New England Revolution Attendance Dropped in 2019, Arena Led Second Half Recovered Some Losses

The New England Revolution are heading into the MLS Playoffs for the first time since 2015 but that doesn’t mean that their regular season attendance numbers rebounded. New England attracted 284,535 fans into Gillette Stadium in 2019 across 17 regular season home games.

Compared to 2018 that is an -8.8% change down from 311,897. On a per game average the Revolution had 17,783 versus 19,494 in 2018. A big driver of the decline was due to a LA Galaxy match in July of 2018 when New England was able to attract 36,573 fans. That was the season high in 2018 versus a season high of 28,602 in 2019. Remove that anomaly and the attendance numbers would be down roughly -3.5% year-over-year.

Match #
2019

2018

w88bet

%

Match 1 

13,808

13,305

3.8%

Match 2

10,605

12,376

-14.3%

Match 3

10,657

10,908

-2.3%

Match 4

15,016

11,508

30.5%

Match 5

14,514

17,015

-14.7%

Match 6

9,422

19,596

-51.9%

Match 7 

20,610

14,087

46.3%

Match 8 

20,131

10,547

90.9%

Match 9 

11,571

21,576

-46.4%

Match 10 

17,372

19,371

-10.3%

Match 11 

10,575

16,484

-35.8%

Match 12 

19,043

36,573

-47.9%

Match 13 

25,515

19,516

30.7%

Match 14
16,236
16,040

1.2%

Match 15

16,588

24,388

-32.0%

Match 16

24,270

19,775

22.7%

Match 17

28,602

28,832

-0.8%

Total Attendance 

284,535

311,897

-8.8%

Average Attendance 

17,783

19,494

-8.8%

Before and After Bruce Arena

New England got off to an incredibly poor start in 2019 that set the overall attendance numbers up for failure. In the six games under former Head Coach Brad Friedel the Revolution had attendance numbers trailing 2018 by -13%. After the Revolution made the change for Bruce Arena the Revolution only trailed last year numbers by -7%, a +6 point swing.

Now that late season rebound still feels a little soft, even when removing the LA Galaxy 2018 match the Revolution top 2019 attended match would still come in second to the season finale in 2018. That Match 17 in 2019 was a playoff clinching type of match and it still drew -0.8% to 2018’s finale when literally nothing was on the line.

MLS as a whole posted attendance -3% to 2018 and only four teams posted worse year-over-year change than the Revolution. New England’s attendance ranked 18th in MLS. It’s tough to get too negative on New England as the late-late season attendance numbers came in fairly solid as fans around the region became re-aware of the local MLS franchise.

New England has a chance to make some noise in the first round of the MLS playoffs next Saturday in Atalanta. Next season big things are expected out of the Revolution who have now built a structure and a program that has significant financial investments from owner Robert Kraft. Would forecast an uptick on the attendance in 2020 down at Gillette.
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