'They tried and failed': Can Macarthur survive?

By The Crowd / Roar Guru

What is the point of Macarthur FC?

That is the question on the lips of all football fans. Well, the ones who know the club exists, that is.

The Bulls operate in a highly-populated area of Sydney, they have a huge football base to tap into. Yet not once have they exceeded 4000 fans to one of their home games. Not even against arch rivals Western Sydney.

They have publicly released figures that are incorrect, with inflated crowds just causing laughter rather than fooling anyone. Crowds have barely exceeded 2000 in truth, an appallingly low number.

The whole purpose of the club was to create a point of difference and tap into an untapped market, but the club has failed to deliver. Overpriced tickets, poor community engagement, a lack of entertaining football and an ownership group who appear to care little for the region.

Campbelltown Council is said to be disengaged from the club, with their facilities at Macarthur Heights yet to get approval despite being talked about three years ago. Camden Council has also blocked plans to build a training base at flood-prone Cawdor, which took a battering recently during the heavy rains.

The club promised $40 million worth of investment, but there has been no movement in the above proposals.

The club’s long-term commitment to Campbelltown has to also be questioned. With a proposed stadium in Liverpool in the next ten years, there is every chance they will move there. The club already trains at Fairfield.

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The Macarthur region doesn’t appear to want a team, either. There is little marketing in the area which makes it harder to operate. The region is a rugby league town, with the Wests Tigers being the main attraction, even though they only play three games a year at Campbelltown.

With Wollongong and Canberra the main clubs that fans want, one has to ask how long Macarthur will stay in the league. Their stake in the APL makes it hard to move them on, but if a willing buyer comes along to purchase the licence, then the owners may as well pull up stumps.

They tried and they failed. The A-League can’t have embarrassingly low crowds like it has this season. The Bulls do nothing to spark the imagination. Wanderers fans don’t take this rivalry seriously. Sydney FC will always be the flagship match.

The only hope the Bulls have is for more free-to-air exposure. If the Bulls appear more often on Channel Ten’s Saturday night game, they may get a chance to shine. Otherwise, this club will continue to prop up the competition.

For displaced Western United, Wellington and Perth to be getting bigger crowds is embarrassing.

The Crowd Says:

2022-05-10T02:21:09+00:00

Lynda

Guest


You're right about it being an A-League wide issue. Who remembers when the A-League had trading cards? Yup, it did. These days... nothing. There's been a general decline in A-League interest overall.

2022-05-10T02:17:56+00:00

Lynda

Guest


The biggest problem with the Bull Pen is that they come across like a bunch of uncouth thugs. Who'd want to sit with them? I mean, seriously. It's great to have passionate supporters, but when it revolves around being foul mouthed and over-bearing, you just want to sit a mile away from them.

2022-04-27T21:17:59+00:00

Grem

Roar Rookie


And neither should be so commonly referred to as football! At least rugby union was once called rugby football, after being formed from association football and it only had scoring from the feet, but rugby league? I guess it was formed from rugby union which was formed from the first and original football.

2022-04-25T03:32:56+00:00

Kewell

Roar Rookie


Stonzo what WSW demonstrate is how winning and a good CEO can lead to bums on seats. Initially WSW had both, good winning team and a good leader in Lyall Gorman. So I think the FFA should do it’s upmost to make the league more competitive and that means giving teams like Newcastle and Central priority to talent then so be it. At least for a while until that’s regain enough self sustaining organic growth. People are not going to come along pay their money to see their teams loose.

2022-04-25T03:15:04+00:00

Kewell

Roar Rookie


The question is will Macarther FC survive, the real question is will the A League survive. Having just read the comments it clear their is lot of anger about the direction football is going. Let’s be honest, at the moment there is only one A league club that regularly draws good crowds the rest are an embarrassment. Thats is not enough to keep a national league going. Yes the main stream media have written off football, News Corp is a disgrace. But the FFA under James Johnson have done nothing to help. They do not advertise or promote the game, they do not call out the anti football bias when they should be complaining, our national and league teams are now failing regular in Asia. Where is the plan to turn the ship around. Where is the tv money going. Success breeds success failure leads to malaise and finger pointing. If things don’t change we may as well forget about a national competition and go back to state leagues, from what I am witnessing there is a rapid decline in international success, player quality, the selling of football and all we get from the administration are mute and appear remote. There are big problems I want to see the plan to fix those problems anf if the FFA want ideas they only need to go through the football threads in The Roar.

2022-04-21T10:11:08+00:00

Stronzo

Roar Rookie


They will prove people wrong, and this coming from a wsw fan. Only club to start in covid globally

2022-04-21T10:07:04+00:00

Stronzo

Roar Rookie


What crap - im a WSW fan but this club started in covid - people forget that. They are our visiting schools doing the community stuff. Take time.

2022-04-21T07:36:03+00:00

Para+Ten Bunnings IUA support Australian Football

Roar Rookie


I'm glad for you that you were so enthralled in the AFL's hair mullet discussion, but hey, some of us are more interested in Australia's national teams on the big stage. (they were in essence, two test matches, drawing nearly 30k attendances to them) Kelley Underwood should go!

