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Premier League 2024-25 fixtures: When will the top clubs play their biggest games?



Premier League 2024-25 fixtures: When will the top clubs play their biggest games?

Euro 2024 has just begun in Germany and the Copa América is about to start in the United States later this week, but it’s time to temporarily switch the focus back to club action because the Premier League fixture list for the 2024-25 season has been released.

Will Manchester City win a record fifth successive title (if the culmination of their fight to overturn 115 charges of financial wrongdoing by the Premier League don’t scupper those hopes), or can Mikel Arteta lead Arsenal in taking the final step to winning the league after finishing as runners-up over the last two seasons?

How will Arne Slot measure up as Liverpool manager following the departure of Jürgen Klopp at the end of last season? Can Erik ten Hag make the most of his unexpected reprieve at Manchester United by proving he is the manager to restore the club to the top of the English game?

Chelsea are under new management with Enzo Maresca, who arrives from Leicester City after guiding the club to the Championship title, while Ange Postecoglou will be expected to build on a promising first season at Tottenham Hotspur. But with Newcastle United and Aston Villa upsetting the established order by qualifying for the Champions League in the last two seasons, will there be another surprise team in the top four?

These questions and many more will be answered in the months ahead, but the rolling out of the match schedule offers the first major clues. Here are the highlights of the 2024-25 Premier League fixture list.

Editor’s note: dates are subject to change once matches have been selected for live domestic broadcast

Tough start for Slot

Arne Slot will get his first taste of the biggest rivalry in English football less than a month into his new job at Liverpool when he takes his team to Manchester United on Aug. 31.

While Jürgen Klopp’s nine years at Anfield were defined by his side’s rivalry with Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City — Liverpool’s first clash with City comes at Anfield on Nov. 30 — it is the encounter with United that is historically the biggest on the Premier League calendar and the game that both sets of supporters regard as the fixture they must not lose. To add some extra spice to the clash, Slot will come up against United manager Erik ten Hag to renew their FeyenoordAjax rivalry and go from facing each other in the Eredivisie‘s biggest game to the Premier League’s.

Slot’s first game as Liverpool boss will be a trip to newly promoted Ipswich Town on Aug. 17, followed by his Anfield debut against Brentford on Aug. 24 before the trip to Old Trafford. And if heis able to mount a title challenge in his first season as manager, Liverpool will have to do it the hard way by facing Tottenham, Chelsea and Arsenal during their final five games.

Titanic clash at Stamford Bridge on opening weekend

Enzo Maresca has been billed as a mini-Pep Guardiola due to the style of play that he introduced at Leicester before guiding the Foxes to promotion from the Championship last season (the Italian’s physical resemblance to the Manchester City manager, and his time spent as a coach at the Etihad, are other factors in the comparison.)

But after being hired to replace Mauricio Pochettino as Chelsea head coach last month, Maresca now has an instant opportunity to measure himself against Guardiola by facing his old boss in his first competitive game at Chelsea on Aug. 18.

Chelsea vs. City at Stamford Bridge is a box-office clash whenever it is staged, and last season it lived up to the billing with the two sides playing out a 4-4 draw. So the meeting of the Blues on the opening weekend is a high-profile fixture to launch the new season, even if it is a game that neither side would have chosen to kick off their campaign.



Ogden: Arsenal have a nightmare start to the Premier League season

Mark Ogden believes Arsenal have been given one of the toughest starts to the new Premier League season.

Arsenal handed toughest start

Yes, every team plays 38 games and each club plays each other twice, so what difference does it make when they play?

Try saying that to Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, after the tough start to the season that the Gunners have been dealt. Arsenal will face away trips to two Champions League clubs — Aston Villa (Aug. 24) and Manchester City (Sept. 21) — and north London rivals Tottenham (Sept. 14) in their first six games of the season.

It is usually at the back end of the season, when nerves begin to fray during the run-in, that Arsenal have faltered in recent years, but their start to this campaign will be a stern test of the Gunners’ credentials. With City proving themselves to be ruthlessly consistent during their four straight title-winning seasons, any rival simply has to make a strong start to give themselves a chance of toppling Guardiola’s side.

