By Paul Kennedy
Even though most of the top Concacaf teams brought less than full squads, the Gold Cup was again a hit at the gate, drawing the two largest and three of the five largest U.S. soccer crowds to date in 2013.
The top two Gold Cup crowds were sellouts of 81,410 at Cowboys Stadium for the semifinals and 70,540 at Baltimore's M&T Bank Stadium for the quarterfinals.
Of the 10 crowds that have drawn more than 50,000 fans, five were for the Gold Cup, two were for MLS matches, one was for last Wednesday's Guinness International Champions Cup final, one was for a Mexico-Nigeria friendly in Houston and the other was for Saturday's Real Madrid-Inter Milan friendly that drew the largest soccer crowd ever in St. Louis.
The seven dates for the inaugural Guinness International Champions Cup averaged 41,335. Only the crowd of 22,208 for Juventus-Everton at San Francisco's AT&T Park drew less than 38,000.
The Seattle Sounders have drawn seven of the top 25 largest crowds, and several of their remaining MLS games should break into the top 10. They have already sold out CenturyLink Field -- 66,000-plus -- for Clint Dempsey's home debut against Portland on Aug. 25.
2013 Top 25 U.S. Soccer Crowds
ATT. MATCH (COMPETITION) CITY
81,410 1. USA-Honduras/Mexico-Panama (Gold Cup semifinals) in Arlington, Texas
70,540 2. USA-El Salvador/Honduras-Costa Rica (Gold Cup quarterfinals) in Baltimore
67,273 3. Real Madrid-Chelsea/LA Galaxy-AC Milan (Guinness Int'l Champions Cup) in Miami Gardens, Fla.
62,107 4. Mexico-Nigeria(friendly) in Houston
57,920 5. USA-Panama(Gold Cup final) in Chicago
56,822 6. Mexico-Panama/Canada-Martinique (Gold Cup Group A) in Pasadena Calif.
54,229 7. Mexico-Trinidad & Tobago/Panama-Cuba (Gold Cup quarterfinals) in Atlanta
54,184 8. Real Madrid-Inter Milan (friendly) in St. Louis
53,679 9. Seattle Sounders-Vancouver Whitecaps(MLS) in Seattle
50,028 10. San Jose Earthquakes-LA Galaxy (MLS) in Stanford, Calif.
48,263 11. Manchester City-Chelsea(friendly) in St. Louis
47,359 12. USA-Germany (friendly) in Washington, D.C.
43,345 13. Mexico-Denmark (friendly) in Glendale, Ariz.
41,983 14. Chelsea-Inter Milan (Guinness Int'l Champions Cup) in Indianapolis, Ind.
40,681 15. Real Madrid-Everton/LA Galaxy-Juventus (Guinness Int'l Champions Cup) in Los Angeles.
40,487 16. USA-Panama(World Cup 2014 qualifying) in Seattle
40,150 17. Seattle Sounders-Portland Timbers (MLS) in Seattle
39,764 18. Chelsea-AC Milan/Valencia-Inter Milan (Guinness Int'l Champions Cup) in East Rutherford, N.J.
39,462 19. Manchester City-Chelsea (friendly) in Bronx, N.Y.
39,368 20. Spain-Ireland(friendly) in Bronx, N.Y.
39,360 21. Seattle Sounders-FC Dallas (MLS) in Seattle
39,196 22. Seattle Sounders-Colorado Rapids (MLS) in Seattle
39,180 23. Seattle Sounders-D.C United (MLS) in Seattle
38,998 24. Seattle Sounders-Montreal Impact(MLS) in Seattle
38,979 25.Seattle Sounders-San Jose Earthquakes(MLS) in Seattle
REAL MADRID-EVERTON RATING.Fox's prime-time broadcast of the Real Madrid-Everton game from the Guinness International Champions Cup drew a 0.5 rating for an average of 990,000 viewers.
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