Who has the hardest start to the 2024/25 Premier League season?


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Euro fever has barely begun and already all eyes have turned to a new season in the Premier League and the challenges that await our favourite stars.

Social media feeds have been inundated with fans claiming their team has been dealt the toughest hand, launching league predictions into the limelight before players have even returned from international duty.

But who of the Big Six actually has the toughest start to life in 2024/25? How important are those opening games for the title race? Let’s take a look.

Harvey Elliott, Mohamed Salah - Winger - Born 1992
Liverpool kick off their campaign against Ipswich / Visionhaus/GettyImages

First five fixtures: Ipswich (A), Brentford (H), Man Utd (A), Nottingham Forest (H), Bournemouth (H)

New Liverpool boss Arne Slot will be rubbing his hands together after looking at his first few games in charge of the Anfield side.

The Reds may have the easiest opening run of any team in the league – facing newly promoted Ipswich Town at Portman Road to kick off their campaign before hosting Brentford, who may even lose striker Ivan Toney in the summer transfer window.

The trickiest of their first five games will come against Manchester United at Old Trafford, having failed to beat the Red Devils in their last season under Jurgen Klopp.

But Liverpool and Slot should be able to rack up a fair few points at the start of next season – potentially a perfect start to life in England for the new boss.

United will start the season at home / JUSTIN TALLIS/GettyImages

First five fixtures: Fulham (H), Brighton (A), Liverpool (H), Southampton (A), Crystal Palace (A)

Manchester United will have a tough couple of fixtures to deal with in their opening weeks, but should come out pretty unscathed.

They start the season at home against Fulham and will be determined to avoid the same fate they suffered against the west London side at Old Trafford in February.

Erik ten Hag’s squad will travel to Brighton & Hove Albion, Southampton and Crystal Palace in their first few games – with the latter two away fixtures easier on paper than the first.

Will Ten Hag be able to win over fans and reverse the narrative in the new season? Only time will tell.

James Maddison, Son Heung-Min
Spurs will travel to newly-promoted Leicester / Daniel Pockett/GettyImages

First five fixtures: Leicester (A), Everton (H), Newcastle (A), Arsenal (H), Brentford (H) 

Former Leicester City star James Maddison will return to the King Power Stadium when Tottenham Hotspur face the Foxes in their first fixture of the season.

They will play some tricky opponents after this, with a journey to Newcastle United and a north London derby on the cards for Spurs.

While Spurs will have the home advantage when they first face Arsenal, they have not beaten the Gunners since 2022, when Antonio Conte was in charge of the team.

They should have some relief when they play both Everton and Brentford at home, but it will not be a walk in the park for Spurs.

Erling Haaland, Rodri, Josko Gvardiol, Bernardo Silva
Man City will start their season at Stamford Bridge / Neal Simpson/Allstar/GettyImages

First five fixtures: Chelsea (A), Ipswich (H), West Ham (A), Brentford (H), Arsenal (H)

Reigning champions Manchester City will head to Stamford Bridge to face new manager Enzo Maresca when they launch their new season.

Pep Guardiola will hope to bring a fifth successive title to the Etihad in what might well be his final at the club, but will first have to navigate the opening months of the league.

City’s first few fixtures aren’t terrible, but they certainly aren’t easy. They will have to travel to both Chelsea and Arsenal – and the former may have a point to prove after just missing out on the league title last season.

Raheem Sterling
Chelsea may have a tough start to the season / Mike Hewitt/GettyImages

First five fixtures: Man City (H), Wolves (A), Crystal Palace (H), Bournemouth (A), West Ham (A)

The Blues have been given a difficult start to the 2024/25 season, hosting Manchester City on the opening weekend.

Former Foxes boss Maresca will have a battle on his hands when he steps into the shoes of Mauricio Pochettino in August and will be keen to make an impression in the Premier League.

Chelsea were unable to outsmart City in either the FA Cup or the league last season – drawing twice and losing once.

They also have the challenge of facing Crystal Palace and West Ham at the start of the season – a slight baptism of fire for Maresca.

Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard
Arsenal will fight for the title in 2024/25 / Clive Rose/GettyImages

First five fixtures: Wolves (H), Aston Villa (A), Brighton (H), Tottenham (A), Man City (A)

Arsenal will look to end their two-decade wait for a Premier League trophy in the 2024/25 season, and have been handed the toughest opening of any of the Big Six.

The Gunners face Aston Villa, Tottenham and Man City away in three of their first five games, throwing them into the deep end before the summer season has even ended.

Arsenal will have to wait until February for their first away encounter at a newly promoted club – facing Leicester City.

Mikel Arteta will demand only the best from his side during the 2024/25 campaign and will have to force his players to up their game as they seek to go one step further next year.


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