Blackpool fans have been studying the impact of their boycott
29 March ~ Attendances are used for many things, by a variety of groups – from clubs plotting their finances to emergency services planning their procedures, catering companies ordering pies and supporters proving points to their rivals. Clubs, and presumably police, have access to extremely accurate data on how many people are actually watching a match but this isn’t available to the public. The “official” figures announced over the PA system or appearing in programmes encompass the number of tickets issued or sold, rather than the amount of people that actually attend a match.
This is causing problems for Blackpool fans, who are currently boycotting games in protest at the way the Oystons are running their club. Rather than rely on the “official” attendances, Blackpool supporters have been working out better figures using their own methods. They take photos of every block of seats in the ground during a match and manually count the number of people in the photos, before adding five per cent to account for anyone in the ground but not in their seats at the time the picture was taken. Through this method they have worked out that crowds are actually between 60 and 70 per cent lower than the announced attendances. This highlights the impact their boycott is having.
You can see more details about their methods and real attendances here, as well as find out how you can start doing the same for your own club.
Photo by Colin McPherson/WSC Photography: Numbered wooden seats in the main stand at Southend’s Roots Hall stadium