Football fans ‘hit like a tonne of bricks’ by World Mental Health Day video

Norwich City have been praised for their emotional video marking World Mental Health Day.

At the time of counting, their two-minute and 26-second post has already been viewed more than 27 million times on X, formerly known as Twitter. The Championship side's clip followed two Canaries fans over the course of several matches.

It showed footage of one lively and joyful fan chanting, cheering and decrying any conceded goal, while his friend appeared more reserved and shy to convey his emotions. However, the ending of the video left fans feeling like they had been 'hit like a tonne of bricks'.

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At the start of the clip fans were told "the following video addresses themes of mental health and suicide that may be distressing to some viewers" while two City fans sat in their seats. Throughout the video, the supporter on the right appears bright and chatty, while the fan on the left is more reserved and nervous.

Further snippets show the fans reacting to Norwich goals, crowd chants and goals conceded, yet the temperament of both fans stayed the same. Intertwined between these clips, the more lively fan sometimes tries to initiate a conversation with the other by asking "how you doing? you good?" and "how's the week been," initiating brief responses such as "it's been okay," from his friend.

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At the end of the montage, the more reserved fan takes of a scarf lent to him by his friend and tries to give it back, until the other says: "Nah, you keep it. That was worth it, wow." The screen then goes to black and projects the message: "At times, it can be obvious when someone is struggling to cope."

In the penultimate scene, the fan, who appeared to be more reserved, returns without his friend. He then places the scarf given to him on the empty seat his friend used to sit in, before the message "but sometimes, the signs are harder to spot," appears over the top.

The video then concludes with a still picture of the empty seats and the undisturbed yellow and green scarf, alongside a final message that reads: "Check in on those around you. #YouAreNotAlone."

Radio presenter Ronan Kemp, former star of the Apprentice Tom Skinner and former Bournemouth and Ipswich Town star Matt Holland were amongst the big names to praise the video and admit it had a strong effect on them.

One viewer said: "Wow. Norwich City FC have created one of the most powerful adverts around mental health I think I’ve ever seen. Watch this until the end. Hits like a tonne of bricks."

Another fan commented: "This mental health awareness video is beyond powerful. Amazing work from Norwich City Football Club." A third posted: "That is without doubt one of the most powerful adverts I’ve seen for mental health. Well done Norwich City FC."

Finally a fourth supporter said: "Nothing more important than mental health and you never know who's struggling. Be a friend and don't be afraid to have real conversations with those around you."

For emotional support you can call the Samaritans 24-hour helpline on 116 123, email [email protected], visit a Samaritans branch in person or go to the Samaritans website.

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