Few things are certain in the surprising and dynamic world of football but, if we know one thing about the year of 2022, it's that it will stand out in the football history books for decades to come. It is, as it will come to be known, the year that FIFA decided to ruin our summer and move the World Cup to November.
Suddenly, everything we’ve come to love and cherish about a World Cup summer has been cruelly ripped away. Gone are the beer garden gatherings, the exciting matches played under the summer sun and the bellowed cheers of ‘It’s Coming Home’ (for now). Instead, we are faced with a long, football-less void that we’re left to fill.
Whether you’re an avid football fan who never misses a game, or a player who isn’t sure how to spend the long weeks of rest, the Avec Sport guide to surviving the football off-season can help. No one wants to be without football to watch and play, but with our top tips, we’ll make it through together.
The length of the football off season changes from year to year, and the annual lack of football entertainment is a recurring disappointment for everyone. In 2022, Premier League fans will have to suffer through 2 months and 14 days of football-less existence while they await the start of the new season. In a World Cup year, this is an unheard of length of time as some of those 75 days were meant to be filled with worldwide excitement but, with the event being postponed to November 2022, those 1800 hours are looking increasingly dull. There is, however, always light at the end of the tunnel and, in this case, it’s a non-stop footballing winter season.
With the FIFA Qatar World Cup throwing everything off this year, it's no surprise that some changes have been made to the Premier League schedule too. For the 2022/23 season, the EFL season kicks off on the 30th July, with the Premier Leauge starting on the weekend of the 6th of August 2022. These games will continue until November, with Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th marking the last matches before the World Cup begins on Monday 14th November.
After one of Britain's home teams has won the 2022 World Cup, the Premier League will resume on Boxing Day, continuing up until the last round of matches are played on 28th May 2023.
A hobby shared by football fans across the globe, playing football video games such as the ever-popular FIFA series is a great way to pass the time during pre-season football. Available on a range of platforms including PC, PlayStation and Xbox, anyone with a computer or console can get involved, and the options for play are endless. Whether you want to use the game to spend more time with your family and friends in couch co-op mode or are hoping to connect to the international online community, FIFA games bring the communal feeling of football into your living room.
If you play football, scheduling in some pre-season football drills is a great way to make sure your skills are sharp when the time to hit the pitch comes around again. Regular training is a key part of heightening your performance during matches and, even if your squad can’t come together to train, there are plenty of ways to keep your fitness up during the off-season by training alone.
If this is the best way for you to get your football fix, we recommend taking a look through our How to Practice Football at Home Alone blog which shares our top tips for building general fitness and improving your ball control and shooting skills.
In the world of professional sport, there are so many incredible, breathtaking moments to entertain us, and only some of them happen within football. If you’re struggling to find something to entertain yourself with in the absence of football matches, why not branch out and expand your sport-watching catalogue?
From the powerful, strategic plays that only happen on a rugby pitch, to the meticulous skills that are required to perform a perfect routine in gymnastics, the summer schedule is jam-packed with amazing sports to watch. This summer, we recommend turning the channel over to a sport you’ve never watched before. Whether it’s a traditional team sport like cricket, or a solo show of talent such as skateboarding, you might just find something you enjoy as much as football.
In the long run, while these football off-season activities will help to bridge the gap and stop those long few months from dragging along as you wait for the new season to kick off, nothing can take the place of football in our hearts. A sport that brings people together from all backgrounds, and from all over the world (as we’re sure to witness in November’s World Cup), football has an undeniable ability to unite people, and to give them all joy, even when their team doesn’t reign victorious.
While you’re waiting for football to come back on the 6th of August, whether you decide to test out virtual football, keep at your pre-season football training or are considering learning what all the fuss is about for Rugby, find all you need to make it through the season at Avec Sport. From comfortable loungewear to performance enhancing training gear, there’s a wide range of sports clothing to discover on our website.