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​Man Utd retain most influential club spot in China

Manchester United is the most influential football club online in China, but the German Bundesliga has retained top spot as the No.1 European football league online in the country, according to Chinese sports digital consultancy and marketing company Mailman, reports SportBusiness.

In its Red Card 2018 ranking of European football, Lionel Messi also replaced Cristiano Ronaldo as the most influential player online in China.

The Bundesliga and its clubs topped four of the other five categories in the report. Bayern Munich demonstrated the best use of technology and had the best tour activation, Mailman said, while Borussia Dortmund produced the best live streams.

The Bundesliga produced the best online campaign, the report added.

Arsenal was the other category winner with the top sponsor activation.

According to Mailman, Manchester United finished top of the rankings for most influential club for the second year in a row, followed by second-placed Real Madrid, third-placed Bayern, fourth-placed Arsenal and fifth-placed Liverpool.

"With over 107 million followers, China is one of Manchester United's most important markets and we have a long history of innovation and fan engagement in the region," the club's chief executive of media, Phil Lynch, said.

"Through data analysis, geo-specific content creation and on-the-ground activities, we continue to be the most-followed football club on China's major social media platforms: Sina Weibo and WeChat."

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