Fans warming up to Xmas fixtures as stadia average capacity his 98.4%

December 20 – Match week 17 of the Premier League season recorded a huge improvement from last week’s double-header, as 403,822 fans piled into top-flight grounds with the four-way title race beginning to heat up.

The fixtures recorded an average maximum capacity percentage of 98.412%, placing it significantly above the league average of 97.81% and marking it as the third-best week of overall percentage capacity so far this season.

Manchester City and Nottingham Forest recorded the lowest %capacities of the week, perhaps as a result of underwhelming performances that have led to City slipping down the table and Forest sacking long-time boss Steve Cooper after picking up just one point from the last 18 available.

The trend continues of Manchester City recording the worst percentage capacity of any ‘Big Six’ team this term, even slipping behind Chelsea who sit tenth in the Premier League table.

Liverpool recorded their highest Anfield attendance of all time thanks to the partial opening of the new-look Anfield Road stand, which is expected to bring the stadium’s maximum capacity to around 60,000 upon full completion in the coming weeks. A record 57,158 fans witnessed the Reds’ 0-0 draw with Manchester United, who manager Jurgen Klopp’s side were expected to beat after raking in 11 goals in the previous two Anfield fixtures against the Red Devils, conceding none.

West Ham recorded another outstanding attendance, with only 45 seats left cold at the London Stadium for the Hammers’ 3-0 victory over Wolves. This marks a season-high 99.93% capacity as the East London club continues to top the percentage capacity chart for the Premier League.

The Hammers also recorded the highest overall attendance of the week in the absence of Old Trafford and the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium at 62,455.

AFC Bournemouth tallied their highest home attendance of the season for their clash with Luton, which was tragically cut short after Hatters captain Tom Lockyer suffered a cardiac arrest mid-game. The 29-year-old underwent a similar incident in his team’s playoff final victory versus Coventry City at the end of last season. He is reportedly in stable condition after being taken to hospital.

The Premier League has announced that the game, which concluded in the 65th minute at 1-1, will be replayed in full later in the season.

The next round of Premier League action begins on Thursday as Crystal Palace host Brighton, with the headline event coming on Saturday as Liverpool host Arsenal in a top-of-the-table bout.

Contact the writer of this story, Harry Ewing, at moc.l1713610034labto1713610034ofdlr1713610034owedi1713610034sni@g1713610034niwe.1713610034yrrah1713610034