So the challenge is already set for Arsenal to overcome their nightmare start and use it as a springboard to success.



Do Manchester United have the easiest start to the Premier League next season?

Mark Ogden believes Erik ten Hag’s luck could be changing as Man United were given favourable opening fixtures.

Ten Hag and Man United will be happy

Maybe Erik ten Hag’s luck as Manchester United manager is beginning to turn. Ten Hag’s side ended a hitherto dismal season in 2023-24 by beating Manchester City in the FA Cup final and they now have arguably the softest start of the big clubs to the new season.

United’s Old Trafford clash against Liverpool on Aug. 31 is clearly a tough fixture and one that has proven to be unpredictable in recent seasons. But aside from that game, United’s first six matches should give Ten Hag the confidence that his side can make a strong start.

United start at home to Fulham on Aug. 16 — the Friday night curtain-raiser for the season — before 10 days later travelling to Brighton & Hove Albion, who have recently appointed the Premier League’s youngest-ever manager, 31-year-old Fabian Hurzeler. After the Liverpool game, United face back-to-back away games at promoted Southampton and Crystal Palace, where they lost 4-0 last season, before a home game with Tottenham on Sept. 28.

It gets tougher for United in December when they face Arsenal, Manchester City and Newcastle, but if they can start well and develop some momentum, that month may not look so daunting.



Why Man City’s run-in is ‘bad news’ for the rest of the Premier League

Mark Ogden reacts to Manchester City’s final six fixtures of the Premier League season.

Title run-in favours Man City

There is a big caveat here because no one knows whether Manchester City will be in the title race by the end of the season or if they will be derailed by a points deduction upon the outcome of their battle against their 115 charges. But from a purely football perspective, if City are heading into the final six games with the title still in their sights, the Premier League may as well just hand them the trophy once again.

While Liverpool face games against Spurs, Arsenal and Chelsea in their run-in and Arsenal have to factor in games against Liverpool and Newcastle, City’s final game against a traditional Big Six side is when they travel to Man United on April 5. In their final six games, City face Everton (A), Aston Villa (H), Wolverhampton Wanderers (H), Southampton (A) and Bournemouth (H) before ending their season at Fulham.

No Premier League game is easy, and most are unpredictable, but City have cruised through run-ins over recent years and their final six games look unlikely to trouble Guardiola’s side.

When are the biggest games?

The big games start on the opening weekend — Chelsea vs. Man City — and continue all the way through the season, but some games are bigger than others and require a big red pen to mark them off.

Man United against Liverpool at Old Trafford on Aug. 31 is as big as they come, while the first north London derby is on Sept. 14.

City and Arsenal have been the top two over the last two seasons, so their encounters are the fixtures that could decide the title – their first meeting is at the Etihad on Sept. 21, with the return game at the Emirates pencilled in for Feb. 1.

Liverpool’s rivalry with City has become the classic fixture of the modern era and the two sides meet at Anfield on Nov. 30 before clashing again at the Etihad on Feb. 22.

And if United can take advantage of their promising start, the Manchester derby could become a key fixture again. United travel to City on Dec. 14 before hosting Pep Guardiola’s side at Old Trafford on April 5.

Where will the Premier League trophy be lifted?

OK, there is a long way to go until the final day of the season, but with a ball yet to be kicked we can still dream about a variety of teams lifting the Premier League trophy.

If City win it again, Craven Cottage could host a title party on the banks of the River Thames when Pep Guardiola’s side visit on the final day. Arsenal’s bid to make it third time lucky in their attempt to wrestle the title from City finishes with a game at Southampton, while Liverpool wrap up their season against Crystal Palace at Anfield.

As for Manchester United, a title win seems some way off, but Old Trafford can still hope to be the venue for a title presentation again with Aston Villa visiting on the final day. But will it be United or Unai Emery’s Champions League qualifiers Villa who go into the last game of the season with title hopes intact?

We’ll start to find out when, with this summer’s tournaments already a distant memory, it all begins on Aug. 16.

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