Everything you need to know before the Start of the 2018/19 Premier League Season.
The EPL juggernaut kicks back into action Friday attracting on average 12 million viewers across 212 countries per game. This global behemoth pulls in a market share of £7.83 billion and with a total league expenditure of £1.171 billion so far this summer transfer window the Premier League is truly a global giant with a multinational network.
Riyad Mahrez’s move to Manchester City created controversy throughout last season, with the player going AWOL whilst still contracted at Leicester. Guardiola made Mahrez a top summer target, and after the success of his first campaign, the top brass couldn’t say no. The tricky Algerian winger became Manchester City’s club record signing when he joined them in a £60m deal last month.
Liverpool are this year’s big spenders totalling £182 million. Jürgen Klopp took the team to the Champions League final in Kiev this year and with new signings to straighten the squad in key positions, they must be looking to mount a genuine title challenge. None more so than Brazilian goal keeper Alisson Becker, bought in from Roma for £62 million making him the world’s most expensive keeper. No pressure! Other signings include Naby Keïta from RB Leipzig (£65 million), and Fabinho from Monaco (£45 million).
Elsewhere, Premier League new boys Wolverhampton Wanderers have also spent big, with a total of £67 million across 8 players. Big names such as João Moutinho will add experience to a team desperate to compete at the top table of English football.
Who are the likely champions?
Champions in 2017/18 Manchester City are odds-on favourites to repeat the feat, for the first time since Manchester United successfully defended the title in 2009.
After addressing key problems in their squad, Liverpool will be genuine contenders. 25 points is a lot to make up on the current champions, but Klopp is the only manager to have a positive win rate over Guardiola.
Manchester United, Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea have big question marks surrounding both their squads and managers, however these teams have dominated the top 6 places in the league of late. They will all surely be there, or thereabouts, come the end.
The premier league new boys
Wolves, Cardiff and Fulham were awarded their official Premier League status when they received their share certificates on the 7th June.
Wolverhampton Wanderers’ transfer window has been well documented, having brought in some big names to strengthen a squad which ultimately ran away with the Championship last year. A strong Portuguese contingent managed by the infallible Nuno Espírito Santo aren’t just looking to stay in the Prem, but compete among the elite.
Fulham are another team to have bought in quality, including World Cup winner André Schürrle. It’s great to have Fulham, a team with great history, back in the big time.
Cardiff are tipped to struggle alongside Huddersfield but with Neil Warnock at the help a manger with over 20 years of experience in management they will be doggedly fighting for every point on offer.
The Premier League kicks of tomorrow night at Leicester with Manchester United in town.
Engage provides primer match day hospitality across all fixtures of the English Premier League season.