Adam Jardy and Steve Sirk were talking attendance numbers today, Crew Union impresario John Clem joined in to further break down the numbers on twitter. The team has averaged 14,141 through seven games. That's an impressive 41% gain over the 2011 season. It's certainly good news that there are more fans in the seats. This is a trend that I thought may happen after the excellent off season the team had with ticket renewals.
It, however, is similar to the first seven games of the 2010 season, 14,368. The Crew coming off back to back Supporters Shield wins were certainly a very good team and that played a bit into it. They reaped the reward for several successful seasons.
As good as 2010 was, the 2011 season was the worst in Crew history, the team would only average 10,011 through the first seven games. The loss of so many recognizable faces certainly played a part as the new look team wasn't as familiar. The team would end with an average of 12,641.
So the 2012 attendance can be seen as a desperately needed return to form. This shouldn't be seen as a slight at the work the team's sales staff has done. The front office has put in to get many of these fans back. Many former Crew fans could have stayed that way, but the team has put in a tremendous effort to get people back who had stopped coming.
The Crew have several event games coming up the rest of the summer too, the normally well attended L.A. Galaxy game, in addition to Saturday games against D.C. United and Toronto F.C. should bring in large crowds.
The team has a chance to approach the 15,000 or 16,000 mark with continued solid attendance. That wouldn't put them in Seattle Sounders territory, but it would place them in the middle of league attendance figures with room for future growth.
Strong attendance, coupled with continued strength in sponsorships gets the Crew closer to that magical profitability mark.
Crew attendance through first 7 games (2006-2012):