Fans’ presence – Bundesliga wears the crown


Average attendance of soccer games around the world Image: Coliseum GSVA

As one of the world’s most beloved sports, it comes as no surprise that major soccer leagues around the world attract spectators in their thousands. The German Bundesliga sat top of the pile in the 2022-2023 seasons, with an average of over nearly 43,000 fans flocking to the stadiums to watch the live action every weekend.

The Bundesliga, sometimes referred to as the Fußball-Bundesliga or 1. Bundesliga, is a professional association football league in Germany. At the top of the German football league system, the Bundesliga is Germany’s primary football competition.

Success of the Premier League

‘statista’ stated that the best attended soccer league in the world in 2021-2022 was the Premier League (UK). The Premier League has been on top, leading the other major soccer leagues in Europe in terms of revenue and continues to be the financially most successful sports league worldwide, also throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Premier League (UK) is the highest level of the English football league system. Contested by 20 clubs, it operates on a system of promotion and relegation with the English Football League. Seasons typically run from August to May with each team playing 38 matches against all other teams both home and away.

MLS no ‘Match’ to NFL

‘statista’ further stated that the average attendance of the Major League Soccer (MLS) (US) in North America stood at just under 22,000 in the 2018-2019 seasons. These figures pale in comparison to the popularity of the National Football League (NFL) (US) – a total of 17.1 million fans watched the NFL games live during the 2018 regular season, with the number consistently over 17 million for the last decade. During the 2018 regular season, the NFL team Dallas Cowboys had the highest average home attendance in the league, with an average of over 91,000 fans watching each home game. This figure is almost 14,000 more than the average attendance of the NFL team New York Giants, which is the second highest in the league. Although the Cowboys’ home ground – the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, has an official capacity of 80,000 for football games, it is expandable to 105,000 with standing room.

The Major League Soccer (MLS) is a men’s professional soccer league sanctioned by the United States Soccer Federation, which represents the sport’s highest level in the United States. The league comprises 29 teams – 26 in the United States and 3 in Canada – since the 2023 season. The league is headquartered in Midtown Manhattan, New York, US.

New York (US)-based the National Football League (NFL) is a professional American football league that consists of 32 teams, divided equally between the American Football Conference and the National Football Conference.

NBA Lagging Behind

In contrast to the NFL, the average attendance of the National Basketball Association (NBA) games is still relatively low, with an average of 21,930 people watching each game live in the 2018-2019 seasons. These figures can be attributed to the smaller size of the basketball arenas, with the largest arena in the NBA, the 23,500-capacity United Center, home of the Chicago Bulls, having a capacity of just under 25,000 people. The Philadelphia 76ers was the best supported team throughout the whole of the 2018-2019 regular seasons, as over 838,000 total fans attended their home games.

New York (US)-based the National Basketball Association (NBA) is a professional basketball league in North America composed of 30 teams. It is one of the major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada and is considered the premier professional basketball league in the world.

Quick Glance (Average Attendance)

  • Bundesliga (Germany) – 42,966
  • Premier League (England, UK) – 40,301
  • Serie A (Italy) – 29,508
  • Primera División (Spain) – 29,428
  • Ligue 1 (France) – 23,677
  • Primera División (Mexico) – 22,562
  • Série A (Brazil) – 21,522
  • Major League Soccer (North America) – 21,034

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