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Roughyhead true

playoff crowds

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.

 

TV pays the clubs handsomely to televise the games (£90,000,000) so despite seats being empty the SL clubs are still getting their money and the fans are still paying and watching the games, just in two different ways.

 

 

 

This is overlooking the not inconsiderable sum involved in actually staging a modern SL match. Although Leeds might come out in front on 12500, several other clubs would have made losses on the crowds attending at the play offs thereby merely adding to the loss for the year. The only thing propping up the play off concept as it stands is the final itself, without this the clubs involved would make further losses as the shared pot would be paltry.

 

It all needs a re-think and overhaul.

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I can't say I noticed the crowd myself.  Headingly is good at hiding 'poor' crowds as it's a series of sheds.  The only give-away was the second tier, but during a match that is hardly noticed anyway.  I think the image was helped by the packed away end.  I know Saints took loads over but that was probably because Saints fans could hardly believe we were actually in the second round!  Not long ago most of us were concerned we wouldn't even get in the top 8. 

 

Rugby league fans just don't want to pay any more for their product than they do already.  I don't think it's all about poverty.  Some will be struggling obviously.  But on the whole I just think it's about choice.  It's an attitude, much like the moaning is an attitude. 

Headingley is "good at hiding poor crowds" because the majority are standing and people just spread into the area available making it look fuller. You don't get big empty blocks in standing areas, it just thins out . Leeds, like most clubs these days, have more people with season tickets than without and it's well established that many won't go if it isn't covered on their ticket. To the Saints' fans, who came in decent numbers imo, this was another 'away' game so they didn't have the mentality of it 'not being on their season ticket'. I appreciate it was down on league attendances but I thought the crowd was OK and certainly up to the norm for play-off games.

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IMO,

The RFL & SL have have pushed their agenda for the last 2 decades and in doing so have abandoned much of what gives our game it's strength. We have a small audience in sporting terms and we've reduced its size over the last 20 years or so by ostracising some geographical and divisional sections of the game. Gone are the days when swathes of supporters from every club attended every major Rugby League event whether their club or any of their players were involved. The RFL and SL now ask a smaller number of fans to dig into their pockets more often and to an extent they do. However, even to those fans there are missable games and attendances at play offs, early CC rounds, low level internationals even some major Internationals and Finals suffer because of it.

Some of the changes and poor areas of governance:

The rush to expansion at the expense of heartland clubs

- including a series of decisions and policy changes which have favoured one club while marginalising others

Abandoning P & R, now a proven disaster.

- Some clubs being afforded latitude while others have felt a hard line

- Wigan avoiding relegation by questionable means, brushed under the carpet

- fast tracking expansion clubs

- ignoring Cumbria

- Refusing a deserving club it's rightfully promotion because of non playing criterion (Hunslet, Dewsbury, Fev)

The diminishing importance of the Challenge Cup in favour of the Grand Final

- Changing the Final date to a non traditional one

Abandoning other Traditional Cup competitions like the

- Regal Trophy

- Yorkshire & Lancashire Cup

Removing the status of Champions from the League Leaders

- Pandering to SKY to elevate their GF showpeice

The switch to summer

- Agree or not it's still contentious and has probably cost us some traditional support

The disbanding of Great Britain and the loss of both home and away tours

- THE Headline international event in our game GONE!

- When a credible International programme is now recognised as a vital component of any sport

- The loss of prestige when your club side takes on a touring team

- The loss of vital exposure and interest from outside the games boundaries

I'm sure I could go on but there's enough there to see reasons for the diminishing crowds and even worse the diminishing importance of our game on the sporting landscape. I haven't included solutions mainly because I haven't got the time right now but much of the above has been discussed numerous times before. When you start putting it all down in a list it's frightening just how much we've lost from the game in a relatively short time. Some of the above has happened for a good reason and maybe they neede to happen but has it been handled well.

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This is overlooking the not inconsiderable sum involved in actually staging a modern SL match. Although Leeds might come out in front on 12500, several other clubs would have made losses on the crowds attending at the play offs thereby merely adding to the loss for the year. The only thing propping up the play off concept as it stands is the final itself, without this the clubs involved would make further losses as the shared pot would be paltry.

