Fundamentally, one of the primary reasons why the sport has been able to thrive in contemporary society is because of the game’s accessibility. According to a report by Dscribe, the inclusive nature of the AFL is central to the fact that 35 per cent of Australia’s total population support an AFL team. While numbers surrounding the AFL’s spectatorship continue to rise, the same can’t be said for the nation’s top-flight football league.
Statistics from ABC show state that, over the course of the last five years, national average attendances have dropped in the A-League to approximately 11,300. Regarding the AFL, however, average attendances showcase that the league is the fourth-largest in the world, with average attendances being recorded at around 33,200.
Crucially, the success of the AFL could be a core reason behind the A-League’s recent struggles. Generally, the kick-off times for both sports are somewhat similar, meaning that prospective spectators can only attend one match. As evident from the above numbers, the AFL is continuing to come out on top in such situations. Moreover, as well as the implications of clashing schedules, many believe that the long-term vision of the AFL’s decision-making bodies is another factor in them being able to get ahead of their competitor sports.