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Which Championship team has the biggest away following?

Last weekend’s FA Cup Third Round action saw the EFL Championship go on hiatus, with the last league matches played on Monday January 1, 2024.

Every team has now played 26 league games and the action will recommence on Friday January 12th, when Hull City host Norwich City.

Championship away support has been impressive this season, especially during the busy festive period.

This level of support was on show in the FA Cup, when over 9,000 Bristol City fans travelled to the London Stadium to see their team draw 1-1 with Premier League side, West Ham.

The break allows us to take a look at away attendance figures in the Championship this season, so we can see which Championship team has the biggest away following.

Thanks to the data collected by ‘The 72’ on X and on their website, we can make a list of the average away followings in the 2023/24 Championship so far.

Bristol City have the 14th biggest away following in the Championship.
Over 9,000 Bristol City fans watched their team draw 1-1 with West Ham in the FA Cup / Photo by Icon Sport

Championship average away attendance table:

  1. Sunderland – 2,969
  2. Leeds United – 2,948
  3. Sheffield Wednesday – 2,529
  4. Leicester City – 2,524
  5. Ipswich Town – 2,422
  6. Coventry City – 2,292
  7. Plymouth Argyle – 2,242
  8. Birmingham City – 2,159
  9. Southampton – 2,089
  10. Middlesbrough – 1,952
  11. West Brom – 1,756
  12. Stoke City – 1,732
  13. Preston North End – 1,724
  14. Bristol City – 1,717.
  15. Norwich City – 1,515
  16. QPR – 1,385
  17. Blackburn Rovers – 1,292
  18. Hull City – 1,225
  19. Cardiff City – 1,162
  20. Watford – 1,147
  21. Huddersfield Town – 1,105
  22. Millwall – 1,079
  23. Rotherham United – 1,032
  24. Swansea City – 1,005

The main talking points

Sunderland have the biggest away following

Sunderland narrowly pipped Leeds United to top spot after 26 games, with only 21 more fans on average attending away games for the Black Cats. The highest away attendance registered by Sunderland fans was on August 12, 2023 when 5,655 away fans travelled to Preston North End’s stadium, Deepdale.

Leeds United have the highest attendance in a single game

Leeds United have registered the highest attendance in a single game when 7,551 away supporters watched them win 2-0 away at Blackburn Rovers in early December.

Preston North End have the lowest attendance in a single game

Preston North End only took 246 fans to Swansea City on 22 December, 2023. This is the lowest away attendance of the season. Perhaps it is no surprise, however, given it was on a Friday night, three days before Christmas and over a 400-mile round trip for the Preston fans.

After the game, Preston manager, Ryan Lowe, was asked about the away fans who travelled. He said: “I am gutted for them. They are not going to get back until four o’clock. I wish I could bring them all on the plane home with us, to save them the journey – but I can’t.”

The Green Army make their mark

Plymouth Argyle have impressed people on the pitch with their attacking style of football. They have also made an impact off it as ‘The Green Army’ have consistently travelled in their numbers. Plymouth are seventh in the away attendance table, averaging 2,242 away fans.

 

Championship away fans seen by social media

  • Watch 7,551 Leeds United supporters celebrate their two goals away at Blackburn Rovers.

  • Plymouth fans travelled far and wide to follow their team across the busy Christmas period.
  • West Brom fans celebrate a Brandon Thomas-Asante goal in a 1-1 draw against Leeds United.

  • Last, but not least. Although it is not a Championship match, it would be harsh to not include the celebrations by over 9,000 Bristol City fans after their equaliser against West Ham in the FA Cup.

 


Will Murray

Freelance football journalist. Experience writing for When Saturday, Comes, Goalkeeper.com, Elite Scholars and Total Football Analysis. Recently finished an MA in Sport Journalism at the University of Brighton. Long-time season ticket holder at the two-time European Champions Nottingham Forest.

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