Everton announces ‘eFriendly’ initiative with Inter Miami CF

Everton has announced that the club will participate in an ‘eFriendly’ with David Beckham’s Inter Miami CF on 4 July as the Premier League side looks to strengthen its fan engagement initiatives.

The eFriendly will see Richarlison take on Miami striker Julian Carranza in a three-game FIFA tournament on American Independence Day, the duo will also answer questions about their respective careers and interests.

Fans will be given the opportunity to win signed Everton and Inter Miami CF Shirts by the two players as part of the event, which will be broadcast on the Premier League club’s official channels from 5pm.

The initiative follows a long list of fan engagement opportunities that the club has launched in the last 12 months, including partnering with sleeve sponsor Angry Birds to integrate Jordan Pickford, Yerry Mina, Andre Gomes, and Goodison Park into the game. 

Additionally, through the global health pandemic the club, along with many other sporting organisations have integrated esports into its initiatives in order to tap into a younger market. Due to lockdown guidelines halting many clubs from participating in any traditional promotional activities, most sides opted to use FIFA as a tool to ensure that interest doesn’t drop whilst the campaign was postponed.

It now seems that due the success of these events, alongside the uncertainty of planning tours outside of the UK, initiatives such as eFriendlies could be used by clubs in the future to increase their profile in other territories whilst travel restrictions still apply.

The Premier League resumed its campaign earlier this month with Everton’s Merseyside derby draw against Liverpool being the most-watched top-division game in the UK by garnering an estimated 5.5m viewers. MLS will hope that its resumption, which is set to resume on 8 July at Disney World, will garner an increased viewership in the US due to the lack of live sporting events in the country.