LONDON - More than 80 percent of 32,000 fans questioned in a worldwide survey said that football was their most regular topic of conversation while 49 percent said it was more important to them than even family and partners. The survey, carried out by Premier League sponsors Barclays across 185 countries, found that Liverpool striker Fernando Torres was the league's most popular player according to 38 percent of voters. Team mate Steven Gerrard was second and Manchester United's newly-crowned European player of the year Cristiano Ronaldo third. David Beckham's goal from the halfway line against Wimbledon in 1996 was voted the fans' favourite moment since the league began in 1992.
9 December 2008
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