According to Forbes, the country who bought the most World Cup tickets outside of host country Brazil was in fact the United States of America. Brazil was able to obtain the most tickets at 1,363,179, or nearly 60% of all tickets in the twelve cities across the vast country. Including Brazil, there are a total of four countries from South America in the top ten of tickets purchased: Brazil, Argentina, Columbia, and Chile. Across the pond in Europe there were three countries that cracked the list: Germany, England, and France. Rounding out the top ten is Mexico, who at one point wouldn’t have been in the World Cup had it not been for USA defeating Panama with two goals in extra time back in 2013. Australia is representing the Socceroos well by placing seventh on the list, despite the lowest ranked team (61st) in the World Cup, which begs the question, does your countries world rankings effect ticket sales? To look at that further here is what each country in the top ten is currently ranked:
As you can see, the results are pretty much across the board with rank effecting ticket sales. One of the most surprising omissions from the top ten is Uruguay. A team that is ranked 7th in the world and boarders Brazil.
The Red, White, and Blue, led the way by more than doubling the nearest country, Argentina, with a staggering 196,838 tickets bought. This could be due to the large support of the American Outlaws, an unofficial supporters group whose mission via their website is “To support the United States National Soccer Teams through a unified and dedicated group of supporters. Creating a community locally and nationally to Unite & Strengthen U.S. Soccer fans from all parts of this country.” The Outlaws, who have a membership of over 20,000 people, chartered two planes to fly to about 540 die-hard fans to Brazil this year. The rest of the supporters found their own means of transportation. Luckily for some countries, they didn’t even have to fly out of their continent to see the World Cup live.
Argentina, who is currently the fourth ranked team in the world and serious contender for the World Cup, purchased only 61,021 tickets. For a team with such promise and is located on the same continent as Brazil it seems a bit strange they wouldn’t garner more support. Although one thing to consider is that Brazil still wouldn’t be considered “driving distance” for an Argentinian. A car ride from the capital of Buenos Aires to Rio de Janeiro (where the team plays in their group stages) is still a 30 hour ride. For the European countries, their travel plans had to be more extensive.
Germany and England were able to obtain the third and fourth most World Cup tickets at 58,778 and 57,917 respectively. Germany is also in the same group as the US, along with Portugal and Ghana. This is widely considered the group of death because it features two top 5 ranked teams, Germany (#2) and Portugal (#4). As well as USA (#13) and the foe that has knocked them out of the last two World Cups, Ghana (#37).
Columbia, Australia, Chile, France, and Mexico fall in between the 33,000-55,000 mark in ticket sales. For a complete list of the current FIFA World Rankings, you could either go to their website, OR just check below to see the top 50.