Do American Soccer Fans Prefer to See High- Quality Teams or Star Players? An Empirical Study of the United States' Major League Soccer
Linvill, Bret B.
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This paper seeks to address the fundamental question: What makes Americans watch soccer? Through analysis of 13 Major League Soccer teams' attendance figures from the 2011-2013 seasons, it is found that fans will either prefer to watch visiting teams that are recently successful or visiting teams with highly-paid players, but never both simultaneously. It is further conjectured that more historic teams' fans are those that prefer to see "star players." Therefore, it can be inferred that supporters of the MLS either endure an initial "honeymoon" phase when they are interested in the league as a whole, or that the expansion teams attract supporters that are more enthusiastic about the league on average. in
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