April 30, 2015

World football attendance by domestic leagues (2013-14 or 2014 figures, primarily) – chart of the top 25 highest-drawing pro leagues of association football [aka football, aka futbol, aka soccer]./ Plus a very brief look at the 3 countries that have led in crowd-size through the years (England, then Italy, and now Germany)./ Plus the Indian Super League, which is now [2014] the fourth-highest-drawing football league in the world.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 11:20 pm

-Source of data, List of attendance figures at domestic professional sports leagues/Complete_table [with 2013-14 or 2014 figures, primarily] (
-European football attendances at E-F-S site,
-Another good site for football attendances: [found atop league tables in the statistics sections at most league-pages there].

    Chart of the world’s top 25 highest-drawing pro leagues of association football (2013-14 or 2014 figures, primarily)

By Bill Turianski on 30 April 2015;

[Note: you can click on the illustration below to place it in a stand-alone page.]

My first version of this chart, which I made two years ago in May 2013, only went to 20 leagues, and the list only considered first division football leagues (with 2011-12 figures). You can see that chart {here}. This time, the list on the chart considers all association football leagues – not just each country’s top flight. I didn’t decide that – the folks who contributed to the list at Wikipedia did. And it makes sense (after all, if you are trying to determine the highest-drawing football leagues, why should you stop at only first division leagues?). So this chart includes the two highest-drawing second divisions in the world – Germany’s 2-Bundesliga, and England’s Football League Championship.

The attendance figures are primarily for the 2013-14 season, but there are a few exceptions…the Argentina Primera División attendance figure is from 2 seasons ago (2012-13), the Algerian Ligue Professionnelle attendance figure is from 6 seasons ago (2007-08), and the Indonesian Super League attendance figure is from 3 seasons ago (2010-11). I already knew there were no reliable attendance figures for Argentina for 2013-14; for Algeria and Indonesia, I tried, but I could not find any more recent figures reported. I decided to include both, but let’s just say there should be a “mental-asterisk” next to the Algerian and Indonesian attendance figures on the chart. (Note: there were a couple others that were not updated on the original list [which you can find at the link at the top of this post]. But I was able to find 2014 Chinese Super League attendances at that Wikipedia page {here}, and I found 2013-14 Turkish Süper Lig attendance at the E-F-S site {here}.)

Note: I added another detail this time to the chart – the populations of the countries. That can be found at the far right of the chart – the figures are from 2011 to 2015 {see each country’s page at Wikipedia for those figures}. On the chart, the country-populations are listed in millions (m), except for India and China, whose vast populations are listed in billions (bn).

    World football attendance leaders through the years…

England and its First Division led in attendance up to 1971-72 (for 74 seasons);
then Italy and its Serie A led in attendance from 1972-73 to 1993-94 (for 22 seasons);
and since 1994-95, Germany and its Bundesliga have led in attendance (for 21 seasons and counting…)

Germany has been #1 in attendance since 1994-95. Before that it was Italy. Originally, of course, it was England.

The English First Division had best crowd size from 1888-89 [when the Football League was formed], all the way to 1971-72. The highest league-average-attendance that the English top flight has ever had was in the third season back after the disruption caused by World War II – in 1948-49, when the First Division pulled in an average of 38,792 per game. That 38.7 K per game is to this day the highest crowd-size the English top flight has ever achieved. The second-best crowd-size in England was in the following season of 1949-50 (at 37,284). The third best English top-flight crowd-size was actually last season [2013-14], when the Premier League (est. 1992-93) had its highest-ever turnstile-count, at 36,670 per game. {Source: European Football Statistics site for those English figures as well as Italian and German figures mentioned below.}.

In 1972-73, Italy’s Serie A (at 32,176 per game) overtook England’s First Division (at 30,257 in 72/73). And the-best-drawing football league in the world was a distinction the Italian top flight held for 22 seasons. Italy remained king of football crowd-size all through the 1980s and into the early 1990s, peaking at 38,872 per game in 1984-85, and still drawing best overall for another 9 years, until Germany’s Bundesliga overtook Serie A as the top-drawing league in the world in 1994-95.

