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Facebook is teeming with 500 million soccer fans

As the planet gears up for the FIFA World Cup in Brazil, users should expect to see a surge in posts about games, players, wins, losses, and goals.


Facebook intended this news to be for marketers, but soccer fans should also delight in the fact that nearly half of the site's users are soccer fans. That's right, of the social network's 1.2 billion users, around 500 million are devotees of the beautiful game.

What constitutes a soccer fan? According to Facebook, it's someone who has liked a soccer player or team.

This news is relevant because in just a few short weeks one of the most anticipated FIFA World Cups is kicking off in the heartland of soccer -- Brazil. So, with hundreds of millions of soccer fans lurking on Facebook, users should get used to seeing posts about games, players, stats, wins, losses, and goals.

Calling itself the "biggest stadium in the world," Facebook says that in the US alone nearly 49 million people are soccer fans. This means the US comes in second only to Brazil, which has nearly 54 million soccer aficionados.

According to Facebook, soccer fans are typically younger and post more to the social network than the average person. The social network's stats show that soccer fans post 1.7 more photos, send 1.9 more messages, post 1.8 more updates, upload 1.7 more videos, and make 1.7 more comments. During a soccer match in March, US fans posted 16.8 million actions on Facebook that related to the game.

Facebook isn't the only social network where soccer fans tend to congregate. Twitter is also a major gathering place for the sport. In 2012, the tweet-per-second record for sports was broken during a Champions League match between Barcelona and Chelsea. During the soccer game, 13,684 tweets per second were sent out globally -- beating the football Super Bowl record of 12,233 tweets per second.