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Research Show Fans Have Mixed Views on Return of Elite Sports

With elite sports now back on our TV screens on a daily and weekly basis, Irish sports fans would appear to have mixed views about it, according to new research from B&A.

As part of B&A’s Shaping Ireland’s Future reporting, B&A recently carried out a national survey on what sports fans are missing about attending live sporting events and to assess their reaction to the fact that elite sport has been progressing apace.

In a pre-Covid world, 43% of Irish adults (1.5m) used to attend live sporting events at least occasionally. In this ‘new’ world, the researcher would have expected a resounding sense of ‘delight’ about elite sport gracing our screens, but the reality is that only 30% of us are delighted to see this continue.  Indeed, as many as a quarter of us would prefer elite sport to cease during these Covid restrictions! While sports enthusiasts (those who in a pre-Covid existence regularly attended live sporting events), are considerably more positive with half delighted (52%) still 12% of this group are uncomfortable with the current situation.

What are sports enthusiast missing?

  • On average a sports fan will miss three of the things from the list below.  The top three include the physical excitement of attending a live event; the atmosphere in the stadium and then there is .. (oh I have forgotten what it is called now, oh yes) the social aspect.
  • Real sports enthusiasts are a little different to the average in that what they miss most is the anticipation and build up to the event and over index on missing supporting their team.

What does the future hold?

  • At the moment, 77% of regular attendees would consider attending a live sporting event but interestingly half of these would only do so if capacity stood at 50% or lower. Only just over 1 in 4 would return if capacity was at 75% or higher.
  • The very large majority of these sporting enthusiasts are happy to wear a face covering for the duration of the match.

About the survey: The survey was conducted by B&A using their online Acumen Panel.  The sample size is 509 with fieldwork conducted from 30th October – 1stNovember, 2020.  Sample was quota controlled and subsequently also weighted to match known demographics of the Irish adult population 18+.

For more information please contact elaine@banda.ie


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