Germany’s Bundesliga is King. Period.
Germany’s Bundesliga has remained at the top of the attendance list since 94/95 – for 21 seasons now (counting 2014-15). The largest crowd-size in a Bundesliga season was in 2012-13, at 45,116 per game. (Last season [2013-14], the Bundesliga had its second-best crowd-size ever, at 43,499.) And the Bundesliga shows no signs of flagging, held back in aggregate crowd-size only by the fact that minnows constantly find a way into the Bundesliga for a year, and end up pulling the league-wide attendance figure down. Minnows like Greuther Fürth (in 2012-13, drawing 16.8 K in a 18 K venue), and SC Paderborn (currently [2014-15] drawing 13.8 K in a 15.3 K venue). And quasi-minnows such as SC Freiburg (drawing 23.8 K currently in a 24 K-capacity venue), can and do find a place in the Bundesliga (this is Freiburg’s 6th-straight season in the Bundesliga), while much bigger clubs, +30-K-drawing-clubs like Kaiserslautern, Nürnberg and Düsseldorf, stay stuck in the second division. The Bundesliga draws well because of several reasons…Bundesliga tickets are very affordable (like often costing less than $20 USD), the stadiums are all full of modern amenities and quite simply fantastic, the atmosphere is absolutely electric, and no fans get hurt. Oh, and last but not least, Bundesliga teams invariably play high-energy, ball-on-the-floor, passing-and-attacking-football. Bundesliga is by far the best attended football league in the world, but it goes deeper than that…Bundesliga is the best football league in the world no matter how you look at it.

Out of nowhere, India now has the fourth-highest-drawing football league in the world – the ISL…
(Indian Super League.)
I am sure many will be as shocked as I was, when I first perused the list, to see that the Indian Super League (aka the ISL), has become the fourth-highest drawing football league on the planet. The Kolkata Derby (Mohan Bagan v East Bengal) has always drawn huge (like ~80 K to ~137 K [seriously; see previous link: it happened in 1997]). But those two clubs are not even in the brand-new ISL – they are in the I-League (the I-League was re-established in 2007-08). Hopes are that the two leagues will find ways to acommodate each other, and maybe even merge, at some future date.

Anyway, there are just 8 brand-new teams in the ISL (there is no promotion/relegation, as in USA/Canda, and as in Australia). Those 8 teams are spread out rather evenly across the Indian subcontinent {see map of 2015 ISL, here}. Now one point needs to be made, and this will put that massive league-average-attendance figure the ISL drew in 2014 into a more fair perspective…these ISL teams are playing way less home matches than most, if not all, other pro football leagues across the planet. The ISL season only runs from October to December, and the regular season has just 14 games…so with just 7 home matches, amassing a higher average attendance is much easier.

This link shows you the 8 teams’ attendance figures in 2014 {here}.

I know the following might be a little dated by now, but this next link is an informative article from Oct. 2014, by Sam Crocker, which gives brief profiles of the 8 teams in the [2014] Indian Super League, Indian Super League: club-by-club guide to the inaugural season (

In the inaugural season, in the Final, the ISL’s top-drawing team, the Kerala Blasters (who drew 49.1 K), and who are co-owned by retired Indian cricket star Sachin Tendulkar, lost 1-0 to the ISL’s second-best-drawing team (at 43.7 K), Atlético de Kolkata. Atlético de Kolkata, located in Kolkata (aka Calcutta), on the northeastern coast of India, are owned by a small consortium which includes retired Indian cricket star Sourav Ganguly and the Spanish club CA Atlético Madrid – and Atlético Kolkata wear the same kit as the 2013-14 La Liga champions (red-and-white-vertical-stripes-with-blue-pants). Here is an article on the ISL, which was posted in late December 2014 following the first ISL Final… from, by Saptarshi Ray from 23 Dec. 2014,
How India’s ISL became world football’s fourth biggest league (

