It is so simple that even you might understand it Grim. Now listen very carefully and think very slowly, as usual.
The capacity of the Etihad is IRO 54.5K. Manchester City have approx 46,000 season ticket holders who are regular matchgoers. On a Premier League match day there are 3,000 seats reserved for away fans whether they sell them or not. That leaves 5k floating/passive fans/day tripper/tourists etc.
The latter category aren't likely to turn up/travel north for a wet wednesday night game against Lyon as we simply don't have enough tourists/passive supporters in reserve willing to make the effort.
As for last night there were just over 40k in attendance with 600 being from Lyon. That leaves around 39.5k of the 46k regulars. Approx 6.5k of those season ticket holders didn't bother for one reason or the other.
Those reasons are numerous and a few are:
City, unlike clubs like yoonited and Liverpool don't have a large pool of glory hunters accumulated over decades of success to take up the slack and fill the seats. This is likely to change as years progress but currently we have a finite number of supporters who need to stump up for all League home/away/FA Cup/League Cup/European games and there are only so many games a family can afford to attend when travel and refreshments are included. My mate who attends all League games with his two teenage kids can't afford to go to the European group stages and I don't blame him for not attending. So there are THREE that didn't go.
The fans we have from far flung parts of the country (yes we have some), find it difficult to travel up and back in time for a midweek game. Next to me I have two people who travel up from Derby but didn't make last nights game for logistical reasons and I don't blame them either. So there are TWO more that didn't go.
Many people work shifts. There is a couple near me who, one of them works nights, so they can't make midweek games. So there are TWO more that didn't go.
That is SEVEN that I know of, all with perfectly legitimate reasons for non attendance. It is their choice which I respect.
Throw into the mix weather/school night/the notorious Manchester traffic (I set off at five and got home at eleven thirtyish for a 90 minute football game) and other reasons personal to themselves then I for one am very impressed with an attendance of 40k. A great effort!
I really don't understand this obsession with some empty seats, it all seems rather childish and more than a little churlish to have an unhealthy fixation with City's attendances, could it be that you no longer have any sticks with which to beat us so you pathetically grasp at that straw. We used to do the same with yoonited not being in MCR when it was City that was rubbish and yoonited were Champions and that too was a ridiculously embarrassing attempt at straw grasping.
Manchester City are The Champions, deal with it!
It amazes me that people like you feel you have the moral authority to sit in judgement of regular match going supporters when you can't be bothered getting off your arses for any games never mind one of the type which we are discussing. You are not worthy.
I've educated you with the above simply because you asked and were in need of enlightenment. Personally I'm not bothered if we sell out for any game as long as most of us loyal fans are there and my team is playing. I certainly don't care what your ilk think.
I feel that we should increase the capacity to 61k ASAP. The ground will sell out for the big games and there will be empty seats for the smaller games....so what? Barcelona don't lose any sleep over the fact that they don't usually sell out and they are a far bigger club than yoonited and Liverpool.
As for City being a big club, yes they are...but then again so are yoonited, Villa, Leeds, Barcelona, Sheffield Wednesday, Wolves etc etc etc.
Now I hope that your and Tweedle Dum's (TC) brains aren't hurting too much with that logic overload.