Apr 12

Matchday 1 EPL Preview

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Fulham vs Arsenal

It may have been delayed by a month, but the Premier League returns and it is Craven Cottage that will see the first ball in anger kicked this weekend, as promoted Fulham play host to F.A. Cup and Community Shield winners Arsenal.

The Gunners' new era under Mikel Arteta is certainly picking up pace and the former midfielder will be hoping that his players can continue their recent display of positive momentum, as they make the short trip across the capital.

Prediction: Fulham 0-2 Arsenal

Crystal Palace vs Southampton

It may be a slight surprise that Roy Hodgson is still at the Crystal Palace helm, as the Eagles failed to soar at the tail end of last season and after picking up just one point from the final twenty-four on offer, a solid start is almost imperative for the Selhurst Park outfit.

They play host to a Southampton side that have rewarded manager Ralph Hasenhuttl a new contract and now the Austrian's remit is to get the club a lot closer or even into the top half of the table.

Prediction: Crystal Palace 1-1 Southampton

West Ham vs Newcastle

David Moyes was tasked with keeping West Ham's head above the waters of relegation and due to a late flurry of impressive performances, the East London outfit are now ready to embark on another season of Premier League action.

They play host to a Newcastle side who were meant to be awash with Saudi Arabian money by now, instead they have had to settle for the signing of Callum Wilson from Bournemouth. Then again, that's not necessarily a bad thing.

Prediction: West Ham 1-1 Newcastle

Liverpool vs Leeds

The clash of the opening weekend takes us to Anfield, as champions Liverpool play host to Championship winners Leeds and after finally landing the Premier League, Jurgen Klopp has to plan on how to defend a title that was 30 years in the making.

They play host to a Leeds side that operate under the watchful eye of Marcelo Bielsa and with this being his first competitive fixture as an English top flight manager, could a surprise be in store?

Prediction: Liverpool 2-1 Leeds

West Brom vs Leicester

Slaven Bilic returns to the Premier League as manager of West Brom and although the overall objective is to avoid the threat of relegation, the first objective is to get the better of Leicester this Sunday afternoon.

While although Leicester fluffed their Champions League lines last season, Brendan Rodgers still has a talented squad at his disposal, and he will be hoping that disappointment has not carried over into this season.

Prediction: West Brom 0-2 Leicester

Tottenham vs Everton

Tottenham have been making the headlines in the past week with their “All or Nothing” documentary series earning rave reviews. However, they now need to make sure Sunday is not all for nothing, as they play host to Everton.

The Toffees have added grit and flair to their midfield, as both Allan and James Rodriguez now call Goodison Park home and manager Carlo Ancelotti will hope that they have an immediate impact.

Prediction: Tottenham 2-0 Everton

Brighton vs Chelsea

It was a relatively successful first season for Graham Potter at The Amex and with the Seagulls looking to earn the mantle of an established Premier League club, the former Swansea manager will be hoping for a lot more of the same this time around.

With that said, their opening gambit will not be easy and with Chelsea doing their level best to buy everyone in the transfer window, they are looking like a team that could now challenge for the title.

Prediction: Brighton 0-2 Chelsea

Sheffield United vs Wolves

An incredible first season for Chris Wilder in the Premier League now needs to be followed up and the largely unfashionable Yorkshire club will aim to avoid all the symptoms that come with the dreaded ‘Second Season Syndrome'

They welcome Wolves to Bramall Lane on Monday night and after suffering disappointment in the Europa League last season, the next objective is to secure a top four place at the end of this one.

Prediction: Sheffield United 1-2 Wolves

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