Premier League's Richard Scudamore hope Manchester City face challenge

Florence Fletcher
August 9, 2018

Other players to keep an eye on are Leicester's Harry Maguire, who is reported to be still keen on joining Manchester United, and Barcelona's Ousmane Dembele who is linked with Arsenal.

Murphy believes Pep Guardiola's Manchester City can still retain the Premier League title.

"The way the players start the season under Unai Emery, and grasp what he wants from them, is going to be so crucial". "But I'm happy we can start at the weekend because preseason is good but the season is better still".

On top of the quick turnaround from the World Cup, a shortened transfer window that closes 24 hours before the season kicks off has left many sides scrambling at the last minute to strengthen their squads.

But while City begin the campaign as firm favourites after their record-breaking title campaign last season, they will be well aware of the threat posed by Juergen Klopp's improving Liverpool and the rest of the big six.

"I've got to be honest, there was a feeling when we've won the league previously, you came back in to the training sessions and everybody was a little bit less intense, a little bit more smiles and happiness, but a little bit less committed".

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The action-packed autumn Premier League period is complemented by BT Sport's exclusive live coverage of the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League.

Liverpool FC, meanwhile, are preparing to host West Ham United at Anfield in their Premier League opener on Sunday. However, I just think this team is lacking the attacking flair and a prolific striker, with Troy Deeney struggling to recreate his early Premier League form.

Chelsea also have a new boss but are already playing catch-up with Maurizio Sarri only appointed a month before the start of the campaign. Regardless, as Real Madrid are prepared to send Mateo Kovacic on loan to Chelsea, in order to secure a £35m transfer for Courtois, the move seems set to go through, though there remains some haggling over the transfer fee.

Kepa becomes the most expensive goalkeeper of all time.

Yet, based on the World Cup performances of Golden Boot victor Harry Kane, Hugo Lloris and Christian Eriksen among others, there is still plenty for Mauricio Pochettino to look forward to.

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