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Toyota Stadium gate numbers through 10 games

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After 10 home games this season, FCD is doing quite well at the gates.

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Normally I shy away from doing a full post on attendance numbers. Historically for FC Dallas they have always been a bit so-so with one or two games selling out and the rest being below the league average.

This year things are just a little different for the club. In 2013, we saw the start of some movement within the front office to improve the atmosphere at the games and more of a marketing push to get people drawn in to buying tickets. Those efforts have paid off this year as the club has averaged just slightly, so close, to 17,000 per game. Right now their number is 16,931 per game at the gate.

To put that against some historical numbers, FCD's top season average at the gate was 16,011 back in 1996. Last year the club averaged 15,374 at the gate.

The shift

The big shift for FC Dallas has to be the fact that through 10 games this season, the lowest attended game was a May 17 visit from Chivas USA, which also happens to be the club that has the worst attendance so far this season.

That is a massive improvement over years past where the club would typically have gate numbers of barely 10k or even 12k for games like that.

The other shift has been the schedule. Finally, the schedule has been relatively good to the club. They may have still had a slightly front-loaded schedule early on but ever since the Toronto-Seattle weekends, the club has had at least one full week to prepare for the next home game in terms of marketing. No more back-to-back home games in the regular season. For gate numbers like this, it is noticeable since the club is able to do promotional deals like the one they tweeted out earlier today for the upcoming New England game and the friendly against Aston Villa next week.

The Figures

Date Opponent Attendance Number
3/8 Montreal 18011
3/22 Chivas USA 15564
3/29 Portland 16045
4/12 Seattle 17070
4/19 Toronto 17406
5/4 New York 17105
5/17 Chivas USA 15039
5/31 San Jose 15682
6/7 Colorado 16209
7/4 Philadelphia 21182

Now it should be noted that these numbers do not include friendlies or US Open Cup games. Plus, these are the numbers for tickets distributed, which is always debated.

Three of the games were 15k-type crowds, which has been the relative normal for the last couple years in terms of average. But seeing three straight games in the 17k's was huge (yes they were against big named clubs too).

What is to come

With seven games left, FCD has visits from New England, Colorado, Salt Lake, Vancouver, Seattle, LA and Portland. All of those should be very good gates for the club if the team continues to improve like we've been seeing since the start of June. LA games typically always have a high gate and we can probably expect a fairly high gate for the second Seattle visit this season.

The only gate I worry about being smaller may be the RSL game on August 22, a Friday right around the time school begins in the area.

By the looks of things, FCD is heading straight towards a record season attendance average this season.