Sounders Insider

Seattle Sounders FC and the Puget Sound soccer scene

Category: attendance


Sounders (officially) announce full-stadium games

Here’s the word from the club:

Seattle Sounders FC today announced that it is opening the full capacity of the Xbox Pitch at CenturyLink Field for four select fixtures against the club’s premier MLS Western Conference rivals. Additional upper deck seating in the 300-level is being made available for games against Vancouver Whitecaps FC (August 1), Portland Timbers (August 30), LA Galaxy (October 4) and Real Salt Lake (October 25). Tickets for these matches can now be purchased via Starting at $159, the “Full 4 Pack” includes tickets to all four full-stadium fixtures, in addition to the 2015 Guinness

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Sounders warn of traffic challenges Sunday

LogoSoundersThis reminder from the club:

Seattle Sounders FC is encouraging fans to arrive early to Sunday’s match against the New York Red Bulls on the XBOX Pitch at CenturyLink Field (2:00 p.m. PT / ESPN2, KIRO Radio 97.3 FM, El Rey 1360 AM). In addition to increased traffic due to a 1:10 p.m. PT Seattle Mariners home game at Safeco Field and other traffic concerns, Sounders FC is inviting fans to attend special pre-match activities for the lone fixture of the season against the Red Bulls.

Fans should expect increased traffic in the area as a result of a Seattle Mariners home game against the Cleveland Indians. First pitch is at 1:10 p.m. PT at Safeco Field (1250 First Avenue S., Seattle, WA 98134), so higher traffic volumes in the stadium district and parking garage congestion should be expected. Public transportation options are limited, as the Downtown Transit Tunnel is being closed to both light rail and buses. Additionally, Fourth Avenue northbound is being reduced to one lane. Complete information on Sunday’s traffic concerns can be found on via the following link:

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Hanauer: ‘We heard people loud and clear’


Sounders owner Adrian Hanauer had this to say today about the non-streaming of S2’s Open Cup match last night, and fan pushback that has led the club to commit to streaming future matches, starting with the third-round match Wednesday against Timbers 2:

Screw up,” he said. “My decision. Every decision we make is sort of a financial calculation: How much does this cost, what are the benefits? We didn’t broadcast or live stream the Xolos game: It seemed to go fine. I think sort of maybe reflective of that decided on this Open Cup game maybe not to spend the money, because it’s not insignificant to go a quality stream. In retrospect, we heard people loud and clear that they would have liked to have that game on, and probably should have done it. So we will going forward: Problem solved.”

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Man United-Club America ticket sale begins

ManuCAThis just in from Sounders FC:

Seattle Sounders FC today announced that it is offering Season Ticket Members the first opportunity to purchase tickets to the July 17 friendly between Manchester United and Club América at CenturyLink Field. The Season Ticket Member pre-sale for the 2015 International Champions Cup North America match begins at 10:00 a.m. PT today, with Members receiving an email with further instructions on how to purchase. Ticket prices for the friendly match start at $34. Sounders FC does not manage inventory for this match, therefore season ticket seat locations are not guaranteed.

Non-Season Ticket Members may sign up for a separate pre-sale beginning Tuesday, May 5 via the following link: The general public on-sale begins Thursday, May 7 at 10:00 a.m. PT, with tickets available through and all Ticketmaster outlets.
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GM: Sounders aim for Seahawks-like attendance … at CenturyLink Field

Lagerwey (Photo provided by Seattle Sounders FC Communications)
Lagerwey (Photo provided by Seattle Sounders FC Communications)

The Sounders have begun their two weeks of training in Tucson. I’ll be joining them for most of the second week. But until then I am planning to dole out six posts over the next six days taken from an interview I had last week with new general manager Garth Lagerwey.

We start today with Lagerwey’s take on whether he sees the club spending this next generation at CenturyLink Field, or whether Sounders FC will pursue it’s own stadium:

“The answer that I give is forever is a mighty long time, but it’s also pretty tough to argue with a downtown venue that you sell out every game with 45,000 I think or 44,000 that we averaged last year. It’s real tough to deviate from that, to try something different.

“Our first goal is can we grow the audience to 60-something thousand and have it compare on equal footing to a Seahawks audience, and I think that’s a goal that will keep us occupied for a couple of years.

“If at some point you are consistently at that mark, would it makes sense? Sure, it could. But you’d have to get all the politics right, you’d have to get the land right, you’d have to get the building right.
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Sounders news beyond Ezra: staff, Yedlin, Zakuani, opening stadium for LA

The naming of Ezra Hendrickson as Sounders 2’s first coach dominated the news at training today, but other varied issues came up:

On replacing Hendrickson on the Sounders FC staff:
“We’ll be adding somebody to our staff. Who that is right now I couldn’t tell you. I’ve got a short list of people that I want to talk to, and we’ll see as we move down the line.”

On this short week of training: We wanted to keep them moving. We wanted to get some guys the rest that they needed and also make sure

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Sounders-FC Dallas second leg is sold out

This just in from the club:

Seattle Sounders FC has announced that the Second Leg of the 2014 MLS Western Conference Semifinals against FC Dallas on Monday, November 10 is sold-out. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. PST on the Xbox Pitch at CenturyLink Field (NBCSN, Univision Deportes / 97.3 KIRO FM and ESPN Deportes 1490 AM), with an MLS-capacity crowd on-hand to support the Rave Green.

Gates open at 6:00 p.m. PST ahead of pre-match festivities that include a National Anthem performance by Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready. As lead guitarist for the Grammy Award-winning, Seattle-based rock group, McCready

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Sounders attendance: GM Hanauer upbeat even as record finally fails to fall

MLSattendance14For the first time in their six-season history, the Sounders did not establish a new Major League Soccer attendance record this year.

Over each of their first five seasons Seattle set MLS home attendance records, topping out in 2013 with 748,652 total attendance and an average of 44,038 per home game.

The 2014 figures came up just short: 743,485 total and 43,734 average. Record or no, those are astounding numbers by MLS standards — the No. 2 home draw in the league drew just over half as many: 22,086 per game.

Looking outside the league, the Sounders’ pre-game average was also higher than every team in baseball’s American League, and in fact every team in Major League Baseball except the Los Angeles Dodgers, who averaged 46,695 per game (and yes, yes, yes, over 81 home games). Seattle also is the only market where the local MLS team had a higher per-game average than the local MLB team, as the Mariners averaged 25,485 (and yes, yes, yes, as above).

In any case, Sounders general manager Adrian Hanauer did not seem overly concerned about his club not quite reaching the mark it needed to set another record in the home finale Saturday.

“Part of me I guess is amused by the question, given we’re sort of questing another crowd of 58,000 that leads to us missing another attendance record by how many? – 300 per game, 400?” he said Saturday. “So I guess I’d point to the positives. We have the largest season-ticket holder base that we’ve had in 35,000 this year. I think we’re at 93-94 percent renewal rate – something in that range – which has to be tops in the league.
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