For the majority of those involved with football, the set of international fixtures just a few weeks into the new season is a real nightmare.
Sides who have started the season in form will find their momentum is halted, and there is also that risk that players can return injured after representing their countries.
However, one man couldn’t have been happier to escape from his nightmare start to the Premier League season – Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic.
After being one of the London side’s best players since his move to Stamford Bridge, the Serbian full-back has suffered a shocking start to this campaign, finding himself being completely torn apart by a number of wingers already.
Unusually, the defender looks beret of confidence, almost scared to make a tackle. Ivanovic has found himself at fault for several of the goals the Blues have conceded.
Jefferson Montero, Callum McManaman, Raheem Sterling, Yannick Bolasie and Wilfred Zaha have all run rings around the Serb so far this season.
Unfortunately for the 31-year-old, the Premier League returns this week and Ivanovic has to face his nightmare again.
Here are three wingers that the defender should be worried about facing in his upcoming games…
The Chile international has shone for the Gunners since his move from Barcelona last summer.
Sanchez has all the qualities you look for in an attacking midfielder – bags of pace, a variety of skills, wonderful technical ability and a keen eye for goal.
He has the ability to adapt his game to play onto the weaknesses of his opponent.
Last season he managed to score 16 goals and pick up eight assists, which is an impressive tally considering it was his first season in English football. He will only get better now he is accustomed to life in this country.
The attacker is always looking to get onto the front foot and create an opportunity. Ivanovic will be kept on his toes and will have to improve on recent performances if he is to stand any chance of keeping the Arsenal star quiet.
Now that the transfer window has closed and the speculation surrounding Mane’s potential move to Manchester United has gone, the midfielder can concentrate on his performances for the Saints.
Another player who is just starting his second season in English football, Mane is at a young age where he is constantly learning and improving his game.
The main strength of the Senegalese international is his blistering pace. Mane often looks to get on the ball and just run at defenders, taking them out of their comfort zone and making life uncomfortable for them.
Mane is also has great technical ability and a great eye for goal. Last season he scored 11 goals and laid on four assists for his team mates.
Ivanovic stands no chance in a straight race with the Saints star, and will have to ensure he gets his positioning right if he wants to silence his rival.
It has been a strange start to the season for the Hammers. They have recorded impressive away victories over Arsenal and Liverpool, yet lost at home to Bournemouth and Leicester.
However, one bright star from all of their games so far has been the new £10.7 million signing Dimitri Payet.
The French international is a wonderful talent – quick, skilful, a great passer of the ball and a real set piece specialist. Payet has fast become the most important man in West Ham’s side.
Last year no player in Europe created more chances than Payet, and Ivanovic will certainly have his hands full trying to keep the Hammers playmaker at bay.
He has already got off the mark in terms of goals and assists this campaign and will be relishing the chance to come up against the troubled Blues full-back.