Premier League Leicester begin title defence at promoted Hull City

The release of the fixtures on Wednesday threw up some meaty first-day tussles with last season's runners-up Arsenal hosting Juergen Klopp's Liverpool.

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Leicester City play

Leicester City

(BPI)
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Champions Leicester City will begin their Premier League title defence with a trip to newly-promoted Hull City and Jose Mourinho's Manchester United reign kicks off at Bournemouth.

Manchester United appoint "Special One" as manager play Jose Mourinho (Man United FC)

 

The release of the fixtures on Wednesday threw up some meaty first-day tussles with last season's runners-up Arsenal hosting Juergen Klopp's Liverpool.

Granit Xhaka play Arsenal midfielder, Granit Xhaka (Arsenal FC via Getty Images )

 

The 2016-17 season kicks off earlier than usual on Aug. 13.

Claudio Ranieri's Leicester, who stunned the football world by claiming the Premier League title last season at pre-season odds of 5000-1, have a testing opening six weeks with Arsenal visiting them before away trips to Liverpool and Manchester United.

Leicester City Premier League trophy presentation play

Leicester City Premier League trophy presentation

(Getty Images)

 

Leicester are listed as 25-1 seventh favourites to retain the title.

Pep Guardiola will make his league debut as Manchester City manager when his team, already marked out as favourites for the title, host Sunderland.

Mourinho, who replaced Louis van Gaal as United manager last month, will be aiming to maintain his record of never having lost any of his seven opening-day fixtures in England.

He will not have to wait long to renew his old rivalry with Guardiola either, with the first Manchester derby being held at Old Trafford on Sept. 10.

  play Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola (EPA)

 

The drastic managerial shake-up in the Premier League means Chelsea also venture into a new era with Antonio Conte, currently in charge of Italy at Euro 2016, at the helm.

His first assignment in English football will be a feisty London derby against West Ham United at Stamford Bridge.

West Ham's first match at their new Olympic Stadium home is against Bournemouth on Aug. 20.

Mourinho will return to his old stomping ground when Chelsea host Manchester United on Oct. 22, a week after the Portuguese's former club host Leicester City.

Mauricio Pochettino's Tottenham Hotspur, who pushed Leicester for the title before finishing third, begin at Everton, who named Ronald Koeman as their manager on Tuesday.

Tottenham Hotspur players play Tottenham Hotspur players (Reuters)

 

Arsenal will host Tottenham in the first north London derby on Nov. 5 while the other eagerly anticipated derby clash, between Merseyside clubs Liverpool and Everton, takes place at Goodison Park on Dec. 17.

Burnley mark their return to England's top-flight by welcoming Swansea City, while Middlesbrough, who were also promoted, host Stoke City.

Full list of opening day fixtures on Aug. 13:

Arsenal v Liverpool

Bournemouth v Manchester United

Burnley v Swansea City

Chelsea v West Ham United

Crystal Palace v West Bromwich Albion

Everton v Tottenham Hotspur

Hull City v Leicester City

Manchester City v Sunderland

Middlesbrough v Stoke City

Southampton v Watford

 

(Writing by Martyn Herman; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty and Toby Chopra)

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