The ISL might not be able to maintain the 24-K-per-game crowds that they drew in their first season in 2014, but, who knows? Maybe they will. I will leave the last word to one of the commenters on the article linked to above…
…(from commenter Indianguardian)…”It was an amazing tournament. I-League will never reach the heights of this tournament. For me I-League has to be scrapped and the ISL should be the only official football league of India.The reason is that the I-League is filled with teams like Dempo, Salgaocar, Mohun Bagan(founded in 1889) etc. These are historic teams with good local support but these team fail to gain national support. To support a team, one must identify oneself with the club. Most European clubs represent a city or a county or a region. People born in that city or in that region have an emotional attachment with that city and anything related with it. The historic I-League clubs don’t have this effect. They are named after their founders, chairmen etc. Imagine if Newcastle United is changed to Sports Direct United, Manchester City/United is changed to Etihad Inc./Glazer United. Will these clubs gain new fans?
¶Chennai is the capital of Tamil Nadu which is quite a big state in India. There are some hardcore football fans in Chennai and it has a population of 4.3 million and ever increasing and there is NO football club based in Chennai. This is what the new ISL corrected. They created teams based on Metropolitan cities and regions where football is extremely popular. People who followed football occasionally suddenly got interested and they wanted to support their city.
¶Another factor in ISL’s success is the ticket price like the author mentions. Everyone were able to afford the ticket.
¶With support for cricket declining in India (test match crowds are already dying out, only a short while ODI crowd diminishes also), ISL organisers must take this to the next stage. The huge cultural differences between the many states in India will lead to exciting rivalries and clashes. Here is hoping that this is the birth of football in India.”…(from commenter Indianguardian at
Thanks to the contributors at, {Source of data, List of attendance figures at domestic professional sports leagues/Complete_table [with 2013-14 figures] (

May 10, 2013

2011-12 World Football Attendances – Best Drawing Leagues (Chart of Top-20-drawing national leagues of association football) / Plus list of 35-highest drawing association football clubs in the world in 2011-12.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 8:30 pm

Note: I have made a more recent post on world football attendance, here, World football attendance by domestic leagues (2013-14 or 2014 figures, primarily) – chart of the top 25 highest-drawing pro leagues of association football [aka football, aka futbol, aka soccer]./ Plus a very brief look at the 3 countries that have led in crowd-size through the years (England, then Italy, and now Germany)./ Plus the Indian Super League, which is now [2014] the fourth-highest-drawing football league in the world.

    2011-12 World Football Attendances – Best Drawing Leagues
    (Top-20-drawing national leagues of association football)


Expanded list, with list of 35-highest drawing association football clubs in the world in 2011-12..

    Click on image below for expanded list featuring the 35 clubs that drew over 40,000 per game in 2011-12.


List of 35-highest drawing association football clubs in the world in 2011-12.
Figures are average attendance for home domestic league matches in 2011-12 except Turkish Süper Lig, 2012-13 season [after 8 to 12 home matches]; European figures from; other clubs’ figures can be found at the links at the bottom of thiis post.
1. Borussia Dortmund (GER), 80,521.
2. Barcelona (SPA), 75,844.
3. Manchester United (ENG), 75,387.
4. Real Madrid (SPA), 74,564.
5. Bayern Munich (GER), 69,000.
6. Schalke 04 (GER), 61,179.
7. Arsenal (ENG), 60,000.
8. Club América (MEX), 58,375.
9. VfB Stuttgart (GER), 55,090.
10. Hamburger SV (GER), 53,465.
11.Hertha Berlin (GER), 53,449 [relegated to 2.Bundesliga in 2012].
12.Borussia Mönchengladbach (GER), 51,846.
13.Celtic (SCO), 50,904.
14.Ajax (NET), 50,147.
15.Newcastle United (ENG), 49,936.
16.Milan (ITA), 49,020.
17.FC Köln (GER), 47,482 [relegated to 2.Bundesliga in 2012].
18.Manchester City (ENG), 47,045.
19.Rangers (I) [Rangers FC Newco (II) relegated to Scottish fourth division in 2012].
20.Hannover 96 (GER), 44,826.
21.Internazionale (ITA), 44,806.
22.Feyenoord (NET), 44,605.
23.Liverpool FC (ENG), 44,253.
24.Seattle Sounders (III) (USA), 43,144.
25.Atlético Madrid (SPA), 43,038.
26.Paris Saint-Germain (FRA), 42,892.
27.Benfica (POR), 42,464.
28.FC Kaiserslautern (GER), 42,434 [relegated to 2.Bundesliga in 2012].
29.FC Nürnberg (GER), 41,968.
30.Chelsea (ENG), 41,478.
31.Galatasaray (TUR), 41,103.
32.Tigres de La UANL (MEX), 41,000.
33.Fenerbahçe (TUR), 40,813.
34.Werder Bremen (GER), 40,808.
35.Marseille (FRA), 40,445.

