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Sounders receive top marks in The Athletic fan survey

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Ownership, front office and roster all score very well.

Photo by Corky Trewin/Sounders FC

In what should come as little surprise to anyone paying attention, the Seattle Sounders scored very well in a recent survey of MLS fans by The Athletic. In fact, the Sounders came out of the survey — which drew about 2,300 responses — looking about as good as anyone.

About 200 people who filled out the survey identified themselves as Sounders fans, second only to Atlanta United FC fans. Those fans cumulatively expressed a high degree of confidence in ownership, coaching and the state of the roster. The cumulative score for those three areas was the highest in the league, with Atlanta United and Los Angeles FC following close behind.

MLS fan confidence

Team Ownership Coaching Roster Cumulative
Team Ownership Coaching Roster Cumulative
Atlanta 9.8 8.1 8.1 26
Seattle 9.1 9.2 8.5 26.9
Los Angeles FC 8.9 9.1 8.6 26.6
The Athletic

Zooming out from how fans felt only about their team, Sounders owner Adrian Hanauer was judged to be the second best owner in the league (albeit far behind Atlanta’s Arthur Blank, who is apparently the envy of just about every fanbase). Brian Schmetzer was also judged by MLS fans to be the league’s second best coach (again, well behind LAFC’s Bob Bradley).

Aside from the stuff about the Sounders and how both our fans and other fans perceive the team, it was interesting to see that two-thirds of the respondents didn’t start following the league closely until 2009.

It should probably be said that despite the impressive number of responses, this is not a statistically relevant sample. Not only are the respondents self-selected, but they are also likely subscribers to The Athletic. Still, it’s an interesting snapshot into how Sounders fans feel about their team and the way the team is perceived by fans around the league. At the very least, I think we can say that the Sounders are seen as among the league’s elite teams in most categories that matter.