The SANFL Crowd Crisis


This is a topic I heard when I was listening to the Footy Gospel while doing an Almanac report. Dave Brown was speaking.


“Chris McDermott wrote last week about how we can’t ignore the declining SANFL crowd numbers. Numbers are well down this year, and he is right, we shouldn’t ignore it.

Since the Crows and Power reserves have come into the comp, numbers have dropped. There is no getting around it.

The Crows said that they would bring 4,000 punters to a game, you don’t even get a quarter of that in Crows fans unless it is in the country.

While an AFL reserves comp could change the game for the better, we still need to recognize that the crowds had been declining ever since the Crows entered the comp, and to be honest, even before that.

The oldest Crows natives, who cant remember Adelaide without the Crows are now into their thirties. The SANFL is not going to attract committed fans for the ones who are sadly, dropping off the perch. That’s progress for you.

But the SANFL is doing the right things. It’s planning for a diminished competition, while focusing its resources and influences further into the grassroots, local and womens footy.

It’s never going to be the 1970s again.

It’s time to appreciate what we’ve got, whether it’s at a local ground, suburban venue or the Adelaide Oval, get the most meaning out of your footy, wherever that may be and don’t look down on other who get there’s elsewhere.”


Here is another observation you can take in.


People say that the crowds have been decreasing ever since the AFL reserves entered the competition, that was 2014. Do you know another thing that happened in 2014? Channel 7 started broadcasting the SANFL. These are the top 5 channels of the week:






5. NineGo


More people would be watching the game on TV than going out to the game and see a good bit of football.


We might not know what made these problems but we know how to fix it, come on Adelaide, support your local club.

About Aidan Hammond

Walkerville footy and cricket, ETKG Tennis. Go Crows, Redlegs, Strikers, Andy Murray, Manchester United and Australia in every sport. Adelaide, SA.


  1. rabid dog says:

    Please direct all questions regarding SANFL crowd numbers to either Stephen Trigg, c/- Carlton FC, or John Olsen, c/- living in taxpayer luxury. They ASSURED the gullible that there WOULD be an extra 4000 heads to the footy each Corporates game.
    There are SO many reasons as to why the SANFL is dying, this is but a part. When the SAAFL have the likes of Tuck running around in the ‘ammos’ then there is something seriously wrong. Grrr.

  2. Dave Brown says:

    That Footy Gospel guy sure knows what he’s talking about, Aidan….

    But more seriously, re. the TV coverage, certainly more people are watching the SANFL on 7 than they did on the ABC. People must like ads. It seems like the AFL reserves sides get more of a run than the other teams, too. Crows people are so much into the habit of going to Adelaide Oval once a fortnight that it was always an ask to expect them to all of a sudden start going to reserves matches every week. Personally, I think they should make an estimate of the lost revenue from the Crows not meeting their promise (say $5 a head x three thousand is $15,000 a match, $300,000 a season). Ask Port to also start paying a $400,000 fee to play in the comp (like the Crows do) and we come out $100,000 in front.

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