The actual turnout to the Italian stadiums is definitely not adequate if we think about the millions of football lovers in the “Bel Paese.” The reality is that the Serie A stadiums are not attractive anymore as explained in the report released by Censis. In the 2015-16 season, 922,000 spectators less than 2008-09 were recorded diminishing from 9.4 million to less than 8.5 mln (-9.8%).

In the same period, the average turnout to the stadiums decreased as well, from 24,717 to 22,291. Even in the current season, the Italian supporters are demonstrating their detachment from the stadiums, in the partial data up to February the audience went down to 21,628.

Overview of San Siro stadium (
Overview of San Siro stadium (

The economic issues that Italy is experiencing at 360 degrees are definitely affecting the behavior of millions of supporters. The average turnout to the stadiums of the fans of the 20 Serie A clubs is 3% lower than that of the France, 20% of Spain, 40% of the United Kingdom, and 50% of Germany.

Although the data reported by Censis are definitely alarming, we have to analyze the behavior of the most important Italian clubs to understand something more about what is happening in the Italian Serie A. According to the numbers reported the turnout at the stadiums in Italy goes from 95.3% for Juventus to 68.4% for Torino and further down as follows:

  • 8% Bologna;
  • 5% Fiorentina;
  • 4% Genoa;
  • 7% Sampdoria;
  • 1% Napoli;
  • 7% Inter;
  • 52% AC Milan;
  • 8% Palermo;
  • 8% AS Roma;
  • 4% Lazio.

Since the end of 2014-15 the Italian stadiums lost 6.6 million spectators. The unsold tickets in Italy are seven times higher than the U.K., five times more than Germany, and two times greater than that of France and Spain.

Censis’s report blames violence in the Italian stadiums

For 10 million Italians stadiums are places with a solid root of violence and in which people give vent to their aggressive behavior. 900,000 Italians reported their discomfort in going to the stadium because of violence. 19.9% of the Italian fans still believe that stadiums are first of all places of passion and warmth, while 19.6% stated that these facilities are places of joy and fun.

A camera on the pitch in Milan (Photo:
A camera on the pitch in Milan (Photo:

Censis’s report highlights the potential of well-managed stadiums 

It seems to be obvious that if the Italian stadiums would be managed in a more efficient way the situation of Italian football would improve. Censis’s report also reaffirmed the importance of the construction of new facilities and their beneficial economic impact, employment rate, and revenues generated.

In 2016, the Serie A clubs had a production value of around 2.1 billion euro and stadium revenues amounted to about 10% of the total. Bringing with relative regularity back to the stadiums those 900,000 people that love and follow football and would like to return to the stadium, the annual revenues could increase up to 200 million euro. The construction of new facilities would also give the possibility to the Italian clubs to collect additional revenue from the sale of the naming rights.