In this post, I will be ranking the 10 best soccer leagues in the world. If I may ask, as a football fan, have you taken your time to watch another league apart from your favorite?
For me, I have watched a couple of games in almost every league, Is it structure? Is it traditions? I would say they are quite different. That said, 5
Be with me.
1. Premier League
The Premier League is the highest level of the English football league system, contested by 20 clubs operating on a system of promotion and relegation with the EFL.
It was founded in 1992 as the FA Premier League, and takes advantage of a lucrative television rights sale to Sky, with accumulated TV rights worth around £3.1 billion a year.
The Premier League is managed by a corporation, with member clubs acting as shareholders.
It is the most-watched sports league in the world, broadcast in 212 territories to 643 million homes, and has a potential TV audience of 4.7 billion people.
The average Premier League match attendance for the 2018-19 season was 38,181, second to the German Bundesliga, while aggregated attendance across all matches is the highest of any association football league at 14,508,981.
2. La Liga
LaLiga, also known as the Liga Nacional de Fútbol Profesional, oversees the two professional football leagues in Spain: the Primera División and the Segunda División.
It was founded in 1984 and operates independently from the Spanish Football Federation.
La Liga’s main role is to organize the National League Championship in conjunction with the RFEF, and it rejects the European Super League for being an exclusive and exclusionary championship that does not reward sporting merit. LaLiga consists of 42 member clubs that are grouped into two divisions: LaLiga Santander and LaLiga SmartBank.
In La Liga, clubs play each other twice in a season, with the winner being crowned champion at the end of the season.
The National League Championship has only been interrupted twice in its history, during the Spanish Civil War and due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
The Bundesliga, also known as the Fußball-Bundesliga or 1. Bundesliga is a professional football league in Germany, comprising 18 teams that compete in a promotion and relegation system with the 2. Bundesliga.
The league runs from August to May, with games being played on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Bayern Munich is the most successful club in the league with 31 titles.
The Bundesliga is ranked third in Europe according to UEFA’s league coefficient ranking for the 2022-23 season.
It is broadcast on television in over 200 countries and is the world’s number-one football league in terms of average attendance.
The league was founded in 1962 and is now operated by the Deutsche Fußball Liga.
The league structure has changed frequently and typically reflects the degree of participation in the sport in various parts of the country.
4. Serie A
Serie A is a professional football league in Italy, considered one of the best in the world, with a history dating back to the 1929-30 season.
It is a round-robin tournament, and the winner is awarded the Scudetto and the Coppa Campioni d’Italia. The league has been organized by various bodies over the years, with the Lega Serie A currently in charge.
Juventus, AC Milan, and Inter Milan are three of the most famous clubs in the league and were all founding members of the G-14.
Italian clubs have won more Ballon d’Or awards than any other league except Spain’s La Liga, although La Liga has more total winners.
Juventus is Italy’s most successful club and tied for sixth in Europe and twelfth in the world with the most official international titles.
Milan is joint third overall for official international titles won, and Inter became the first Italian team to achieve a seasonal treble in the 2009-10 season.
Serie A is known for its tactical and defensive playstyle, and many of the world’s greatest footballers have played in the league. Forty-two of FourFourTwo magazine’s 100 greatest footballers in history have played in Serie A, more than any other league.
5. Ligue 1
Ligue 1, the top professional football league in France, is contested by 20 clubs and operates on a promotion and relegation system with Ligue 2.
It runs from August to May, with each club playing 38 matches throughout the season.
Ligue 1 is ranked fifth in Europe and is administered by the Ligue de Football Professionnel. Paris Saint-Germain and AS Saint-Étienne are the most successful clubs with ten league titles each.
The league has been won on multiple occasions by foreign-based club AS Monaco, making it a cross-border competition.
The current champions are Paris Saint-Germain, and starting in the 2023-24 season, the league will reduce the number of clubs to 18, with four teams being relegated to Ligue 2 and two being promoted.
The Eredivisie is the highest professional football league in the Netherlands, founded in 1956.
It consists of 18 clubs, each of which plays the other twice every season, and the winner claims the Dutch national championship.
The bottom two clubs at the end of each season will be relegated to the Eerste Divisie, while the top two teams from that division are promoted to the Eredivisie.
The league is ranked sixth-best in Europe by UEFA as of the 2020-21 season. Ajax has won the most titles with 36, followed by PSV Eindhoven with 24 and Feyenoord with 15. The league has been known by various names due to sponsorship deals, including PTT Telecompetitie and KPN Eredivisie.
In 2012, media tycoon Rupert Murdoch secured the Eredivisie’s rights for 12 years for one billion euros.
7. Russian Premier League
The Russian Premier League (RPL) is the top-division professional association football league in Russia, established in 2001 and rebranded in 2018.
The league has 16 teams and had four allocated spots in European competitions for the 2021/22 season.
However, due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, these spots have been suspended along with the national team’s participation in international competitions.
The bottom two teams are relegated to the Russian First League, and the 13th and 14th-placed teams compete against the National League’s 4th and 3rd teams in a two-legged playoff.
The league is currently called the Mir Russian Premier League for sponsorship reasons. Since its inception in 2002, five teams have won the title, with Zenit Saint Petersburg being the current champions having won the competition consecutively from 2018 to 2021.
8. Liga Portugal
The Liga Portugal, also known as LPFP, is an autonomous organization under the authority of the Portuguese Football Federation that manages professional football club competitions in Portugal.
Established in 1978 as Liga Portuguesa dos Clubes de Futebol Profissional, it changed its name to Liga Portuguesa de Futebol Professional in 1991, and in 2020, it was rebranded as Liga Portugal.
The LPFP oversees and organizes Portugal’s top two leagues, the Primeira Liga and the Liga Portugal 2, along with the Taça da Liga knockout cup competition, which is limited to professional league clubs but excludes reserve or B teams. The current president is Pedro Proença, a former Portuguese international referee who has held the position since 2015.
9. Major League Soccer
Major League Soccer (MLS) is a professional soccer league sanctioned by the United States Soccer Federation.
The league has 29 teams, with 26 in the United States and 3 in Canada. MLS was established in 1993 as part of the United States successful bid to host the 1994 FIFA World Cup.
The league comprises a fixed membership of individually-operated teams owned by the league’s investors.
MLS had financial and operational struggles in its early years but has since become profitable due to the proliferation of soccer-specific stadiums around the league, the implementation of the Designated Player Rule, and national TV contracts.
MLS has the fourth-highest average attendance of any major professional sports league in the United States and Canada.
The MLS regular season starts in late February or early March and runs through mid-October, with each team playing 34 games.
The MLS Cup Playoffs take place in late October and November, culminating in the MLS Cup championship game. LA Galaxy has won the most MLS Cups with five while Los Angeles FC is the current defending champion.
If you ask me, that’s my top 10 ranking best soccer leagues in the world. So, which league are you gonna be watching this weekend?
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.