IN-FORM Castle Lager Premier Soccer League club Highlanders have so far drawn the biggest crowds on average, compared to other crowd pullers such as Dynamos and Caps United.
BY FORTUNE MBELE
In their four home matches so far this season, Highlanders have had a total attendance of
32 720 paying fans, while Caps United have attracted 22 792 fans from their three home matches.
Yesterday, Dynamos declined to release their figures, but the attendance has been poor by the Harare giants’ own standard owing to their dismal form, where they have failed to record a single win in their first seven matches.
Their biggest crowd is obviously the one in the match against Highlanders, which looked similar to the one that thronged Rufaro Stadium in September in a match against the same opponents last year, where about 10 000 fans paid to watch the match
The country’s biggest derby pitting Caps United against Dynamos on Sunday at the National Sports Stadium attracted the largest number of 11 365 fans, while the Bulawayo derby, where Chicken Inn hosted Highlanders, attracted 10 477 fans.
As Bosso continue to enjoy good form, the figures have been increasing with each match.
Highlanders started off with
7 595 fans paying to watch their first game when they beat Black Rhinos 2-1 at Barbourfields on March 18, with the number dropping to 6 596 when they were held by to a goalless draw by Triangle.
After Triangle, the Bulawayo giants travelled to Harare, where they beat Dynamos and their return to Barbourfields was marked by an over-2 000 increase in the number of fans, with 8 850 paying to watch the Madinda Ndlovu-coached side edge newboys Nichrut 1-0.
Following that game, Highlanders were away to Chicken Inn in the biggest Bulawayo derby, which attracted 10 477 paying fans, making a good purse for the GameCocks, but Bosso will claim those numbers were theirs.
On Sunday, 9 679 fans paid to watch Highlanders beat Shabanie Mine 3-1 at Barbourfields.
Bosso have been on a spirited social media drive, dubbed “Fill Up BF” campaign, to lure more fans to their home matches and it is proving successful.
Yesterday, the club thanked its fans on their social media platforms that include Twitter and Instagram.
“The club wishes to acknowledge the fans who paid their way into Barbourfields yesterday, all the 9 679 of them who supported and whistled positive encouragement, cheered and celebrated as the boys went on to win against Shabanie Mine through clinical goals from Peter Mudhuwa, Sianchali Newman and Brain Banda,” the club said.
Unbeaten Highlanders are second on the log standings with 17 points, two behind their next away opponents Ngezi Platinum Stars.
Both Dynamos and the Premier Soccer League could not provide the figures for the DeMbare home matches.
Until the Big Harare Derby at the weekend, Caps United were also struggling to attract large crowds, with the other matches drawing less than 5 000 fans.
The former champions started their campaign with 4 445 fans paying to watch them in their drawn match against Harare City at the National Sports Stadium.
That figure dropped by just over 1 500 to 2 942 in another goalless draw to champions FC Platinum at home. They beat Black Rhinos 2-0 in their next home game, which attracted 4 040 fans.
Despite falling 2-1 away to Triangle, Caps United attracted the biggest crowd so far in the Harare derby when they beat Dynamos on Sunday at the National Sports Stadium.
Caps United are on position six with 12 points from three wins, three draws and one defeat, with an away game to Nichrut at the weekend, while struggling Dynamos remain winless, sitting second from the bottom on the log table with a paltry three points from seven matches, having suffered four defeats.
Their next match is against fellow strugglers Bulawayo City at Rufaro Stadium on Sunday.