Home Championship Barcelona’s Dembele seen at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light with friend for Sheffield...

Barcelona’s Dembele seen at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light with friend for Sheffield United match

Barcelona's Dembele seen at Sunderland's Stadium of Light with friend for Sheffield United match

When it comes to recovering from an injury, most athletes would choose a sunny location like Barcelona. However, Barca forward Ousmane Dembele had other plans. He decided to watch the Black Cats play Sheffield United at the Stadium of Light on Wednesday instead.

Sunderland was looking to climb their way back towards the play-off places in what’s been a pleasing first season back in the Championship following their promotion last campaign. Meanwhile, visitors Sheffield United were looking to widen the gap between them and third place Middlesbrough, who are hot on the Blades’ heels thanks to their revival under Michael Carrick.

Dembele was obviously keen to witness first hand just how thrilling England’s second tier can be, as he was spotted watching from the directors’ box. TV cameras panned to the Frenchman in the second half, showing him sat next to Sunderland owner, 25-year-old French businessman Kyril Louis-Dreyfu.

The pair do have a long-standing friendship having previously posted pictures on Instagram together on holiday in Florida, and Dembele also congratulated Sunderland on their promotion last season after their play-off final win over Wycombe.

Dembele – who has been out injured since going off in the 1-0 win over Girona on January 28 – isn’t the only big name to make an unexpected appearance at an EFL game recently, though. FIFA president Gianni Infantino turned up to Millwall for the Lions’ promotion six-pointer against Norwich earlier this month. Likewise, actor Will Ferrell was at Loftus Road to watch QPR play Sunderland in February.

But unluckily for Dembele, Infantino and Ferrell, all three home sides lost their fixtures, with QPR losing 3-0 to Sunderland, Millwall being defeated 3-2 to the Canaries and the Black Cats losing 2-1 to the Blades.

Wednesday’s loss to Sheffield United leaves Sunderland eight points off the final play-off spot, whilst the Blades are now six points clear of Boro and 13 points off league leaders, Vincent Kompany’s Burnley.

It is interesting to see high-profile individuals attending EFL games. It shows that even though these games are not as glamorous as Premier League matches, they still have a lot of appeal. The Championship is known for its competitiveness and unpredictability, and it seems that even top athletes and celebrities are drawn to it.

It is also worth noting that Dembele’s decision to attend a game in Sunderland rather than recover in Barcelona shows his commitment to football. Despite being injured, he still wants to be involved in the sport and learn from watching games. This is a testament to his dedication and passion for football.

Overall, Dembele’s attendance at the Stadium of Light is a reminder that EFL games can be just as exciting as Premier League matches. It is great to see high-profile individuals showing an interest in these games and supporting smaller clubs. Who knows who will turn up at the next EFL game?

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