Study: 800,000 tourists attended soccer games in England


LONDON (AP) — The lure of British football is highlighted in a study which found that 800,000 international visitors to the country last year attended a match, spending more than $1 billion during their time there.

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Figures released by VisitBritain show that around 40 percent of the tourists going to a match said watching sport was the main reason for visiting Britain.

Old Trafford and Emirates Stadium, the homes of Manchester United and Arsenal, were the most popular destinations among tourists for watching football with 109,000 visits.

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One in 10 overseas visitors to the northwest of England – where clubs such as United, Manchester City and Liverpool are located – attended a match.

Ireland (121,000), Norway (93,000), Sweden (58,000) and the USA (53,000) were the countries that provided most football-attending visitors.