Real Madrid kicked off its 2018-19 La Liga season with a 2-0 win against Getafe, but the result was overshadowed by Madrid’s lowest home league attendance in nearly a decade.
The Santiago Bernabeu has a capacity of 81,044, but just 48,466 people showed up for the match. It was the lowest turnout for a home league game since the club’s 3-1 humbling against Real Mallorca on May 24, 2009, which came in a middle of a five-game, end-of-season losing streak just before Cristiano Ronaldo moved to the Spanish capital from Manchester United for a world record fee.
Ronaldo, of course, is no longer with Los Blancos, having completed a blockbuster transfer to Juventus this summer.
While CR7’s absence is no doubt likely to have had an effect on the turnout, reports are also attributing the empty seats to the late 10:15 p.m. Sunday-night kick-off time, which is said to have hindered younger fans from attending.
In addition, Madrid has so far failed to bring in a high-profile replacement for Ronaldo. The club’s premier summer transfer, goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois from Chelsea, was left on the bench. Vinicius Jr., the 18-year-old Brazilian prodigy who joined the club for a reported fee of $50 million, was also left to observe the action from the sidelines.
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