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Ah, the Premier League fixture list. More tightly controlled than cocaine, and considering the football fans global community, probably more abused than cocaine too.
The 2010/2011 fixtures were just announced, and you’re the lucky few ones to see it before all your mates. Here are the hot matchups from this year’s Premier League fixtures list (pending rescheduling due to TV requirements, cup ties, etc):
On the opening day, Liverpool host Arsenal and Spurs and City renew their 4th/5th rivalry at White Hart Lane before City host Liverpool and Fulham host their new-found bunnies Manchester United the following weekend. The final weekend sees Villa v Everton as the biggest game before the international break.
Manchester United have Everton away and Liverpool home back to back, Arsenal are still enjoying an easy start to the season (more false expectations) while City host Chelsea on the final weekend. Plus there’s the usual Liverpool away game slip-up expected at Birmingham.
What’s that, a tough game for Arsenal? Foul! The Gunners travel to Stamford Bridge at the start of October as Tottenham host Villa on the same weekend. October also sees Arsenal travel to Manchester City, Tottenham host Everton and then play away to Manchester United the following weekend. I’m guessing Howard Webb won’t be refereeing that one.
Liverpool v Chelsea to kick off the month, and in what’s certain to cause concern for United fans, back to back away trips to Manchester City and Aston Villa just 3 days apart. Arsenal travel to Goodison Park before hosting their much-loved rivals Spurs, and then travel again to play Aston Villa. Interesting month for the Gunners. It all ends with Tottenham v Liverpool, which will surely lead to some chants about playing in the Champions League.
The month of the big three. Manchester United play Arsenal (home) and Chelsea (away) back to back before Arsenal host Chelsea and Liverpool travel to Blackpool – on Boxing Day. Fun times.
The new year kicks off with Arsenal away to Birmingham and then home to City, while Everton have back to back matches against Tottenham (home) and Liverpool (away). Tottenham, incidentally, host Manchester United before traveling to St James’ Park to play promoted Newcastle United.
Chelsea v Liverpool, the Manchester derby and the North London derby are all highlights for February. Last season saw the third team in the title race lose out at the end of January, it’ll be interesting to see if we’ll have more than two title contenders by February this time around.
Surprisingly dry (but with plenty of free time for Champions League, FA Cup and rescheduled league fixtures. The standout game is Liverpool v Manchester United (5th March 2011) and depending on City’s form, Chelsea v Man City the following weekend.
The trend for back to back big matches continues, with Liverpool hosting Man City before playing away at the Emirates (while City host Tottenham on the same weekend). It’s fairly tame though, although the league table will add extra spice to almost all fixtures.
The fun kicks off on the last weekend of April, as Arsenal host Manchester United and Chelsea host Tottenham on the 30th (one of those two is getting moved to Sunday, eh?)
Are we done yet? Rigged or otherwise, United will host Chelsea on 7th May before traveling away to Blackburn the following weekend and hosting Blackpool, of all teams, on the final day. Liverpool probably have it the worst, with Fulham away, Tottenham at home and then Villa away. Arsenal and Chelsea don’t have it easy either, but then again, when did winning the league become easy?
You can see the full list here, and share your thoughts below.