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There is a famous Bill Shankly quote that reads “Some people believe football is a matter of life and death, I am very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that.” Now a scientific study conducted by Well Pharmacy has found that Premier League fans agree with the Liverpool hero, with a large proportion of supporters putting their health at risk every time they watch their team.
What did the study look at?
, who are the second largest pharmacy operator in the UK, assessed Premier League football fans looking at three key factors. They were the team they supported, their blood pressure and their stress levels when watching their team play. The latter two factors were then combined together to create a ‘danger score'; the higher the score the worse your result.
What were the Premier League study results?
The Well Pharmacy study looked at fans from every Premier League team, and we're afraid it's bad news for those of you who follow struggling sides.
Newly promoted Luton
have been a breath of fresh air to the English top flight this season but their fans rank highest in the ‘danger score' sitting at a lofty 52.5%. They're joined in the ‘Champions League' places by fellow strugglers Burnley, Sheffield United
with the Toffees having the highest ranking stress levels of 71% – that's 11% higher than the next most stressed fan base (Burnley).
As for the ‘relegation spots', which in this case is where you'd want to be, there are a few surprises. Given how the most ‘at risk' teams play out you might expect those ‘lower risk' fans to be those that follow top performing teams.
Only Man City
feature at the bottom though; they sit third from bottom with a 29% danger score. Beneath them are Brentford (28.5%) and Brighton, with the Seagulls sitting way down the list with a danger score of just 18%.
What's the point in the study?
You might ask why Well Pharmacy have spent their time looking at sport fans when there are so many other things going on in the health sector, but this study is far from a publicity stunt.
High blood pressure – or hypertension – is closely associated to a range of health issues including stroke and heart attack with middle-aged men the most likely candidates for suffering from undiagnosed issues.
That just happens to be the same demographic that makes up the majority of football fans in England hence this study – which is supported by ex-footballer and heart attack survivor Glenn Hoddle – is targeting them to get checked.
We encourage anyone – regardless of age and gender – to get themselves checked if they have any concerns.