Year End Attendance Analysis (part 1)
Half of the teams have finished their home schedule, and we can now take a look at how their seasons compare to last year. Expect part 2 sometime next week.
A slight increase from last year, and the third year overall with an increase (thanks to 2002/3 in Naperville). On the surface that looks good, but this is one of the most inflated numbers ever thanks to two big doubleheaders with USA-England and R.Madrid-Chivas. They were forced to play a ton of home games in the early part of the schedule, so the few games they had later in the season drew better. But overall, this year is meaningless, as they prepare for the move to Bridgeview next season. With the new stadium seating only 20,000, they should draw 17,000 for real next season.
A little bit down from last season. They had a big draw with Freddy Adu last season and not this year, but they just had a Mexican doubleheader last week to make up for that. Also, they had a ton of Wednesday games this year, as usual. The difference from last year probably comes from the fact that they have one more home game, so the July 4 effect is dragged down a bit. This marks the third year in a row of declining attendance, tying the league record with the 1997-99 Metrostars and the 1998-2000 Revolution. Expect one more year of lackluster attendance while they wait for Commerce City.
Ouch. This is the 8th worst decrease in league history, down 3,956 fans. Guess they should've fired Andrulis sooner, huh? They should rebound next season. Even with attendance down, they are still better off than the other five teams in this post because they are in a SSS. That's why having your own stadium is great. BTW, looks like the NHL being gone really didn't matter.
Only the 12th sub-10,000 season in league history; five of those are from the Wizards. Lamar's hard work got the team to draw well for a couple years, and he also helped undo that by putting the team up for sale. But there probably still would've been a decrease. Maybe not the 5th biggest decrease of all time, but the trend was going down. The good news is that if a stadium is built, everything is solved. You can worry about building the fan base later, like FC Dallas is doing. If they stay in KC, expect similar numbers next season.
Fans seem to be caring less about the team, if that's possible. The good news is that Harrison was finally completed, so like the Rapids, next season is pretty meaningless attendance-wise. I believe Lalas said they would be lowerering prices next season, so they shouldn't get any worse. The Colombia-England game gave a big boost, but they usually have a big doubleheader every year so that's nothing new.
Interesting that San Jose actually improves with the threat of relocation, while Kansas City got worse. They do actually have their games on tv, though. And it helps to have a great team. San Jose needs to draw early in the season, and then they could have really good numbers.