The Premier League is arguably the most marketable football league in the world with some of the biggest names in the game. But an all-star break could make the league even bigger and offer an extra dimension to increase the excitement.
There aren’t many things the Americans do well, but their domestic sports are very much one. Basketball and the NBA is America’s fastest growing sport, having quickly replaced the NFL and MLB as America’s pastime. One of the ways the NBA has achieved such success is its all star weekend.
The all star weekend uses a simple format, the best players are selected from each conference via a fan vote with the two most popular players being named captains. The captains then enter a draft to build their squad for a one off expedition game. There are a variety of other events such as the three-point contest, dunk contest and skills challenge.
Whilst the format wouldn’t be exactly translatable to the Premier League, other formats could be adopted. A far-fetched idea, but could a North vs South game could finally decide which end of the country is more dominant? (it may be hard to work out if Leicester city is the North or South though). Similarly, a top 6 vs best of the rest game may be a brilliant way to showcase hidden gems and prove the Prem is the most competitive league in the world.
There could also be opportunities for games for U21 players to promote the next generation and smaller events such as skill challenges or 5-a-side tournaments.
This season, the Prem scrapped the mid-season break, but in future seasons it could serve as a brilliant way to engage fans during the tough middle months of the season. It would also serve as a good chance for clubs battling relegation and those stuck in the mid-table mezzanine to reassess and kick on for the rest of the season.
The game could soon stagnate, this could be the best way to keep pushing the global brand that is the premier league and settle some crucial fan debates.