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Post by Scottish » Sun Jan 25, 2015 5:36 pm

Croatia has done extremely well internationally since independence from the old Yugoslav federation but less so at club level with the country’s finest players heading for leagues of higher quality in countries with better remuneration. Perhaps this accounts for the poor average crowd of 3,193 and standings of 25th in Europe and 55th in the world.

The top level Prva HNL has ten clubs playing each other four times, a system familiar to Scottish football in the final quarter of the 20th century. The bottom team goes down and second last into a play-off. There are thirty-six games per club and 180 for the league in total.

No club managed to attain a five-figure average (I have seen suggestions Hajduk Split did so but my figure are the official ones of the Croatian association) though individual matches could climb as high as 25,000. The low was 300. The break-up of Yugoslavia has hit attendances badly as games between Belgrade and Zagreb clubs (to take the most obvious example) are no longer played and the huge crowds they once attracted have vanished with them.

9806 Hajduk Split
5500 HNK Rijeka
4657 Dinamo Zagreb
2811 Osijek
2556 Istra 1961
1733 Slaven Belupo
1622 Zadar
1328 Hrvatski Dragovojiac
1239 RNK Split
681 Lokomotiva

Numbers in the second level Drug HNL have varied over the years and last season there were twelve playing each other three times each for a total of 198 games overall and thirty-three each, bringing it with the familiar imbalance of home and away matches. The bottom two are relegated to the regional structure below.

Crowds ranged from 100-1,500 and the average of 394 was disappointingly low, leaving Croatia 48th in these particular rankings.

659 Rudeš Zagreb
506 Cibalia
500 Inter Zaprešić
447 Segesta Sisak
438 NK Zagreb
413 Dugopolje
406 Solin
329 Gorica
297 Radnik Sesvete
272 Lučko
237 Pomerac Kostrena
231 Zelina

I have no figures for the third level and below.

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