IPL vs EPL: How the leagues compare

Comparing the English Premier League vs IPL

The IPL is now comfortably the most popular franchise T20 competition, with the Indian Premier League having grown in size and popularity since its inception in 2008. Ten teams now compete against each other during the months of April and May, with this an enormous global sporting competition.

IPL Broadcasting Rights

To give you an idea of the scale of the IPL, the broadcasting rights are now more valuable than English Premier League football. The BCCI were able to sell the broadcasting rights for an eye-watering ₹48,390 crore (US$6.1 billion) in June 2022, with the package covering the 2023 season right through to the 2027 campaign.

Indeed, it’s only the NFL which now commands a bigger pay day, with the Indian Premier League featuring a round robin format which has returned to home and away in 2023 after three years of the schedule being affected by COVID-19. 

Nevertheless, the growth of the IPL as a product has been unmatched in recent years. It is now the most-attended cricket league on the planet, with 2010 being a breakthrough year in part due to the IPL being the first sporting event that was actually broadcast live on YouTube.

Premier League vs IPL

Not to say that the English Premier League soccer pales into insignificance. This is another global sporting competition and the advantage is that the season spans roughly 75% of a calendar year. Traditionally it starts in August and ends in May, with twenty clubs competing in a league format for major honours.

In recent years, there has been a growth in overseas club owners, with a large number of American consortiums acquiring control of clubs such as Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United. Similarly, there are groups in the Far East that now own Manchester City and Newcastle United.

EPL vs IPL Similarities

The Indian Premier League and English Premier League therefore have parallels in so far that they are two of the biggest sporting club competitions in the world in terms of popularity, with billionaire owners now hugely invested into the success of various franchises.

The IPL is a competition that has really put Test cricket in the corner when it comes to the Indian national team. The excitement starts to build from late December when the IPL auction takes place and there are some enormous fees paid by the franchises as they bid to snap up the most talented players on the market.

IPL Most Expensive Player

For example, Sam Curran was bought by Punjab Kings for ₹18.50 crore (US$2.3 million) in December 2022 and ahead of the 2023 season. This was a record-breaking amount to pay for an individual player and the auction has similarities with the NFL draft that takes place, although the latter focuses on the best college players that are for sale.

Although it’s not a precise figure, the estimated brand value of the IPL in 2022 was ₹90,038 crore (US$11 billion). This is a competition where seven cities and three states compete against each other, with the fanbases now creating their own identity and the rivalries between the various teams is enormous.

The English Premier League is certainly no slouch when it comes to attendances, with this being the most-watched sports league in the world and it can lay claim to being a more truly global product when you consider that it’s broadcast in over 200 territories and now reaches roughly 650 million homes. 

IPL Brand Value

As mentioned, we are now looking upwards of US$11 billion when it comes to the brand value of the Indian Premier League. This number has increased hugely in the past twelve to eighteen months, with 2022 seeing the brand value roughly double compared to the end of 2021 figure and it will be interesting to see if the numbers continue to explode.

The addition of two extra teams has certainly allowed for some of this growth although the IPL are currently content to keep the number of franchises and there’s definitely a focus on not diluting a brand as they aim to achieve more global reach when it comes to the 2023 tournament.

IPL Media TV Rights Cost

In addition to the media rights being sold for $6.2 billion in June 2022, there was also the sale of two new franchises which boosted the coffers. The proceeds of the sale when it came to Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants raised in the region of Rs 12,500 crore ($1.5 billion) and there is now plenty of speculation when it comes to more franchises being created.

After all, the IPL will be casting an eye towards the English Premier League and the NFL as global competitions where a much larger number of teams are participating and there might be a slowdown in growth during 2023 as the market consolidates after two new teams and the securing of a long-term rights deal for broadcast.

Most Valuable IPL Teams

Although Gujarat Titans were the 2022 IPL champions, the most valuable Indian Premier League teams are Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders and Chennai Super Kings. Mumbai were estimated to be worth $83 million in 2022, with the teams splashing the cash when it came to the recent December 2022 auction where 405 players were shortlisted.

Sam Curran was the most expensive purchase when being acquired by Punjab Kings for ₹18.50 crore (US$2.3 million), with 123 overseas players being listed along with 273 players native to India.

IPL Sponsors

The combined television and digital rights for the period between 2023 and 2027 was two and a half times bigger than the previous rights cycle that took place between 2018 and 2022. It’s a similar story when it comes to the sponsorship and it’s Tata who have now acquired the title rights.

It has been reported by media outlets that the BCCI would receive $62 million for the 2022 and 2023 season from their title sponsors, with Vivo having previously made headlines In June 2017 when the Chinese smartphone manufacturer retained the rights for the next five seasons (2018–2022).

