Championship now has third highest attendance in European football
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
The Championship now has the third highest attendance of any league in Europe – and Norwich City have played their part in the division's rise.
Uefa have published their Annual Club Licensing Benchmark Report, which provides a comprehensive report of football in Europe at the end of each financial year.
In amongst a huge amount of facts and statistics about the state of the game is an annual league table of the leagues which attract the most supporters.
The Premier League continued to lead the way in the 2016-17 season, with an aggregate of 13.607,420 fans attending matches in the top flight, although that was actually a drop of almost 250,000 on 2015-16.
That is due largely to Norwich, Newcastle and Aston Villa dropping into the Championship – and taking their hefty average attendances with them.
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The English second tier's aggregate attendance for the whole of 2016-17 was 11,086,368, a rise of just over 1,500,000 from 2015-16, which had seen Burnley, Middlesbrough and Hull promoted, while at the other end of the table Charlton, MK Dons and Bolton were replaced by Wigan, Burton and Millwall.
That rise saw the Championship watched by more people that the Spanish top flight, the Primera Division, which dropped by almost 250,000 to a total of 10,621,000 during 2016-17.
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The Bundesliga, the German top tier, remains in second after seeing its aggregate actually fell by around 500,000.
Last season City averaged 26,354 (aggregate of 606,132), the seventh highest in the Championship, with Newcastle's 51,106 (1.175,442 total) the highest average ahead of Villa's 32,107 average (738,464 total).
However, with Carrow Road holding just over 27,000, the Canaries sold 96.7pc of their capacity, bettered only by Newcastle with 97.7pc.
TOP 5 EUROPEAN LEAGUES 2016-17
Premier League: 13.6m total (35,809 average)
Bundesliga (Ger): 12.7m (41,516)
Championship: 11.1m (20,084)
Primera Div (Spa): 10.6m (27,950)
Serie A (Italy): 8.3m (22,047)