Attendances continue to rise
Last season's average Barclays Premier League attendance of 35,931 was the sixth highest since league football began in 1888. Attendances have been growing again this season. If the present average of 36,412 is maintained it will become the third largest ever.
Crowds would have only been larger in 1948-49 (38,776) and 1949-50 (37,400). These were years when the disruption of the immediate aftermath of war had been overcome, but there was a lack of entertainment alternatives.
It is possible that the highest ever average attendance may be achieved within a few years. Manchester City, whose average attendance this season is 45,689, are to expand the Etihad Stadium so that it will hold 61,000 by the summer of next year. Tottenham hope to have their new stadium seating 56,250 ready by 2017. West Ham plan to move into the 54,000 capacity Olympic Stadim in 2016.
Average attendances in the Championship are currently estimated at 16,410, 45 per cent of the Premiership figure. They more than halve in League One where at 7,370 they are a fifth of the top flight average. In League Two they are 4,249, twelve per cent of the Premiership figure and in the Conference they are 1,808, five per cent of the Premiership average.