AFLW TV Audience Down 70% Per Game On Average

AFLW TV Audience Down 70% Per Game On Average

Average TV audiences for the AFL Women’s game are down 70 per cent on average per game when compared to the series launched back in 2017.

This comes at a time when the AFLW and the player’s union are increasingly at loggerheads over pay and how many matches there should be.  

Crowds are also down 60 per cent from the season’s launch, however it is important to note a number of key changes that would impact average audience numbers. 

As The Age reported today, AFLW audiences have fallen from an average of  180,000 per match in the competition’s first season in 2017 to just over 53,000 for season seven. 

An important thing to note, however, was that the AFLW season held in 2022 overlapped with the men’s final series, and also that there are far more teams now than there were in 2017.

In 2017 there were just eight teams and now all 18 clubs have an AFLW team. 

Given the more-than-double increase in the number of teams and matches, it’s natural that the average audience per game would also decrease. 

And whilst crowds are down 60 per cent, dropping from 6500 to 2500, it’s also important to note that tickets were free when the series first launched in 2017. 

The figures have been put forward at a time when there are pay negotiations and the player’s union is pushing for sustained investment in women’s football. 

The AFL shared the numbers with the club’s executives at a meeting in Melbourne last week.

They were put forward as average audiences for  home-and-away matches across Channel Seven and Fox Footy.

During the presentation, AFL CEO Andrew Dillon used the comparison of Big Bash to warn club bosses about the dangers of expanding too quickly. 

He also mentioned the WNBA which has had six franchises fold since launching in 1997. 

Despite Dillon’s claims the AFL Women’s players are adamant that they want to play a 17-game league and be professional athletes by 2026. 

Dillon admitted on an interview on the AFL’s website last week that the body (which is not-for-profit) and players were at loggerheads which is natural. 

“There’s a bit of a gap between where we are and where they are, but that’s not unusual.”

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