It’s official: The San Diego Wave FC have surpassed the single-game attendance record for tickets sold for an NWSL game during the regular season. By selling 27,000 tickets, they broke the record that was previously held by Portland Thorns, as 25,218 spectators watched them defeat the North Carolina Courage at Providence Park in 2019. Now, the San Diego Wave have created history and will have the chance to cap off their achievement with a victory over Angel City FC at the Snapdragon on September 17th.
Though there will be quite a few Angel City fans at the game, given the close proximity between Los Angeles and San Diego, it is worth noting that San Diego sports fans tend to be supportive of their teams. The San Diego Padres, for example, are currently fifth in attendance in Major League Baseball, and they’ve also recorded 22 sellouts so far this season. This is despite San Diego being considered a “mid-sized” market, with fewer inhabitants than the cities that are above them in attendance. The Wave can also benefit from the city’s inhabitants being enthusiastic and supportive of their teams.
The team can also attribute this achievement to a combination of aggressive and targeted marketing which saw them collaborate with local supporters groups such as the Sirens. Moreover, they can attribute this success to a city full of fans who are starved for sports heroes. And the Wave are perfectly placed to fill that void.
In the words of star forward Alex Morgan:
“This is a testament to two things: women’s soccer in the U.S. and the San Diego Wave and what we’re building here. This game is so significant for us being in our first season, knowing that the NWSL has gotten more and more fans each year, that there has been more and more traction, that there is more and more value in women’s sports and women’s soccer specifically.”
Morgan also went on to say, “[...] this number today, right now, and just know that we are on the road to a sell-out is just an incredible feeling because this club set its mind on breaking the single-game attendance in league history. We’ve done that now, but now the goals don’t stop for this club and I’m just really proud to be a part of that.”
Tickets for their home opener at the Snapdragon remain on sale. However, the availability for them has gotten rather low.
In the meanwhile, the San Diego Wave are preparing to play against the Portland Thorns this Saturday. The clash will see them face the current league leaders and former record holders for the right to claim the sole spot at the top of the table. They’ll also be playing the Thorns’ two days after they play the Courage, which means that the Wave will be playing them with a full week’s rest. Kickoff time for the game between San Diego and Portland will be at 7:30 PM PDT.
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