2022-04-21T05:37:20+00:00

Brepen

Roar Rookie


You had the US masters, Aus Grand Prix, AFL and NRL , Kyrgios tantrum at the tennis, Cummings quickest ever cricket 50, all happening that week I think, a womans friendly is hardly going to get a look in, and yes more people would be interested in an AFL players hairstyle yes sad but true.

2022-04-21T02:21:22+00:00

AR

Guest


I never understood ALeague fans complaining about the broadcast deal. Fox - by far the biggest subscription provider in Australia, with millions of customers, a 24-hours dedicated sports channel, lives matches, specialty ALeague shows, updates, highlights etc. SBS - for decades the home of soccer, live ALeague marquee games, ad free, World Cups, EPL, Les, Fozzy etc. But it was always just whinge whinge whinge. First SBS was chased out of town with pitchforks, then it was the ABCs fault, then nasty ol Foxtel must go...next... Ch.10...?

2022-04-20T23:33:28+00:00

Para+Ten Bunnings IUA support Australian Football

Roar Rookie


Brepen, Really? There is a Women's world cup in Australia and NZ coming up next year, and you are suggesting that discussing an AFL player's hairstyle is more important, then how our two host nations are progressing, playing in a two match series, in preparation of the most significant sporting event in our nation's history? Well I'll be damned!

2022-04-20T10:37:10+00:00

Brepen

Roar Rookie


I think being a friendly with zero at stake , would lend it to having little focus in a show that has about 30 minutes of content.

2022-04-20T09:28:55+00:00

Grem

Roar Rookie


And I'm writing this while watching The Wanderers take a 3-0 lead over Newcastle at home. Where has this form been?

2022-04-20T09:27:13+00:00

Grem

Roar Rookie


I believe there's room for both even though I know Sydney were worried about the Southern Expansion group for similar reasons and the Wanderers, too - encroachment. As a Sydney supporter I actually follow both western Sydney clubs as well. I can't wait for the day when Sydney and West Sydney are strong together - what a grand final that would be! I'm a "westy" who would have been a member if they were in at the same time as Sydney FC. I also live near Macarthur and would love to see them grow their supporter base. 3 big Sydney teams would be great for our competition.

2022-04-20T09:19:44+00:00

Grem

Roar Rookie


Disappointed to read that. I too find Paramount a pretty clunky platform to use. I would also prefer free to air or Foxtel, but the choice is not there, so I'll stay. I've always read your comments and appreciate what you have to say. You would be a loss for the A League as you seem like a real football supporter. Apart from Juventas and possibly South Melbourne it's hard to put a club to you so that indicates you support the sport. I hope you reconsider at the end of the season.

2022-04-20T04:19:15+00:00

chris

Guest


There is a genuine lack of interest in the sport in Sydney. I daresay in Brisbane as well. League and football are the main sports talked about here and followed. Next is Rugby. AFL a distant 4th. I went into 2 sports clothing stores yesterday. Both had racks and racks of shirts. The overwhelming majority was football shirts. League had every Sydney team represented as well. Rugby not much and AFL had a couple of Swans shirts and a couple of GWS shirts. This seemed to aptly show the level of interest for the 4 football codes in Sydney.

2022-04-20T03:47:32+00:00

sheek

Roar Guru


Randy - same reply as to Brainstrust.

2022-04-20T03:22:46+00:00

Randy

Roar Rookie


NRL are looking at an 18th team with NZ and Perth as front runners. The problem with NZ is that there are no other large population areas outside of Auckland. Wellington and Christchurch are both smaller than Newcastle. NZ have produced many great League players and supply the NRL with lots of players, possibly up to 20% of the player pool are from NZ so saying they are only good at Rugby Union is false. It's a very important region for RL.

2022-04-20T02:33:28+00:00

sheek

Roar Guru


Thanks Braintrust, Sometimes you need to know when I'm being sarcastic & cynical, as I'm good at both! In any case, my simple philosophy on NZ teams in Oz comps is, either 2 teams or none. The reason being to prevent the one team being a default national team. Neither NRL or A-league deserve a 2nd NZ team result-wise, but in terms of effectively growing the game in NZ, it's essential. Ditto NBL. Netball has separated which I think is a good move. The NZ netball association can survive on their own, as do their rugby & cricket comps. But league & soccer are a problem. Of course, we have this Super Rugby Pacific which frankly, is a nonsense in my opinion, & won't last. It's one thing for the Wallabies to be flogged by the All Blacks annually, but we don't need our major provinces experiencing the same fate. As I've noted elsewhere, Canberra should be first cab off the rank. They have the women's team & also the infrastructure.

2022-04-19T23:32:50+00:00

chris

Guest


Randy, the author who is a "guru" doesn't even know the difference. What hope do the brainwashed kool-aid Melbourne sporting public have?

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