So who was the Best Supported NRL Team in 2017? The question so few people ask about has been answered by The Gurgler for a third straight season with the Gurgler Fan Index returning.
We have previously answered the question of who was the Best Supported NRL Team in 2016, and 2015, with last year’s version going to the Roar website, where one comment generously calling it “the biggest piece of crap ever written. Such praise from a Keyboard Warrior.
But people not liking or reading our website has never stopped us before, and so we present the GFI for 2017 where we attempt to answer the question of the Best Supported NRL Team in 2017.
The ultimate answer of the Best Supported NRL Team in 2017 is not that surprising, but we attempted to use a variety of statistics to ensure it wasn’t just down to one team having the advantage of an entire capital city at their disposal.
Across the 15 statistics we have ranked the teams from best to least best, and scored the top NRL team with 16 points down to the lowest with one. After all the ranking points are done, the sum of all 15 will determine the Best Supported NRL Team in 2017
Settle in for a bunch of tables and statistics to prove who we have as the Best Supported NRL Team in 2017.
Best Supported NRL Team in 2017 – AVERAGE CROWDS
|Team||Avg Home Crowd||Avg Crowd Rank||Avg Crowd Corrected||Avg Crowd per Comp Point Rank|
|North Queensland Cowboys||16,069||14||14||9|
|Manly Sea Eagles||13,493||7||9||5|
|St. George Illawarra Dragons||13,427||6||8||7|
|Gold Coast Titans||12,961||4||5||13|
|New Zealand Warriors||11,754||2||2||12|
|South Sydney Rabbitohs||10,903||1||4||8|
No surprise that the Brisbane Broncos are top of the list, given their one city status. Melbourne Storm are in a similar position with the Broncos, but have to compete against AFL. Talking of AFL, there are 10 sides who have an average crowd figure greater than the Broncos, and only three teams below 20,000.
The corrected score is an attempt to level out the playing field by dividing the average crowd by the population base of the team’s city. For Sydney the total Sydney region was used and divided by 9 for all the Sydney based NRL teams.
While we’re at it, why not have the average crowd per point to see the real loyalty of the fans, or if winning makes all the difference. Once again the Newcastle Knights rated highly, proving to be a real rugby league city.
Best Supported NRL Team in 2017 – HIGH-LOW CROWDS
|Team||Top3 High Crowd Avg||Top 3 Rank||Top3 Corr||Min High-Low||Min Hi-Low Rank||Avg % Full||% Full Rank|
|Manly Sea Eagles||24,371||12||13||-91%||1||50%||9|
|North Queensland Cowboys||20,859||9||12||-41%||14||62%||16|
|St. George Illawarra Dragons||18,162||7||8||-66%||7||49%||8|
|Gold Coast Titans||17,907||6||5||-41%||15||50%||10|
|South Sydney Rabbitohs||15,099||2||4||-63%||8||22%||1|
|New Zealand Warriors||13,688||1||2||-34%||16||40%||5|
Here we take the average of the Top 3 Home Crowds for 2017, which lessens the impact of of big one-offs like for Manly and Melbourne in the Suncorp Stadium double Header or the big Anzac Day clashes.
Once again we have used the location correction too, as once again teams with one team in town have an advantage. Newcastle Knights top this location corrected field. Unsurprisingly, the Brisbane Broncos top the Top 3 highest crowd average.
Also thrown in is the difference between the highest crowd and the lowest crowd, the smaller the gap, the more loyal the fans are between different days or form on the field. In a rare win, the New Zealand Warriors have the smallest gap between highest crowd and lowest.
Finally for each game we have worked out the % full of the home crowd, and worked out the average of that % Full figure. The North Queensland Cowboys top that category.
