The final of seven Premier League matches on offer today takes us to the seaside as Brighton make their Premier League debut in front of the TV cameras. But they arguably have the toughest start of any of the 20 top flight teams due to the opposition that they will face.
That is because Manchester City’s all star squad and superstar manager have come to town and they will be looking to show the world just why they have been named as the bookmakers’ favourites to win this season’s Premier League title.
For Brighton there will be a celebratory atmosphere before the game but they will be in for something of a culture shock once the game kicks off. They may have won many admirers in the EFL Championship over the past couple of seasons but this will be a real acid test as to whether or not they can make the step up at this level.
Manager Chris Hughton has been backed in the transfer market in the past week with not one but two club record signings. Monday saw The Seagulls capture Dutchman Davy Propper from PSV for £6m but then that record was smashed later in the week with the arrival of Jose Izquierdo from Club Brugge for £13.5m.
But that outlay of just under £20m is small change compared to that of Manchester City’s summer expenditure. It would not even get you half a Kyle Walker after his £50m move from Tottenham not to mention Bernard Mendy’s signing from Monaco for a similar fee.
Add the captures of Danilo, Ederson and Bernardo Silva during this transfer window and it is clear to see that City mean business this time around. Big Business. Pep Guardiola has undertaken a summer clear out and this is something which is now resembling what you would call his squad.
A squad that is brimming with attacking talent to the point where you do not really know where or how they will all fit onto the pitch at once, that or Guardiola is just going to do away with a midfield this time around. Knowing the former Barcelona and Bayern’s penchant for left field tactics then it may not be all that of a surprise.
Without being flippant though City do have an embarrassment of riches at their disposal and Guardiola is spoiled for choice when having to select players to play in the final third of the pitch. One player that will arguably the most focus shone on him is that of Gabriel Jesus.
After bursting onto the scene in the second half of last season it will be interesting to see what he can do over the course of the whole campaign. Not only that though but just how will he and Sergio Aguero co-exist in the same attacking setup, or should that be can they co-exist?
This evening it is something of a free hit for Brighton, they would undoubtedly love to get off the mark today and claim a huge early scalp. One that would give them a huge amount of confidence going forward but to be honest I don’t think there will be any South Coast celebrations as City march on to an opening day away win.
Here is what social media thinks will happen and it does not make good reading for Brighton fans
— Dan Tracey (@dantracey1983) August 11, 2017