Three Lions is the ultimate football song, Spotify and YouTube confirm

What’s the ultimate England football song? (Pretend you don’t already know). We at Trusted Reviews decided to ask Spotify and YouTube what football-themed songs users have been streaming and, shock of all shocks, Three Lions tops the charts − by quite some distance, too.

Penned by The Lightning Seeds’ Ian Broudie and comedians David Baddiel and Frank Skinner, Three Lions became an instant classic when it was first released ahead of Euro ‘96. It was re-released for France ‘98, and has been inescapable over the past few weeks, with fans belting it out in the streets, train stations, and pubs, and even squeezing it into iconic film and TV scenes (with mixed success).

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Spotify told Trusted Reviews that the ‘96 version of the song has been streamed 7,024,505 times in total, with the ‘98 version slightly less popular, having amassed 3,354,454 plays.

Barring Shakira’s Waka Waka (184,618,601) and K’NAAN’s Wavin’ Flag (28,880,969), which were heavily promoted global hits, Three Lions is far more popular than any other proper football song beloved by English fans. We’ve ignored big hitters that have vague links with the beautiful game but aren’t actually football songs, like The White Stripes’ Seven Nation Army.

Below is a list of the 10 most popular on Spotify (The Life of Riley isn’t strictly a football song, but it’s just too good and closely tied with English football to ignore):

  1. Three Lions – Baddiel, Skinner and The Lightning Seeds – 7,024,505
  2. World In Motion – New Order – 4,834,343
  3. The Life of Riley – The Lightning Seeds – 4,081,255
  4. Three Lions ‘98 – Baddiel, Skinner and The Lightning Seeds – 3,354,454
  5. Carnaval de Paris – Dario G – 3,094,974
  6. Vindaloo – Fat Les – 2,285,582
  7. Shout for England – Dizzee Rascal and James Corden – 1,362,176
  8. We’re on the Ball – Ant and Dec – 851,788
  9. Eat My Goal – Collapsed Lung – 288,713
  10. World at Your Feet – Embrace – 260,062

It’s a similar story on YouTube, where Three Lions is currently getting almost one million views a day in the UK. It’s climbed 14 spots on the site’s UK Top Songs chart this week, reaching #33.

three lions youtube

Unsurprisingly, Three Lions views are going through the roof on England matchdays, with YouTube saying it has recorded spikes as high as 6333% compared to the pre-World Cup daily average for the year.

World In Motion has seen massive gains too, and lands at #93 on YouTube’s UK Top Music Videos chart.

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