Sunday, November 7, 2010

Crew goes down, MLS Attendance

I've been interested for a while now on how the MLS is doing. It's a new(er) league in the US and always sort of thought that it was a niche thing. Not that I thought they weren't doing well, per say. Just way behind the other sports. Well it turns out they are actually doing well on a game to game basis. I say game to game because the play significantly less games then the other leagues in the US.

Philadelphia Union and Toronto FC actually fill their stadiums each game. The Seattle Sounders FC fill what is afforded to them at Quest Field which has a soccer capacity of 36,000 but actual cap of around 64,000 if they opened it up.

The Crew average about 14,000 fans a game, or 62% capacity. This is below the average and median by about 2,000 in the MLS, but in a Buckeye football dominated area? Not too shabby.

How does that stand up to the rest of the soccer world? I'm asking myself the same question. After all, we are just lowly Americans who could care less about the other Football right?

1. Bundesliga (GER): 42,790
2. English Premier League (ENG): 34,088
3. La Liga (ESP): 28,971
4. Serie A (ITA): 23,899
5. Ligue 1 (FRA): 20,119
6. Eredivisie (NED): 19,319
7. MLS (USA): 18,452
8. Championship (ENG): 18,113
9. Scottish Premier League (SCO): 15,128
10. Bundesliga 2 (GER): 15,056

I know that population has a ton to do with this. I'm actually surprised the Scottish league is in the top 10. I think that means that 110% of the Scottish population is showing up for games. Either way, nice work MLS!

Now, for the Crew going down....

The name of the MLS playoff game is: Aggregate. It's unique to "major" leagues in this world. Teams making the playoffs get a Home/Away match up. Team with the most goals in those two games win. It seems experimental, fun, strange and wonky.

The crew lost to the Rapids in the first game 1-0, but then won the second game 2-1. Aggregate? 2-2. Soooo, the second game went to PK's. Columbus lost.

I'm actually thinking they should just turn this sucker into a 3 game series.


While I'm at this attendance thing, topic and thinking on that cheerleader picture above... MLS plays a different time of year then most other leagues. Soccer in the rest of the world is a fall/winter sport and I like that idea. Could it work in the US? Heck yeah! February games in Salt Lake, Calorado, Kansas City, Chicago, and Columbus! How about Toronto and New England? Okay, maybe not.

However, with the league playing when it does I would like to see a Cup set up between the MLS and European leagues during their seasons and not "warm up" games featuring European teams playing the MLS teams during the MLS season.

Drop a couple of your meaningless cups and invite the Yanks out to your backyard - England and Germany - after our season is over. We'll go. In fact, I'll set up a tournament on FIFA 11 and see how it goes.

ahhh, 'tis a dream. 'tis a dream.

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