This year’s World Championship was full of surprises, twists, and thrills. However, when it comes to sports betting, no one is more surprised than those who believe soccer is dead in the US.
GeoComply’s numbers show that the sport is fast becoming popular in North America, and the fact that the 2026 tournament is being held there only sweetens the pot.
World Cup Second Only to NFL
Canadian cybersecurity and fraud prevention company GeoComply has released data on sports betting in the US. France and Argentina were the second most popular choices for US sportsbooks. The World Championship game recorded 7.9 million geolocation transactions, ahead of the NBA Finals by 5.
One million and the NCAA Finals with 4.8 million. Last on the list provided by GeoComply was the NHL Stanley Cup Finals, which recorded approximately 1.9 million geolocation transactions for that single game. However, these numbers have been dwarfed. For championship game number one.
This was, as many probably expected, this year’s Super Bowl. GeoComply data shows it has attracted 23.5 million geolocation transactions, exceeding the numbers the other championships have drawn for their most recent matches. It’s also the most established event in the US, so that’s normal. However, this year’s World Championship also got on the NFL’s toes, as the first had a different schedule and started in the fall.
This was done to avoid possible harm to players during Qatar’s notoriously hot summers, when days are often sweltering, often exceeding 110 degrees (43°C), which is unsafe for the sport.
US Interest in Soccer Growing
As interesting as these numbers may seem, there is a story that is arguably more important, that being told by the number of active bettors. While GeoComply’s numbers for unique user accounts for the 2022 Sports Finals tell a similar story, some differences exist. One of them is key to debunking the American gamer myth. And this myth says that American fans don’t care about football. The FIFA World Cup final attracted 1.7 million unique user accounts.
The Super Bowl hit 3.1 million, which is still a lot more. However, while the number of geolocation transactions was more than three times as high as the numbers show, the number of individual accounts was not. This suggests that the discrepancy in the first metric is not due to the number of fans but rather to their activity. Also of note is that this was the first World Cup where US fans could place bets with US-regulated operators.
Team USA reached the Round of 16, giving fans more time to cheer on their home team. Qatar World Cup 2022 has attracted around a million new accounts from North America (NA), according to GeoComply, which is excellent. News for bookmakers. With the 2026 World Cup being co-hosted by the United States, Canada, and Mexico, interest in soccer in NA is almost guaranteed to grow, especially in the United States, where 60 of the tournament’s 80 games will be played.