Challenging the traditional concept of a religion with a new form of 'religion' that is in more of your houses than you might think. 

Christianity, the largest religion in the world has 2.2 billion followers. Football has over 3 billion followers. I can’t deny it may seem odd; to equate religion with football or any entertainment but it must be said before mass media, religious ceremonies were a source of entertainment for the everyday working man.

Here I would love to insert a definition of religion but because there are so many different types of ‘religion’ it is impossible to come up with a single, undisputed definition. So in this scenario let’s agree religion is a pursuit or interest followed with great devotion. And by this definition football is nothing but a religion. 

The construction of stadia have become the new churches of this religion, where the faithful could go to see their players (prophets) they admired play (conduct their sermons) from week to week. Visiting these churches provides the ritual of a weekend gathering for those who are truly committed. For those perhaps less devout can stay at home at watch Match of the Day, football’s Songs of Praise. As no ritual is completed without a hymn anthems will be sung, (without the aid of a hymn book). 

The journey of those fans who follow their teams across the earth in an effort to be there when the team they love and worship is crowned a champion of some kind could be likened to a pilgrimage. Managers and players are held up like saints and prophets of old and often deliver moments of genius that some would dare say are biblical in proportion. It would in fact be very easy to classify football as a religion because of the impact it has upon those who follow it with such passion, much like how followers feel after being enlightened with a holy text. 

Previously hat is often considered the defining feature of religions is that they are concerned with cosmology, if we remove that so called defining feature we are left with more similarities than differences.