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  • Writer's pictureAndrew Collins

RED CARD 2015 China Digital Football Index: The Real Winner is Madrid


Mailman Group releases RED CARD 2015 China Digital Football Index: a comprehensive study into the online performance of European football teams across China’s digital landscape.

The ratings track China’s top digital and social media channels to identify the football teams that are most successfully interacting with Chinese fans.

Real Madrid is the highest ranked club.

(from Nov. 11, 2014- Jan. 11, 2015)

SHANGHAI, CHINA. Jan. 30, 2015

Mailman announces the findings of their two-month study of global football teams and how they rank with their Chinese fans when it comes to digital and social engagement.

Drumroll please….the winner is Real Madrid. Real Madrid has claimed the top spot in the 2015 Red Card China Football Index, narrowly beating Spanish rival FC Barcelona.

The Red Card Index is the industry’s go to report when it comes to the big business of football and Chinese digital and social media. It represents the enormous opportunities global sports teams have in China.  (*See the news peg below about the popularity of football in China.) This report creates value for fans, football leagues, advertisers and sponsors, as it is the most comprehensive report of its kind. The data assesses seven key performance metrics including social following, website, video, e-commerce, online buzz and engagement across China’s major online social networks.

This report is the industry leader as it’s now in its 4th year. It measures social engagement across the most popular social platforms and media portals including Sina and Tencent Weibo, Netease, TMall, Weishi and WeChat. China’s newest and fastest growing social and communication network WeChat is also featured as a key component to assessing interactions and popularity across the landscape.

Key questions the Red Card report answers:

What are new platforms/new revenue streams football clubs have started using and creating this year?

Which club drives the most sales on Tmall?

How do these clubs score in comparison to one another when it comes to revenues for clubs and players?

Which European league is most successful in China right now?

Which World Cup nation is proving most popular in China?

Key findings include:

  1. The first ever published WeChat league table

  2. The shift toward e-commerce: 10 of 15 teams have a Chinese online store

  3. The power of China’s German football community: most popular national team

  4. The importance of having a Chinese language website: there is only 1 club that doesn’t have a presence.

  5. 6 Premier League teams finished within the Red Card top 10

The top 5 teams for Nov. 11, 2014-Jan. 11, 2015:

  1. Real Madrid: 147 points

  2. Barcelona: 145 points

  3. Manchester United: 138 points

  4. Bayern Munich: 138 points

  5. Liverpool: 119 points

Andrew Collins, Mailman Group CEO stated, “The Index has again reflected the direct relationship between Champions League success and popularity within China’s football community.”  Collins further added, “China’s booming digital landscape has created enormous opportunities for teams to develop direct fan relationships, and the enormity of online commerce in China will encourage more teams to realize market potential.”

Collins is not the only one who recognizes the opportunities for European clubs to grow their global brands, develop new revenue streams and attract new audiences in Asia:

*News peg:

BEIJING, Jan 21 (Reuters) – China’s biggest property conglomerate, Dalian Wanda Group Co, has bought 20 percent of Spanish soccer champions Atletico Madrid for 45 million euros ($52 million), becoming the first Mainland company to invest in a premier European club.

“The Asian market is the largest and every European club is working in Asia,” Atletico’s Chief Executive Officer Miguel Angel Gil Marin told Reuters at the signing ceremony.

About Mailman:

Mailman is a China based sporting and consulting group with expertise in digital and social media, commercial and media partnerships and brand strategy. Established in 1999, the company has been at the forefront of sport, new media, technology, and consumer trends in China for over 15 years. Mailman represents the world’s top professional sports teams, athletes, and celebrities in China.

See full Red Card 2015 China Digital Football Index here:

Media contact:

David Hornby

+86 (21) 6445 9899

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