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English Premier League 2016/2017 season preview

Leicester City completes miracle run to EPL title

Leicester City have won the 2015/16 Premier League title in one of the greatest sporting stories of all time. The Foxes become the first club since Nottingham Forest in 1977/78 to win the English top-flight league trophy for the first time, having only once before, in 1928/29, finished as runners-up in their 132-year history. Leicester started the campaign as 5,000-1 outsiders for the title after almost being relegated the season before. However, closest challengers Tottenham, Arsenal, Manchester City and Manchester United have all failed to match the Foxes' consistency across the season.

teamtitles11/1212/1313/1414/1515/16
Man United2021745
Liverpool1887268
Arsenal1334432
Everton97651111
Sunderland61317141617
Chelsea5633110
Man City412124
Tottenham245653
Burnley2---19-
West Brom1108171314
Leicester City1---141
Stoke City-1413999
West Ham--1013127
Swansea City-11912812
Southampton --14876
Crystal Palace---111015
Hull City---1618-
Watford-----13
Bournemouth-----16
Middlesbrough------

The overall number of titles for each club in English Premiership since 1889 and their league standings in the last five seasons.

Pep Guardiola takes Manchester City job

Pep Guardiola, who won 14 trophies in a glittering four-year spell at Barcelona, is the new manager of Manchester City. The Spaniard replaces Manuel Pellegrini at the helm after three years in charge of Bayern Munich. Guardiola led Bayern to three Bundesliga titles in his three seasons. But after taking over the Champions League titleholder, he could lead the Bavarians only as far as the semifinals in that championship in all three seasons, and decided not to extend his contract. Already the best-paid manager in world football, Guardiola penned a three-year deal worth more than 15 million pounds a year, an increase on his salary at Bayern. City now have their dream manager for at least three seasons, unfortunately coinciding with Manchester United, Liverpool and a few others picking up their dream managers as well.

Mourinho appointed United manager

Jose Mourinho takes over as manager of Manchester United from this season, signing a three-year contract with an option to stay at the club until at least 2020. He replaces Dutchman Louis van Gaal, who was dismissed following two years in charge. Mourinho, 53, has managed at the top level of European football for over a decade and in that time has won league titles and cups in four countries, Portugal, England, Italy and Spain, as well as winning the UEFA Champions League twice, in 2004 with Porto and in 2010 with Inter Milan. Mourinho was sacked by Chelsea in December after a poor defence of their Premier League title, ending his second stint at Stamford Bridge. Mourinho has spent a huge amount of money this summer on a number of marquee signings, including Paul Pogba, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

This page is introduction to the 2016/17 English Premier League season. Latest news, statistics, results and predictions you can find on our main Euro Football > England page.

Antonio Conte named Chelsea manager

Chelsea have appointed Antonio Conte as their new manager. The former Juventus and Italy boss, who has signed a three-year deal, has been chosen as the full-time successor to Jose Mourinho, who was sacked in December after presiding over a disastrous Premier League title defence. The Blues have enjoyed a relative revival under interim manager Guus Hiddink, but finished 10th last season. Chelsea will hope that Conte can replicate the immediate impact he had at Juventus, where he inherited a team that finished seventh in Serie A in the 2009-10 season and led them to three straight titles. He also led Italy to the Euro 2016 quarter-finals this summer.

Ronald Koeman leaves Southampton for Everton

Everton have confirmed the appointment of Ronald Koeman as their manager, with the 53-year-old signing a three-year deal to succeed Roberto Martinez at Goodison Park. Everton have lured the Dutchman away from Southampton as they look to improve on a dismal 2015/16 campaign. Koeman guided Southampton to seventh and sixth place in the Premier League in his two season at St. Mary's, and has won eight trophies in his career at clubs such as Ajax and Valencia. Meanwhile, Southampton have confirmed Claude Puel as their manager on a three-year contract. The experienced Frenchman won the French league title when in charge of Monaco in 2000 before going on to enjoy a six-year spell at Lille. He then took over at Lyon and spent the last four years as the coach of Nice, who last season finished fourth in Ligue 1. He has never coached outside France's top tier.

Other coaching changes

Walter Mazzarri has signed a three-year deal to take over as Watford manager. The 54-year-old, has not managed since leaving Inter in 2014, replaces Quique Sanchez Flores at Vicarage Road. Mazzarri becomes the eighth manager to work under the Pozzo family since they completed their takeover of the club in 2012. David Moyes has been appointed Sunderland manager on a four-year deal. The former Everton and Manchester United boss, 53, takes charge at the Stadium of Light after Sam Allardyce left to become England manager. The Scot has been out of work since being sacked by Spanish club Real Sociedad in November. Mike Phelan looks set to lead Hull City into the new Premier League season. The former Manchester United assistant boss has been in caretaker charge since Steve Bruce quit in July. And there is now a strong chance that Phelan will land the role on a permanent basis after the club's failed attempts to appoint their preferred targets.

