With the achievements of title winners Leicester City still fresh in the memory, and despite Euro 2016 now upon us, attention has already turned to next season’s Premier League. Claudio Ranieri will be joined in the Premier League by Pep Guardiola and Antonio Conte, as well as reacquainting himself with new Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho. The renewed rivalry between Mourinho and Guardiola, which dates back to their days at Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively, will undoubtedly be one of the major talking points of the new season. However elsewhere, the fate of newcomers Burnley, Middlesbrough and Hull City will as always be of interest to many, along with Slaven Bilic’s West Ham, who will complete their first Premier League campaign away from Upton Park. With the summer transfer window having only just opened, we are also likely to once again see record transfer fee’s spent, as clubs look to fully equip themselves with the best talent from around the world.
We have already seen major moves in the transfer market, with Manchester rivals City and United looking to once again battle it out at the top of the table, having both suffered disappointing campaigns last time around. Guardiola has moved for former Dortmund midfielder Ilkay Gundogan, while Mourinho looks to follow up the signing of Villarreal defender Eric Bailly with the capture of Swedish superstar Zlatan Ibrahimović. With Chelsea also undoubtedly set to splash the cash, Conte may well use his knowledge of the Italian market to rejuvenate his squad, with Roma’s Radja Nainggolan and Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly among his rumoured targets. As a result of such activity, the odds look favourable for the three clubs, with football odds of 9/4, 9/2 and 6/1 from bookmakers Coral for City, United and Chelsea respectively.
After their heroics of last season, Leicester face a battle to keep hold of their most prized assets, with the likes of Jamie Vardy, N’Golo Kante and Riyad Mahrez having all been linked with moves away from the King Power stadium. With an additional focus upon the Champions League to contend with now also, it could well be a season of consolidation for Ranieri’s men. Coral offer Ranieri’s men football odds of 20/1 to win a second successive title.
Meanwhile, Middlesbrough return to the Premier League for the first time since 2009, with manager Aitor Karanka hoping not to repeat the performances of North East rivals Newcastle United, and suffer relegation back to the Championship. Speculation still surrounds the future of Hull City manager Steve Bruce, despite having only recently lead them back to the top flight, with Burnley looking to continue their good form having finished top of the Championship.