The Premier League was first established 24 years ago, when Wayne Rooney was just four years old – and the top flight of English football has since become an international attraction. The new season gets under way on Saturday, 8 August and will see 20 teams doing battle over 380 fixtures – playing 38 games apiece and meeting each other twice throughout the course of the season.
Who are the big favourites?
In the noughties it was all about the "big four" of Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool – with United and Chelsea taking all the wins but one for Arsenal back in the 2001-2002 season. Now that select group has expanded to become a "big six", with the addition of Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur to the top table. City have triumphed twice in the last four years. Bookies currently have reigning champions Chelsea down as the favourites to repeat their victory – with odds of 13/8 available – and Manchester City not far behind them on 11/4. Arsenal are third favourites on 9/2, while Manchester United are only a whisker behind on 5/1. Liverpool and Tottenham fans can get odds of 28/1 and 150/1 respectively – indicating that they are not seriously expected to challenge for top honours.
Last year's competition saw Burnley, Queens Park Rangers and Hull City relegated – making way for Watford, Norwich City and Bournemouth. The latter team will be enjoying their first ever season in the top flight of English football. Unfortunately, but perhaps not unsurprisingly, the three newcomers are also the bookies' favourites for relegation come next spring.
Which players will shine?
Last year's golden boot winner (the award presented to the league's top scorer) was Argentine striker Sergio Aguero, and the Man City star is expected to continue in his winning ways this year. Chelsea's Diego Costa and Spurs star Harry Kane are also likely to continue hitting the back of the net regularly, as is Arsenal's Chilean forward Alexis Sanchez. Chelsea's Eden Hazard and Cesc Fabregas were instrumental in the blues' triumph last season and are both set to defend the trophy this time around. Wonder winger Raheem Sterling will be keen to impress in his new job at Manchester City – where he's just moved from Liverpool for £50m – and Wayne Rooney will be determined to help Manchester United get back to the top after a difficult couple of years for the once-dominant team.
So where can I see it then?
Obviously there are 20 places where you can go and see the action live, but only if you're lucky enough to get hold of tickets. This won't be too difficult at many of the clubs, but will be tougher if you want to see one of the more-popular teams in action. If you want to watch the game on TV (or online), then you can choose between Sky Sports – which will be broadcasting 116 games – and BT Sport – which has the rights to show 38. You'll need to subscribe to both if you want to see all the games, but you may prefer to pick a service according to which fixtures you prioritise. The website live-footballontv.com has a handy breakdown of the TV coverage.