FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP ATTENDANCES have fallen by an average of more than 7,000 per game over the last 10 years, new figures released by the GAA show.
A total of 788,746 fans attended the 60 games (not including replays) played in the provincial championships and All-Ireland series in 2016.
This average crowd of 13,146 per match represents a drop of almost 35% from the 2007 average of 20,172.
Crowd numbers have been steadily decreasing since then, although there was a slight increase in 2015.
The figures and the charts were released as part of a document to outline a new football championship format and address criticisms.
The major change would see the quarter-final stage of the championship scrapped and replaced by a round-robin with two groups of four teams (four provincial champions and four Round 4 qualifier winners), with each team playing each other once, and the top two teams in each group progressing to seeded semi-finals.
“The new structure will generate an increase in football championship attendances, which have been declining in recent years,” the GAA writes. “We recognise, of course, that the economic recession has been a factor here.”
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