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I have listed in the table below the average crowds for all teams, in all football codes. At the end of the table are the code averages.
You can each draw you own conclusions. But the table clearly shows the AFL rules-all in terms of crowd attendance, with only the Brisbane Broncos topping their spectator averages.
Super 14 only played 23 games in Australia with the second highest average. The ARC figures…well, they speak for themselves.
Looking at the Super 14 and A-League averages, suggests to me that the ARC was causing many sponsors to look at the numbers and ask what was going on, which was a big part of its cancellation. Further given union’s crowd averages at Super 14, if I were in charge, I’d be calling for a second round.
The A-League figures do not include the finals and, after the finals crowds are added, will more than likely equal the NRL. Interestingly, apart from Perth Glory all A-League clubs pulled larger crowds than a number of NRL teams. In fact many Sydney teams did not do that well, also head to head Newcastle Knights V Newcastle Jets is very close. Melbourne Storm won the grand final, but the Melbourne Victory, in a very poor season, had about two and a half times the crowd.
AFL I believe will struggle to hold the level of support it gets in Melbourne as other sports and more media gets into the Melbourne market – which until very recently was almost the exclusive domain of the Melbourne ALF media mafia.
When the A-League expands and is combined with Asia, over a 27 round season, it is possible a 10 team, 27 round A-League, when added to Asian Champion league matches, could out-draw the NRL crowd figures.
My overall interpretation is the A-League is changing the way people think about sport in Australia. If the A-League continues to grow, its revenue will increase providing all that goes with increasing funds, additionally influence is also growing at government levels given Asia and Women’s league.
What this all means, I’m not sure. But as I have often said, let facts be your friend. These are facts – so how do we interpret them?
Note: you can also view the data here.