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Premier League matchweek 1: Staff picks and predictions

13 August 2017, 07:18 | Joan Schultz

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Georgi Kinkladze in action for Manchester City

Chelsea midfielder Willian has revealed Manchester United held talks with his agent regarding a move to Old Trafford in a bid to reunite the player with his former boss Jose Mourinho.

During his news conference ahead of the Premier League season opener on Friday, Jose Mourinho said that he will not "cry" or "moan" if he does not end up obtaining that fourth and final player between now and August 31.

After surrendering 39 goals last season, Man City made it a top priority to address the backend this off-season, and they did exactly that with the acquisitions of Ederson Moraes in goal and defenders Kyle Walker and Danilo.

The Belgium global had earlier missed from just a few yards out with the goal gaping, but Mourinho was pleased with the way his £75m summer signing responded. In the case of the first two, I feel that this may hit them and their league title hopes, since I've yet to see sufficient strengthening of their squad.

"I think we did well, I think we lost to one goal which shows the result was really short and one of their goals was an offside". With Guardiola at the helm, Manchester City found out just how hard the rigours of life in the Premier League can be.

"It's not something urgent, that we are desperate to have it done or not done, I just think that he was very clear by showing what he did past year was not enough for him".

However, Mourinho will welcome Eric Bailly and Phil Jones back in to the squad after they missed the Super Cup defeat to Real Madrid in midweek through suspension.

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I felt pretty good when I woke up this morning so to hear that it's a strain and it's going to be a few weeks was frustrating. To put ourselves in the position we're in right now, a lot of it has had to do with James Paxton .

Hectic, right? Mentally, this could have a big impact on the players as they'd no doubt be wanting that first home game as soon as possible, especially as it'd be the first time for the "new kids on the block" to experience London Stadium from a players perspective as one team.

"Last season, I wouldn't say it was a bad season but we had a lot of ups and downs and we only finished one point away from eighth position", Ayew continued.

"He is still a great player and great person and he makes everything better".

Manchester United fans, already excited about the match, will have an extra reason to scour the team news when it's released this evening.

I had midfield players scoring goals, wingers scoring goals, central defenders good in the air scoring goals from set-pieces. I have conditions to deliver a better team than I did in the first season.

"To try to develop things that we normally don't do and in this moment there are so many teams playing with three in the back and wing-backs that probably sometimes we have to play that way".



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