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Thread: ScottishJet I have a question for you?

  1. #1
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    Hey I was watching a Claymores game the other day and there was hardly anyone in the stands.


    What's up with that? They losing their fan base?

  2. #2
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    Attendances at the past two games have been just over 9,000. Their opening game this season was closer to 11,000. Over the years the fan base has gone down a bit - games in the late 90's would get about 12,000 average, and would easily get 15,000 when we played the dear-departed Monarchs (Scotland - England rivalries don't die, even when 95% of the players are American). It perhaps doesn't help that games are played in such a huge stadium - a smaller venue would definitely contribute to the atmosphere.

    Now I know that 9,000 or so doesn't seem like much. But here are a few things to bear in mind. Scotland's population is just over 5m. (American) football is still seen as a real minority sport, in a city where sport is dominated by Rangers and Celtic football teams. The weekend I attended the Rhein game, it was the third best attended sports event in Scotland. Other than Rangers and Celtic, no other football game had more than 5,000 attendance. Last but not least - the team kinda sucks this year. After the first home game - a 3-0 mudfest on a cold and rainy day - it's not too surprising that attendances dropped away.

    Whether the attendances will be enough to keep the team alive for next year I don't know. I certainly hope they do. A lot of work has gone into promoting the sport in schools and through the media, it'd be a shame to see that investment go to waste.

    Here's hoping ...

  3. #3
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    It doesn't help that the soccer season is still going (all be it nearly done) Theres only so much money for leisure acitivties.

    I think an indoor arena would be great. More noise. More action. More feeling.

  4. #4
    I gotta believe part of the problems some of these non-German NFLe teams face is they lack rivals.

    Look at Barcelona with the Dragons, had there been a team in Madrid, maybe you could build something better?

    How about a team in London or elsewhere in the UK to ignite Claymore fans?

    But it's kind of a tough spot: On one hand, NFLe needs more teams to set up rivalries and build up. On the other hand, the league isn't strong enough to expand the number of teams.

    NFLe took a strong hit, I believe, when London lost it's team.

    Honestly, I don't know how long NFLe can last anyway. Outside of Rhein and Frankfurt, all the teams struggle mightly with attendance.

    I really believe the NFL is keeping the league afloat in order to one day start tapping Euro talent--ala the NBA.

  5. #5
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    Aye, what Jim said.

  6. #6
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    The moving of the London franchise came about due to dwindling numbers there. After the initial excitement of NFLE hd died down, there simply weren't enough hard core fans who would turn up week in week out, regardless of weather / team performance. The fact that pretty much the entire roster changes year to year means that fans don't build the same bond with the teams. And in London there was so much competition for attendance, with the league being played at the time when the soccer leagues are all nearing their climax. Add to that the trouble that the Monarchs had securing a permanent home ground, and you end up with some of the games that I attended where the 'official' attendance figures were around 4000, and everyone in the ground knew there was maybe only half that.

    Once the London franchise disappeared, the Scotland - England rivalry went too, which was always a big draw for the Scotland fans.

    It's interesting to note though that the two newer German franchises have struggled to replicate the success of Frankfurt and Rhein. Berlin have had between 12-14,000 this year at home games. Cologne have managed between 9-11,000. I think the market is getting saturated there.

    At the end of last season there was a suggestion that the league would be cancelled at the end of next season unless attendances doubled. As I don't see that happening, then NFLE may indeed not be around for much longer. :(

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