City towards a third coronation, Liverpool as outsiders, top 4 mission for Arsenal … What you need to know before the start of the season

Like Ligue 1, it’s also back-to-school time for Premier League stars. Crystal Palace and Arsenal meet at Selhurst Park on Friday August 5 for the first clash of the season.

A clash between two London teams which should set the tone for this 2022-2023 exercise, where the noose between the top 6 clubs could still tighten. In the fight to maintain, Nottingham Forrest, back in the elite after 23 years of purgatory, will have to fight not to yo-yo and regain the Championship (English second division).

City favorite to own succession?

Never two without three. There is no doubt that Pep Guardiola particularly appreciates this expression. The Cityzens manager is looking for a new title after those gleaned in 2021 and 2022 and, for this, the Manchester club did not hesitate to reshape its workforce. England international Kalvin Phillips (23 caps) has arrived, as has Norwegian superstar Erling Haaland, 22, who will take the reins of the England champions’ attack.

At the same time, Gabriel Jesus (Arsenal), Oleksandr Zinchenko (Arsenal) and Raheem Sterling (Chelsea) left to reinforce competitors. But Kevin de Bruyne and his teammates are used to consistency and know how to go the distance (29 wins, six draws and three losses over the 38 days last season). From there to making them the natural favorites to their own succession, there is only one step… which the presence of Liverpool – the last bastion of resistance fighters against the sky blue wave – prevents, for the moment, from crossing .

The Reds want their revenge

A point. This is what separated the Reds from Manchester City at the end of last season. A single point that deprived Jürgen Klopp’s men of a new title after the one won in 2020. Therefore, it is impossible not to see Liverpool players as credible contenders to climb the royal throne.

Without Sadio Mané, who left for Bayern, but with the reinforcement of Uruguayan star Darwin Nunez, 23, from Benfica, the Reds intend to remain competitive. They also showed it by winning the Community Shield last weekend against Cityzens (3-1), with a goal from Mohamed Salah, voted best player in early June by the players’ union in England ( AFP).

Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal, Manchester United… the fight will be tense for Europe

We take the same and start again ? Behind City and Liverpool, the fight for the last two qualifying seats for the Champions League promises to be fierce between Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and Manchester United.

If the Blues and the Spurs had managed to integrate the top 4 last season, the cards are redistributed from Friday. Author of a remarkable summer preparation, galvanized by the arrivals of Jesus (City), Zinchenko (City), Vieira (Porto) and the return from loan of Saliba (OM), Arsenal seems on a mission to find the C1. This is also the case for Manchester United, even if the pre-season did not show the same serenity, due in particular to the management of the case of Cristiano Ronaldo, who would be looking for a new base.

We will also have to keep an eye on West Ham, who finished two points behind sixth place – synonymous with qualification for the Europa League and who can count on Jarrod Bowen and his newcomer, the Italian Gianluca Scamacca, on the front line. ‘offensive.

Nottingham Forest, the English legend is back

Since 1999, his supporters have dreamed of returning to the Premier League. This is to say the event for Nottingham Forest. Myth of English football since the crazy epics lived at the end of the 1970s and at the beginning of the 1980s with Brian Clough (ascent to the first division, winner of the championship the following year then double winner of the Cup of champion clubs (ex-C1 )), Steve Cooper’s men want to hold on for their return to the top flight at all costs.

The Forest coach will want to rely on Jesse Lingard or Neco Williams to avoid yoyoing. In his fight against relegation, he should find the other two promoted, Bournemouth and Fulham, two clubs very familiar with the exercise.

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