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MLS experiencing crowd problems despite some positive movements

2009 saw Major League Soccer experience some attendance lows despite positive movements by some clubs within the competition.

MLS' average attendance this season was 16,037, down 2% even though expansion franchise Seattle Sounders managed to get over 30,000 to their home games and for the third year in a row, Toronto FC sold out every home game.

The problem areas may lie with New England Revolution who attracted just over 7,000 to a home play-off and reigning MLS champions Columbus Crew whose crowds were not at their best.

Some of it could be put down to the Global Economic Crisis and the fact families may have stayed away from luxuries such as sporting events to ride out the wave of economic uncertainty.

But MLS is hoping that whatever the reason for the decline in attendance changes when Philadelphia Union enter the league next season which will be followed by Portland and Vancouver the following year.

If crowds are not sustainable when these new franchises enter, then MLS will have a task on their hands to improve the status of the sport.

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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