Euro 2020 fever may be everywhere, but when the dust settles it won’t be long before club football is on our minds again.
The good news is you don’t have to wait until the end of the international tournament for the excitement of the upcoming Premier League season to kick in.
And where better to start your planning than the day we always look forward to, when the fixtures for the new campaign are released, and the usual questions are being asked.
‘When is the local derby?’ ‘Who have we got first game?’ ‘How about the festive period?’ ‘And what about the run-in?’
Here’s all you need to know about the upcoming fixtures announcement.
Manchester City FC via Getty Ima)
When are the fixtures released?
The Premier League fixtures for the 2021/22 season will be announced on Wednesday 16 June at 9am.
Norwich and Watford are back in the mix after achieving automatic promotion from the Championship, while play-off winners Brentford prepare for their first season in the Premier League.
When does the season start?
The new campaign gets underway on the weekend of Saturday 14 August.
That means fans have just 34 days to wait from the end of Euro 2020 to the start of the new domestic season.
Last season’s opening day saw newcomers Leeds play out a seven-goal thriller at Anfield against defending champions Liverpool.
All 20 clubs will be getting their campaigns up and running on the same weekend this time, after Man City and Man Utd were allowed to start last season a week later due to their European commitments overrunning into the summer.
The season will then conclude a day earlier than this year’s finale, on Sunday May 22.
When are televised fixtures announced?
As usual Sky and BT Sport will be taking the lions share of the action, while BBC and Amazon Prime Video are also in line to land a small selection of fixtures each.
BT have already revealed they will be taking their pick of the matches from the opening two months on Monday 5 July.
You can bet Sky will follow a similar timeframe, though they are yet to confirm when their lineup of fixtures will be announced.
What can we expect?
Well, first things first, all being well, we should finally have fans back in stadiums.
UK restrictions should be full lifted by the time the new season kicks off, and how we’ve all been waiting to get back in the stands.
What’s more, we should have a closer title battle on our hands after Manchester City stormed their way to the title last season.
Chelsea are still on cloud nine after their Champions League triumph and will be contenders heading into the opening day, while Liverpool’s injury problems should be behind them along with some new additions.
Arsenal surely can’t be as bad as last season, but Leeds and Aston Villa are looking to build on their progress.
Either way, it’s a new season, fresh optimism, and it’s coming our way very soon.
Who will win the Premier League next season? Make your predictions below.