We have to start with the return of the football season and we have to begin with the Premier League. In a summer where record transfers have been made and then broken the next day, this is one of the most hotly anticipated seasons in years. Here are some of the key fixtures to further whet the appetite.
Arsenal v Leicester 11 Aug
For the first time in Premier League history, the season kicks off on a Friday and there’s no better end to the working week. Arsenal entertain Leicester under the Emirates lights for what should be a cracking opening fixture. Which Leicester will we see this year? Can Arsenal mount a serious challenge without Champions League football? This result would be a good indication to which Gunners team we should expect for the rest of the season.
Tottenham v Chelsea 20 Aug
The top two from last year have a heavyweight clash early on in the season and with Tottenham playing their games at Wembley, it may be a tough ask for them to replicate their success from 12 months ago. Chelsea will also find it hard to match last season’s title winning triumph as European exploits could play a big part on how they perform in the league.
Man City v Everton 21 Aug
Man City have spent over £200m this season and over £120m of that was on full backs. Pep and his team mean business and he’s done his business early doors, with players coming in and going out. We fully expect them to be challenging for the league come the start of May. Talking of spending money; Everton haven’t held back and have spent £100m+ to try and break into the top 6. This game should prove very entertaining.
Other key fixtures:
Liverpool v Arsenal – 27 Aug
Man United v West Ham – 13 Aug
Newcastle v Tottenham – 13 Aug
Sky Bet EFL 4 Aug
The Championship is probably the hardest league in the world to play in, and it’s even harder to predict. It’s a long, hard slog through months of gruelling games covering 1,000s of miles; where only three teams come out smiling the other end. This year has so many clubs with great traditions and superb support. No team will want to give an inch as they all fight to get into the big time.
Sunderland v Derby – 4 Aug
Aston Villa – 5 Aug
Nottingham Forest v Leeds – 26 Aug
Burton v Birmingham - 18 Aug
Middlesbrough v Sheffield United – 12 Aug
This is a very busy month for the England cricket team with three tests coming their way. The first test will be the fourth and final test against South Africa. With the series hanging in the balance, it’s sure to be an enthralling climax to what has been a brilliant test series.
England’s heads then turn to the West Indies where they will play a three test series at home, starting at Edgbaston. The WI aren’t the team that used be in the 70’s, 80’s or even the 90’s, so this should be a comfortable series win… but this is the English cricket team, they don’t do comfortable. Don’t be surprised if there are a few banana skins along the way!
Eng v SA, 4th Test – 4-8 Aug
Eng v WI, 1st Test – 17-21 Aug
Eng v WI, 2nd Test – 25-29 Aug
Formula 1, Pirelli Belgian GP – 27 Aug
Like the weather, the Formula 1 season is hotting up. With a roster of great drivers on show, there are two in particular that have taken the limelight; Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel.
The race at Spa-Francorchamps circuit would give the winning driver an edge over their rival heading into the final third of the season. Both drivers have won on this track twice before and a hat-trick of wins will be just what the constructor ordered.
It would be silly to just focus on the top two as there are potential winners all across the grid. The Red Bull pairing of Max Verstappen/Daniel Ricciardo and Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas will all believe they have a chance of taking the chequered flag.
Golf, USPGA Championship – 10-13 Aug
It’s the final major of the golfing calendar and all eyes will be on current king of golf, Jordan Speith.
Speith will look to win the career grand slam at the Quail Hollow Club in North Carolina If he is successful, he will become the youngest ever player to achieve the feat at the tender age of 24 years.
Rory McIlroy would love to get his 2nd USPGA title (5th in total) and show the world that Speith isn’t running away with the sport, but like the all other players, he may have to play second fiddle to the Texan come the 10th August.