Premier League Reload - Matchday 8Oct 10
After eight games on the opening weekend, the Premier League is back with a full calendar of fixtures for Matchday 2 as all 10 teams get down to business.
Sunday 20 September
Southampton v Tottenham - 11.30am on BT Sport 1 HD, Ultimate, BTSport.com & BT Sport app
Sunday kicks off with a lunchtime clash on the south coast, exclusively live on BT Sport, as Tottenham travel to St Mary’s to face Southampton.
Both sides are smarting from opening-day defeats and keen to right the wrongs of the previous games. Southampton lost 1-0 to Crystal Palace in a disappointing start to the campaign for a team many have high hopes for in 2020/21.
Spurs lost by the same scoreline at home to Everton after a turgid, sluggish display which led to Jose Mourinho hitting out at his own players in the post-match interview.
After a summer in the spotlight, Mourinho must find the right formula and fast but it’s difficult to see much going Tottenham’s way should they turn in a repeat of their display against Everton.
Saints are known for their high-intensity pressing under Ralph Hasenhuttl, so Sunday could see a fascinating clash of styles. They’ll take confidence from the fact they’ve defeated Tottenham in their previous two meetings at St Mary’s.
The fixture also sees both Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg of Spurs and Kyle Walker-Peters of Saints face their former clubs after departing on permanent deals in the summer.
Brighton make the long journey north to St James’ Park in search of their first point of the season following a 3-1 defeat to Chelsea on Monday evening.
The Seagulls were hard done by against Frank Lampard’s side after impressing for long stretches but lapses in concentration cost them and Graham Potter will need to stamp out that naivety in time for Sunday.
They take on a Newcastle side who are making a habit of maximising their chances under Steve Bruce.
The underlying statistics suggested Newcastle should have finished with fewer points than the 44 they took in 2019/20. Yet they continue to confound and defeated West Ham 2-0 at the London Stadium with The Hammers missing several decent opportunities.
Encouragingly Newcastle’s debutants grabbed the goals as Callum Wilson and Jeff Hendrick made the difference in east London.
Remarkably Brighton have the longest unbeaten away run in the division with seven games without defeat on the road. The south coasters have never lost a Premier League match to Newcastle with The Magpies failing to even score in five of the six meetings.
Arguably the match of the weekend sees Chelsea and Liverpool renew one of England’s most modern of footballing rivalries at Stamford Bridge late on Sunday afternoon.
Chelsea are tipped by some as contenders for Liverpool’s crown after a huge summer of spending which saw them splash out in excess of £200 million.
The new arrivals include German internationals Kai Havertz and Timo Werner, who both featured in the 3-1 win at Brighton on Monday night. Now Frank Lampard will hope to have available fellow new arrivals Hakim Ziyech, Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell.
Werner will no doubt be keen to show his opponents what they missed out on after Chelsea beat Liverpool to the German international’s signature this summer.
The Reds were handed an almighty scare in the start to their title defence as newly-promoted Leeds scored three times at the home of the champions only for Mo Salah’s late penalty – and his hat-trick – to secure them victory.
Questions are being asked of Liverpool after a relatively dodgy run of form since the return of football in June. They’ve conceded 15 goals in their previous eight matches having let in 15 goals in the previous 28 matches prior to that.
If it's anything like last meeting, a wild 5-3 win for Jurgen Klopp’s men before they were presented with the Premier League trophy, we're in for a cracker!
The Foxes breezed past West Brom on their opening matchday with a 3-0 win secured via two Jamie Vardy penalties as last season’s Golden Boot winner got off to a fast start.
Leicester will have reflected on a missed opportunity last season as they fell away badly from second place to fifth following a poor run of form to end 2019/20.
Burnley meanwhile are in action for the first time this season and fans know exactly what to expect from the longest-serving manager in the division – Sean Dyche.
Once again Burnley outdid expectations to finish in the top half last season but reports suggest Dyche’s patience may finally be wearing thin over the lack of investment in his playing squad.
Burnley have made no major additions to a squad which lost Hendricks, Joe Hart and Aaron Lennon in the summer. James Tarkowski is also attracting serious interest from West Ham currently.
These two sides won their respective home fixtures 2-1 last season and it’s been the same score line in four of their previous five meetings.
Monday 21 September
Aston Villa v Sheffield United - 6pm NOW TV on BT TV
A repeat of the first fixture after lockdown sees Aston Villa host Sheffield United, riding on a high after a brilliant week of business off the field.
Captain and talisman Jack Grealish has penned a new five-year contract with the club and Villa have confirmed the £17million signing of Arsenal goalkeeper Emi Martinez – who impressed in the FA Cup final and Community Shield for Mikel Arteta’s side.
Villa’s goalkeeper was very much in the limelight the last time these sides met in what was the first game of Project Restart. In that match Orjan Nyland carried the ball over the line for a Sheffield United goal only for the goal-line technology to fail referee Michael Oliver.
The goal was not given, the match finished goalless and Villa would eventually stay up by a point. As Dean Smith prepares for his side’s first Premier League match of the new season, he’ll hope the margins are considerably wider come May.
Opponents United were promoted alongside Villa but experienced differing fortunes with The Blades occupying the European places for much of the campaign.
Chris Wilder will no better than most that second season syndrome can afflict the most solid of teams and he’ll be desperate for his side to bounce back from a 2-0 defeat against Wolves which began their campaign.
The weekend rounds off with the tenth and final game on Monday night as Manchester City get their season underway with a trip to Molineux to face Wolves.
Wolves boast an impressive record against City having done the double over Pep Guardiola’s side last season. The Spaniard has never lost three consecutive league games against a single opponent in his managerial career.
Nuno Espirito Santo’s side laid any lingering fears over fatigue to bed when they made a fast start to see off Sheffield United 2-0 at Bramall Lane in their opening fixture with star striker Raul Jimenez off the mark already.
City have not lost their opening match in any of their last 11 Premier League seasons and have won nine in a row. Win at Molineux and they’ll become the first team ever to win 10 season openers on the bounce.