Growing up, I loved playing soccer, and I played on organized teams through high school. I never really enjoyed watching soccer on television, because I didn’t follow any teams or players. Lately, I’ve been watching English Premier League football games when I catch them on tv here in the US. This morning, I tuned in to the Arsenal vs. Tottenham game on ESPN2 and was surprised about the domain names I saw advertised.
When I was in the UK (and other European cities), I saw many more ccTLD domain names advertised than anything else. In the UK especially, I saw mostly .co.uk domain names used by advertisers. This morning, I didn’t see a single .co.uk domain name used in the stadium signage or uniforms, and I was very surprised. I know the Premier League is global, but I would have thought there would be more local advertising at the stadium.
Some of the domain names I saw advertised were Arsenal.com, Emirates.com, BarclaysTicketOffice.com (forwards to Barclays.co.uk), NikeFootball.com, PaddyPower.com, and Mansion.com.
I am sure that advertising at Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium is very costly, and probably too much for most local companies. However, it was still surprising to see the urls that were used. I would have been less surprised if this was a World Cup game, because those will be truly global, but since it was a EPL game, I was surprised.