This winning bid of ₹2,199 crore (US$280 million) made the deal more expensive than Barclays’ English Premier League title sponsorship contract between 2013 and 2016, with the Premier League currently operating without a sponsor and they have opted for a clean brand despite previously having Barclays in the title.

Although the Barclays deal was previously worth around £40 million to the English Premier League, there was a strategic decision for the tournament to compete more effectively internationally and challenge NFL and NBA when it came to overseas reach. Indeed, it is estimated that the EPL now generates £5.136bn when it comes to annual broadcasting revenue.

Top IPL Teams 

Mumbai Indians are the most successful IPL team of all time. They have secured five titles in total and they were achieved between 2013 and 2020. This is a franchise owned by Reliance Industries which is India’s biggest conglomerate, with Mumbai winning the race to be the first team to achieve a brand value of over $100 million. This milestone was achieved in 2017, with the team playing their home matches at the Wankhede Stadium and they play in a distinctive blue kit.

The Chennai Super Kings are also a huge IPL franchise and they recorded back to back successes in 2010 and 2011. More recently, the Super Kings were crowned champions in 2018 and 2021, with the team playing their cricket at the M. A. Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. They have also won the Champions League in 2010 and 2014, with Chennai playing in an all-yellow strip.

The inaugural Premier League winners were Rajasthan Royals when they claimed the maiden title in 2008. The history makers have so far fallen short when it comes to landing a second championship success, although they did finish runner-up in 2022 and they are a well-supported team who play at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur. Ajinkya Rahane is the team’s record run-scorer with 3098 runs, while the leading wicket-taker is Shane Watson who has managed 67.

Step forward Kolkata Knight Riders, with this team having been one of the 2008 founding members and they have been crowned champions in 2012 and 2014. Kolkata were also runners-up in 2021 and they have finished third on two occasions. They play their home cricket at the distinctive Eden Gardens in Kolkata, with Red Chillies Entertainment now owning this franchise.

Top EPL Teams 

Manchester United have won the Premier League title on thirteen occasions and they have been English champions twenty times. They are a huge global brand who have been regulars in the Champions League, with the team playing their matches at Old Trafford. They won the Premier League and Champions League double in the 1998-99 and 2007-08 seasons and can lay claim to being the most famous English club.

Liverpool sit one league title behind Manchester United, having won nineteen times although only once in the Premier League era. They have a strong rivalry with the Red Devils and have won the Champions League on six occasions, with Jurgen Klopp having improved the fortunes of a team who can list Steven Gerrard, Kenny Dalglish and Ian Rush as their icons.

Arsenal are the third most successful club in the history of English football, with the Gunners having won thirteen league titles. The Gunners play at the Emirates Stadium and they have won the FA Cup on thirteen occasions. The London outfit also hold the record for the longest unbeaten streak which spanned 49 matches between May 2003 and October 2004. 

Chelsea have been successful in the modern era, with Roman Abramovich having invested heavily into the London club who play at Stamford Bridge. They have been able to land the Premier League title on five occasions, with Jose Mourinho helping them to a great deal of success although it was Roberto Di Matteo who oversaw their Champions League win in 2013 before a further success in 2019 under Thomas Tuchel.

Manchester City are now one of the most successful English clubs and they have been Premier League champions on six occasions. Between the 2017-18 season and the 2021-22 season, they recorded four separate title successes under Pep Guardiola. Playing under Pep Guardiola, they are often among the Champions League favourites and have also won a lot of domestic cups.

Tottenham Hotspur are regarded as part of the Big Six in the English Premier League although they haven’t won a league title since 1961. However, they have won the FA Cup on eight separate occasions and also triumphed in the League Cup four times. They also reached the Champions League final in 2019 and play at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Top IPL Players 

Virat Kohli has to be recorded as an IPL legend, with the batsman currently holding the record for the most runs scored in the history of the tournament. As things stand, he has racked up 6,624 runs for Royal Challengers Bangalore, with an average of 36.19 occurring in 223 matches.

However, David Warner’s achievements also have to be respected with the bat in the Indian Premier League. The Australian has amassed 5,881 runs over 162 matches and that actually gives him the best average out of all the top IPL run scorers. 42.00 is extremely good and he deserves a place in the hall of fame when representing Delhi Capitals and Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Let’s also talk about Chris Gayle and the Boss holds a number of IPL batting records. This popular figure recorded the fastest century when hitting a ton for Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2013, while he has also scored the most IPL centuries and has six to his name that were achieved for three different teams. Unsurprisingly, he also has the most recorded Sixes after racking up 357.