The May 2013 issue of World Soccer magazine featured a very interesting chart of the top 20 drawing association football leagues throughout the world. And, you know, the fact of the matter is that attendance figures for some association football leagues are very hard to find. Almost impossible, in some cases (because of corruption). Unfortunately, the sources for the attendance figures in World Soccer’s article in the May 2013 issue were not attributed. Unattributed. Wow. One would imagine a big publication like World Soccer would see fit to cite sources in this case – you know, like actually tell the reader where they got their attendance figures from. Because it is very hard to find attendance figures for some first division leagues. Go try finding attendance figures for the Mexican 1st division or the Argentine 1st division, for example. Because I am telling you that if you do try, you will almost certainly come up empty (except for finding very vague attendance estimates [notice all the repeating digits in the figures] at, or finding virtually no attendance figures at all from recent Liga MX seasons at

I re-did the list in a different style of chart and have added national flags and the names of the leagues. On the second chart (see above), I added all the clubs that drew over 40,000 per game in 2011-12 (34 football clubs and one soccer franchise [Seattle]). It looks like those 35 are the only association football teams in the world that drew over 40K per game in 2011-12 (based on attendances from home domestic league matches). Clubs that just missed out on reaching that 40,000 per game mark were… SSC Napoli (at 39,808 per game in 2011-12), Boca Juniors (at 39,683 per game in 2011-12), and Sunderland AFC (at 39,026 per game in 2011-12).
[Note, links for attendances are below.]

Main Source and other sources…
One definite source used for World Soccer’s list, for 12 of the 13 UEFA (European) leagues, was the invaluable

I am not saying that World Soccer used the following sources for their list, but for your own viewing, here are some sources for attendance figures for the other 8 leagues on the list -
Mexico (Liga MX),
USA/Canada (MLS), ‘Major League Soccer attendance‘ (
Argentina (Argentine Primera División),
Japan (J.League),
China (CSL),
Brazil (Campeonato Brasileiro Série A),
Turkey (Süper Lig), {league average that is slighly lower than the figure on the World Socer list (11,250 at Wikipedia versus 12,600 on the [unattributed] World Soccer list): ’2011–12 Süper Lig’ ( via; team-byteam / current 2012-13 Turkish Süper Lig attendances
[click on 'Turkey' at side-bar on far left].
Australia/New Zealand (A-League), {source of World Soccer list – ‘2011–12 A-League‘ ( / team-by-team lists,

Thanks to World Soccer magazine.
Thanks to

May 22, 2010

England, Non-League Football: the 50 highest drawing clubs in the 2009-10 season (all clubs averaging over 500 per game).

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 3:36 pm


On the map, club crests are sized to reflect each club’s average attendance from home league matches in the 2009-10 season. At the far left on the map page is the list of all the clubs in English Non-League football that drew over 500 per game. The club’s level is then listed, with any promotion or relegation this season noted; then the average attendance this season, then the percent increase or decrease versus the club’s 2008-09 average attendance.
Below is a list I put together from data I found on Mike Avery’s Non-League Football Page. The list here shows the highest numerical increase in average attendance for Non-League clubs [the list on lists all clubs, League and Non-League, combined].
Note: in the column named ’2009-10 Level with Promotions/Relegations’, an up or down arrow preceding the Level number denotes league movement for that club after the 2008-09 season; and an up arrow after the Level number denotes a promotion for that club after the 2009-10 season.
It is worth noting that only one club on this list did not have any league movement in the past two seasons, York City. Also, unlike most situations where a club is relegated and then sees an attendance drop the following season, Luton Town and Mansfield Town saw attendance increases. Mansfield’s higher average attendance was pushed up by their pay-what-you-want promotion in February {see this}, which drew 7,261 to Field Mill in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire.


