Excitement as English Premier League kicks off Friday

Excitement as English Premier League kicks off Friday

The 30-year-old has found it hard at times to secure minutes since the arrival of the German, but with Brazil's number one now also in the frame, the Belgium worldwide will be forced to look elsewhere for first-team football.

Nearly every top-flight club strengthened their squad either on deadline day or in the weeks before, the clear exception being Tottenham Hotspur who set a record for being the first top-flight English club since the summer window was introduced in 2003 not to bring in a single new name to bolster the squad.

Of the 16 teams to spend the most in a summer transfer window, only five have gone on to win the Premier League.

In an abbreviated trading period when English top-flight clubs collectively spent more than £1.2-billion ($2.01-billion), there was one anomaly by the close of business on Thursday.

The Tottenham Hotspur Supporters' Trust expressed grave concerns over the lack of new recruitment even though the club did manage to hold on to their existing crop of elite players, not least England striker Harry Kane.

Excitement as English Premier League kicks off Friday
Excitement as English Premier League kicks off Friday

Pochettino decided keeping players was the priority after a third successive top-three finish.

Saturday's visit to Newcastle for their opening game will therefore offer few surprises, although Pochettino must decide which of the nine players who appeared in the World Cup semi-finals are ready to return to action.

City are the reigning champions after Pep Guardiola guided them to 100 points last season, but the Premier League years had previously been dominated by United, who won 13 titles under Sir Alex Ferguson.

Premier League clubs smashed the world-record fee for a goalkeeper twice during the window, with Liverpool bringing in Alisson from Roma before Chelsea moved for Kepa Arrizabalaga in an €80m (£72m/$91m) deal to replace Real Madrid-bound Thibaut Courtois. Champion Manchester City had already signed winger Riyad Mahrez for a club-record GBP60 million from Leicester City.

Just before the deadline, Everton secured the services of Colombian World Cup star Yerry Mina from Barcelona. Ayew, who has 11 goals in 49 appearances for Ghana, scored 11 times for Swansea last season as he impressed in a struggling side.

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Woodland, even with the lowest 36-hole score in 60 years of stroke play at the PGA Championship, still had a long way to go. Just ahead of them, two-time US Open champion Brooks Koepka narrowly missed a 20-foot birdie putt at No 9.

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