#teampointsg.dif.win-draw-loss
1Leicester813223-12-3 (38)
2Arsenal712920-11-7 (38)
3Tottenham703419-13-6 (38)
4Man. City663019-9-10 (38)
5Man. Utd.661419-9-10 (38)
6Southampton631818-9-11 (38)
7West Ham621416-14-8 (38)
8Liverpool601316-12-10 (38)
9Stoke City51-1414-9-15 (38)
10Chelsea50612-14-12 (38)
11Everton47411-14-13 (38)
12Swansea47-1012-11-15 (38)
13Watford45-1012-9-17 (38)
14West Brom43-1410-13-15 (38)
15Palace42-1211-9-18 (38)
16Bournemouth42-2211-9-18 (38)
17Sunderland39-149-12-17 (38)
18Newcastle37-219-10-19 (38)
19Norwich34-289-7-22 (38)
20Aston Villa17-493-8-27 (38)

The English Premier League standings for the 2015/2016 season.

Premier League's biggest-ever managerial battle

The competition in England is fiercer than ever and the 2016/17 EPL campaign is likely to be the opposite of last season. The 2015/16 campaign was defined by underperformances from all the richest sides, paving the way for clubs like Leicester City and Tottenham to perform beyond expectations. This season there are at least six clubs that will expect to challenge for the title, but only one can win it, and only four can qualify for the Champions League. So, some managers are going to fall short of their expected targets even if they are doing all the fundamentals of their job correctly. According to online bookmakers, the Manchester duo occupy the first two spots followed by the London pair of Chelsea and Arsenal.

teamoddsteamodds
Man City3.25Swansea501
Man Utd4Stoke751
Chelsea6Crystal Palace751
Arsenal7Middlesbrough1001
Liverpool9Watford1001
Tottenham11Sunderland1001
Leicester29Bournemouth1001
West Ham81Burnley1001
Everton101West Brom1001
Southampton201Hull1501

The preseason odds for the outright winner of the 2016/17 English Premier League

FA Cup finals in last five years

2016   Manchester United - Crystal Palace   2:1   (aet)
2015   Arsenal - Aston Villa   4:0
2014   Arsenal - Hull City   3:2   (aet)
2013   Wigan Athletic - Manchester City   1:0
2012   Chelsea - Liverpool   2:1

League Cup finals in last five years

2016   Manchester City - Liverpool   1:1   (3:1 on penalties)
2015   Chelsea - Tottenham Hotspur   2:0
2014   Manchester City - Sunderland   3:1
2013   Swansea City - Bradford City   5:0
2012   Liverpool - Cardiff City   2:2   (3:2 on penalties)

key players
(transfer market value in m€)

Arsenal

Goalkeeper Petr Cech (12); Defense: Laurent Koscielny (22), Hector Bellerin (18), Nacho Monreal (15); Midfield: Mesut Ozil (50), Aaron Ramsey (35), Granit Xhaka (35), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (20); Forward: Alexis Sanchez (55), Olivier Giroud (25), Theo Walcott (22).

Bournemouth

Goalkeeper Artur Boruc (1); Defense: Tyrone Mings (6), Steve Cook (5), Nathan Ake (5); Midfield: Jordon Ibe (10), Max Gradel (9), Lewis Cook (5), Junior Stanislas (4); Forward: Callum Wilson (9), Benik Afobe (9), Joshua King (4).

Burnley

Goalkeeper Tom Heaton (3); Defense: Michael Keane (8), Jon Flanagan (5), Ben Mee (3.5), James Tarkowski (2); Midfield: George Boyd (4), Scott Arfield (3), Johann Berg Gudmundsson (2.5), David Jones (2); Forward: Andre Gray (10), Sam Vokes (4).

Chelsea

Goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois (35); Defense: Cesar Azpilicueta (20), Kurt Zouma (17), Gary Cahill (16); Midfield: Eden Hazard (65), Cesc Fabregas (45), Oscar (35), Nemanja Matic (32), Willian (32); Forward: Diego Costa (45), Michy Batshuayi (25).

Crystal Palace

Goalkeeper Steve Mandanda (10); Defense: James Tomkins (7), Pape Souare (6.5), Scott Dann (5); Midfield: Yohan Cabaye (18), Yannick Bolasie (14), Andros Townsend (11), Wilfried Zaha (9), Bakary Sako (8), James McArthur (7); Forward: Connor Wickham (6).

Everton

Goalkeeper Joel Robles (5); Defense: John Stones (28), Seamus Coleman (17), Leighton Baines (13), Ramiro Funes Mori (12); Midfield: Ross Barkley (22), James McCarthy (17), Kevin Mirallas (13), Tom Cleverley (9); Forward: Romelu Lukaku (40), Oumar Niasse (12).

Hull City

Goalkeeper Allan McGregor (1.5); Defense: Andrew Robertson (7), Moses Odubajo (5), Curtis Davies (3.5), Michael Dawson (3.5); Midfield: Tom Huddlestone (5), Robert Snodgrass (5), Jake Livermore (4.5), Ahmed Elmohamady (4), David Meyler (2.5); Forward: Abel Hernandez (8).

