EPL

Premier League fixtures 2022-23: Man City start title defence at West Ham, Liverpool visit Fulham, Lampard hosts Chelsea

By Sports Desk June 16, 2022

Manchester City will start their Premier League title defence at West Ham, while Frank Lampard will host his former club Chelsea with Everton on the opening weekend.

City pipped Liverpool to their fourth English top-flight crown under Pep Guardiola and there will be significant interest around their August 7 opener at London Stadium, where new signing Erling Haaland could make his debut after arriving from Borussia Dortmund.

Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool will aim to mount another title charge in the 2022-23 campaign and they go to newly promoted Fulham for their first game.

Chelsea eased into third place last term and their first league game of the Todd Boehly era sees them travel to face Blues great Lampard at Everton, who narrowly avoided relegation to maintain their top-flight status.

Manchester United finished in a disappointing sixth last campaign, with a 4-0 thrashing at Brighton and Hove Albion a low point, and they host the Seagulls in what will be Erik ten Hag's first game in charge.

Arsenal will visit Crystal Palace on August 5 as the season's opening game, while promoted side Bournemouth are at home to Aston Villa.

Antonio Conte's Tottenham sneaked into the Champions League last season and open their campaign at home to Southampton, with Nottingham Forest playing their first top-flight fixture in 23 years away at Newcastle United, who climbed out the relegation zone under Eddie Howe in the previous term.

Testing opening for Liverpool, Guardiola faces late Blues clash

Liverpool were in the hunt for an unprecedented quadruple for much of the 2021-22 season, but fell short and ended up with just the EFL Cup and FA Cup crowns to their name.

Klopp's side will be tested in the opening weeks of the season, facing four – United, Chelsea, City and Arsenal – of the traditional 'big six' sides in the first 11 games, alongside a Merseyside derby at Everton on September 9.

The first clash between United and Liverpool will come just three matchdays into the season, with the Reds visiting Old Trafford on August 20.

Liverpool then head Chelsea and Arsenal either side of the late September international break, with champions City travelling to Anfield just a week after the Gunners trip.

Supporters in Manchester will eagerly await October 1 for the first meeting between United and City at Etihad Stadium, while the first north London derby between Tottenham and Arsenal comes on the same day.

The Premier League title race went down to the wire last campaign, and City could face a tough task if it does so again as they host Thomas Tuchel's Chelsea in an enticing clash on the penultimate weekend.

Premier League opening weekend fixtures:

Crystal Palace v Arsenal
Bournemouth v Aston Villa
Everton v Chelsea
Fulham v Liverpool
Leeds United v Wolves
Leicester City v Brentford
Newcastle United v Nottingham Forest
Tottenham v Southampton
Manchester United v Brighton and Hove Albion
West Ham v Manchester City

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    Neuer is out of action for the remainder of the season after breaking his leg in a freak skiing accident, though has not managed to steer clear of controversy.

    The Germany international criticised the club's decision to fire goalkeeping coach Toni Tapalovic in an interview with The Athletic, saying he felt like his heart was "ripped out" and described it as the "most brutal thing" in his career.

    Those comments have attracted vast criticism, including from Nagelsmann, Bayern director Hasan Salihamidzic and Lothar Matthaus, the latter believing Neuer should be stripped of the captaincy.

    However, Nagelsmann believes now is not the time for such discussions.

    "I know that this is a very burning question that is being asked because the interview came out. But it's not a question I want to answer now," he told Bild.

    "I now have to answer the question of who will be captain on the field for the next five months – whether it's Thomas [Muller], Joshua [Kimmich] or another player.

    "Manuel's task is to get fit and healthy, that's what we're waiting for. And then we'll see. In general, I have the task of finding the right first eleven – and accordingly the captain of the next few weeks."

    A 4-2 victory at Wolfsburg's Volkswagen Arena on Sunday brought an end to a three-game winless streak for defending champions Bayern.

    It was not plain sailing for Bayern, who lost Kimmich to a red card in the second half, but Nagelsmann lauded a valuable result after their first league victory of 2023.

    "The win was very important. We scored three goals from the first three chances, which made it easier for us," he added.

    "We were too relaxed after the 3-0 and allowed Wolfsburg back into the game. Jamal's [Musiala] goal was crucial. We take the three points and move forward."

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    Germany veteran Neuer is out for the rest of the season after a freak skiing injury sustained during a post-World Cup holiday, with Yann Sommer signed from Borussia Monchengladbach as a replacement.

    The arrival of Switzerland international Sommer coincided with the dismissal of long-term Bayern goalkeeping coach Toni Tapalovic, a move Neuer criticised in an interview with The Athletic.

    His comments have sparked widespread backlash, including from coach Julian Nagelsmann, and Germany's most-capped player Matthaus has added his own voice to the chorus of disapproval.

    "Manuel Neuer is no longer acceptable as Bayern captain," he wrote in his Sky Sport Germany column. "He skied negligently and now vehemently attacks the club. Didn't he say a few weeks ago no one was above the club?

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    Pep Guardiola congratulated the "exceptional" Harry Kane after his record-breaking strike for Tottenham downed Manchester City on Sunday.

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