 

It all needs a re-think and overhaul.

 

Based on what, this play-off fixture ( Leeds v Saints at Headingley) had its highest attendance since 1999.

 

The only problem there is, is that, clubs have put massive marketing efforts into getting people to move from pay on the day to season tickets very successfully. Then getting potential walk ups to actually pre-buy tickets.

 

This means that the supporters mentality has completely changed. A large proportion of fans after having used a season ticket all year see play-offs as expensive (they never saw a cost to get in to an actual game on the night/day of the match) and also their is the 'hassle' of getting a ticket when you know that all the play-off games are televised. I'll take a guess that the majority of season ticket holders that decide to watch on the TV are those with family tickets, they will see a it as a big expense..

 

Here's a simple idea, if you have a family season ticket ( 2x adults 2x children) then even picking the cheapest tickets at Headingley a family suddenly has to find £64 plus their usual game spend, if they want to sit down then they have to find £90. Published ticket prices from Leeds not accounting for any offers for Play-Offs. If you allow children who have been using a season family ticket in for free for the play-offs as long as the adults also attend then you can knock about a third or more off the costs.

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IMO,

The RFL & SL have have pushed their agenda for the last 2 decades and in doing so have abandoned much of what gives our game it's strength. We have a small audience in sporting terms and we've reduced its size over the last 20 years or so by ostracising some geographical and divisional sections of the game. Gone are the days when swathes of supporters from every club attended every major Rugby League event whether their club or any of their players were involved. The RFL and SL now ask a smaller number of fans to dig into their pockets more often and to an extent they do. However, even to those fans there are missable games and attendances at play offs, early CC rounds, low level internationals even some major Internationals and Finals suffer because of it.

Some of the changes and poor areas of governance:

The rush to expansion at the expense of heartland clubs

- including a series of decisions and policy changes which have favoured one club while marginalising others

Abandoning P & R, now a proven disaster.

- Some clubs being afforded latitude while others have felt a hard line

- Wigan avoiding relegation by questionable means, brushed under the carpet

- fast tracking expansion clubs

- ignoring Cumbria

- Refusing a deserving club it's rightfully promotion because of non playing criterion (Hunslet, Dewsbury, Fev)

The diminishing importance of the Challenge Cup in favour of the Grand Final

- Changing the Final date to a non traditional one

Abandoning other Traditional Cup competitions like the

- Regal Trophy

- Yorkshire & Lancashire Cup

Removing the status of Champions from the League Leaders

- Pandering to SKY to elevate their GF showpeice

The switch to summer

- Agree or not it's still contentious and has probably cost us some traditional support

The disbanding of Great Britain and the loss of both home and away tours

- THE Headline international event in our game GONE!

- When a credible International programme is now recognised as a vital component of any sport

- The loss of prestige when your club side takes on a touring team

- The loss of vital exposure and interest from outside the games boundaries

I'm sure I could go on but there's enough there to see reasons for the diminishing crowds and even worse the diminishing importance of our game on the sporting landscape. I haven't included solutions mainly because I haven't got the time right now but much of the above has been discussed numerous times before. When you start putting it all down in a list it's frightening just how much we've lost from the game in a relatively short time. Some of the above has happened for a good reason and maybe they neede to happen but has it been handled well.

If all that is true, what explains the bigger crowds today?

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Based on what, this play-off fixture ( Leeds v Saints at Headingley) had its highest attendance since 1999.

The only problem there is, is that, clubs have put massive marketing efforts into getting people to move from pay on the day to season tickets very successfully. Then getting potential walk ups to actually pre-buy tickets.

This means that the supporters mentality has completely changed. A large proportion of fans after having used a season ticket all year see play-offs as expensive (they never saw a cost to get in to an actual game on the night/day of the match) and also their is the 'hassle' of getting a ticket when you know that all the play-off games are televised. I'll take a guess that the majority of season ticket holders that decide to watch on the TV are those with family tickets, they will see a it as a big expense..

