Offside to hat-trick: Search data reveals the most asked football questions

The Most Asked Football Questions Across UK and Europe, Revealed

  • Brits were the most clueless about the length of half-time, with 7,700searches a month for ‘How long is half-time in football?’
  • ‘Who invented football’, ‘How long is extra time?’ and ‘What is offside?’ were among other common questions across Europe.
  • The highest-searched question in Germany was‘Who is the best footballer in the world?’ with 6,700 monthly searches.
  • Russia and Spain knew the least about offside, with over 4,500 monthly searches between them.
  • ‘Who is the best footballer in the world?’and ‘What is offside?’ were the most common questions asked across Europe, with both receiving the highest search volumes in nine countries.


With a worldwide estimate of 1.5 billion football fans watching Argentina beat France in the 2022 World Cup Final, it’s clear that football is among the most popular sports across the globe.

That being said, not all of us are fans or know how to play the beautiful game. The experts at SeatPick decided to test this by using Google Search volumes to see what the most searched football-related questions are in the UK and Europe (translated into each country’s respective language), and what the most searched question is overall.

The 10 Most Searched Football Questions in the UK:

RankQuestionAverage Monthly Search Volume
1How long is half-time in football?7,700
2Who is the best football player in the world?7,300
3Who invented football?5,400
4How long is a football pitch?3,800
5How long is extra time in football?2,600
6What is offside?1,700
7How many players are in a football team?1,000
8How often can you make substitutions in football?700
9What is a hat-trick in football?350
10What year was football founded?250

As the table above shows, the most searched question in the UK was‘How long is half-time in football?’ with an estimated 7,700 search volumes per month. With the small break being the moment most use to go to the bathroom or grab a drink, it’s no surprise that many want to know how long they have to do so. The answer, of course, is 15 minutes.

Second in the rankings is ‘Who is the best football player in the world?’with 7,300 searches a month. There is a divide on this one – many fans will say it’s Argentine hero Lionel Messi whilst others will say it’s Cristiano Ronaldo, and others may have an entirely different answer! There’s no wonder it’s the second-most popular football question in the UK.

In third place with 5,400Google searches is ‘Who invented football?’.The sport as we know it today was founded by the Football Association in 1863, but the earliest form of football was called ‘cuju’, originating in China around 206 BC. Ancient Greece also had a similar game called ‘episkyros’, but players were allowed to use their hands, a rule not used in cuju or modern football.

At #5,with 2,600searches a month is‘How long is extra time?’. It’s unsurprising that this is a common question. According to Ahrefs’ keyword tool, this question received over 33,000 searches in early July 2021, which would have been from fans watching the Euro 2020 Championships. Those fans would have found out that knock-out matches which end in a draw after 90 minutes face an additional 30 minutes of football to settle the difference.

Interestingly, ‘What is offside?’,which is perhaps the most commonly unknown football term, is lower down the list at #6 with 1,700 searches a month. The offside rule is infamous for being a difficult term to explain, and even referees themselves have difficulty calling offsides, as viewing angles can affect what is deemed fair play and what isn’t.

Simply put, the offside rule states that an attacking player, when in the opposition’s half, must have at least two opposition players, including the goalkeeper, between him and the opposition goal when a pass is being played to him.

Trailing at the bottom of the top ten is ‘What year was football founded?’with an estimated 250 searches per month. A popular question for a pub quiz round, it’s unclear whether they meant modern football or the Chinese origins.

The top 10 countries with the highest searches…

CountryMost Searched QuestionAverage Monthly Search Volumes
UKHow long is half-time in football?7,700
GermanyWho is the best football player in the world?6,700
NetherlandsHow long is a football pitch?2,900
RussiaWhat is offside?2,200
ItalyWho invented football?1,600
SpainWhat is offside?1,400
SwedenHow long is a football pitch?1,400
UkraineWho invented football?900
DenmarkHow long is a football pitch?900
FranceWho is the best football player in the world?800
  • It’s surprising that the UK, the ‘home’ of football, would appear first in this list, with 7,700 average monthly search volumes for ‘How long is half-time in football?’
  • ‘How long is a football pitch?’ is the most common question in these top 10 results, occurring in three countries, with a combined average monthly search volume of 5,200 searches.


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