Man City and Liverpool set for flyers and other key stats after Premier League fixture reveal

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Manchester City

The new season’s Premier League fixtures point to last season’s title rivals Manchester City and Liverpool continuing their strong opening-day records.

City have started their season with a win for the last eight years in succession while the Reds have won five of their last six.

And with West Ham and Norwich respectively awaiting them, there appears little resistance this time around.

The Hammers have lost on day one for the last three seasons, including back-to-back 4-0 defeats at Manchester United and Liverpool, while City have won 4-0, 4-1 and 4-0 away to the Hammers in the last three seasons.

Sergio Aguero has the most opening-day goals in the Premier League among the competition’s active players, with six. He has not netted in any of those three wins at the London Stadium but did score there in January 2017’s 5-0 FA Cup win.

West Ham’s run of poor starts is mitigated by their opponents – after Tottenham, Arsenal, Chelsea, United and Liverpool, the visit of City sees them complete the full set of “big six” opponents in successive seasons.

The only blemish on Liverpool’s recent record is the stoppage-time equaliser they conceded to Watford in their 2017 opener, and they face a Canaries side with only two wins on opening day in the last 20 years.

The opening weekend’s marquee fixture sees Manchester United host Chelsea on Sunday, August 11, with both teams enjoying strong records.

United have won their last four opening-day fixtures and eight out of 10, while Chelsea have only lost once on opening day in the last 20 years – although that came the season before last against Burnley.

Watford have the longest unbeaten run among current top-flight clubs at 12 games, though eight of those came as a Championship club and the run is evenly split between draws and wins.

Last season’s 2-0 win over Brighton was their first on opening day since returning to the top flight and the Hornets have the same fixture this time around.

Arsenal have lost three of their last four opening fixtures but face a Newcastle side who are winless in six, with the Magpies’ only point coming courtesy of 2015’s 2-2 draw with Southampton.

Tottenham will look to build on back-to-back opening wins when they face promoted Aston Villa, who have only one defeat in their last six curtain-raisers. Harry Kane broke his August duck last season but has still never scored in the first game.

Southampton have started with a draw four years in a row, against Newcastle, Watford, Swansea and Burnley, and the Clarets have another chance to end that run this year.

Everton are unbeaten in seven, though with only two wins, and face a Crystal Palace side who have begun with a defeat in six of their last eight campaigns.

Wolves, unbeaten in six opening games, face a Leicester side who have lost three in a row while Bournemouth, with two wins in their last five openers, host Sheffield United who have won only one out of five.

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Real Madrid willing to pay £135 million for Man United star Paul Pogba

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Real Madrid is understood to be willing to pay £135 million for Paul Pogba as part of Zinedine Zidane’s rebuild, the Mirror reports.

But United want at least £150m to let the World Cup-winning midfielder unite with Eden Hazard at the Spanish club.

Maurizio Sarri will not be allowed to depart Chelsea two years early for Juventus until the Italian giants compensate the Blues for the manager, according to the Daily Mail.

Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale is reportedly no longer being sought by Manchester United.

The Red Devils’ executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has long targeted the Welsh winger but the Evening Standard says that goal has been surrendered in the face of Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s vision to recruit the strongest domestic prospects to Old Trafford this summer.

The Telegraph reports Aston Villa are willing to pay £14m to secure Leeds’ Kalvin Phillips, but his club are seeking up to £20m for the hometown midfielder.

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Players to watch

William Saliba: The 18-year-old St Etienne defender is the subject of advanced talks with Arsenal, Le10Sport reports.

Dejan Lovren: Liverpool’s Croatia centre-back is being courted by AC Milan, according to Sky Sports.

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Premier League 2019/20 fixtures: Liverpool play opener v Norwich, Man United and Chelsea clash

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Manchester City

Liverpool will kick off the 2019/20 Premier League season with a Friday match at Anfield against newly-promoted Norwich City as the fixtures were released on Thursday.

Champions Manchester City on the other hand will begin their title defence away to West Ham on August 10.

The early run of games for Pep Guardiola’s side also features encounters with Tottenham, Bournemouth and Brighton in August.

Liverpool will hope to go one better this time around after finishing a close second last season and their latest title charge will also see them take on Southampton, Arsenal and Burnley in the opening rounds.

Their fans’ eyes however will immediately be drawn to December 4 for the Merseyside derby with Everton and October 19 when they face Manchester United.

Ole Gunnar Solkjaer’s first full season in charge kicks off with a tough clash at home to Chelsea on August 11 and he’ll hope incoming transfers over the summer will help his side be more competitive in the Manchester derby on December 7 than they have been in recent times.

Whether or not Maurizio Sarri will remain at Chelsea’s helm next season is unclear with a move to Juventus being speculated but if he remains with the Blues, a trip to Old Trafford first up will be challenging.

Mauricio Pochettino’s future is also up in the air at the moment but should he stay with Tottenham, he’ll lead his team out for their season opener against Aston Villa at home.

Meanwhile, Arsenal will be desperate to force their way back into the top four and their pursuit of Champions League football begins with an away game against Newcastle United.

The north London derby between Arsenal and Spurs is scheduled for August 31.

Check out the complete list of fixtures here.

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