The Premier League season gets underway on Saturday with four matches forming the first card of the new campaign in the top flight, on a day where the champions get their title defence up and running and some other decent sides are on show.
Two of the three promoted teams gets their season started on Saturday while three teams who struggled for large parts of last term also have the chance to showcase any improvement. As with all matches in September, all four matches are live on TV.
Saturday’s fixtures are as follows: (UK kick off and TV in brackets)
Fulham vs Arsenal (12.30 – BT Sport 1)
Crystal Palace vs Southampton (15.00 – BT Sport 1)
Liverpool vs Leeds United (17.30 – Sky Main Event & Sky Premier League)
West Ham United vs Newcastle United (20.00 – Sky Main Event & Sky Premier League)
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The action begins with a London derby when the latest return to the Premier League for Fulham sees them taking on an Arsenal team who are quietly improving under Mikel Arteta but with that comes a bigger expectation so it will be interesting to see how the Gunners cope with that. The second game of the day comes from Selhurst Park where Crystal Palace and Southampton get their season underway, the former looking to ensure safety easier than they usually do while the visitors might have their eyes on the top half this term.
The big match comes in the early evening kick off when the champions Liverpool get their title defence started as they host the winners of the Championship from last season in the shape of Leeds United in what looks a good looking match up and carries plenty of intrigue. The final match of the opening day sees the action heading back to London when troubled West Ham United host Newcastle United at the London Stadium in a clash which gives both the opportunity to silence doubters that are circling.
I’ll go with one on the opening day in the Premier League and we have to wait until the last match until it comes along. Of the earlier games Southampton appeal but are probably correctly priced while I like the over at Anfield but I’m aware that matches recently in various competitions have been largely low scoring which is enough to put me off that. That leaves the clash between West Ham United and Newcastle United.
West Ham feel like they are a crisis waiting to happen. The tweet Mark Noble sent out when Grady Diangana was sold highlights that somewhere along the lines all is not well with the Hammers and Newcastle should be able to take advantage of that. Steve Bruce and his players are often criticised but actually they’ve done some good business in the last week or two and look a much better outfit than the one which still finished above West Ham last season so even taking out what is going on with the Londoners there is reason to believe Newcastle could get something from this one. Throw it all together and they definitely can.
WON – Back Newcastle United (+0.5AH) to beat West Ham United for a 3/10 stake at 2.00 with BetVictor
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