Impact executive vice-president Richard Legendre addressed the media Wednesday morning, sharing some positive news as it seems the momentum the team is currently experiencing on the field has transferred to the stands.
“We are very pleased with the way fans have renewed their engagement with the Impact in the second half of the season,” he explained. “Interest has increased, as evidenced by the five sellouts at Stade Saputo in our last six games, and we have averaged over 20,000 spectators at home over our last eight matches. There is a renewed pride in the Bleu-blanc-noir and 2015 has been a year of great turnaround for the club. When the stadium is full, it is felt by the players on the field as the ambiance is unmatched.”
Taking in all competitions in 2015, the Impact has seen some 460,000 spectators at home games this year so far, which is 40,000 more than the club’s previous best year in 2012.
Legendre went on to paint a fuller picture.
“One month after our renewal campaign launched, we are already at 84%, surpassing the club’s previous best of 81%,” he enlightened. “In addition, we also have our best ever number in terms of new season ticket holders, already at about 2,000 new members.”
Legendre admitted that the arrival of Didier Drogba has contributed to the renewed interest, but he suggested that we’d be hard-pressed to ignore other important contributing factors.
“For sure, Didier Drogba is a part of it, but we had already begun to see an increased interest in midsummer, prior to his arrival, where we saw attendance numbers go up. But we cannot minimize the influence of good results on the field. A new coach, better results, a playoff race and Drogba have all helped grow interest.”
One member of the media asked Legendre if the club was tempted to increase ticket prices based on the renewed interest, but his response was that the club felt doing so would be taking advantage of the situation.
“We want to remain accessible to our fans and the 18-34 demographic notably. We want to build a relationship where the stadium will always be full.”