Townsend backing promoted Brighton to survive then thrive in Premier League

Doug Mendoza
August 13, 2017

They have spent big - Benjamin Mendy, Kyle Walker, Danilo, Bernardo Silva and Ederson amount to about £205 million ($267 million) in transfer money spent.

The Portuguese press always said Pep Guardiola wanted him because of his ability to pass with his feet, something already confirmed by the goalkeeper. "But if you go to England it's £20-£25m more expensive", the Spaniard told a news conference ahead of City's Premier League opener with Brighton & Hove on Saturday.

"For me he is a brilliant manager because of his personality; he wants to play his football and doesn't want to change", Bruno added.

Some years it can be hard to identify relegation candidates but, as the new season prepares to kick off this weekend, I have a firm idea of who I think will drop out of the Premier League in May.

"Expectations are loaded on Guardiola who, after his first season grappling with a new league and new squad, will provide a fascinating study as he seeks to remind us why he arrived with such fanfare and glittering reputation".

It was the inevitable reaction to feeble title challenges that saw Guardiola's City finish 15 points behind the victorious Chelsea side in third place and Mourinho's United drift over the line nine points further adrift. I'm not going to say we are going to play all the season in that system, we are going to play different systems, but the fundamentals will be the same.

Guardiola said the current spike in football transfer spending, which culminated in Neymar's recent world record move from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain for €222 million (£200 million, US$260 million), had been building for some time.

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Which of last season's top seven would you back to win the title?

Liverpool - The Reds have added Mohamed Salah and Dominic Solanke, but they haven't signed almost enough players to be challenging for the title. I think if Liverpool could get a out-and-out centre-forward then we could push for the title.

"So it's a bit of a gamble but he has definitely brought quality to the club".

Manchester City were better than Real Madrid, Tottenham and West Ham in the pre-season, while their only defeat came against their city rival - Manchester United. And comments made by Fernandinho suggest that another left-back could be on the way in.

Huddersfield Town - Aaron Mooy has been one of its big signings and he was terrific last season, but it's going to be a tough one in the Premier League for it. Make no mistake, for teams like Huddersfield success is staying up. It's just a shame that his Old Trafford career ended as sourly as it did.

Arsenal also have a new striker to go to war with, in the form of Alexandre Lacazette, but most of their hopes could lie on the future of two longer-serving players. We didn't have full backs and you have to buy full backs.

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