We are back! The English Premier League, that is. In truth, we have the upcoming FIFA World Cup in November to thank for the calendar adjustments.
And yet, for its enthusiasts and lovers, there is plenty of excitement to go around. The next set of weekends until the end of the year will not be the same again.
Last season served up a dramatic finish up until the last millisecond. Manchester City was going to defend its title easily. Then they would not. Aston Villa had scored the opening two goals in the opening half of the final game of the campaign to start to ruin the party.
But in less than 15 minutes, the Cityzens turned the game on its head thanks to substitute, Ilkay Gundogan, who scored the first and winning goal, his teammates piling on him in celebration.
And for all of the excellence that was Liverpool’s season, challenging for an unprecedented quadruple, including the Champions League, they managed to win just the FA and Carabao Cup.
And now, the new season promises so much, many of the teams recruiting brilliantly.
Of course, City and the Reds are the favourites to win the title on paper. But Manchester United with newly-appointed Erik Ten Haag, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham will have plenty to say, even regarding the European spots.
Will an oil-backed Newcastle get into the mix somehow?
There is plenty to look forward to beginning with the season opener.
Preview of Gameweek 1
Some cracking encounters are set for the season starter. The desperation to start the season on an excellent note will make for a compelling watch.
The Gunners will kick off the new season with a trip to Selhurst Park to take on Crystal Palace tonight. Mikel Arteta will be confident that his team can secure a win, especially with the addition of forward, Gabriel Jesus.
Last season’s Championship winners, Fulham will have their hands full as they welcome Liverpool to the Craven Cottage at lunchtime tomorrow. Darwin Nunez will expect to start after an outstanding cameo in last weekend’s Community Shield win.
Newly-promoted Bournemouth takes on Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa as Newcastle will be optimistic about picking all points against old foe, Nottingham Forest.
Tottenham Hotspur has an exciting meeting with Southampton. Antonio Conte will back his wards to start the campaign on a winning note.
Leeds United faces off against Wolves as Frank Lampard welcomes his former side, Chelsea to Goodison Park.
Leicester City will entertain Brentford at King Power. The Foxes have not made any signings this season. And yet, a few stars have been rumoured to be on their way out of the club. Haruna Lookman has joined Atalanta.
Manchester United will take on Brighton on Sunday afternoon. The Red Devils lost embarrassingly the last time they faced the Seagulls.
The Premier League Champions, Manchester City begin the defence of their title with a cracking battle against West Ham.
Predictions for Gameweek 1
BetBiga Booking Code: x5y7b
Crystal Palace vs Arsenal (over 1.5 goals)
Fulham vs Liverpool (2)
Bournemouth vs Aston Villa (over 2.5 goals)
Newcastle vs Nottingham Forest (1X)
Tottenham vs Southampton (1)
Leeds United vs Wolves (X2)
Everton vs Chelsea (Away team to score)
Leicester City vs Brentford (over 1.5 goals)
Manchester United vs Brighton (over 2.5 goals)
West Ham vs Manchester City (2)