edmonton, Forge FC, HFX Wanderers FC, Pacific FC, Valour FC, Atlético Ottawa, and York United FC.
The Canadian Premier Division has not only provided a platform for Canadian players to display their skills but has also generated excitement among soccer fans.
In addition, Canada is represented by three teams in Major League Soccer (MLS), the premier professional league in the United States and Canada.
The Toronto FC, Montreal Impact (now known as Club de Foot Montréal), and Vancouver Whitecaps fly the Canadian flag in this competitive league.
These teams have brought a new level of visibility to Canadian soccer, competing against renowned American franchises and attracting a passionate following of their own.
The growth and development of professional soccer in Canada have been bolstered by the country’s successful bid to co-host the FIFA World Cup in 2026.
This landmark event will not only announce Canada’s ability to organize a global sporting competition but will also provide an opportunity for the national team and domestic clubs to shine on the biggest level.
How Many Professional Soccer Teams Are In England?
England is marked by a vast number of professional teams, with a total of 69 clubs in England and three in Wales competing in the Football League.
The Football League, established in 1888, is divided into three divisions: the Championship, League One, and League Two. Collectively, these divisions comprise the professional association football clubs that form the heart of English soccer.
With 24 teams in the Championship, 24 teams in League One, and 24 teams in League Two, the Football League offers a wide range of competitive opportunities for clubs across the country.
The Championship, the second tier of English soccer, is known for its intensity and competitiveness. It is the battleground for teams aspiring to earn promotion to the Premier League.
Teams like Leeds United, Nottingham Forest, and Derby County have enjoyed historical success in the Championship. League One, the third tier, hosts another 24 professional teams. It is a highly competitive division where clubs strive for promotion to the Championship or battle to avoid relegation.
Teams such as Sunderland, Portsmouth, and Ipswich Town are also notable teams in League One. League Two, the fourth tier, completes the Football League structure with an additional 24 teams.
While often considered the lower rung of professional soccer, League Two provides a platform for clubs to showcase their talent, nurture emerging players, and compete for promotion to higher divisions.
Aside from the Football League, England also hosts the top-flight professional league, the Premier League, which consists of 20 teams.
This elite division features renowned clubs like Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, and Chelsea, attracting some of the world’s best players.
Lastly, the three professional teams from Wales that compete in the English football pyramid system, namely Cardiff City, Swansea City, and Newport County, contribute to the regional representation in English soccer.
How Many Professional Soccer Teams Are In The USA?
The United States has witnessed a surge in the popularity of soccer in recent years. The professional football in the country is led by Major League Soccer (MLS), which has experienced rapid expansion and now features a total of 27 teams.
Out of the 27 teams, 24 are located within the United States, while the remaining three are based in Canada.
These Canadian teams, namely Toronto FC, Montreal Impact (now known as Club de Foot Montréal), and Vancouver Whitecaps, contribute to the makeup of MLS.
MLS has shaped the growth and development of football in the United States. With a strategic focus on expansion, MLS has welcomed new franchises in various cities, broadening the league’s reach across the country.
Teams like Los Angeles Galaxy, Seattle Sounders FC, New York Red Bulls, and Atlanta United have become prominent names in American soccer, attracting large fan bases.
The rapid expansion of MLS is set to continue, with plans to increase the number of teams by 2023. In addition, the United States boasts a rich soccer ecosystem that includes lower-tier leagues and developmental systems.
The United Soccer League (USL) is the second division, featuring professional teams that provide a pathway for talent to progress to MLS.
This definitive guide has provided valuable insights into the number of professional soccer teams in the world. As I said, there are currently 3,903 active professional soccer teams across 201 different countries.
And talking about the number of teams in some countries and states, London alone boasts seventeen professional soccer teams, while Canada has witnessed a rise in professional football, with 18 clubs competing in various leagues.
Also, England is home to 69 professional clubs in the Football League. In the United States, Major League Soccer (MLS) leads the way with 27 teams.
Kenneth is a an avid soccer follower, fan and writer. He is a consistent follower of the sport and is a fan of Chelsea FC.