The cut-off on this map was 500 per game home attendance in league matches, and this meant there ended up being 50 clubs on this map. The map I made in October, 2009 had a cut-off at 600, but I lowered the bar by 100 because I couldn’t resist cramming a few more clubs into this end-of-season attendance map. The extra clubs happened to include 3 clubs from South London, so to the map page I added the Greater London map you see at the top of this post. Bromley and Welling United are both in the Conference South, which is a 6th Level league. Sutton United are a 7th Level club, and play in the Isthmian League Premier Division.

Other clubs which made it onto this map, and not onto my 3 other previous Non-League attendance maps are…Eastleigh (of the Conference-South), who are from Hampshire, just north of Southampton; Dorchester Town (also of the Conference South), who are from Dorset; and Hayes and Yeading United, who are from Hayes, Hillingdon, West London, about 3 km. (2 miles) north of Heathrow Airport. Hayes and Yeading won promotion to the Conference (aka Blue Square Premier League) in 2008-09, and drew 334 per game. This season in the Conference the club drew 664 per game, an 84% increase. Hayes and Yeading survived the drop by 3 points, finishing in 17th place.
Hayes & Yeading were the Conference club which had the highest percentage increase in average attendance (+84%)…

English Football Attendances, Average Attendances 2009-10 by % Change (

The Conference club with the highest numerical increase in average attendance was Oxford United, whose turnstile count went up 1,125 per game, to 6,004 per game. Oxford won the Conference play-off, and will play in League Two in 2010-11, thus returning to the League after a 4 season absence. Leading scorer for Oxford was James Constable, who scored 28 league goals (Conference top scorers, here {ESPN Soccernet}), and scored 3 times in 3 matches in the club’s successful playoff campaign.
The 6th Level club with the highest average attendance percentage increase and the highest numerical increase was the Welsh club Newport County AFC, who won automatic promotion to the Conference by winning the Conference South, and drew over 900 more per game than in 2008-09. The Exiles drew 1,840 per game, a 116% increase from 08/09, to their not-exactly fan-friendly, running track-scarred municipal stadium, the Newport Stadium. Newport County is a club with a pretty long League history (61 seasons, including two seasons in the 2nd Level), and are finally having a resurgence. They will make their debut in the Conference, as they were relegated multiple levels when they were relegated out of the old Fourth Division in 1988.
The 7th Level club with the highest percent increase was Aveley FC, an Isthmian League Premier Division club located in Aveley, Essex, near the Dartford Crossing. Aveley did not make this map (and in fact, their ground only has a 1,100-capacity). The Millers drew 212 per game, a 47% increase from the 144 per game they drew in 08/09, when they won promotion the Isthmian League-D1 North. Aveley page at .

The 7th Level club with the highest numerical increase in average attendance was Boston United, of Lincolshire. Boston United won promotion this season to the Conference North, drawing 224 more per game than in 08/09. Boston United drew 1,343 per game this season, and it looks like the Pilgrims are finally starting to recover from the the financial mess/grounds problem that resulted in a protracted time in administration and which plunged them from League Two (the 4th Level) to the Unibond Premier League (in the 8th Level) in the space of 2 years. York Street, home of Boston United, below…
The 8th Level club with the highest numerical increase in average attendance was the phoenix-club FC Halifax Town, of Halifax, West Yorkshire. The Shaymen saw their gates go up 286 per game to 1,452 per game, which is a figure that dwarfs other clubs at this level. Sure enough Halifax won promotion and are on the path back to regaining the position of their predecessor club, Halifax Town AFC, who had League and Conference history, but were forced to dissolve due to tax debts in 2008. The photo below shows the Shay, FC Halifax’s home. The stadium is owned by the Calderdale Metopolitan Council. Calderdale is a metropolitan borough in West Yorkshire, and is made up of 6 former local government districts within the towns of (from east to west) Brighouse, Elland, Halifax, Sowerby Bridge, Hebden Bridge, and Todmorden. Todmorden is right up against the Pennine Chain, and this is pretty much where Yorkshire ends. At the other, western, side of the Pennine Chain (which is a low-rising mountain chain which is often called the backbone of England), is Lancashire.

