A departed manager, points deduction, relegation battle, and plenty of late goals have ensured that the past eight months or so have been eventful for the Select Car Leasing Stadium faithful.
For a while, it looked as though the Royals could be on their way to League One but an upturn in form since the arrival of interim boss Paul Ince has helped them confirm their place in the second tier for another season.
It’s not been an easy time to be a Reading fan and with ongoing concerns over whether the current ownership is taking the club in the right direction, things could be testing moving forward as well but plenty of loyal supporters have stuck by their club.
The 2021/22 campaign saw full capacity crowds allowed in football stadiums once again but how has the Royals’ attendance this term compared to previous seasons? We’ve turned to Transfermarkt to assess just that.
Reading have played 22 Championship home games this season and a total of 287,921 spectators have been present at the Select Car Leasing Stadium for those – giving the Berkshire club an average attendance of 13,087.
That is the 17th-highest in the division, with only Hull City, Millwall, Blackpool, Preston North End, Peterborough United, Luton Town, and AFC Bournemouth below them.
While the 2020/21 campaign can be discounted due to restrictions, this season’s average attendance is the club’s lowest across a season since 2001/02 (12,010).
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It’s nearly 1,500 lower than the average attendance across the games when fans were allowed in stadiums in 2019/20 (14,535) while it’s a drop of more than 10,000 from their single season in the Premier League nine years ago (23,862 in 2012/13).
Given the off-field struggles and on-field inconsistency this term, the significant drop is not a huge surprise and should surely serve as a warning to the ownership that things need to change at the club.
With a host of key players out-of-contract this summer and uncertainty surrounding the manager position, it looks as though things could get worse before they get better for the Royals and unless dramatic action is taken we could see the average attendance drop again next term.