The 2023 season of the Korean Football League was a ‘box office smash’. It was a year that marked the return of soccer enthusiasm after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2023, the league surpassed 3 million spectators for the first time since 2018, when it began collecting paid attendance, erasing the aftermath of COVID-19. Last year, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, was the first year that we reopened the gates to all spectators, confirming the enthusiasm of fans for soccer intuition. This year, for the second year, we opened the 3 million spectator era.

In particular, the K League 1, which concluded its 11-month campaign from the end of February to the final match on March 3, attracted a large number of spectators from the opening round and predicted a huge box office success. A total of 101,632 fans attended the stadium, the highest opening round attendance since 2013 when the promotion system was introduced.

The box office continued. After 96 games, a new record for the shortest number of games since the introduction of the relegation system, attendance surpassed 1 million. After 176 games, the cumulative attendance totaled 1,837,901, breaking the previous record for the highest single-season attendance in K League 1 (1,827,061 in 2019).

The interest in soccer, which grew after Korea advanced to the round of 16 at the World Cup in Qatar last year, continued to spill over into the K League scene this season. There were plenty of great matches. In addition, the marketing strategies of each club provided spectators with a variety of attractions and entertainment.월카지노

FC Seoul was particularly popular. The popular club, which uses Seoul World Cup Stadium, the largest stadium in Korea, drew a total of 439,000 fans for its 19 home games, becoming the first team to exceed 400,000 home fans in a single season in the era of paid attendance.

Seoul’s average attendance also surpassed the 2019 figure, reaching 22,633 fans, marking the first time in the paid attendance era that the club has reached the 20,000 average.

The April 8 match between Seoul and Daegu FC, which featured a ceremonial start and performance by popular singer Lim Young-woong, drew 45,007 fans to Seoul World Cup Stadium, a new record for a single post-COVID-19 professional sports match.

Ulsan Hyundai, which won back-to-back K League titles for the first time in its history, ranked second in attendance after Seoul with 345,990 fans (18,210 average). Ulsan also surpassed the “300,000” mark for the first time, earning praise for both its performance and popularity.

Daejeon Hana Citizens, who were the surprise promotion team at the beginning of the season, came in third with 244,274 (average of 12,857).

Defending champions Jeonbuk Hyundai (238,759 – average 12,566), Suwon Samsung (224,177 – average 11,799) and Daegu (208,340 – average 10,965), who suffered the first relegation in their history, also averaged over 10,000.

By match, Seoul swept the top four spots in terms of largest crowds. The Daegu game was the largest with 45,007, while the May match against Jeonbuk drew 37,008. The November Super Match against arch-rival Suwon Samsung drew 36,077 fans to the stadium. The October game against Jeonbuk was fourth with 33,103 fans. The August derby between Ulsan and Hyundai in Jeonbuk ranked fifth with 30,756.

In addition, K League 1 had a total attendance of 2,447,147. The average attendance per game was 17,733, marking the first time in 12 seasons since the 2011 season that the average attendance reached 10,000 and the first time since paid attendance was collected.

K League 2 also received a lot of attention. A total of 564,362 fans visited stadiums across the regular season, semi-playoffs, and playoffs, surpassing the 536,217 fans in the 2019 season. Combined, K League 1 and K League 2 totaled 301,159 fans, surpassing the three million mark, which was one of K League’s goals.

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