Seen below is the new East Stand, from a satellite photo taken while that stand was still under construction [the view is towards the south]. The East Stand was opened in March, 2010. You can pretty much see how ambitious FC Halifax Town are, by the size of the stand. The stadium now has a capacity of just over 10,000, and that is a Football League-sized ground for sure.

The 8th Level club with the second-highest numerical increase at the turnstiles was Bury Town, of Bury St. Edmunds, in Suffolk. Bury Town saw their gates increase 172 per game, from 273 to 445 per game, as they won the Southern Football League Division One Midlands. Bury Town’s Ram Meadow @ Extreme Groundhopping site.

The 8th Level club with the third-highest numerical increase in average attendance was Lowestoft Town, of Lowestoft, Suffolk. The Trawler Boys won the Isthmian League Division One North by 15 points and drew 733 per game to their Crown Meadow ground, a 30% increase and 170 more per game higher than in 2008-09. And in 2007-08, Lowestoft Town were drawing just 310 per game, so the club’s fan base has more than doubled in two years.


Thanks to, Hayes & Yeading United FC, Church Road ground (Bird’s Eye view). Thanks to Stephen Harris at, Stephen Harris @

Thanks to Sam Mason at,Oxford United FC – Kassam Stadium. Thanks to Jim 2000 at, Photos by jim 2000 @ Thanks to Oxford United FC- OxKits, Thanks to Oxford United official site/ Gallery, Thanks to The Amber Terrace at, The Amber Terrace’s photostream @

Thanks to the Pride of Anglia – Ipswich Town Football Club, Pride of Anglia (Ipswich Town).

Thanks to Extreme Groundhopping, Exreme Groundhopping – Crown Meadow, Lowestoft Town FC.

Thanks to Mike Avery for his excellent site.

October 4, 2009

England: Non-League Football, attendance map for 4th October, 2009 (all clubs drawing above 600 per game- 45 clubs).

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 5:35 pm


Attendance in the Conference is up 10.5%.  Last season,  the final average attendance for the entire league as a whole was 1,857.  This season,  as of 4th October, 2009,  the average is 2,051.  The main reason is the huge gates,  in Non-League terms,  of Luton Town and Oxford United (in the 5,00o-6,000 range).  The Oxford v. Luton match of 8th September (a Tuesday) drew 10,613. (!)   Also,  Mansfield Town,  another former Football League club,  is seeing a big upswing at the turnstiles,  with a 40% increase from last season,  to 3,392 per game.  And one of the newly promoted clubs is AFC Wimbledon,  who are seeing a 20% increase to 3,844 per game.  Two more clubs in the Conference are drawing above 3,000 per game:  Wrexham (3,734) and Cambridge United (3,032).

It must be pointed out that all but one of these clubs have spent considerable time in the Football League,  in the past.  The one club without League history is AFC Wimbledon,  but 1). AFC Wimbledon is the heir to Wimbledon FC,  who spent 14 seasons in the top flight,  and famously upset Liverpool in the 1988 FA Cup;  and 2). AFC Wimbledon is almost certainly bound for promotion to the Football League in the near future.

If you are wondering what all these decent-sized clubs with long histories in the Football League are doing in the 5th Level (ie, the Conference),  it is because so many small,  but well-performing clubs like Dagenham & Redbridge,  Barnet,  Burton Albion,  Aldershot,  and Morecambe are currently in the League.  All of these clubs are drawing less than 3,000 per game.  In fact,  11 clubs in League Two are drawing lower than 3,000. 

Prior to 1987,  there was no automatic promotion and relegation between the Football League (Levels 1-4),  and the lower leagues that made up Non-League football.  What we are seeing today is a sort of leveling out…all these clubs that spent decades in the lower reaches of the League,  and never had to worry about relegation (like,  say,  York City) now find themselves out of the League.  And clubs like Yeovil Town,  with no League history,  have punched above their weight and climbed up to the League.

