It’s time to leave, but I can’t. This should be considered a significant change.
The average number of spectators per game in K-League 1 this season after round 13 is 10,159. Each team played 6-7 games at home, and they maintain the title with an average of 10,000 spectators.
Originally, the K-League enjoys a “sparkle” opening effect at the beginning of the season. Until March, many spectators were mobilized, but in April, when the professional baseball season began and the spring outing season returned, the number of spectators rapidly decreased.
If you look at the pre-COVID-19 pandemic, you can see that clearly. The average number of spectators in March 2017 was 11,458, but it plummeted by almost half when spring came to 6,675 in April and 6,245 in May. Even in 2018, it fell by exactly 50% from 8,018 in March to 4,000 in April. Although it increased to 5,628 in May, it fell far short of the opening time in March. 2019 is no different. The decline was remarkable, from 10,745 in March to 6,774 in April and 7,877 in May.
At the opening season, public opinion was created that the game was a box office hit, but as the season progressed, the average number of spectators drastically decreased, and there were many cases in which the game ended in disappointment.
This season, the atmosphere is completely different. The average number of spectators from March to May has remained largely unchanged. The average number of spectators in the 18 matches in March of the K-League, which opened happily with an average of 16,939 in the opening game in February, reached 9,587. Although it fell significantly compared to the opening game, it is not a small number compared to the past. What is encouraging is the fact that the average number of spectators for 36 games in April was 9,583, no different from March. In the following 17 games in May, the average number rose slightly to 9,624. Recording an almost similar number of spectators for three consecutive months, which is exceptional, can be interpreted as meaning that the K-League’s crowd mobilization has stabilized.
It is positive that the average difference between each team is also decreasing. 1st place FC Seoul (27,532) leads the overwhelming crowd category, while 2nd place Ulsan Hyundai (16,943 people) and 3rd place Daejeon Hana Citizen (13,593 people), a total of three teams average 10,000. Keeping the audience. Jeonbuk Hyundai (9988) and Daegu FC (9958) are also recording figures that are virtually no different from 10,000. In addition, Incheon United (8,883), Suwon Samsung (8,359) and Pohang Steelers (8,150) do not back down from the box office. Even Jeju United, which always struggles to mobilize spectators, is doing its best with 7,001 people. Suwon FC (5388), Gangwon FC (4193), and Gwangju FC (3960), which are in the lower ranks, are not bad compared to last year.
Field officials are also aware of the changed box office atmosphere of the K-League. An official from one club said, “Actually, it was packaged, but the K-League was always a league in which the number of spectators dropped significantly after spring. This year is definitely different. As the Corona 19 pandemic ends, each team is actively attracting spectators. We’ll have to wait and see, but I think this year this phenomenon will last a little longer.”
Several factors can be cited as success factors. As the previous official said, many people are choosing to watch professional soccer as an outdoor activity after the pandemic ends. The number of ‘core fans’ who attend not only home matches but also away matches held across the country is increasing, 스포츠토토 creating an effect of increasing the number of spectators. Not only that, but one of the driving forces is the aggressive game contents that add interest in the fierce ranking battle. A schedule that minimizes weekday games is also helpful for box office success.
Ahn Chi-joon, public relations team leader of the Korea Professional Football Federation, said, “The federation is positively viewing the fact that the number of spectators is maintained. There may be many reasons, but in the end, I think it’s the result of each team’s efforts. When summer comes in earnest and the rainy season begins, there will be variables, but it seems important that the federation and the club work together to aim for a long-term box office hit.”