Despite the torturous wait for the return of the English top tier now underway. With high-profile transfers, team controversy, fines, injuries and a concentration of world class managers all wetting our appetite for the English Premier League. The clashes in the fixtures will live very long in the memory and there is no better way to feel the thrills of the footballing world than to get the LED Tv as well as home theatres.
Here are few facts about the EPL that would keep you on the edge of your seat in anticipation of the new season
The return of Jose Mourinho: The Return of Jose Mourinho: After an embarrassing exit from Stamford Bridge last season, Jose returns as manager of the Red Devils. He has already crashed the pre season transfer markets with big signings. Ex PSG man Zlatan IBRAHIMOVIC. Borussia Dortmund’s playmaker HenrikhMkhitaryan, Eric Baily & Juventus Paul Pogba are now officially Manchester United players. Already, Ibrahimovic has started to do what he knows how to do best and the fans love him already. After Man United’s win over Bournemouth, Pogba will have to step to justify his price and gain the confidence of the fans. However, Mourinho has a lot of catching up to do this season and his tactics will be closely monitored by the management and fans alike.
The dawn of Zlatan Ibrahimovic: Journalists predicted this transfer since Mourinho took charge of the Red Devils. The elusive relationship with Jose will motivate the Swedish striker to bring out his best in a league, which is alien to him. However, as stated by Jose himself, Zlatan’s vast European experience already looks like it would be valuable to the team, which is looking to re-enter the UCL post this season. Meanwhile Zlatan has a lot of work to be done to become a darling to English football fans and the media who have been pretty cynical about his form and attitude in recent years. Maybe a few dozen goals in a red jersey will turn tables over.
The marriage between Guardiola & Manchester City: Pep Guardiola’s arrival makes Manchester City clear favourites for the crown. The fixture list also gives them the easiest looking start for any front running title contender. Out of the six clubs which are contenders for the title, aggregations made by bookmakers’ suggests that City are the only team who face two of the others before the end of November. The rest of the pile including Manchester United, Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham- face a title rival four times in this period.
Will Leicester City return to the least?: Leicester City enjoyed, what was probably the greatest fairy-tale story in modern day sports when they lifted the PL trophy last season. However, the battle only gets tougher when they begin their journey as defending champions. Their opening fixtures against newly promoted Hull City came as a shocking defeat and they will be looking for a better performance against Arsenal. Leicester is the only club to face five of the six current title favourites, which will provide a stern test for the defending champs.
Conte’s move as Chelsea’s task master: Chelsea faded lie an old pair of jeans last season. However, with the exit of Jose and the emergence of former Juve manager Antonio Conte at the helm of proceedings, they can regain their old form and lost confidence. Conte has earned a reputation of being one of the most feared and aggressive men in his field. Carlo Ancelotti was quoted saying,” In Conte’s philosophy, you are either with the team or you’re against them. There is no middle ground.” Today will be Conte’s official debut against West Ham and we can only keep our fingers crossed.
When Zlatan meets Guardiola: In his autobiography titled, “I am Zlatan” , the Swedish striker brought light on his bruised relationship with his former manager Pep Guardiola. Zlatan goes on to mention the height to which Pep went to get him out of Nou Camp. If anyone is awaiting the Manchester derby eagerly, it is none other than Ibrahimovic. There would be no love lost between the striker and his former manager whom he describes as a “good coach but a bad person.”
When Mourinho meets Guardiola: These two managers could provide the greatest entertainment on the pitch as well as off screen. Mourinho and Guardiola’s bittersweet relationship ages back to the La Liga days when Mourinho was in charge of Real Madrid while the latter was with Barcelona. The two went head to head in countless El Classico games where Guardiola enjoyed the upper hand. Mourinho will do his best to prevent Guardiola from another successful stint by lining up a deadly and dangerous squad.
The Klopp-Guardiola rivalry: Just like Mourinho, Klopp will have his own rivalry with Guardiola who was in charge of Bayern Munich when the former handled Dortmund. Guardiola’s success at Munich was due to the lack of success of Klopp’s Dortmund and the Liverpool boss, who has just extended his contract, will be hoping to stop the City boss’ success.
Arsenal’s long walk to failure: Already, it seems like Arsene Wenger has not learnt a thing about his failures over the last decade. With the defeat against Liverpool, Wenger might just be convinced he needs to strengthen his squad before the transfer window closes.