When it comes to bowling, Dwayne Bravo can lay claim to being the highest wicket-taker in the IPL and he has taken 183 wickets for Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings and Gujarat Lions combined. With a strike rate of 17.0 and a respectable average of 23.82, this has been an outstanding achievement in 161 matches.

Nevertheless, Lasith Malinga is a Mumbai Indians legend who can actually boast a superior average of 19.79 during his 122 matches and innings. The Sri Lankan holds a number of IPL records and he was able to record no less than seven four-wicket hauls between 2009-2019, with the 2011 IPL season seeing him notch 28 wickets.

Top EPL Players 

Alan Shearer is a true Premier League icon and he is the record goal scorer in this competition. The former Southampton, Blackburn and Newcastle forward was able to notch 260 goals in 441 appearances, with that being an impressive ratio of 0.59 goals per game. Shearer was able to help Blackburn land the Premier League title in 1995 and also scored 30 goals for England.

Thierry Henry is also among the record scorers in the Premier League but he was hugely successful when it came to landing trophies for Arsenal. He won two domestic titles with the Gunners and also helped them secure two FA Cups during his time at the club. He won four Premier League Golden Boots during his time with the club and was included in the PFA Team of the Century between 1997-2007.

Ryan Giggs is strongly associated with Manchester United’s dominance of the Premier League and he helped the Red Devils to win an incredible 13 titles. He was in the PFA Team of the Year on six different occasions and made an incredible 672 appearances for United, scoring 114 league goals. Operating in a left-wing position for the majority of his career, he remains an icon.

David Beckham was Giggs’ team-mate at Manchester United and there’s no denying that the former is a huge global brand in his own entity. Becks started his career with the north-west club and made 265 appearances, scoring 62 goals. He was renowned for his prowess from free-kicks and also scored some spectacular goals including one from the halfway line away to Wimbledon.

Steven Gerrard might not have been able to win a Premier League title with Liverpool FC, although he’s one of the greatest players to have represented the Merseyside club. The midfielder made 504 appearances for the Reds between 1998-2015 and scored 120 goals in the process. He also steered them to a Champions League success in 2005 and also won two FA Cups with Liverpool.

Global Popularity  of THE EPL vs IPL

It’s now fair to say that the IPL and EPL are among the two biggest sporting club competitions in the world. Cricket and football fans are able to watch the latest action in hundreds of different territories, with various media companies having acquired TV and online broadcasting rights along the way.

When it comes to estimated viewing figures for the IPL, it was reported that 229 million television viewers watched the first week’s action when it came to the 2022 Indian Premier League. The overall reach was regarded as 267 million although the 2023 tournament is expected to surpass that number.

Average Attendances

There are sixty games played throughout the IPL season and the total attendance tends to be around 3,500,000 which means an average attendance of around 58,000 for each game. That compares to the English Premier League having an average attendance of 38,168 for each encounter, although some clubs command upwards of 70,000 per home game.

It is estimated that the English Premier League’s television audience is 4.7 billion people when it came to watching at least one game throughout the season. It has recently been confirmed that the Premier League is the most widely distributed sports programme in Asia.

Social Media IPL vs EPL

The English Premier League official Instagram account now has 63.4m followers, with the same league having a devoted IG account for Indian followers and that figure recently surpassed 700,000. They also have similar accounts for fans in the US, Indonesia and Arabic fans.

Conversely, the IPL T20 official IG account has 7.9m followers, with Mumbai Indians having over 10 million followers and it’s clear that Indian cricket fans are flocking to Instagram like never before. Chennai Super Kings have also passed the 10 million mark when it comes to IG followers, while Kolkata Knight Riders have 3.4m followers.

When it comes to the English Premier League, Manchester United have 60.7m followers, with Liverpool having 41.3m followers. Then comes Arsenal with 24.8m, Chelsea with 38m and Manchester City with 38.7m.

David Beckham is a Manchester United legend and he now commands 77.3m followers on Instagram, while Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah has 56.4m followers on the same platform and he commands a large audience from Egypt and the other Arabic nations.

However, if you’re looking for ridiculous numbers, then former Manchester United forward Cristiano Ronaldo now has 543m followers and he recently returned to Old Trafford to turn out for the Red Devils before leaving for Saudi Arabia.

There is no greater Indian cricket living legend than Sachin Tendulkar and he has 38.4 million followers, although Virat Kohli is hitting out of the park and he has 234 million followers on Instagram right now. AB de Villiers is also pulling no punches with his 20.3m followers. Rohit Sharma is doing slightly better with an audience of 26.6m.

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