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Volume 26 No. 230
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Home & Away: Freddy Adu Still Making His Mark On Attendance

Adu Boosting Attendance
Numbers Across The League

USA TODAY's Ridge Mahoney profiles DC United F Freddy Adu and his impact on MLS attendance this season. Mahoney notes that only one of Adu's games has attracted a crowd under the league average of 15,287, and that game, 13,043 for a home against the Galaxy May 19 is still "about 40% higher than what MLS teams routinely draw for non-Saturday games." Since drawing 24,603 for Adu's April 3 debut, United has averaged 17,200 for four games. United President & CEO Kevin Payne: "The Freddy effect has started to wane, and we expected that." Meanwhile, the Rapids held their annual jersey giveaway when Adu visited May 22 and drew 31,443, "nearly double the 16,772 fans a game it averaged last year." United Communications Dir Doug Hicks indicated on the conference call in advance of each road game, "anywhere from 20 to 50" journalists will participate. Mahoney notes throught his past weekend, United had the two most-viewed MLS games this season on ESPN2, including a May 1 game versus the Earthquakes that drew a 0.4/ (343,219 HHs). League ratings are up 50% from '03 up 0.2 to 0.3 (USA TODAY, 6/9).

FREDDY TRACKER: United through five homes games this season is averaging 18,681 fans per game, a 20.3% increase from the 15,520 average through five games last season and a 8.7% increase from the '02 five-game average. Seven of United's eleven regular-season games this season have played to over 80% of capacity. THE DAILY compares each United game to their opponent's '03 final regular-season average. United's home games are played in RFK Stadium, capacity 24,603 (THE DAILY).

DATE
OPPONENT VENUE
ATT.
% CAP.
'03 AVG
. % +/-
4/3
Earthquakes RFK Stadium
24,603
100.00%
15,565
58.10%
4/10
Galaxy Home Depot Center
27,000
100.00%
21,983
22.80%
4/17
MetroStars Giants Stadium
31,419
125.70%
15,822
98.60%
4/24
Fire RFK Stadium
21,235
86.30%
15,565
36.40%
5/1
Earthquakes Spartan Stadium
17,667
66.60%
10,465
68.80%
5/8
Crew RFK Stadium
18,376
74.70%
15,565
18.10%
5/15
Wizards RFK Stadium
16,147
65.60%
15,565
3.70%
5/19
Galaxy RFK Stadium
13,043
53.00%
15,565
-16.20%
5/22
Rapids Invesco Field
31,443
116.50%
16,772
87.50%
5/29
Revolution Gillette Stadium
19,314
96.60%
14,641
31.90%
6/5
Fire Soldier Field
25,810
109.80%
23,500
84.30%