Here's a simple idea, if you have a family season ticket ( 2x adults 2x children) then even picking the cheapest tickets at Headingley a family suddenly has to find £64 plus their usual game spend, if they want to sit down then they have to find £90. Published ticket prices from Leeds not accounting for any offers for Play-Offs. If you allow children who have been using a season family ticket in for free for the play-offs as long as the adults also attend then you can knock about a third or more off the costs.

If this genuinely is the mentality I.e. won't pay for play off games because they are not included in a ST, then the only logical solution I can see is the one mentioned by a previous poster whereby ST holders pay slightly more for their ticket but it also allows entry to play off games. Whether this could also be extended to cover Challenge Cup games is another possibility. The only downside is you're asking fans of clubs who don't make the play offs to subsidise those that do. Similarly your club might be drawn away in the CC and be knocked out in their first match meaning you've partially paid for something you don't get any return on.

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People have just got this all wrong. The number of people interested in the game in Warrington, Leeds, Hull and Wigan hasn't systematically changed in the last 30 years. The difference is that in 1983 only around 5-8,000 of those fans bothered to go to every league and cup fixture. While the silent minority picked their games - e.g. top of the table clashes, derbies, big challenge cup or other important cup games.

 

The clubs have worked hard to convert these casuals into committing into season ticket to turn up for 13 home fixture in the regular rounds. The reward is that the club gets it £200-£300 season ticket money in advance. By doing this the casual fan has pretty much used up its budget for the year. For other non-budgeted games then they have the comfort of the sofa. So for Challenge Cup ties and play-offs it is back to the core support (a la 1983).

 

If you notice the play-offs for the last 10 years you will find that the away support (the core fans) is pretty strong. This was the case with Saints fans last night, Leeds fans last week, Wigan fans at Hudds etc.

 

IMO we can't have it both ways. Anyone who is nostalgic about what crowds were like in the 1980s and 1990s obviously has rose tinted specs on cos' I remember regular 5k home gates at Saints and Leeds and Warrington often pulling in 4k.

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If all that is true, what explains the bigger crowds today?

TOTAL fans attending across the game is down., well down..wether it fits the agenda or not...just because a few top clubs have massively increased averages  and we have one additional big crowd the GF, does not hide the appalling attendances at cup matches , play offs and across the lower divisions.."more" fans have merely migrated to fewer clubs , its another debate which is the better model

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People have just got this all wrong. The number of people interested in the game in Warrington, Leeds, Hull and Wigan hasn't systematically changed in the last 30 years. The difference is that in 1983 only around 5-8,000 of those fans bothered to go to every league and cup fixture. While the silent minority picked their games - e.g. top of the table clashes, derbies, big challenge cup or other important cup games.

 

The clubs have worked hard to convert these casuals into committing into season ticket to turn up for 13 home fixture in the regular rounds. The reward is that the club gets it £200-£300 season ticket money in advance. By doing this the casual fan has pretty much used up its budget for the year. For other non-budgeted games then they have the comfort of the sofa. So for Challenge Cup ties and play-offs it is back to the core support (a la 1983).

 

Interesting point. Leeds have had some whopping attendances against clubs the fans find boring like London and Catalans.

 

The additional point is if you get them in albeit cheap they still spend money inside the ground.

 

There's an excellent reply threaded through this thread to the OP criticisms.....

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IMO,

The RFL & SL have have pushed their agenda for the last 2 decades and in doing so have abandoned much of what gives our game it's strength. We have a small audience in sporting terms and we've reduced its size over the last 20 years or so by ostracising some geographical and divisional sections of the game.

I'm sure I could go on but there's enough there to see reasons for the diminishing crowds and even worse the diminishing importance of our game on the sporting landscape. I haven't included solutions mainly because I haven't got the time right now but much of the above has been discussed numerous times before. When you start putting it all down in a list it's frightening just how much we've lost from the game in a relatively short time. Some of the above has happened for a good reason and maybe they neede to happen but has it been handled well.

