2018 League of Ireland Attendances - Week 3

Wed, Feb 28 2018

A wintery scene greeted fans at Dalymount Park on Tuesday Credit: Michael P Ryan

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Only five games made up series three of the 2018 League of Ireland season as the First Division avoided the early week fixtures. As a result five Premier Division games were played over Monday and Tuesday with the last two fixtures getting to experience the first huffs of icy breathe from the much talked about “Beast from the East.”

8,252 people attended the five games, resulting in an average of 1,650. To put this into perspective, the Premier Division totals and average gates for the first two weeks were 14,460 (average 2,892) and 16,176 (average 3,235).

From the many number of years writing attendance articles, one thing is very clear: early week fixtures are almost always well down on the usual Friday and Saturday night fixtures crowds.

Waterford topped this week’s attendance as 1,859 turned up at the RSC for the 2-0 win over St. Patrick’s Athletic. That’s 643 down on the opening day crowd but again that can be expected for a Monday game.

Sligo Rovers' 4-1 loss to Cork City and Dundalk’s 8-0 pounding of Limerick came in with 1,842 and 1,843 respectively.

Sligo opened the season with 3,056 and then followed that with 2,319 and subsequently 1,842. With three home games in nine days and a Monday fixture to boot, the drop is more just a factor of the frequency of matches and a start of the week encounter than anything worrying for the Bit o’ Red.

Dundalk opened the season with a crowd of 2,491 and dropped 648 (almost the same drop as Waterford) for their Tuesday goalfest. It’s a decent crowd considering the day it was on and the fact the snows had started to fall and the temperature was loitering around zero degrees at kick-off.

Shamrock Rovers' 6-0 win over Bray Wanderers drew 1,525. That’s a drop of 2,540 from their home visit of Dundalk a few days earlier. Again, the patterns from the last two seasons have shown early week games ruin attendances for clubs.

The final game was Bohemians' 1-0 loss to Derry City, which was watched by 1,183. The conditions were similar to those in Oriel Park and, like Shamrock Rovers, the Gypsies suffered a 2,457 drop in numbers.

In total 41,535 people have now visited League of Ireland venues across 19 games in the last week and a half. That’s an average of 2,186 per game.

If the league wants to ensure maximum crowd numbers for their games then Monday and Tuesday games should be avoided. The stats over the last two or three seasons paint that picture very clearly.

In the case of Bohemians and Shamrock Rovers, if the average take was 10 euro per person from the missing 2,500 from their previous fixture, that is potentially a revenue drop of 25,000 that no League of Ireland club can do without.

As the stormy snows across the country over the next few days, we will see what damage the weather will do to the weekend League of Ireland fixtures. Stay tuned to extratime.ie for updates on the status of all the games.

 

Gameweek 1 Attendances

Home

   

Away

Attendance

Dundalk

0

0

Bray Wanderers

2,491

Waterford FC

2

1

Derry City

2,502

St. Patrick's Athletic

2

3

Cork City

2,771

Sligo Rovers

0

1

Limerick

3,056

Bohemians

3

1

Shamrock Rovers

3,640

     

Total

14,460

     

Average

2,892

 

Gameweek 2 Attendances

Home

   

Away

Attendance

Cork City

2

0

Waterford

6,443

Shamrock Rovers

0

0

Dundalk

4,065

Sligo Rovers

2

1

Derry City

2,319

Limerick 

1

1

Bohemians

2,225

Galway United

4

1

Athlone Town

1,198

Bray Wanderers

1

2

St. Patrick's Athletic

1,124

Longford Town

2

2

Cobh Ramblers

575

UCD

2

1

Shelbourne

550

Cabinteely

0

1

Wexford

324

     

Total

18,823

     

Average

2,892

     

Prem Total

16,176

     

Prem Av

3,235

     

First Total

2,647

     

First  Av

662

 

Gameweek 3 Attendances

Home

   

Away

Attendance

Waterford FC

2

0

St. Patrick's Athletic

1,859

Dundalk

8

0

Limerick

1,843

Sligo Rovers

1

4

Cork City

1,842

Shamrock Rovers

6

0

Bray Wanderers

1,525

Bohemians

0

1

Derry City

1,183

     

Total

8,252

     

Average

1,650