The Premier League kicks off this weekend after what feels like a summer of soccer. Norwich City entertain Liverpool on their return to the top flight while Newcastle United face a West Ham United team who finished in the top six last time around and who are hungry for more this season. We’ve put together this second part of previews to help you beat the bookies and find the betting tips you need to keep that bankroll growing.
Burnley vs Brighton
Although neither team was close to being relegated last season both Burnley and Brighton will want to improve on their respective 17th and 16th finishes last season. Burnley have stayed mostly out of the transfer market this summer despite a takeover at Turfmoor while Brighton have bought in a few new players as Graham Potter looks for better results.
Sean Dyche welcomes keeper Nick Pope back to first team action after surgery this summer in goal, although he faces a fight with new signing Wayne Hennessey for the number 1 spot. Chris Wood is also in the squad having played at the Olympics for New Zealand and could start up front alongside Matej Vydra. Aaron Lennon made a brief appearance in the Clarets’ last friendly with Cadiz and he will be hopeful of securing a spot on the bench.
Brighton forward Danny Welbeck is out with a recurrence of a thigh injury from last season, which is likely to keep him out until after the international break. Defender Dan Burn sustained a knee ligament injury and will be out for a while. Zambian midfielder Enock Mwepu could make his debut for Brighton following his move from Red Bull Salzburg.
Norwich City vs Liverpool
The Canaries take on Liverpool in the late game on Saturday at Carrow Road hoping to cause an upset on their return to the top flight. Liverpool on the other hand will be looking for a strong start in East Anglia as they look to bring the title back to Anfield.
Norwich City have been busy in the transfer market this summer, bringing in a host of new players to help ensure that their stay in the Premier League isn’t a short one. While they have lost the mercurial Emi Buendia to Aston Villa, Norwich have looked to strengthen their wide options bringing in Milot Rashica from Werder Bremen and Christos Tzolis from PAOK. They have also brought in American forward Josh Sargent to help ease the load on flying Finn Teemo Pukki. However, no less than six players are out of the squad due to Covid including Rashica, defender Grant Hanley and forwards Onel Hernandez and Jordan Hugill.
Liverpool have spent big in defence as they look to learn from the mistakes of last season. Ibrahima Konate has come in from RB Leipzig, while Dutch centre back Virgil van Dijk has been given a new contract as he celebrates his return from injury. However, skipper Jordan Henderson could miss out and needs a late fitness test to see if he can start. Full back Andrew Robertson is out with an ankle injury for at least a month, which could mean a rare start for Greek left back Kostas Tsimikas.
Newcastle vs West Ham
The first game on Sunday sees West Ham visit Newcastle United hungry to prove that last season wasn’t a fluke and that they can fight with the top six again. Newcastle on the other hand have had a tough close season with only Joe Willock signing from Arsenal so far. Toon owner Mike Ashley is not the most popular man on Tyneside and should Newcastle continue to struggle it could be a very difficult season.
With both Martin Dubravka and Karl Darlow ruled out with injury Newcastle manager Steve Bruce has to choose between giving a league debut to Freddie Woodman or Mark Gillespie between the sticks. Gillespie made three cup appearances for the Magpies last season but Woodman has played 88 games for Swansea in the Championship on loan the last two years.
Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester City
The big game of the opening weekend takes place on Sunday afternoon at White Hart Lane, where all eyes will be focused on Harry Kane. New Spurs manager Nuno has not given any indication whether his want-away England forward will play; the spiciness of the question is amped up several notches as Manchester City are the potential purchasers of Kane.
Spurs have already spent this window, bringing in Argentine centre back Cristian Romero on a season long loan from Atlanta and Spanish winger Bryan Gil from Sevilla. Romero probably won’t make his debut in this game having had a knee injury and Nuno has told reporters that he doesn’t want to rush him into action. Should Kane not play, Nuno could start with Son Heung-Min, Gil and Lucas Moura in attack.
Manchester City come into this game with a few doubts. Phil Foden and Kevin de Bruyne are both definitely out of contention, while a number of players are minor doubts having returned late from international football. Keeper Ederson, defender Kyle Walker and forwards Gabriel, Raheem Sterling all sat out of the Community Shield but should come into the squad having missed the Community Shield. Recent £100M signing Jack Grealish will be pushing for a start in the front three, as will Ferran Torres, Riyad Mahrez and Bernardo Silva.