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Premier League!! Arsenal Vs Leicester City Today, 07:45PM (Drop Your Predictions)

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The 2017-18 Premier League campaign gets underway at the Emirates Stadium on Friday night as two past champions in Arsenal and Leicester City lock horns.

After surviving the growing calls to step aside in the second half of last season, the pressure is now on Arsene Wenger to finally end the Gunners’ long wait for a top-flight crown, while Leicester will themselves be hoping for a smoother journey after briefly flirting with relegation last time out.

For the first time in more than two decades, Arsenal head into a new campaign without Champions League football to contend with. For many that was reason enough to dispense with Wenger during the summer, but the Frenchman again survived and put pen to paper on a two-year deal.

It is hoped that, with the speculation now over for another couple of seasons, the fanbase can get back to cheering on the players rather than focusing on the manager, as the constant hounding and #WengerOut displays took prominence for large parts of 2016-17.

Unproven he may be, but the appointment of Craig Shakespeare at the King Power Stadium in February could well have been the difference between Premier League football and life in the Championship for Leicester.

Make no mistake about it – the Foxes were well on their way to joining Manchester City by claiming the unenviable record of going down as champions, if not for the impressive work of Shakespeare to completely galvanise the players that he had got to know so well during his time as assistant.

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TEAM NEWS-

Arsenal will be without star man Alexis Sanchez for the next fortnight due to an abdominal issue, although if Wenger has his way then the Chilean has certainly not played his final game for the club.

Laurent Koscielny will sit out the opener due to a suspension carried over from last term, while fellow defender Gabriel Paulista is nursing a knee complaint.

In terms of the visitors, Shakespeare has vowed to play wantaway winger Riyad Mahrez – the subject of interest from Roma and Inter Milan, as well as Friday night opponents Arsenal – as he remains ‘fully committed’ to the club.

New recruits Iheanacho and Maguire are likely to fit straight in, but fellow newbie Iborra is out for a couple of weeks with a groin strain.

Arsenal possible starting lineup:
Cech; Bellerin, Mustafi, Mertesacker, Monreal, Kolasinac; Xhaka, Ramsey; Welbeck, Lacazette, Iwobi

Leicester City possible starting lineup:
Schmeichel; Simpson, Maguire, Morgan, Fuchs; Mahrez, Ndidi, Amartey, Gray; Iheanacho, Vardy

ADMIN PREDICTION:Arsenal To WIN and Over 2.5

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Super Eagles defender William Troost-Ekong signs for Italy’s Udinese in a €3.3m deal

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Super Eagles defender William Troost-Ekong has joined Italian side,Udinese in a deal worth €3.3m from Turkish side, Bursaspor.

 

The 24-year-old centre-back who played three games for Nigeria at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia completed the move this afternoon.

 

After signing for the club, William took to Instagram to confirm the move. He wrote: ‘Very happy to sign for @udinesecalcio in the @seriea!.’

 

Udinese’s technical director, Daniel Prade told the club’s official website : “Ekong is a player with an important physical structure. He is good in the air, can defend very well and support the attack as well.

“We talk about an aggressive central defender, strong in contrast and with an excellent game reading: a thoughtful, non-instinctive leader who always tries to play the ball, all characteristics that go very well with the game of our coach (Julio Velazquez).

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Mourinho: I wanted to play Martial

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Manchester United started the Premier League season with a 2-1 win over Leicester. Captain Paul Pogba scored from the penalty spot before Luke Shaw scored his first career goal to double the score. Substitute Jamie Vardy scored a late equaliser.

After having such little time with the first team following the World Cup, with many of the players returning to first team training as recently as Monday, Jose Mourinho acknowledged that his players were tired and not match fit.

Anthony Martial, whose agent has claimed on more than one occasion this summer that the player wants out of the club, was an unused substitute but Mourinho claims he wanted to play the forward.

I needed six changes not three, three weren’t enough for me. I want to play Martial for Mata or Alexis but I couldn’t. Paul Pogba couldn’t play 90 minutes, Fred the same. I needed more changes, but I couldn’t so it was not easy to manage the game from the touchline point of view.

I feel I wanted more attack and I feel that Martial coming into the game in the last 20 minutes for Alexis could have given us the second goal to kill the game. But I couldn’t make that change, so it was really hard. But the players gave everything, they gave what they had. I told them to give everything they had. You have 10 minutes, you give 10 minutes. Marouane told me he couldn’t give me more than 10 minutes, okay but give me 10 minutes. Everybody did that in a fantastic way.

 

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Manchester United Vs Leicester: Why I Handed Pogba Captain Band – Mourinho

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Manchester United manager, Jose Mourinho has explained why Paul Pogba was handed the team’s captain band in their Premier League game against Leicester City on Friday.

Mourinho started the French midfielder in Friday night’s Premier League opener after just a few days’ training.

Pogba scored from the penalty spot to give United the lead in the first half with Luke adding the second goal late in the second half.

Pogba had his first training session on Monday but impressed to such an extent with his application and physical condition that he was picked to start.

The Portuguese coach handed Pogba the captaincy.

Asked about the significance of making Pogba captain, Mourinho told Sky Sportsm, “Last season, he was captain a few times.

“Valencia is captain, but Valencia is not here.

“Paul is one of the options, third season, made in the academy, understands the club, the culture, good relationship with his teammates and a good example today putting himself in the team.”

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