NWSL attendance spikes in first games with USWNT stars since World Cup win

From Megan Rapinoe to Rose LaVelle, Team USA saw no shortage of breakout stars during its exciting victory at the 2019 Women’s World Cup. It appears that excitement might be spilling into the club side, as many hoped.

Several teams have seen a significant increase in attendance for their first games with USWNT players since the World Cup, as the Washington Post’s Steven Goff documented.

For comparison’s sake, the Chicago Red Stars’ average attendance last year was 4,368 per game. Utah Royals FC’s was 9,466, the Orlando Pride’s was 4,837 and the Washington Spirit’s was 3,892.

Each of those teams features a significant player from the USWNT as well. Chicago has Julie Ertz, Utah has Christen Press, and Alex Morgan and Rose Lavelle play for Orlando and Washington, respectively, though neither played this weekend.

Lavelle also met an interestingly named fan after her game.

As with any post-event jump, the question now is if the NWSL can retain its new fans as the World Cup moves further and further away. That remains to be seen, but the league is probably still happy with where it is right now compared to a few months ago.

ORLANDO, FL - JULY 20: Orlando Pride midfielder Marisa Viggiano (23) kicks the ball during the soccer match between Sky Blue FC and the Orlando Pride on July 20, 2019, at Exploria Stadium in Orlando FL. (Photo by Joe Petro/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Midfielder Marisa Viggiano scored the only goal for the Pride in their win over Sky Blue FC. (Getty)

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