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Manchester: The Ultimate Football City

November 5, 2022

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Article Summary

  • One of the features that makes the city desirable to visit and move to is often overlooked by most: its football heritage.
  • In 2019, Manchester United and Manchester City attracted over 300,000 overseas visitors and generated a total of over £285m in fan spending at their stadiums.
  • In 2019, The National Football Museum had 210,000 visitors come through their doors, with 25% being international visitors.

With an estimated population of over 586,000 in the City of Manchester (MCCFM) and over 2.8 million in the Greater Manchester Area (ONS), the metropolis has become an incredibly attractive location to live in.

Whether it be for the job opportunities, the culture, the lifestyle, or the pure love for the city, people are choosing to move to the area for one reason or another. One of the features that makes the city desirable to visit and move to is often overlooked by most: its football heritage.

United & City

Manchester is home to two of the biggest football clubs in the world, Manchester United and Manchester City. The former holds the rich history and tradition that made this city famous for the sport. But the latter has seen more success, big names and headlines go their way in the past decade or so.

Between them, tens of thousands of football fans flock to their respective home stadiums every week to watch domestic and continental fixtures against an array of sides. The sides have 28 top flight titles between them, with 20 United’s way and 8 City’s. In fact, 11 of the last 16 Premier League titles have gone to one of the Manchester sides.

Manchester United claim to have 1.1 billion fans and followers which, for reference, would fill their stadium Old Trafford over 14,800 times. Most of these fans will, unfortunately, never be able to visit Manchester or the stadium. Thousands of fans from all over the world still manage to make the pilgrimage every year, generating high levels of tourism and income for the City.

Tourism and the Premier League

In 2019, Old Trafford garnered 226,000 visits from overseas fans, generating an total income of £225m from visitors, the most in the Premier League. In comparison, Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium attracted 87,000 international fans, and raked in £63m in fan spending. In total, Premier League clubs generated over £1.4 billion from overseas visitors. This amount highlights the impact that football has not only on Manchester’s economy, but the entire country’s economy.

The football history and legacy that the city holds could be a factor for individuals who are planning to relocate within/to the UK for work. It may not be a deciding factor, but it is a positive for football fans as they will be nearer to the club they support.

The National Football Museum

In addition to the success and appeal of the clubs, Manchester is home to the National Football Museum. It is a popular tourist attraction that is free to enter for City of Manchester residents. The museum preserves and displays several pieces of football memorabilia from the inception of the beautiful game to present day.

Consisting of four floors, the National Football Museum also has game zones where visitors can play football mini-games and an ever-changing exhibition floor. The museum has a range of unique memorabilia from pivotal points in football history on every floor.

In 2019, The National Football Museum had 210,000 visitors come through their doors, with 25% being international visitors.

Hotel Football

Opened in 2015 by ex-Manchester United players Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt, Phil Neville and Gary Neville in partnership the GG Hospitality Management Company, ‘Hotel Football’ is situated next to Old Trafford stadium. The ten storey hotel is intended to be the first in a chain of football-themed hotels to be located next to, or near, football grounds around the world. The rooms in the hotel are all football-themed, such as the Class of ’92 rooms, which contains memorabilia, quotes and facts on the walls.

On the ground floor of the hotel is café football, a restaurant and bar with a range of food and drinks. On matchdays, it becomes a popular pre-match meet-up for Manchester United match-going fans. To conclude these features, there is also a five-a-side football pitch on the roof of the building. 

Investment in Manchester

Overall, each of these factors help to contribute to Manchester’s ever-growing economy and its thriving tourism. The Greater Manchester region’s tourism sector is worth £7.9 billion, highlighting the size and popularity of the City.

More people than ever are relocating up North from the South, with Manchester being the most populous city in the UK after London. Evidently, it is the ideal time to invest in property in Manchester as the city, its population and economy continues to grow.

To find out more about Manchester and the properties we have available there, click here.

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