 

Division one crowds used to average 5500 now they average 9400....

 

Yes fans levels outside the top division are down but not but as much as they are up in the elite. 22,000 more fans I think?You can get higher levels of overall fan "attendances" by adding more competitions but then you get such as Adrian Shelford playing 40 games a season.

 

The move to professionalism reduces the ability to stage more top competitions but £90,000,000 SKY contracts make up for any losses by having less fixtures.I'd also guess professional clubs have a really good take per head opposed to what it used to be in semi pro days.

 

Leeds averaged 12500 in 1995 in the old first division.Their play off tie with Bradford was nearly half the attendance of the league game. The problems of play off attendances aren't the exclusive property of Superleague

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TOTAL fans attending across the game is down., well down..wether it fits the agenda or not...just because a few top clubs have massively increases averages and we have one additional big crowd the GF, does not hide the appalling attendances at cup matches , play offs and across the lower divisions.."more" fans have merely migrated to fewer clubs , its another debate which is the better model

Total crowds are down since compared to when? Post war? 1970's 1980's? When?

Besides, I am a 'new' RL punter and I know quite a few other converts. So there are genuinely new fans that have been created

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The highest since the early 1960s.significantly higher than the lwo point of the early 70s and about 40pct of the high point of the post WW2 boom.

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One aspect of the playoff debate that really annoys me is the lack of historical perspective by the League leaders=champions proponents.

Our traditional way to name Champions was of course by the Championship route in a 1 division league.

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One aspect of the playoff debate that really annoys me is the lack of historical perspective by the League leaders=champions proponents.

Our traditional way to name Champions was of course by the Championship route in a 1 division league.

 

Are you sure? I thought that the traditional way for 1 division was by play-off and grand final - until the mid-1970s when 2 divisions came in.

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Total crowds are down since compared to when? Post war? 1970's 1980's? When?

Besides, I am a 'new' RL punter and I know quite a few other converts. So there are genuinely new fans that have been created

Compared to various times... , if we did a graph we are not at a high point in respect of total numbers but nor at a low point, indeed for SOME clubs the SL era has been a fantastic success but not for the MAJORITY of clubs in terms of numbers watching live or on tv.....it is another debate as to which is best for the game ..to have say a minimum average crowd in ALL professional clubs of 1000, but a high of 12,000 and more competitions and  games and more spectators overall or many low averages numbered in the low hundreds but a few high averages for the top clubs with just two competitions and less games and less overall paying spectators..

 

 

 

Division one crowds used to average 5500 now they average 9400....

 

Yes fans levels outside the top division are down but not but as much as they are up in the elite. 22,000 more fans I think?You can get higher levels of overall fan "attendances" by adding more competitions but then you get such as Adrian Shelford playing 40 games a season.

 

The move to professionalism reduces the ability to stage more top competitions but £90,000,000 SKY contracts make up for any losses by having less fixtures.I'd also guess professional clubs have a really good take per head opposed to what it used to be in semi pro days.

 

If you are correct and the clubs now have a far superior take per head then can you tell me what is better??? 3.3 million spectators paying that take per head or 1.7 million spectators????

 

It is widely acknowledge the SL clubs get just shy of £1mill per season from the £90 mill contract, at an average of £20.00 per head (admittance only) this works out at 50,000 spectators they are been paid for...or 700,000 over the fourteen clubs...

 

How much is lost to the game overall?

 

Perhaps nothing in the "summer" era..

 

Would indeed the modern summer era passholder turn up for extra cup games or tour matches anymore..??? Probably not...

 

Whilst the average crowds of Leeds, Wigan, Warrington and Saints are to be applauded and ARE good for the game it does gloss over and take attention away from what lies beneath and wether it is admitted or not the game would not last much beyond a generation without the bottom 70% of the pyramid..

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That's what I meant.for the majority of our history we had 1 division with the Champion decided by a playoff system .

Top 4 for most that time.

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That's what I meant.for the majority of our history we had 1 division with the Champion decided by a playoff system .

Top 4 for most that time.