Leicester City

Goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel (8); Defense: Jeffrey Schlupp (8), Christian Fuchs (6), Robert Huth (6); Midfield: Riyad Mahrez (30), Nampalys Mendy (12), Danny Drinkwater (10), Marc Albrighton (6); Forward: Jamie Vardy (20), Ahmed Musa (18), Shinji Okazaki (10).

Liverpool

Goalkeeper Simon Mignolet (12); Defense: Nathaniel Clyne (21), Mamadou Sakho (18), Dejan Lovren (15); Midfield: Coutinho (35), Sadio Mane (30), Jordan Henderson (28), Adam Lallana (19); Forward: Roberto Firmino (35), Christian Benteke (27), Daniel Sturridge (25).

Manchester City

Goalkeeper Joe Hart (17); Defense: Nicolas Otamendi (32), Vincent Kompany (30), Eliaquim Mangala (23); Midfield: Kevin De Bruyne (60), David Silva (33), Ilkay Gundogan (30), Leroy Sane (30), Fernandinho (28); Forward: Sergio Aguero (60), Raheem Sterling (45).

Manchester United

Goalkeeper David de Gea (40); Defense: Daley Blind (22), Luke Shaw (21), Eric Bailly (20); Midfield: Henrikh Mkhitaryan (37), Juan Mata (31), Morgan Schneiderlin (28), Ander Herrera (28); Forward: Wayne Rooney (35), Anthony Martial (32), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (12).

Middlesbrough

Goalkeeper Victor Valdes (2.5); Defense: Antonio Barragan (3.5), Bernardo Espinosa (2.5), Daniel Ayala (2); Midfield: Marten de Roon (10), Stewart Downing (6), Gaston Ramirez (5), Viktor Fischer (5); Forward: Jordan Rhodes (10), Alvaro Negredo (7.5), Cristhian Stuani (4).

Southampton

Goalkeeper Fraser Forster (15); Defense: Ryan Bertrand (14), Virgil van Dijk (12), Cedric Soares (12); Midfield: Dusan Tadic (17), Jay Rodriguez (13), Jordy Clasie (11), James Ward-Prowse (11), Nathan Redmond (10); Forward: Charlie Austin (13), Shane Long (10).

Stoke City

Goalkeeper Jack Butland (9); Defense: Ryan Shawcross (11), Philipp Wollscheid (7.5), Erik Pieters (7), Glen Johnson (7); Midfield: Giannelli Imbula (18), Xherdan Shaqiri (15), Joe Allen (12), Marko Arnautovic (12); Forward: Bojan Krkic (10), Mame Diouf (8).

Sunderland

Goalkeeper Vito Mannone (2.5); Defense: Lamine Kone (6), Patrick van Aanholt (6), Papy Djilobodji (4.5); Midfield: Jeremain Lens (11), Wahbi Khazri (9), Jack Rodwell (7), Fabio Borini (6), Lee Cattermole (3.5), Jan Kirchhoff (3); Forward: Jermain Defoe (6.5).

Swansea City

Goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski (9); Defense: Federico Fernandez (9), Ashley Williams (8), Neil Taylor (6), Kyle Naughton (5); Midfield: Andre Ayew (18), Gylfi Sigurdsson (17), Leroy Fer (8), Sung-Yong Ki (7.5), Jefferson Montero (5.5); Forward: Fernando Llorente (6).

Tottenham Hotspur

Goalkeeper Hugo Lloris (24); Defense: Toby Alderweireld (27), Jan Vertonghen (23), Kyle Walker (15); Midfield: Christian Eriksen (31), Erik Lamela (26), Heung-Min Son (25), Dele Alli (20), Eric Dier (18), Mousa Dembele (18); Forward: Harry Kane (40).

Watford

Goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon (4.5); Defense: Christian Kabasele (6), Sebastian Prodl (4), Craig Cathcart (4); Midfield: Etienne Capoue (9), Mario Suarez (8.5), Abdoulaye Doucoure (6), Nordin Amrabat (4.5); Forward: Odion Ighalo (12), Troy Deeney (11), Matej Vydra (5.5).

West Bromwich Albion

Goalkeeper Ben Foster (4); Defense: James Chester (6), Jonny Evans (6), Craig Dawson (6); Midfield: Matt Phillips (6), James Morrison (5), Claudio Yacob (4), Chris Brunt (4), Callum McManaman (4); Forward: Jose Salomon Rondon (17), Saido Berahino (15).

West Ham United

Goalkeeper Adrian (9); Defense: Aaron Cresswell (12), Winston Reid (10), Angelo Ogbonna (9); Midfield: Dimitri Payet (30), Sofiane Feghouli (14), Gokhan Tore (14), Cheikhou Kouyate (12), Manuel Lanzini (10); Forward: Diafra Sakho (12), Andy Carroll (10).

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