Arsenal-Leicester:Season 2017/18 of the English Premier League football competition kicks off tonight at the Emirates stadium when Arsenal entertain the champions from two seasons ago, Leicester City.This is the curtain raiser for the brand new English Premier League campaign. Having missed out on Champions league football for the first time in over twenty years, Arsenal have added the likes of Striker Alexander Lacazetteand left backSeadKolasinac. Leicester have had an indifferent season last time around after shocking the footballing world in 2015/16: being the champions of England.The star duo Jamie Vardy and RiyadMahrez were out of form and failed to follow up on their brilliant outings from the season before. As a result,the Foxes sacked their title winning manager Claudio Ranieri mid-way into the 2016/17 season and appoint Craig Shakespeare as an Interim boss who managed to bring Foxes to the respectable twelfth place finish in the table.
Match facts:The London giants have won each of their last ten Premier League fixtures against the Foxes at home turf, which is their joint best record at home(ten successive home wins against Everton between January 1995 and September 2005). In fact, the Midlands club are on a twenty-one game winless streak against the Arsenal. Last season, this fixture was decided when a late hopeful shot by Nacho Monreal was deflected on Foxes’ defender Robert Huth and into the back of the net to give all three points to the Arsenal.
Player to watch: All eyes of the match will be on a certain Arsenal striker Alexander Lacazette who is set to make his competitive debut for the Gunners. With 37 goals in 45 appearances in the last campaign for Olympique Lyonnais, the Gunners’ record signing definitely knows where the back of the net is. It will be interesting to see how hebegins his life in arguably the most competitive league of the world.
Chelsea- Burnley:Chelsea start the defence of their title when they welcome Burnley at Stamford Bridge on Saturday afternoon. The champions have added the likes of Antonio Rudiger, TiemoueBakayoko and Alvaro Morata into their already impressive squad.However, their long serving captain John Terry has moved to Aston Villa and star winger Eden Hazard has suffered a broken leg in pre-season, who is expected to be side-lined for the first few weeks of the season. Burnley, having escaped relegation last time around, have also boosted their squad with the addition of experienced Striker Jonathan Walters and Left Back Charlie Taylor amongstothers.
Match Facts: Chelsea are unbeaten in their six Premier League meetings with Burnley, winning four and drawing two. The Blues have won the Premier League title in each of the three previous seasons that Burnley were in the Premier League.Burnley’s last win at Chelsea came in a League cup tie in 2008. Last season, a goal each from Eden Hazard, Willian and Victor Moses gave Chelsea a comfortable win in this fixture.
Player to watch: Fresh from winning the European Champions League and Spanish La Liga titles with Real Madrid, Striker Alvaro Morata has joined Chelsea, becoming the most expensive Spanish player of all time. With the future of fellow countryman Diego Costa uncertain, Morata looks set to lead the line for the blues. Having had the best goals per minute ratio in Spanish League last season, he is the one to watch.
Manchester United- West Ham United: Having secured the Champions League football back with Europa League glory over Ajax Amsterdam, Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United will host West Ham United to kick off their Premier League campaign. The red devils have added Swedish Defender Victor Lindelof and Belgian Striker RomeluLukaku into their ranks. West Ham United’s first Premier League campaign at their new London Stadium didn’t quite went according to plan as they failed to gain momentum into their campaign last time around. However, with the addition of Austrian winger Marko Arnautovic from Stoke City and former Red Devil Javier Hernandez from Bayer Leverkusen, the Hammers fans have reason to be optimistic this season.
Match facts: Manchester United have lost only two of their last 24 league matches against the Hammers at home, winning 20. West Ham’s last win at Old Trafford was in May 2007, when Carlos Tevez scored the only goal of the game to avoid relegation for the Hammers. Last season Diafra Sakho’s early opener in this fixture was cancelled out by Zlatan Ibrahimovic to secure a draw.
Player to watch: RomeluLukaku will make his Premier League debut for Manchester United after securing theBritish record fee transfer from Everton this summer. Having proved himself with 85 goals in the Premier league already, he will be eager to impress his boss Jose Mourinho for the second time in his career.
Among the other notable fixtures, Watfordwill host last season’s top four side, Liverpool in the late Saturday kick-off. The Hornets are yet to make any major signings. However, new manager Marco Silva will be looking to better their 16th place finish of the previous campaign. The Reds have added star Winger Mohammad Salah from the Serie A side AS Roma, who is set tomake his competitive debut for the Merseyside club.
In another Saturday kick-off, newcomers Brighton and Hove Albion will entertain Manchester City at Amex Stadium. This is the first ever taste of Premier League football for the South Coast side. On the other hand, the Blue half of Manchester looks set to challenge the Premier League title having already spent close to 200 million pounds on new signings.
Newcastle United will host last season’s runner upsTottenham Hotspurs in an early Sunday kick-off. The Tyneside club managed to gain promotion at the very first time of asking having been relegated in the season 2015/16. Spurs will be up for a revenge after suffering a devastating defeat to an already relegated Newcastle United in this fixture last time around.