The Widnes paying public

  • This topic has 52 replies, 17 voices, and was last updated 25 Apr 21 @ 8:44 pm by Spike Island 90.
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  • #7559
    Spike Island 90
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    Not really relevant to recent events but I am curious to gauge opinion!

    We are a small town in comparison to our local rivals and we cannot compete with their crowds. Although I believe we have some of the loyalists fans in the game.

    Looking in a recent book, I find our attendances deeply baffling. In 1989, one week we attract 14,000 and the next week we attract less than 5,000. Bare in my mind, this was when we were the best team in the world and had a team of superstars. Conversely, in 92/93, we averaged less 5,000 fans, a year we got to Wembley and finished a respectable 4th.

    I understand, the Derbys will attract bigger crowds and more away fans but to lose nearly 9,000 fans in a matter of a week?

    Now, when I speak to Widnesians, for every fan who goes the games, there’s ten “rugby liking, Widnes fans” who don’t have much interest.

    So what gives? Are rugby fans in Widnes lazy?

    #7563
    sandgroper
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    I honestly think that its impossible to guess what makes people want to go to games.

    I just like the game and I support Widnes. The hard core fans fall into that category I suppose and many might see us as stupid, pouring VIQI cash in etc just to keep the team on the field, win or lose.

    Some just like the big occasion ! Get to Wembley and everyone has ‘watched them all my life’.

    Maybe the breakdown of the Covid lockdown will attract a few to try it again. We need to play entertaining stuff to keep them, which is within the scope of the lads that we have.

    Winning games is the only thing that matters to some of course, but winning with a thumping great pack and and no fast backs can be a turn off for others!

    Combine the two, open football and win games, and we might have a chance of building on our fan base.

    #7564
    Sinbad
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    The gates of 14000 were one offs.Derby games and championship deciders.The usual gate was around 5500/ 6000 or around 10% of the population.Warrington were getting even lower crowds than ourselves  during the 70s and 80s but had a much bigger population from which to draw.Granted, they never had our success.

    #7565
    Spike Island 90
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    The gates of 14000 were one offs.Derby games and championship deciders.The usual gate was around 5500/ 6000 or around 10% of the population.Warrington were getting even lower crowds than ourselves during the 70s and 80s but had a much bigger population from which to draw.Granted, they never had our success.

     

    Yeah accept the population, it isn’t bad considering St. Helens for example attract the 14,000 that is around 10% of their population.

    But for me, it’s the general attitude in Widnes, seems to me that there is a lot of people who have connections to the club and are rugby fans but yet won’t go anyway near our games.

    Granted there are people who are just footy fans but in Widnes, it seems there is a lazy attitude towards the club.

    #7566
    sandgroper
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    You are right there Spike I. When we were really up against it the crowd funding must have dragged in many who were ‘lazy’ supporters, as you call them. I just hope that the combination of the lifting of restrictions and relief from the boredom will tempt some at least to get to the games. Play bright football, get people talking, and maybe, just maybe it might happen!

    #7567
    kyosei
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    Wasn’t the 14000 crowd in 1989/90 season the day Jonathan Davies made his debut?

    #7568
    geoffw
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    I cannot recall many 14,000 crowds for local derbies from 1958 up to 2020. Against Wire & Saints the gate rarely exceeded 10.000 – 11,000 & that was usually at New Year or Easter Bank Holiday too.  Remember only 2 or 3 games v Wigan when we got 14.000. Even in our glory years  our highest average attendance was only 7,600 & that of course includes away & neutral support. In 1975 we allegedly took 20,000 to Wembley v Wire but that was a lot of people jumping on the band wagon for a one off  game to say “I was there”  at a final.

    This has always been the way. As has been said before Widnes is a small town with RL competition at the top Super League level nearby in the form of Wire, St Helens & Wigan.  There is also massive competition nearby from top Premiership Clubs Liverpool, Everton, Man Utd & City.

     

    #7569
    geoffw
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    Wasn’t the 14000 crowd in 1989/90 season the day Jonathan Davies made his debut?

    Yes over 14,000 on for the  Jonathan Davies debut but there have only been a handful of other games when we got similar gates or more over the period 1958 to present while I have been watching.

    #7570
    Farnworth Viking
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    I’m not sure what the crowd figure was, but the ground was full, for the home game against Wigan in 1989 when we beat them to win the championship.

    #7571
    Royston Vasey
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    Wasn’t the 14000 crowd in 1989/90 season the day Jonathan Davies made his debut?

    Yes over 14,000 on for the Jonathan Davies debut but there have only been a handful of other games when we got similar gates or more over the period 1958 to present while I have been watching.

    I think the 14k crowd was for Jiffy’s debut and the week after it was snowing and we were playing a poor side in the Cup although it might be old age is causing me to confuse things 😳😳

    #7573
    Spike Island 90
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    It was not after JD debut, Oldham was the next game after that and that was attended by 9,400 and Salford game was attended by 11,600 according to Anthony Quinn book.

    And big crowds were not reserved for Derby’s, in 89, in the space of a few weeks, we attracted 11,000 against Castleford, 9,500 against Bradford, abs 8,000 against Feth.

    Conversely, the first home game against Hull of the 88-89 season, the defending league and premiership champions attracted a shocking crowd of 5,490.

    This what I mean by lazy, the champions first home match since been crowned attended by a mere 5,499 specys. What was Dougs famous quote about our crowds…..

    #7576
    Martin
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    The game against Wigan for the championship decider had an all ticket attendance of 16000 and it was packed. How we got 25000 for the cup replay against Saints in i will never know👍👍

    #7577
    Sinbad
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    Just a few off the top of my head geoff- v Wigan challenge cup 77, Bradford in the cup around 78ish , v Australia 78 and  1990 ,v Saints Easter Monday 78 and 88, Wigan in the league 88 and 89.All between 13000/ 16000.

    #7578
    Sinbad
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    There was 20 000 in the ground for that Wigan game despite the official attendance of 16000.

    #7579
    MT
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    Having been watching Widnes since 1982/3 season no other game has come close to that Wigan title decider. Genuinely the only time I have felt like I was in a full stadium for a home game.

    Amazing atmosphere.

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