The biggest increases among clubs in the leagues below the Conference are found at Havant & Waterlooville (+55%),  Newport Country (+51%),  and Tamworth (+47%),  all 6th Level clubs.  Newport County,  of south Wales;  and Tamworth,  of south-east Staffordshire,  were promoted last season.  That explains the gate increases there.  With H&WFC,  the club has seen an increase from 722 to 1,122 per game most likely due to the matches against other clubs within close vicinity,  which produced traveling support that increased the gates.  Their recent matches v. Bath City,  Eastleigh,  Basingstoke Town,  and Dover Athletic all fall into this category,  with gates in the 1,100-1,400 range rather than the normal 700-800 range.   [I guess that's one problem with doing a map like this,  when only about 30% of the season has been played...certain matches will skew the figures.  So I will make an updated version of this map in May,  2010.]


51 weeks ago I made a map for Non-League attendance leaders,  with a cut-off point of all clubs drawing above 800 per game {see it, here}.  This year,  I have put the cut-off at 600 per game.  This added 7 more clubs total to the map.  Meanwhile, 33 of the 38 clubs on the map last season are back on the map this season.  Gone via promotion to the Football League are Burton Albion and Torquay United.  Gone from the map because of a drop in attendances are Bath City,  Lewes,  and Northwich Victoria.

Here are the clubs that were not on the Non-League attendance map last October… Braintree Town,  nicknamed the Iron,  are from Essex,  and play in the Conference South (a 6th Level league).   Truro City play in a location pretty far off the beaten path,  in Cornwall.  The club are currently in the Southern League (in the 7th Level).  Truro City have now been promoted four straight seasons.  Truro City are the only football club from Cornwall in the top 10 Levels of the English football league system   Farnborough are in the Conference South (6th Level),  and are from that north-east Hampshire town where ’The Football Ramble’ originated {see this recent article in the,  about the unlikely rise of this independent sports show…click here}.   Havant & Waterlooville are also from Hampshire,  and also in the Conference South,  and are located in Havant,  which is about 10 km. north-east of Portsmouth.  The club,  nicknamed the Hawks,  made it to the 4th Round of the 2007-08 FA Cup (after beating Swansea in the 3rd Round).  Their 4th Round match versus Liverpool,  at Anfield,  was widely broadcast,  and saw the plucky south coast side take the lead on the Reds twice,  only to fall 5-2.   Eastwood Town are in the Conference-North,  and are from Nottinghamshire.  The club,  nicknamed the Badgers,  made it to the 2008-09 FA Cup 3rd Round (after beating Wycombe Wanderers in the 2nd Round).   Leamington are from Whitnash, Warwickshire,  that historic county which wraps around the eastern end of the West Midlands.  Leamington Spa and Warwick are both neighboring towns of Whitnash.  Leamington are in the Southern League (7th Level).   Lowestoft Town are from north-east Suffolk,  on the North Sea 33 km. (20 miles) south-east of Norwich;  and 59 km. (37 mi.) north-east of Ipswich.  The club has the great nickname of the Trawler Boys.  Lowestoft Town are in the Isthmian League, North (aka the Ryman North),  an 8th Level league. [note- there are just two clubs from the 8th Level on the map: Lowestoft Town and FC Halifax Town (who are the re-born Halifax Town AFC].  Gateshead are located in Tyne and Wear,  within Greater Newcastle.  The club crest features the town of Gateshead’s Angel of the North sculpture {see this}.  Gateshead were promoted to the Conference last season,  and have seen an attendance increase of around 300,  to 718 per game.

Thanks to the contributors to the pages at {click here for the page on 2009-10 Conference National}.   Thanks to the King’s Lynn FC site’s Turnstile Count {click here}.   Thanks to ESPN Soccernet {click here},  for Conference attendance figures {click here}. 

Thanks to the Blue Square South official site {click here}.   Thanks to the BBC site’s Non-League page {click here}.  Thanks to the Two Hundred Percent site,  for it’s excellent coverage of the Non-League scene {click here}.

January 4, 2008

Non-League Football in England, Attendance Map.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 4:56 pm


[ This map was made in connection with the Pitch Invasion site ( ]

The statistics used for the map are from December 28, 2007, courtesy of the King’s Lynn FC official website, which you can access, here.** 

Since then, no other club has broken into the top 32 Non-League average attendances, although Worcester City, Stafford Rangers, and Dover Athletic have all now broken the 900-per-game mark (which was my cut-off point, for the map). 

Using the latest gate figures (January 2, 2008), here is the list of the biggest gate increases, from last season to this season, of clubs that made the map.   

