A look at Premier League clubs engaging fans during the international break

This week, Premier League football takes a backseat as the international break brings national teams to the spotlight. Except, it’s not quite that easy: fans of football clubs tend to crave the league games they’ll be missing this weekend, giving the clubs themselves a great opportunity to keep the conversation alive at a time when there’s no need to build up to games.

In other words, it’s a more relaxed way of interacting with an audience that’s more than willing to be engaged with, and clubs won’t disappoint.

Aside from the usual ‘on this day’ posts and videos of players, both on the pitch and behind the scenes, international week allows for a look back on the season so far and is an opportunity to get fans and club staff alike to reflect on what’s happened so far and what they’d like to see coming up ahead.

That’s one strand to go on, but there’s also a more obvious one: top clubs have plenty of players leaving to represent their countries on international duty, both at senior and underage level. So that’s a chance for clubs to show off their players’ prowess for the national side, and also a chance to keep fans informed of their performances – and any dreaded injuries they may pick up.

Chelsea, as one of the biggest clubs in the country, are bound to have plenty of players jetting off, but apart from the obvious superstars, they also have plenty of young prospects to keep an eye on, and many of them are representing their countries at youth level this week.

They may have asked their fans to name all 17 senior players who have gone off to play full internationals this week, but that number would rise dramatically if the youth players were included. Still, we’re a little bit disappointed they didn’t follow through with this quiz idea!

Unlike West Ham United, another London Premier League club who have plenty of players away this week. They’ve created a quiz on their site, cleverly blurring out their players and asking fans to guess who it is just by recognising their country colours.

There are, of course, always contrasting emotions among fans during international week: some are excited to watch their country compete, others just can’t wait for the Premier League to return. The contrast is also borne out in the reactions of the clubs:

But if your fans are feeling the withdrawal with fewer meaningful games to watch, there’s still plenty of football to watch.

The international weekend is non-league weekend, and Saturday afternoons during the break are the perfect time for fans to go and support their local clubs.

Lots of big clubs have lent their support to #NonLeagueDay, an initiative attempting to get their fans to local non-league games this weekend to boost gates at clubs for whom this is one of the biggest weekends of the year.

Non-league clubs don’t get the financial security that Football and Premier League clubs do from media rights deals and sponsorships, and so the money they make on matchdays are vital to their survival.

About author

Chris McMullan
Chris McMullan 420 posts

Chris is a sports journalist and a regular contributor to Digital Sport - follow him on Twitter @CJMcMullan91

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