seo – Website Translation: New Top Level Domain vs. Subfolder of Current Version

About 3 months ago, we translated our website into Spanish. Because our brand has a meaning in itself, we have also decided to translate it. The hope was that it would benefit our SEO.

For example (fictitious):

We have marked in both Sitemaps the different language versions and put links on both websites (the footer with a language appears as you see on many websites).

We note that even after 3 months, the traffic on the Spanish website is almost zero. Our average .com ranking on Google is 6.6, against 70 for the .es file. Clicks generated by search engines do not exist on the .es file, while on +1 million for the last 3 months.

Outside of the language, the website is exactly the same. Meta tags have also been translated. There is absolutely no reason for English speakers to be more interested in the content of our website.

So … we start thinking that the choice of a new top level domain was not so smart after all.

My question: Would you advise us to choose www.footballtactics.com/es or es.footballtactics.com? Will we benefit from our good .com ranking? What we want to do is to make sure that people who are looking for "football tactics" find our website; therefore, it is not the Spaniards who are looking for "football tactics" and who are presented with a Spanish version but the other will drive more traffic).

What are your thoughts?