If you’re anything like us, international break is the dreaded weekend that arrives to disrupt the flow of Premier League and European domestic football viewing habits. We just want to watch our form team continue their demolition of the opposition on the way to the title, or curse and swear as we seep further towards seemingly inevitable relegation. Or somewhere in between. So with that in mind, we consider the top 7 alternatives to watching your favourite football team play this weekend.
7. Talk To Friends And Family
Highly controversial and most often ill-advised, use the weekend to forego your regular dedication and passion to club football. Instead, spend some time to stop and smell the roses, surprise your wife or husband or sister or someone with a bouquet of roses, or eat a box of Cadbury Roses with your dearly beloved whilst watching the latest chick flick or a re-run of War Of The Roses. Failing that, you can always read up on the literal Wars Of The Roses so as to later regale your loved ones with an enriching knowledge of medieval England.
6. Watch International Football
Okay, we know this is a stretch…BUT, it is World Cup qualifying time so it should hold more interest than a run of the mill friendly. For a start, there is much to look forward to in the England v Malta game alone. Such as, can England put double figures past Malta or will they prove too hard to break down? Can Gareth Southgate go the 1st week of his 4 games in charge without accepting a bung or slagging off his players (at least on camera)? Will Wayne Rooney manage to connect his once billion-dollar foot to the ball when closer than 40 yards from goal? And that’s just to start.
5. Watch The Football League
Can Newcastle continue their resurgence under Rafa Benitez? Can the un-fancied Huddersfield Town hold on to top spot for another week? Are Aston Villa doomed or can they avoid the double drop? Well tune in this weekend as The Football League Championship takes centre stage, with fixtures between…oh hang on, they’ve gone on break too. That’s awkward. Perhaps not then. Any particular reason for this?
4. Reminisce Over The Last Time You Won The League…Or A Game
Yep, that SKY IQ button was created exactly for moments like this. You saved and never watched those old bad boys for a reason. Dust off your favourite memories of games from the season before last and witness them come from 2-0 down to be 1-0 up at the half and hold on for a 0-0 draw. Or something like that. You could even pretend it’s a live encounter, play it smart and your girlfriend may not notice the difference. We never should have let that number 8 go on a free though…
3. Pick Your Best XI So Far This Season
This will eat up a bit of your time at least. Okay, here is our Premier League best so far this season. Quite succinctly, in name only. We are controversially going with only three defenders as we don’t think this team will be seeing much action at the back. We’re cheating a little as Blind and Alderweireld can also play left and right back respectively. Method to the madness. And Capoue can drop deeper if required. Apologies to the 11 or 50-odd alternatives we couldn’t squeeze in.
Goal Keeper: Jordan Pickford
Defenders: Daley Blind, Laurent Koscielny, Toby Alderweireld.
Midfield: Kevin DeBruyne, Etienne Capoue, Philippe Coutinho, Sadio Mane, Raheem Sterling
Forwards: Sergio Aguero, Diego Costa
2. Play FIFA 17
It’s received mixed reviews, but the juggernaut that is the FIFA franchise rolls on. EA could release the same game as last year but with the title “FIFA 17” attached to it, and the masses would still flock. So why don’t you join the flock, and see what all the fuss is about. You know you want to.
1. Go Outdoors
Yes, apparently there is a world waiting to be discovered. You could begin by rediscovering the remaining few hours of British sunshine for another year before it disappears again, or get your old boots on and play a 5-a-side game against some childhood friends. But beware, bad things happen outdoors. So make sure you don’t spend too long out there…is it match day next weekend yet?