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Season opener sees the Saints visit the champs

LONDON: Manchester City will begin the defence of their English Premier League title at home to newly promoted Southampton on August 18.

Manchester United, who were just pipped to the title on the final day of the 2011/12 season, are away to Everton before Fulham visit Old Trafford the following weekend. Arsenal, third last term, start at home to Sunderland before travelling to Stoke and Liverpool.

The opening day of the season sees two Europa League rivals go head-to-head when Newcastle welcome Tottenham Hotspur, currently without a manager following the departure of Harry Redknapp, to St James’ Park.

European champions Chelsea, with Roberto di Matteo now their full-time coach, begin their quest for the Premier League title away to Wigan. Newcastle will be the first league visitors to Stamford Bridge.

OPENING DAY FIXTURES

Arsenal v Sunderland

Everton v Manchester United

Fulham v Norwich

Manchester City v Southampton

Newcastle v Tottenham

QPR v Swansea

Reading v Stoke

West Bromwich Albion v Liverpool

West Ham v Aston Villa

Wigan v Chelsea

l See Page 27

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