A. (#20) Histon, up 56% (from 790 to 1,229).;     B. (#15) Salisbury City, up 34% (from 1,118 to 1,498).;     C. (#3) Cambridge United, up 27% (from 2,818 to 3,519).     D. (#4)  Torquay United,  up 26% (from 2,633 to 3,320).     E. (#22) Chelmsford City, up 19% (from 1,001 to 1,193).;     F. (#4) Stevenage Borough, up 18% (from 2,126 to 2,520).

Histon and Salisbury were both promoted last spring, with their debut in the 5th Level (The Conference).  Cambridge and Stevenage did not move from the 5th Level, but are both doing well this season (both are in the playoff places).  Chelmsford City is a 6th Level club that is in the top 5 of their league (the Conference South).  And Torquay, believe it or not, got relegated out of the Football League, yet has increased their gate by 667 fans a game.  Maybe they are pulling a Bradford City (ie, get relegated, then slash ticket prices.) 

I just checked around, and their prices are about the same as Oxford and Stevenage Borough’s.  Torquay’s unusual gate increase must be because of the optimism engendered by the club’s new ownership.  Plus, it doesn’t hurt that they are playing well.  The Gulls are in 2nd place, four points behind Aldershot Town.  Still, to be cast from the promised land of The League, and then see such a marked increase in attendance, is a good sign for Non-League football.

Other clubs (that did not make this map) with big increases in crowds are (#38) Farsley Celtic, up an astounding 186% (from 308 to 880);  and (#40) Lewes, up 55% (from 520 to 805).    Farsley Celtic are from Leeds, and were just promoted up to the Conference, for the first time.    Lewes, known as The Rooks, are from East Sussex, and are leading the Conference South (in the 6th Level) by 9 pts.  **(See this  feature);   **(see this photo gallery). 

There are a couple other burgeoning minnows, but the one that deserves the final mention here is Chasetown FC.  On Saturday, they will play in the 3rd Round of the FA Cup.  As an 8th Level club, Chasetown will become the lowest ranked club in history to reach the 3rd Round of the FA Cup, when they host Cardiff City, in their 3,000 capacity ground. (See this article.)   This club is from south Staffordshire (just north of Birmingham).  Nicknamed The Scholars, they play in the Southern League, Division One-Midlands (see standings, with attendances, here…  some of the clubs in this league don’t even average 100 per game.) 

Chasetown’s average gate this season is #68 in Non-League football, at 462, up 51% from last season.  Go Scholars !    **(Here is BBC-Staffordshire’s coverage of the story.)    **(Chasetown FC Official site, here.)

November 14, 2007

England, 2nd Division: attendance update, November, 2007.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:48 am


The League Championship is the second level of football (soccer) in England.  It is the 12th highest-drawing professional domestic league in the world.  Last season, the league averaged 18,221 per game.  However,  this season attendance is down over 10% .  The only non-promoted club with a significant gate increase is Wolverhampton.  The West Midlands-based club, which was last in the top flight 4 seasons ago,  have maintained a solid fanbase, and yet again are pushing for promotion.  They sit 5th in the table, which is a promotion play-off position  (first and second place win automatic promotion to the Premier League;  3rd through 6th place vie for the third promotion spot).   As the season progresses, and clubs become involved in both the push for promotion spots, and in the struggle to avoid relegation (the bottom three clubs), attendances will likely increase.   

October 28, 2007

English Premier League, October 2007 attendance update.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 8:08 pm


English Premier League attendance is up 5 % this season, but some of that can be explained by the addition of Sunderland.  The Black Cats have rocketed to the 5th best attendance in the country.  They are up 10,000 from last season’s final totals (when they won the 2nd Division).  As for the two other newly promoted clubs, Derby has an increase of 6,200, while Birmingham’s gate is up 4,100.  The 2 biggest gate increases of non-promoted clubs are at Aston Villa and Manchester City.  Both these clubs are seeing a rejuvenation on the field, and it has been reflected in the turnstiles.  Villa are 3,000 above last season’s average; City shows an increase of 1,600.  The club with the biggest downturn is Bolton, at -2,000.  They seem doomed to relegation, and it looks like the fans know it.    

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