Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013
If last weekend’s AFL Grand Final was a meeting between East and West, then this Sunday’s NRL Final could, at a stretch, be considered a North–South showdown. In what will surely be an unforgettable match, the northern beaches’ Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles go up against inner-city (and south-of-the-Bridge) favourites, the Sydney Roosters. Admittedly, here at Roy Morgan, we’re not too fussed about which team wins. We’re more interested in their supporters …

Numbering around 305,000 people, Manly’s supporter-base is significantly larger than Sydney’s (256,000). Both have shrunk in recent years, however, with Manly dropping more than 30,000 fans since 2009 and Sydney losing about 6,000.

Both teams’ supporters are predominantly male: 66% of Manly supporters and 65% of Sydney supporters are men. While both groups of fans are more likely than the average Australian to earn $100k+ per year and slightly more likely to own their own home, 69% of Manly fans and 68% of Sydney fans report cutting down on their spending in recent times.

But for all their shared traits, Roosters and Sea Eagles supporters are far from identical. The table below reveals some key differences between these two NRL tribes…

Sydney vs Manly-Warringah: attitudes and activities


Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), July 2012 – June 2013 (n = 530).

Geoffrey Smith, General Manager – Consumer Products, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“Like the supporters of last week’s AFL Grand Finalists, fans of the teams in the NRL Grand Final appear very similar at first glance. For example, both groups are less likely than the average Australian to have a degree/diploma, more likely to have attended a professional sporting event in the last three months (and played sport themselves), and more likely to prefer beer over wine.

“However, by delving into the Roy Morgan Single Source database, we’ve found Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles supporters to be a little more ‘sensible’: avoiding risk, giving to charity and more inclined to eat multicultural cuisine than fast-food. In contrast, Sydney Roosters fans tend to be more carefree with their love of sexy cars, trashy takeaway and risky behaviour.

“No matter which team wins on Sunday, we foresee that betting agencies will do a roaring trade – both groups of supporters have been known to enjoy a flutter!”

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Roy Morgan Research

Roy Morgan Research is Australia's best known and longest established market research and public opinion survey company. Roy Morgan Single Source is thorough, accurate, and provides comprehensive, directly applicable information about current and future customers. It is unique in that it directs all the questions to each individual from a base survey sample of around 55,000 interviews in Australia and 15,000 interviews in New Zealand annually - the largest Single Source databases in the world. The questions asked relate to lifestyle and attitudes, media consumption habits (including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, cinema, catalogues, pay TV and the Internet), brand and product usage, purchase intentions, retail visitations, service provider preferences, financial information and recreation and leisure activities. This lead product is supported by a nationally networked, consultancy-orientated market research capability.
Samantha Wilson
P: (03) 9224 5268


Sydney Roosters, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles, NRL, Grand Final



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