BPL Breaks Two-Week Season Attendance Slide in Week 10

Liverpool slipped up at St James’ Park to Newcastle while Manchester United continued their rocky campaign in Week 10 of the Barclays Premier League. While weekly attendance figures have numerous caveats to take into account, the season attendance figure has fewer and at times give a better perspective. Since Week 7, the average season attendance has been dropping, but this past gameweek saw that slide end as the season average increased from week 9.

Across all games, Week 10 showed an average attendance of 37,525, a 7.7% increase from week 9’s 34,842 average attendance. The slide in season attendance may have been broken but the change from 35,858 in Week 9 to 36,025 in Week 10 is only a 0.46% increase.

So far in the first ten gameweeks of the Barclays Premier League, the season average attendance has changed negatively more times than it has positively at five times to the negative and four times to the positive. It’s always good to see the average change positively but from Week 9 to Week 10, 0.46% represents the smallest positive change all season with the biggest being a 2.9% positive change from Week 3 to Week 4.

Despite the increase in average attendance and the resulting positive impact on the season average, Week 10’s stadiums were actually less full at 94.6% compared to Week 9 which was 96.41%.  This also brought the season capacity trend down from 95.25% to 95.18%.  In and of itself, the change isn’t too significant considering that the season capacity trend has hovered at 95% +/- 0.35% since Week 2.
Interestingly enough while Week 10 seems to be relatively neutral with both positive and negatives in terms of contributions to the season trends, there really is one primary culprit:  Aston Villa.  While two of the top three highest capacity stadiums in the BPL in St James’ Park and the Emirates Stadium were among the most full this week, Aston Villa’s Villa Park anchored the least full stadiums list by a wide margin.  To further demonstrate the impact this one game had on the week’s numbers, without Aston Villa’s attendance contributions, Week 10’s average attendance would jump 2% to 38,133 and the week’s stadiums would have been 96.76% full.

As it stands the season is just over a quarter of the way finished.  With 38 total gameweeks, it seems appropriate to take a comparison measure to last season.  At Week 10 in the 2013/14 season, the season average attendance was 36,520 with stadiums 95.41% full for the season. So far 2014/15 has not matched or outperformed 2013/14.  While one quarter seems like a significant portion of the season (and it is) it still means that there is 75% left for an out-performance to occur.  Here’s where each team individually stands on the season as far as home attendance goes.

Data Source: Barclays Premier League & Business of Soccer Analysis

Data Source: Barclays Premier League & Business of Soccer Analysis

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