Sports

Excitement as English Premier League kicks off tonight

Manchester City's Spanish manager Pep Guardiola (C) holds the Premier League trophy on the pitch with Manchester City players after the English Premier League football match between Manchester City and Huddersfield Town at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, north west England, on May 6, 2018. PHOTO | AFP
Manchester City's Spanish manager Pep Guardiola (C) holds the Premier League trophy on the pitch with Manchester City players after the English Premier League football match between Manchester City and Huddersfield Town at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, north west England, on May 6, 2018. PHOTO | AFP

After a 13-week break, the 2018/19 English Premier League season kicks off on Friday with Manchester United taking on Leicester at Old Trafford from 9pm Kenyan time.

As has always been the case, Kenyans are already showing excitement and especially on social media ahead of the start of what undoubtedly is the most popular sports event in the country, in terms of TV audience.

Most entertainment joints in the country are projecting increased revenue as fans stream in to watch the matches which are normally aired on Pay-TV channel Supersport.

VICTOR WANYAMA

Harambee Stars captain Victor Wanyama, who is attached to Tottenham Hotspur, is the only Kenyan featuring in this competition. He, thus, is one of the players in this competition Kenyans fans will be keen to watch play.

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba, Arsenal’s Gabon forward Pierre Emerick Aubamayang, Liverpool’s African strikers Saido Mane and Mohammed Salah, Manchester City’s Brazilian Jesus are some of the other standout players in the league.

Meanwhile, defending champions Manchester City alongside Liverpool, Manchester United and probably Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham are considered favourites to win this competition at the end of the season in May 2019.

Newly promoted clubs Wolves, Cardiff City and Fulham could, among the likes of Huddersfield, Southampton and Brighton, be considered among the candidates to be relegated at the end of the campaign.

At the same time, football fans will be salivating at the prospect of watching some of their new signings in action.

BRAZILIAN MIDFIELDER

Examples are Brazilian midfielder Fred who has joined Manchester United, Algerian dazzler Riyard Mahrez who moved from Leicester to Manchester City, Uruguayan destroyer Lucas Torreira who will be playing under new Arsenal coach Unai Emery and Liverpool who have splashed out billions to acquire Naby Keita, Fabingo, Xherdan Shaqiri and Brazilian keeper Alisson who joined for a world record Sh10 billion fee for a goalkeeper.

Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois is one of the superstars to exit the league, having moved from Chelsea to Real Madrid so as to, in his own words, move closer to his family.

At the same time, local betting firms such as Betin and sites including and affiliates such as betting.net look set to cash in on the increasing trend of gamblers who are willing to place money where their mouth is.

Let the game begin!

About the author

DAVID KWALIMWA

DAVID KWALIMWA

David Kwalimwa is a journalist with a great bias for sporting events and current affairs. He studied Information Technology at Kampala International University. He’s experience in journalism includes covering Kenya’s General Elections in 2013 and 2017, two Africa Cup of Nations tournaments, the FIVB Grand Prix in Mexico and Croatia, and Women’s Volleyball World Cup.



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