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Football fever grips India

india Updated: Jun 11, 2010 14:12 IST

Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

The 2010 FIFA World Cup kicks off today and India’s interest in the sporting extravaganza has reached its zenith with the D-day coming closer. A reflection of this can be seen on the Internet, as the number of searches related to football has been on the rise on Google since January. What’s more is that, Google Insights reveals that football is currently India’s favourite sport, with cricket following at number two.

Top 10 countries searching FIFA
Besides host country South Africa (SA), which is most interested in FIFA, it is India that seems to have developed a ‘soccer’ curiosity. India ranks third following SA and Indonesia among countries looking up on football, leaving all the other European countries behind. Incidentally, India did not even feature in the top-10 list of countries on Google searching for FIFA, World Cup and related content in 2009.
South Africa
Indonesia
India
UAE
Malaysia
Australia
United Kingdom
Canada
Netherlands
USA

Top 10 Indian states following FIFA
Among the cities, Karnataka takes a lead proving its enthusiasm towards the game. Following is the state down South — Tamil Nadu. Delhi is a close third followed by Maharashtra. Surprisingly, West Bengal doesn’t find a mention in the top 10.
Karnataka
Tamil Nadu
Delhi
Maharashtra
Andaman and Nicobar Islands
Andhra Pradesh
Arunanchal Pradesh
Assam
Bihar
Chandigarh
Within Maharashtra, Mumbai tops the charts in terms of searches, while Mahape follows at number two.

Popular search terms
Some of the key elements searched for on Google in relation to FIFA were — World Cup 2010, FIFA 2010 schedule, FIFA tickets, Shakira’s Waka waka song, ‘the anthem /theme song for FIFA 2010’, FIFA teams and FIFA players. FIFA images and jerseys are other search queries made by people globally.
FIFA 2010
South Africa
World Cup Schedule
Yellow Jersey
England football jersey
FIFA tickets
Shakira’s Waka waka

Favourite footballer
Cristiano Ronaldo leads the pack fending off competition from counterparts like Wayne Rooney, Lionel Messi and Kaka. Incidentally, the Ronaldo craze appears to be at its peak in Mumbai and Delhi. Also, people seem to want to know more about Ronaldo’s lifestyle, with several people on the lookout for wallpapers, videos and pictures featuring the player.
Cristiano Ronaldo
Ronaldo wallpapers
Ronaldo videos
Real Madrid
Ronaldo pictures
Lionel Messi
Kaka
Wayne Rooney