Ahead of this weekend’s Sky Bet Play-Off Finals, analysis of attendance data from the 2017/18 season has shown that the number of supporters making their way through the turnstiles of EFL Clubs is continuing to increase year-on-year.
The Championship has seen the highest individual growth, with attendances rising by almost 210,000 to over 11.3 million across all 552 matches in what is the second successive season that the Championship Clubs have surpassed the 11 million mark. In addition, Clubs welcomed an average gate of nearly 20,500 spectators in 2017/18.
This follows a report by UEFA earlier this year, whereby the Championship was listed as the third best attended division in Europe, with Spain’s La Liga and Italy’s Serie A just some of the high profile leagues posting lower figures.
As for the whole of the EFL, overall matchday attendances have again topped 18 million across all three divisions in 2017/18 for only the third time since 1959, with the cumulative number of supporters totalling 18,099,894.
When comparing the like-for-like across the 67 teams that participated solely in the EFL across the 2016/17 and 2017/18 seasons, those figures represent a 4% growth with an average attendance across all three divisions of over 10,500.
EFL Chief Executive, Shaun Harvey, said: “The appeal in attending live football across the EFL has never been of more interest, with all 72 Clubs doing their upmost to attract new supporters and keeping it accessible to those loyal fans already engaged. It is particularly pleasing to see that the cumulative attendance has once again topped the 18 million mark. In what was a record breaking 2016/17 campaign, this season has continued the trend of improvement in fan experience, generating a positive impact in enjoyment and ultimately attendance.”
In addition, nine Clubs in the Championship averaged over 25,000 with Aston Villa (32,097), posting the highest individual numbers. Bradford City topped League One with 19,787 with 10 Clubs exceeding 8,000 while Coventry City’s average attendance of 9,255 was the highest in League Two.
Last year it was announced that the EFL has more than 500,000 season ticket holders for the first time in living memory, and that trend has continued into the 2017/18 EFL campaign with over 520,000 sold, an increase of 4%.