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Attendance

Home attendances for USWNT games up 13% compared to 2016

Photo credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The US Women’s National Team have completed their final game of the 2017 calendar year. The performances leave plenty for fans to be worried about (the women’s national team finished last at the She Believes Cup and only managed second at the Tournament of Nations). However, after the worrying trend last year of declining attendance, the news that that decline appears to have temporarily stopped is good news. Indeed, the women saw their average attendance rise a good amount.

For the USWNT it was nothing but good news on the attendance front. The average attendance at WNT games in 2017 was 18,150 per game, up 13% from 15,973 in 2016, which is spectacular news considering the average attendance for the WNT dropped 42% from 2015 to 2016. The only blip on the radar this year so to speak was that two games drew under 10,000 fans (though one of them was at Wake Med Soccer Park which only holds 10,000 fans so not a terribly big deal there). It seems like the strategy of US Soccer to label a group of random friendlies as a tournament (She Believes Cup and Tournament of Nations) has worked (this could be lending credence to the absurd notion of hosting a World Cup NIT for the number of men’s teams that failed to get to the World Cup). The biggest crowd of the year for the WNT however was not a She Believes Cup game or a Tournament of Nations game: it was a friendly against South Korea in Cincinnati, which has exploded onto the national soccer scene in the last year and a half. In fact, the crowd of over 30,000 in Cincinnati was the first such crowd for the WNT since Abby Wambach’s final game in New Orleans in December of 2015. The only concern going forward, attendance-wise, is that the WNT is unlikely to play meaningful games until the end of the year so there are some who are concerned about a potential drop in interest. Only time will tell on that front.

Here are the home attendances for both USWNT in 2017:

2017 USWNT Attendances

3/1 – She Believes Cup – USA vs. Germany – Talen Energy Stadium – 16,318
3/4 – She Believes Cup – USA vs. England – Red Bull Arena – 26,500
3/7 – She Believes Cup – USA vs. France – RFK Stadium – 21,638
4/6 – Friendly – USA vs. Russia – Toyota Stadium – 15,191
4/9 – Friendly – USA vs. Russia – BBVA Compass Stadium – 11,347
7/27 – Tournament of Nations – USA vs. Australia – CenturyLink Field – 15,748
7/30 – Tournament of Nations – USA vs. Brazil – Qualcomm Stadium – 21,096
8/3 – Tournament of Nations – USA vs. Japan – StubHub Center – 23,161
9/15 – Friendly – USA vs. New Zealand – Dick’s Sporting Goods Park – 17,301
9/19 – Friendly – USA vs. New Zealand – Nippert Stadium – 30,596
10/19 – Friendly – USA vs. South Korea – Mercedes-Benz Superdome – 9,371
10/22 – Friendly – USA vs. South Korea – Wake Med Soccer Park – 9,727
11/12 – Friendly – USA vs. Canada – Avaya Stadium – 17,960

Total Attendance: 235,954
Average Attendance: 18,150

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. numbers

    November 21, 2017 at 1:08 pm

    To be clear, ToN and SBC were both US Soccer-created friendly tournaments. US women played in zero international matches of any stakes this year. WCQs start next year and CONCACAF doesn’t stage women’s tournaments otherwise (no equivalents to the men’s Gold Cup or LoN).

    Nippert had the largest women’s international match attendance in North America this year. Second was the Nov. 9 Canada-hosted friendly vs. US at BC Place, a 28,017 sellout.

    CanWNT home matches:

    2/4 – Friendly – Canada vs. Mexico – BC Place Stadium – 22,508
    6/8 – Friendly – Canada vs. Costa Rica – Investors Group Field – 14,434
    6/11 – Friendly – Canada vs. Costa Rica – BMO Field – 20,628
    11/9 – Friendly – Canada vs. USA – BC Place Stadium – 28,017

    Total: 85,587
    Average; 21,396

    Mexico played only one home friendly in 2017, but for context, the Liga MX Femenil grand finals first leg last night drew 28,955. A bootleg stream of the FS1 MX broadcast peaked at around 92k viewers.

    • Lawrence Dockery

      November 21, 2017 at 1:34 pm

      Not sure if you misunderstood the point I was making about the She Believes Cup and the Tournament of Nations. They’re both fake and artificial tournaments created out of thin air. I think I said as much when I said in the article, “It seems that US Soccer’s strategy of a random group of friendlies…”

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