 

Apologies, misread.

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Compared to various times... , if we did a graph we are not at a high point in respect of total numbers but nor at a low point, indeed for SOME clubs the SL era has been a fantastic success but not for the MAJORITY of clubs in terms of numbers watching live or on tv.....it is another debate as to which is best for the game ..to have say a minimum average crowd in ALL professional clubs of 1000, but a high of 12,000 and more competitions and  games and more spectators overall or many low averages numbered in the low hundreds but a few high averages for the top clubs with just two competitions and less games and less overall paying spectators..

 

 

 

 

If you are correct and the clubs now have a far superior take per head then can you tell me what is better??? 3.3 million spectators paying that take per head or 1.7 million spectators????

 

It is widely acknowledge the SL clubs get just shy of £1mill per season from the £90 mill contract, at an average of £20.00 per head (admittance only) this works out at 50,000 spectators they are been paid for...or 700,000 over the fourteen clubs...

 

How much is lost to the game overall?

 

Perhaps nothing in the "summer" era..

 

Would indeed the modern summer era passholder turn up for extra cup games or tour matches anymore..??? Probably not...

 

Whilst the average crowds of Leeds, Wigan, Warrington and Saints are to be applauded and ARE good for the game it does gloss over and take attention away from what lies beneath and wether it is admitted or not the game would not last much beyond a generation without the bottom 70% of the pyramid..

 

You could be right but when looking at the attendances we should compare with RU. I would say we compare favourably with the club game in RU.   In England the top 3 or 4 teams achieve high attendance of 16-18,000 but below that the average is around the 9-9500.  Not too different.  Compared to RU in Wales we are doing really well, their the average for top clubs is around and often below 5000 mark. They have the central funds from the international game to help their sustainability.  

 

Of course in England club RU attendances are rising and hence the more positive outlook.   They have the huge international game that provides the funds and exposure that brings in sponsors to the club game.  The central funds that the international game provides is the major factor that enables the RFU to support strategic decisions.

 

So we should not look too negatively at the SL attendances. Although play-off's is and should be a real concern.   For me it should be just the top 4 immediately playing a semi-final with the higher clubs getting home advantage. Plus enough time to promote and sell tickets between end of normal season and the play off.

 

The reason the game will always be struggling is the lack of a real international and representative game.  Until we have one RL will be forever fighting from one crisis to another.

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TOTAL fans attending across the game is down.

 

Can you give us the actual figures to back that up?

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Looks like I have to dig this one out again. Oh well. 

 

 

AggregateAttendances.jpg

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Looks like I have to dig this one out again. Oh well. 

 

 

AggregateAttendances.jpg

That could be a graph for anything. There's no reference to rugby league at all.

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That could be a graph for anything. There's no reference to rugby league at all.

 

Its a graph of aggregate attendances for division 1, 2, 3 and the the total aggregates for the whole pro competition from 76/77.

 

WTF do you think it could otherwise have been.

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Its a graph of aggregate attendances for division 1, 2, 3 and the the total aggregates for the whole pro competition from 76/77.

 

WTF do you think it could otherwise have been.

If people post "evidence" to support their argument I at least expect to see rugby league referenced on it somewhere or at least a link of some sort. I'm sure you understand my reasoning.

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If people post "evidence" to support their argument I at least expect to see rugby league referenced on it somewhere or at least a link of some sort. I'm sure you understand my reasoning.

 

I cannot post a link to my own PC.

 

The graph is factually correct and verifiable by checking any year against your copy of Rothman's or Gillette year books. If you can find a year that isn't correct then please let me know and I will amend my data and produce a new graph just for you.

 

If you don't believe the data, go away, research and prove me wrong.

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I cannot post a link to my own PC.

 

The graph is factually correct and verifiable by checking any year against your copy of Rothman's or Gillette year books. If you can find a year that isn't correct then please let me know and I will amend my data and produce a new graph just for you.

 

If you don't believe the data, go away, research and prove me wrong.

So because you post a graph with nothing to say what it is I have to prove otherwise!!!!!

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