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Understanding the effects of match-going fans on football and its finances

As the premier league and La Liga are set to restart the matches behind closed doors, We in this article will try to understand the effects of match-going fans on football and its ecosystem.

Ankit Kanaujia
Last updated: 11.06.2020
Understanding the effects of match-going fans on football and its finances | Sports Social Blog

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The outbreak of coronavirus has taken the world by storm. Almost all the countries are struggling and the sports world is stopped all of a sudden.

Now when the things started getting a little better, Most of the football leagues are returning but behind the closed doors and without the match-going fans.

The match going fans felt like the inseparable part of the sport, but the pandemic left the sports industry with no other option. But certainly, to be honest, it lower downs the thrill, enthusiasm, and the noise we are used to that definitely. As a player, It feels like practice matches.


How many fans go to the matches:

During the 2018/19 season, the average attendance at a Premier League game was 38,168, while more than 14.5M people clicked through the turnstiles overall. That translates into a total figure of £677M brought in by fans on a matchday.

But mass gatherings off the agenda till the next updates, It will be off the agenda for some time.


The empty seats in the stadiums are like malls without the shops, art galleries without the paintings, theaters without the audience or nightclubs without the music. It gives the feeling of ‘Something missing’.

Alvin Martin, Former West Ham Captain told in an interview, that 

“To go from playing in a full stadium to playing behind closed doors is eerie. The atmosphere that you’re reliant on isn’t there and you can’t feed off the energy of the crowd.”

 The defender earned 17 caps for England and is fifth on West Ham’s list of all-time appearance makers after playing 596 times for the club over an 18-year period.

Martin recalled his experiences during the time of West Ham,“At West Ham, the fans created an atmosphere that was up there with the very, very best,” he says.

“They are the ones that you play for. When they turn up at a game, they set the stage for you.

“They enhance the feeling of the game and the worth of it. You know that if you're playing in front of 30 or 40,000 people then you're doing something important.”


How Loud is a football stadium:

The presence of fans at the stadium creates an atmosphere of excitement, passion and plays a major role in the performance of the team. It motivates players in such a way that it improves their performance by 5-10% that they can’t find in the training sessions.

The influence of match-going fans enables players with an adrenaline rush that helps them play despite having very hectic schedules.


Effects of fans generated income on Football Finances:

The £677m generated by matchday income in the Premier League in 2018/19 works out at 13 percent of the overall turnover for all 20 clubs.

In other words, £1 in every seven is made from fans.

Below is the data according to different premier league clubs:

It may be sounding not a very significant portion of the revenues, but it’s the source of cash that clubs can not afford to leave.

Kieran Maguire, The Football Finance expert (Who gives lectures at the University of Liverpool & Authored the Price of Football) says It doesn’t matter on the nature of the business but no one will want to throw away any regular stream of revenues.

The industry is big and it will need to adapt to the changes and innovate, how they are going to cover up the losses due to the absence of match-going fans. 

The integral relationship between Football and fans is still there and clubs will have to reimagine the ways they will keep engaging their fans.

We at Chase Your Sport these indeed are the challenging times for the sports ecosystem but when there is any challenge it comes with an opportunity as well. That makes mankind reinvent new ways and keep moving forward.

We are eagerly waiting for the season to restart that brings some live-action back!

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