Manchester United are as big as a religion when it comes social media buzz and interest according to managing director Richard Arnold.

Speaking in Portugal at the 2016 Web Summit in Lisbon, Arnold said the club operated at a different level to anyone else in sport and were bigger than Justin Bieber, Taylor Swift and outgoing US President Barack Obama.

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“John Lennon was famously quoted as saying The Beatles were ‘bigger than Jesus’.

“Whilst we wouldn’t want to be disrespectful in that way, what you are seeing from a measurement point of view is that the level of engagement and fervour we get is on par with the world’s major religions and those are the only things at the same level as Manchester United in terms of that interaction and engagement.’

He also said that the social media “Pogback” campaign around the world record signing of Paul Pogba created an unrivalled social media buzz eclipsing the moves of Gareth Bale to Real Madrid and Luis Suarez’s signing with Barcelona.

Arnold also revealed United will be introducing an app into the most popular markets in the coming months.