Finally, the Premier League football returns in just a few minutes. Let's be honest; we can't wait to be part of the thrilling new challenges coming ahead of the 2019-20 season!
All 20 top-flight teams are back in action as the new campaign is set to kick off starting from the European champions Liverpool head-to-head against Championship's newly promoted side of Norwich.
Let's talk about what can we expect from the following matches, which player to keep an eye on for our fantasy managers and also, throwing away a prediction score in the end!
(All times BST)
- 20:00 Liverpool vs Norwich
- 12:30 West Ham vs Manchester City
- 15:00 Bournemouth vs Sheffield United
- 15:00 Burnley vs Southampton
- 15:00 Crystal Palace vs Everton
- 15:00 Watford vs Brighton
- 17:30 Tottenham vs Aston Villa
Now, let’s take a look at what the following top three clubs — potential title winners — have to face over the weekend:
- Liverpool v Norwich
For the Reds, this is the perfect chance to continue a home win streak from last season and throw the first punch to Manchester City. While the Canaries did win the Championship title, they will be fighting to survive in the league. If anybody has doubts over Liverpool’s motivation, they need to watch the Community Shield game from the weekend again.
Jurgen Klopp will want his team to take motivation and start focusing on winning while Daniel Farke will want to settle down, especially in their first five fixtures, since they host Chelsea and Manchester United soon after visiting Anfield.
Liverpool are unbeaten in their previous 12 games against Norwich; winning 10 and the other two being a draw, scoring 39 goals and conceding only 13.
Also, the Champions League winners have not lost Match Day 1 of a Premier League since a 3-0 defeat against West Brom back in 2012-13 season.
Oh, and Liverpool are currently enjoying their 40-game unbeaten home streak in the league (W30 D10), so good luck Norwich!
Player to watch: Mo Salah
After a brief session against Lyon, Salah played the entire 90 minutes in the Community Shield, with ten shots attempted, four on target. Of course, he will be the danger man against Norwich. I’m sure fantasy managers have kept a close eye on this guy! Also, do focus at Teemu Pukki of Norwich, who was the top scorer in the Championship with 29 goals.
Prediction: Liverpool 4-0 Norwich
- West Ham United v Manchester City
Pep Guardiola’s City has set its sight on a straight hat-trick of Premier League titles, so it’s time to make a statement against West Ham United! Fresh from winning the Community Shield against Liverpool last weekend, the Citizens will want to stamp their name and continue their dominant era.
Former manager Manuel Pellegrini stands in their way as the Hammers aim to field their record signing Sebastien Haller and midfielder Pablo Fornals to make a difference in their expected Premier League debuts on Saturday.
City have managed to win their last seven in all competition against West Ham, scoring a total of 23 goals.
Just a month ago, the Citizens defeated the Hammers by a 4-1 scoreline in the Premier League Asia Trophy.
The upcoming fixture will be their 110th competitive meeting, with City winning 55, West Ham 37.
Player to watch: Raheem Sterling
Every fantasy manager has placed faith in Raheem Sterling to score and provide assists. The manner in which this English forward has improved, on- and off-the-field is unbelievable, and his form plus hunger for more goals is yet to go to another level.
Prediction: Manchester City 3-1 West Ham United
- Tottenham Hotspur v Aston Villa
Newly promoted team Aston Villa will travel away to face Champions League finalist Spurs, and they shouldn’t expect to take a result very easily. One team will be looking to push as much as they can to be in the title race picture, with a trophy being high on the agenda while the other will be focused on mere survival in the league for now.
Tottenham had a very good transfer summer despite leaving it to the final minute, so Mauricio Pochettino’s side definitely looks interesting on paper. New arrivals Tanguy Ndomble, Giovani Lo Celso and Ryan Sessegnon will provide stability and tactical options for the manager this season. And the best part, Spurs managed to hold key players such as Christian Eriksen and Toby Alderweireld.
These two teams have some history together; Spurs have won nine of the last ten meetings against Villa.
However, the promoted side has only scored three goals during that ten-match streak. According to these numbers, one can expect a game full of goals!
Player to watch: Harry Kane
Many are already predicting this English striker to win the golden boot this season! True or false, that just speaks a lot about the player’s caliber. Due to his ankle injury, Kane wasn’t able to perform his best last term. The England captain will be keen to get back on top of the striker pecking order, and Spurs not signing any new strike partner shows just how much they trust this forward.
Now, Spurs have all the tools to challenge for big honors, and they showed that in the Champions League last season. Having a fully-fit Harry Kane in their side just mean putting the ball into the net will not be a worry!
Prediction: Spurs 2 - 0 Aston Villa
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Our fantasy teams are set, so let’s pray our boys give us the points we fantasize in the first week! Who are you watching for fantasy earnings? Who are you watching for possible purchase in a future fantasy transfer window? And what match(es) are you watching just as a fan? Please share with us, and let us know your match predictions in the comments below!