November 10, 2010

The Online Manchester Derby

The Manchester Derby, a heated football game between Manchester City and Manchester United, has been hotly contested since 1881. United have recorded the most wins overall, and indeed the most success in general. However, City recently (by some measures) became the world's richest sports team and have invested heavily in order to become outdo their local rivals.

But how has this rivalry taken form online? Has the new found wealth (and relative success) of Manchester City given the team more visibility than their more successful rivals? And, is the commonly repeated assertion that City fans are from Manchester, but United fans are from elsewhere reflected in online visibility for the two clubs?

The maps show that within Britain, Manchester United are far more visible than Manchester City. There are only 18 postal code areas in which there are more references to City than United, but 92 in which the opposite is true. The main cluster of areas in which City outdo United are unsurprisingly located in the Northwest, but interestingly within Manchester itself it is United and not City that are characterised by the greater degree of online visibility. So, at least in online world, it remains that Manchester City can't quite yet claim to be the only real representatives of Manchester.


  1. Perhaps more pertinent might have been a heatmap of where most of the mentions come from, in absolution if you will, rather than in comparison to the other team? So what proportion of Man City mentions come from Manchester?

  2. All of those football fans but one vary sad individual to make a page like that.


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.