The international break is upon us and leagues from all over the world take time off from domestic competitions, as players prepare to engage in friendlies and World Cup qualifiers.
The international break comes at a time when some of the most followed and watched leagues on the planet are about to reach their conclusions.
The importance of the international matches cannot be stressed enough as international teams look for a place in their regional competitions or for a chance to compete for a place in major international tournaments like the European Championships or the World Cups. The international matches within a calendar year cannot and should not be replaced - but on closer inspection these international matches can play a major role in deciding where a league title ends up.
The international break may be just over 10 days long but it can have a resounding effect on the domestic teams in which these players in.
Fatigue or jet-lag is a major factor when players return following their stints with their respective nations. Injuries can be one of the other factors which decide a domestic side’s chances of finishing either in the top half or the bottom.
Smaller teams have at most two or three international players going off to different parts of the world to compete, whereas teams like Manchester United, Arsenal, Manchester City, Chelsea, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Barcelona each have eight to ten players competing for their nations - meaning almost all of the first choice squad will be competing in international matches.
The possibility of injuries and severe ones at that are enanced and teams mounting a title defence or a title challenge could be severely affected.
Manchester United’s Nemanja Vidic has already stated in a recent interview the benefits reaped by the senior players of the squad who are retired from international football as the international break helps them recover their strength, recuperate from knocks and injuries while also working on a few technical aspects of their game.
However good or bad the international break proves to be, one thing is for sure that the beautiful game will provide us with more exhilarating action, drama and controversy to keep us glued to our seats in the days ahead.
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