A-League Attendance Figures: Positive signs of growth

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The A-League enters into the final ten rounds of the season with average attendance figures up on last season and on track to achieve the highest total aggregate in its nine year history.

Average attendance for this season after Round 17 is 13,774 versus a full year average for last season of 12,347. With 49 games remaining, the average attendance required to beat last year’s total aggregate attendance is 9,842, which is safe to say is easily achievable. Whilst there are many positives in attendance figures for this season, the peak average attendance in season 3 (2007-08) of 14,610 looks less likely to be beaten.

 

Average Attendance YTD Comparison

TeamYTD Avg Attendance YTD Avg Attendance LYVariance (%)Full YTD Avg Attendance LY
Adelaide11,36610,038+13.2%9,585
Brisbane16,32914,128+15.6%13,416
Central Coast9,91610,358-4.3%9,884
Heart9,6818,882+9.0%8,560
Victory22,96920,228+13.6%21,885
Newcastle12,92713,573-4.8%13,388
Perth9,9849,066+10.1%8,840
Sydney FC19,78219,299+2.5%18,637
Wellington8,7407,445+17.3%6,877
Western Sydney15,63811,349+37.8%12,466

Comparing YTD average attendance by club is somewhat difficult as not every club has played the same number of homes games this season compared to last. Only Adelaide United, Brisbane Roar, Newcastle Jets and Perth Glory have played the same number of home games as last season after 17 rounds. Taking this into account, some clubs would have to be happy with the growth in average attendance figures. Adelaide (+13.2%), Brisbane (15.6%) and Perth (10.1%), all have double digit growth. Western Sydney Wanderers has increased average attendance by 37.8% on last year, bringing in an extra 22,963 through the turnstiles. Whilst Wellington Phoenix have played two extra homes compared to the same period last season, the growth figure of 17.3% is pleasing.

 

Aggregate Attendance Required in Last 10 Rounds to Beat Last Season

TeamAgg. Required to Beat LYHome Games RemainingAvg. Required YTD Avg Attendance
Adelaide22,31045,57811,366
Brisbane43,78067,29716,329
Central Coast39,25857,8529,916
Heart33,84065,6409,681
Victory76,708325,56922,969
Newcastle70,623611,77112,927
Perth33,91048,4789,984
Sydney FC84,021614,00319,782
Wellington17,61844,4058,740
Western Sydney49,41659,88315,638

Some big fixtures remain to help drive the attendance figures. Both the Sydney and Melbourne derbies, plus the Big Blue is being played at AAMI Park in Round 25.

Melbourne Heart will be hosting the derby in Round 21, and look set to beat last season’s average and aggregate totals; not a bad effort for team that is sitting at the foot of the table. Their cross-town rivals on the other hand could fall short on aggregate totals. Melbourne Victory have only three home games remaining, as their Round 19 clash with Western Sydney Wanderers was brought forward. Requiring 76,708 more people through the turnstiles, with one less home game game than last year (the regional match is included in average and aggregate attendances), Victory will be hoping that the Adelaide and Sydney FC games will be making up most of these numbers.

This season, Sydney FC host two of the derby matches. The Round 3 clash brought in 40,388 through the gates at Allianz Stadium, and anything close to this figure for the final instalment will ensure another bumper year of crowds, built solidly last year thanks to the arrival of Alessandro Del Piero.

Central Coast average attendance might be down for the same period (-4.3%), but they should be on track for growth. They are hosting the F3 derby in Round 23 and in Round 25 Western Sydney Wanderers. These two matches brought in crowds of 10,920 (Round 16) and 17,134 (Round 1) respectively in the previous encounters at Bluetongue Stadium.

Three teams could come close to beating their peak seasons. Brisbane average attendance is currently 16,329 compared to the peak season 2007-08 (16,951). Perth Glory’s has never grown above season one’s crowds of 9,734 (currently 9,984), and Sydney could go better than last year’s peak of 18,637 (currently 19,782).

The expectations for any business is to grow on the previous year. The growth in A-League attendance figures is a positive for nearly every team and the competition as a whole.

Shaun is contributing editor for Leopold Method, interpreting the ‘cause and effects’ in Australian football. Previously his articles for retail and SME marketing were syndicated across 6 countries. He has also co-authored 2 books.

One comment on “A-League Attendance Figures: Positive signs of growth

  1. Dinoweb on said:

    What I find really encouraging is that every club is above it’s lifetime regular season average to 2012/13.

    As of this morning (10/2/14) increases range from a mediocre 3% for Phoenix (8740 v 8516) up to a whopping 47% for SFC (20177 v 13695).

    The league overall is up a fantastic 24% with 13,748 compared to the lifetime 11,112.

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