How Premier League clubs are interacting with local fans on pre-season tours

The Premier League transfer window is nearing its close and the teams are preparing for the new season. But despite the downtime in competition, this is a very important time for clubs looking to grow their worldwide fanbase.

Many have embarked on tours of special locations for their preseasons matches, and as different sides visit far-flung pockets of the world this is their chance to interact with a new set of fans.

Take Chelsea, for example, who will face off against Serie A side Inter Milan on Saturday in Nice. Not only will French football fans pack into Allianz Riviera Stadium to witness two elite European clubs, but Chelsea fans who live in France will have a chance to follow along with their favorite team in a special manner, as the London club have created their own France fan Twitter account.

Chelsea is more than capitalizing on the worldwide fandom they’ve cultivated, as they have recently launched a United States account as well, which has 9,300 followers.

That might be new for Chelsea and most Premier League sides, but their recent app launch might have shown us their thinking – adding a feature for overseas fans to find their nearest supporters’ club.

The Premier League preseason really provides its clubs with an opportunity to push along the globalization of their league. American football is in its offseason currently, allowing European clubs to occupy the massive stadiums in the states, like US Bank Stadium in Minnesota and Rose Bowl Stadium in California.

Lucky enough for Tottenham and their American fans, the Spurs will play in both of those venues. In preparation for their preseason matches against Barcelona in Los Angeles and AC Milan in Minneapolis, Tottenham shared photos of a team training session held at Loyola Marymount University.

But surely one of the most anticipated preseason games held in the states this preseason will be between Manchester United and Liverpool — two of the Premier League’s most historic and successful teams — at Michigan Stadium.

Nicknamed “The Big House”, Michigan Stadium is the largest stadium in the United States with a capacity of 107,601. That didn’t stop 109,318 fans from squeezing in back in 2014 when Man United and Real Madrid played in an International Champions Cup match, and it should be lively again during Saturday’s match.

Liverpool, too, have a dedicated US account, just like Chelsea, and with the successes of the likes of Roma and AC Milan, you can see why they’d want to.

Meanwhile, Manchester City are in Miami, preparing to begin their championship-defending campaign. They’ll play Bayern Munich at Hard Rock Stadium on Saturday.

Of course, the United States isn’t the only country hosting Premier League preseason games. Multiple clubs have voyaged to Asia — Arsenal, for example, will compete against Paris Saint-Germain on Saturday at Singapore Sports Hub.

The preseason isn’t just a chance for clubs to get some warmup games and test how their new acquisitions fit in with their formations — it’s an opportunity for each side to build their fanbase and give their international fans a taste of football.

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