The domestic season is starting to slowly come to an end, and more often than not, that either means a summer with a World Cup, a summer with the European Championships, or a summer with neither. This time around its the latter, as fans prepare to wait for a few months before everything kickstarts once again. Sure, there are still a few cup finals and European finals for the masses to enjoy, but week to week enjoyment and football viewing (often) trumps all of that.
Alas, it seems odd to us that very few folks seem to be discussing three of the international tournaments that are actually taking place over the summer. They aren’t really that highly regarded in comparison to the Euros or the World Cup, but we honestly believe they’re equally (in some regards) as valuable.
The good news, above everything else, is that fans can immerse themselves in different football cultures. They got the chance to do the same thing during the World Cup last year, but it’s not really the same. These games are going to be different, the fans are going to be different, and the coverage is obviously going to be very different. It’s a chance to learn and develop your understanding of the beautiful game, and that’s hardly a bad thing.
FIFA Women’s World Cup – France – 7 June to 7 July
The rise of women’s football has been great to see over the course of the last few years, and the World Cup represents that perfectly. There’s going to be more coverage for this tournament than there has been for most others in the history of women’s football, and we can’t wait to see how it unfolds.
Copa America – Brazil – 14 June to 7 July
As always the pressure is going to be on Brazil to get the job done, but as a whole, the Americas have something to prove to the world. They didn’t live up to the hype at the World Cup last year, and if they want to continue to be taken seriously, they all need to put on a show in what is pretty much their flagship tournament.
Africa Cup of Nations – Egypt – 21 June to 19 July
The controversy surrounding moving the tournament from Cameroon to Egypt has certainly dampened the spirits a little bit for this, but we’re still confident in saying that we’ll get an entertaining showing from all teams involved. The play is a little bit sloppier, but in equal measure, some of the world’s best footballers are starting to come out of the continent. That’s no exaggeration, either, and we’re excited to see them on display this summer.
The bookmakers have their own views regarding who the favourites are for each of the tournaments, but to be honest, we’re just excited to see so much simultaneous football over the summer. It’s not going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you give it a chance, then maybe you’ll soon realise that there’s more to the game than just European football.