The Monday After

Big week and weekend of games in MLS, so we’ll start right in with a look at attendance.  Starting with the Monday game, more than 20k were in KC for the Galaxy and Sporting match.  16k came to PPL Park for the thrilling 4-4 draw with the Revs.  The game was rescheduled from a couple of weeks ago when Hurricane Irene blitzed through the Northeast.  On Friday night, the Home Depot Center hosted more than 20k for the Galaxy weekend.

On Saturday, LiveStrong Sporting Park saw its smallest crowd of the year on Saturday night (just under 15k).  Has the saturation point been reached? Another solid crowd in Seattle with just under 36k.  Philly had another solid crowd, with more than 18,500k at PPL Park.  In Columbus, just over 13,500 saw the Crew fall to TFC.  In New England, just under 15,500 saw the rare Revs home win and just under 20k for the Red Bulls home tie against Vancouver.  Chivas USA reported more than 12k at the HDC on Saturday night.  More than 10,500 saw San Jose on Saturday night.

Some other non-attendance related tidbits from the last couple of days.  First kudos, to the multiple MLS local broadcasts that devoted some air time to the life and passing of Bobby Rhine.  Rhine was a figure in American soccer for a long time and it was an outstanding gesture to those teams that offered fans a sense of his accomplishments.  Also, the MatchDay Live feature remains an outstanding offering on MLSSoccer.com.  The opportunity to watch three games, full broadcasts and more in high quality is outstanding and the league deserves credit for making that feature available.

 

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7 Responses

  1. I think the SKC figure was one-off. If it is repeated next home match, then maybe people are just worn out or broke. Otherwise, I’d write this off as a 3k reduction due to 9/11. Maybe folks wanted some quiet time or wanted to avoid crowds on such a weekend. I don’t think you can reach a “saturation point” with this stadium. The end of the season/playoffs are historically lame attendance-wise in the MLS.

  2. Historically, does anyone know if there is much of a decline in attendeance after labor day (when school and football season begins)? I know that the summer season is intended to help MLS stand out in the sporting crowd, which I think it does. But it would be nice if the attention carried through until the end of the playoffs.

  3. It varies by team. A number of teams run back to school/club team promotions in the Fall which brings numbers up. At the same time, some fans need to use up mini plans in the Fall.

  4. I know we typically get very good fall crowds here at D.C. United once summer break is over.

  5. I would say football season and club soccer has much more to do with a drop than 9/11. I know it gets harder for me to go to games because my kids have games on saturdays and also I want to watch UW Husky football also.

  6. There is probably some saturation for Kansas City. They played nine consecutive home matches, with several of them being played two to a week.

    It was also on a Saturday afternoon in early fall. While Kansas, Kansas State, and Missouri aren’t superpowers, they still have strong followings and make for tough competition.

  7. Attendance has been very steady throughout the season. After Labour Day teams that are successful tend to draw a bit better while those that are struggling in the standing are doing better. Some of the stats are skewed due to special events (or games). Attendance has hovered between 4.3% and 5% over last season all season long Vancouver and Portland (new franchises) and Sporting KC (with a new stadium) have all been over last year’s season average. Even Seattle with their 35,000+ fans have seen an increase of 2-3% all year. For anyone that is interested I have kept stats which can be view at:

    http://members.shaw.ca/scolantonio/MLS_Attendance/Welcome.html

    I thought it might interest some of you.

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