The English Premier League has definitely been missed. This is not just the case in the UK but in other parts of the world, like Scandinavia, where Premier League clubs have a large number of fans.
In countries like Finland, fans have taken to other forms of entertainment, such as netti casino play; online casino play in the Finnish language. However, they now have the opportunity to return to their first love, watching football. Although, it’s fair to say that the return of the Premier League has not been popular with everyone.
The argument that the return is too early
When the Premier League returned to entertain fans, alongside the Bundesliga and La Liga, it was welcomed. There was also a record audience for the Merseyside derby (Liverpool vs Everton) which attracted 5.5m viewers.
However, not everyone was impressed. Some supporters actually said that they would rather go outside and get extra exercise than watch the new form of football entertainment. This was mainly due to the lack of atmosphere with no crowds allowed at games as the result of the pandemic.
However, the football also lacked energy and performances were less than sparkling. This is perhaps unsurprising given that the players have only had a limited amount of training and preparation time prior to the re-start.
The chance to bond over a game
Despite the negatives, some fans have welcomed the return for the fact that it allows them to bond with others. They may not be able to attend matches with other supporters but they can communicate with them and discuss what went on during the match.
This is an important part of the football experience in the UK. Having these discussions remotely may not be ideal but it’s better than nothing for many people.
For some fans, any football is a positive
Common opinion amongst a large section of fans is that the return of football is close enough to normal to be okay. Many people even enjoy the crowd noise that has been added to games, to improve their sense of atmosphere.
In addition, fans also believe that the standard of football can only get better. This is likely to be the case given that footballers are now getting the matches that they need to build on their levels of fitness and sharpness.
Will fans continue to watch?
It seems as though fans will continue to watch the Premier League, especially as many of the matches are free to view in the UK. This is especially going to be the case for fans of certain teams. For instance, Liverpool fans are watching keenly, just waiting for their team to finally win their first title in thirty years and their first since the First Division became the Premiership.
At the other end of the table, teams like Bournemouth and West Ham are fighting against relegation. This makes it more likely that their fans will continue watching any action that they can.
There are games available to watch on most days as the Premier League seeks to finish the season before the end of July. It’s an exciting time for many fans despite the restrictions that the Premier League is under.
What does the future hold?
Fans are happy now that the Premier League has returned. However, they are still eager to know what to expect in the future. If the pandemic is not eradicated, it may be some time before full crowds are back at matches.
Although, the Premier League is hopeful of having some sort of crowd at games next season. It remains to be seen whether this will happen. It’s likely to be dependent on what happens with the virus in a wider context.
The return of the Premier League has not been entirely positive. The quality of the football has not been good overall and there has been a lack of atmosphere as matches are being played behind closed doors.
However, at least fans are able to watch their favorite teams at home. It’s also likely that the standard of play will improve and there will be plenty of exciting action to watch before the end of the season.