The world’s most popular sport isn’t even considered a player in North America’s “big four” of professional football, baseball, basketball and hockey, but North America’s soccer league, Major League Soccer, is making a strong case to earn the respect the NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL are receiving.
According to MLS Daily, thanks to a strong opening month of the 2010 seasons, the MLS is on pace to surpass both the NBA and NHL in terms of average attendance, using each league’s last full regular season’s numbers.
Check out the standings below, noting that the MLS season is just 21 games deep into the season:
1. NFL – 67,508.69 (2009 season)
2. MLB – 30,213.37 (2009 season)
3. MLS – 18,452.14 (2010 season, as of April 11)
4. NBA – 17,110.64 (2009-10 season)
5. NHL – 17,004.53 (2009-10 season)
Although most teams have hosted just one game, the Seattle Sounders FC — one of just six clubs with two home games as of April 14 — are averaging over 36,000 fans per game. The New England Revolution have hosted one game so far, drawing a shade under 13,000 fans to Gillette Stadium.