2024 Super League Season Analysis: Attendance Trends & Success Stories

2024: The Year of Super League Resurgence?

As the 2024 Super League season unfolds, the game of Rugby League has certainly received a significant boost in exposure. More matches than ever are being televised, with Super League fixtures being broadcast on primetime BBC2. The product on the field has generally been well-received, barring the early-season controversy surrounding the rules on contact with the head.

However, the picture in the stands paints a more nuanced story. While the game has undoubtedly gained more visibility, there is a sense that crowd numbers in the stadiums have not quite rebounded to pre-pandemic levels. To better understand this trend, we have delved into the attendance data to analyze each Super League club’s average home attendance.

London Broncos: Finding a Permanent Home

London Broncos, the perennial nomads of English Rugby League, appear to have finally found a more permanent home at the Cherry Red Records Stadium, the ground of AFC Wimbledon. Their average attendance of 3,467 is the lowest in the league, but it provides a solid foundation to build upon. With the right plan, the Broncos may finally have the stability to grow their fanbase.

Wigan Warriors: Dominant on and off the Field

At the other end of the spectrum, the Wigan Warriors are leading the way with an average attendance of 14,289 – the highest in the competition. Their on-field success, which has seen them capture all four available trophies, has been rewarded with a passionate following. However, their sample size is relatively small, with just three home games played so far, so it remains to be seen whether this impressive attendance can be maintained over the full course of the season.

Leeds Rhinos: Enduring Legacy, Dwindling Numbers

Leeds Rhinos, despite their struggles on the pitch, continue to attract the second-highest average crowd of 13,877, a testament to the club’s enduring legacy. However, the numbers are dipping compared to the club’s golden generation, and the Headingley faithful will be hoping for a return to the heights of yesteryear.

Regional Strongholds: Catalans Dragons and Hull FC

Elsewhere, the Catalans Dragons and Hull FC have both managed to maintain strong support, with average attendances of 9,317 and 12,088, respectively. Salford Red Devils and Leigh Leopards have also seen encouraging growth in their fan bases, signaling a broader positive trend for the game in certain regions.

“As the IMG reforms take effect in 2025 and with every Super League game set to be televised, the stage is set for the game to truly capitalize on this increased exposure. Whether the attendance figures can continue to climb remains to be seen, but the signs are encouraging for a sport eager to shed its stagnant image and embrace a new era of growth and popularity.”

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