Here is a look at five...
Chelsea have been on top-form so far this season – they have secured an impressive 19 points from a possible 21 in their seven games played. Their 4-1 hammering of Norwich last weekend came on the back of an away victory against title rivals Arsenal, and a 6-0 thrashing of Wolves in the Capital One Cup.
Roberto Di Matteo now faces an ‘interlull’ in which almost all of his first-team squad will be involved with their national teams for the World Cup 2014 qualifiers.
Blues fans will surely be crossing their fingers that their team comes back in one piece ahead of their next fixture – a tough trip to White Hart Lane where they’ll face Tottenham in their third London derby in just over a month. Their last post-international fixture was a drab 0-0 draw at QPR, another derby, in which the players displayed signs of weariness.
Everton currently occupy 4th place in the Premier League table, just 5 points behind leaders Chelsea. They’ve impressed from the offset this season ever since their opening day victory over Manchester United back in August.
They’ve been on a good run – their only loss coming against West Brom last month – they’ve won 4 and drawn 2 and will be hoping they can pick up where they left off after the break. They’ll face bottom of the pile QPR on the 21st October.
In a similar fashion, West Brom will view the international break with disregard – they sit in 6th place, also on 14 points. Their dramatic win at home to QPR rounds off an impeccable start for The Baggies who have won 4, drawn 2 and lost 1 of their seven games.
Top goalscorer Shane Long is expected to be involved in the Republic of Ireland’s clash with Germany on Friday – West Brom manager Steve Clark may find himself watching that game from behind the sofa.
Manchester United have recorded one of their worst starts to the Premier League this season. A demoralizing home defeat to Spurs was atoned for last weekend with what was their best display of the season so far at St James’ Park against Newcastle United.
They won the game emphatically 3-0, much to the relief of Sir Alex Ferguson who no doubt would have preferred to have taken that momentum straight into the next fixture.
Instead, he’ll have to wait until his side host Stoke City in a fortnight’s time. He’ll likely be another one who will be wincing every time his player rides a challenge.
New star signing Robin van Persie will be in action for Holland and has an infamous history, having picked up a season-long injury in a Friendly match for the Netherlands, which saw him miss 5 months of Arsenal’s 2009/10 campaign.
And finally, Martin O’Neill has admitted the international break couldn’t have come at a worse time for his Sunderland side. The Irishman claims it will likely have a negative affect on his preparations for their Wear-Tyne derby with Newcastle United on 21st October.
He said: “I’ve got no control over what happens to them now, so that’s a worry, although I’m not the only manager in that position.”
“Hear hear." might have been the word from the offices of Di Matteo, David Moyes, Clarke, and Sir Alex.
image: © hisgett