Monday, August 26, 2013

European Club Football Map


The map was made with Inkscape using information and crests/logos from Wikipedia. Some of the logos had to be retrieved from Google image searches in order to find images with transparent backgrounds. Team colors were matched to kit colors with ColorPick Eyedropper Chrome extension. I decided on stripes or gradients on an inconsistent basis. If you would like the SVG file to make your own edits, you can leave a comment below.

Following the effort of the College Football Map that I have posted on this blog, I decided to try my hand with the other football (soccer). I am fairly unfamiliar with the geography and fan spread of these leagues, but I tried my best with what information I could gather. I have been getting more into club soccer in Europe in the last couple of years and this kind of helps position the teams in my mind geographically, so it was a fun project. I am sure there will be plenty of complaints about the map (provided there will be people who actually see it), but I am open to making revisions of the map for greater accuracy. I even wouldn't mind the addition of other leagues, but I would need to do a little more research on that.

Before I continue I should mention that aesthetics were a big decision making criteria for this map, even at the cost of some accuracy. It is a given that making an accurate fan map would actually become pretty ugly and confusion. I instituted a could of rules to keep the map prettier (just like on the cfb version):

1) Continuous and regular shapes for each region. No disconnected regions
2) The regions should partition the whole map. No empty spaces or overlaps
3) Except smaller team with no region map (only a logo/crest stamp) create small overlaps
4) Avoid adjacent areas sharing the same background color. Switch to alternate colors if possible.

So yes, I know that it won't be absolutely accurate. An exactly accurate map would either be impossible or look hideous.

As far as inclusion of teams, I followed a two-tiered system.

1) For (physically) larger countries [England/Wales, France, Germany, Spain, Italy], include all teams which have played in the top level at any time within the last five years
2) For (physically) smaller countries [Portugal, Netherlands], include only teams which have played at the top level in all of the last five years.

I added Portugal and the Netherlands last and found it very difficult and muddled to try to fit a lot of teams into the smaller space. Even England and Italy were harder to work with.

The island in the square is Madeira and belongs to the Portugese league.