Best Supported NRL Team in 2017 – MEMBERSHIPS
|Team||2017 Members||Member Rank||Member Corr Rank||16to17 Member Growth||Mem Growth Rank||Av Crowd Membership||AvCrowd-M’ship Rank|
|South Sydney Rabbitohs||30454||15||16||-7.7%||2||36%||1|
|St. George Illawarra Dragons||18732||10||10||4.3%||9||72%||5|
|North Queensland Cowboys||18678||9||12||-5.3%||4||86%||10|
|New Zealand Warriors||17428||6||2||-5.3%||5||67%||3|
|Manly Sea Eagles||12779||2||5||-4.5%||6||106%||14|
|Gold Coast Titans||10883||1||4||5.6%||10||119%||15|
South Sydney prove they are big on Memberships in a rare win for the Rabbitohs in any category. Second overall, and easily win the location corrected statistic.
Growth of memberships from 2016 to 2017 is the next mildly interesting stat, and after a great 2016 finals run, Canberra Raiders top the growth stat, but one can wonder if that growth will continue given the Raiders disappointing run in 2017. The lowest growth went to the Bulldogs.
Finally we have the average crowd to memberships comparison, where we measure whether how many of the members actually show up. The three lowest teams for Membership are the top three for this stat. All over 100%.
Best Supported NRL Team in 2017 – SOCIAL MEDIA
|Team||Facebook Likes||FB Likes Rank||Twitter Followers||Twit Follow Rank||Twitter Likes||Twit Likes Rank|
|New Zealand Warriors||474,554||14||98,900||14||26,400||16|
|South Sydney Rabbitohs||427,498||13||98,400||13||17,800||14|
|North Queensland Cowboys||286,233||11||73,300||10||2,215||2|
|Gold Coast Titans||195,009||7||61,200||7||1,087||1|
|Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles||186,992||6||60,400||6||2,562||4|
|St. George Illawarra Dragons||172,512||5||56,600||4||2,225||3|
Next is the all important Social Media. We have taken the stats from Facebook and Twitter. No location correction as anyone can follow from all around the world.
Big hitters Brisbane Broncos and Melbourne Storm are up the top, as are the overall underperformers in South Sydney and the NZ Warriors,
Best Supported NRL Team in 2017 – SUPPORTER JERSEY ON EBAY
|Team||Ebay Jersey||Jersey Rank|
|St. George Illawarra Dragons||$ 2,400.00||16|
|North Queensland Cowboys||$ 1,999.00||15|
|Brisbane Broncos||$ 1,399.00||14|
|Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks||$ 899.00||12|
|Melbourne Storm||$ 799.00||11|
|Wests Tigers||$ 650.00||9.5|
|Penrith Panthers||$ 650.00||9.5|
|Gold Coast Titans||$ 600.00||8|
|New Zealand Warriors||$ 599.00||7|
|Canberra Raiders||$ 500.00||5.5|
|Parramatta Eels||$ 500.00||5.5|
|Newcastle Knights||$ 300.00||4|
|South Sydney Rabbitohs||$ 299.95||3|
|Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles||$ 275.00||2|
|Sydney Roosters||$ 250.00||1|
Why not have a slightly more ridiculous field. The more expensive the Jersey on Ebay, the more people want it, meaning the more that team is supported. We say anyway.
St George illawarra Dragons win this one.
Best Supported NRL Team in 2017 – OVERALL WINNER
|North Queensland Cowboys||161|
|St. George Illawarra Dragons||113|
|Gold Coast Titans||111|
|New Zealand Warriors||107|
|South Sydney Rabbitohs||105|
|Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles||101|
Here are the final results adding all the ranking points together.
Once again the Brisbane Broncos win the Best Supported NRL Team, and the Cowboys featured strongly in second place.
A surprise of sorts in third place is the Newcastle Knights, whose fans loyalty you could never question.
Melbourne Storm and another surprise, the Wests Tigers, round out the top 5.
A bunch of Sydney clubs are at the bottom, and the NZ side and the Gold Coast.
Best Supported NRL Team in 2017 – Conclusion
No surprise that Brisbane Broncos and North Queensland Cowboys are up the top, the Broncos having an advantage like nothing else. Newcastle and West Tigers were the surprise in the top 5.
Sadly a whole bunch of Sydney clubs finish in the lower half, proving how hard the Sydney clubs have work to bring in more supporters.