Chelsea and Liverpool can set the tone as Manchester clubs finally kickoff

It’s only the second week of the new English Premier League season but we have the first clash between two ‘big six’ sides – Chelsea and Liverpool (Sunday, 11.30pm).

It won’t get any easier for the Reds as they will face Arsenal next week, but they are likely to do so with new boy Thiago Alcantara in the team by then.

For now, though, they will face a big-spending Blues that have recruited six players – with the promise of several more to come before the Oct 5 transfer deadline.

Besides Thiago (who will be going by his first name), Liverpool’s only other recruit is leftback Kostas Tsimikas.

Chelsea fan Mohan Thambirajah was far from impressed with the Blues’ 3-1 victory over Brighton last week but is still confident of securing victory tomorrow.

And he predicts a player coveted by Liverpool fans will do the damage.

“My bet is (Timo) Werner will make a difference in a single-goal victory for the Blues,” said Mohan of the German striker who many had expected to sign for Liverpool.

“Chelsea were lucky last week, but the defence will be shored up by the presence of (Thiago) Silva.

“It’s just a pity Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic are injured. They could have been real threats.”

Adding spice to this weekend is the spillover from last season’s clash where Blues boss Frank Lampard lost his cool after Liverpool won 5-3.

Although Lampard and Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp have made up, the two clubs have a history of needling each other, especially when Jose Mourinho was in charge.

Separately, KL Kopites president Sashidaran Nair said he isn’t worried about Liverpool’s lack of spending power.

“It is more to smart signings without rocking the boat,” said Sashidaran, who is excited by the signing of Thiago.

“We need good additions at the right price – like Thiago. The inclusion of the academy boys will spur the morale of the team. The bonus is Georginio Wijnaldum is staying.”

He added he is confident Liverpool can retain the crown as other teams, like Chelsea, are in the rebuilding stage.

Elsewhere, the two Manchester clubs – City and United – are finally in action.

They were given extra time off as they were involved in the Champions League and Europa League.

United begins its season by hosting Crystal Palace on Sunday morning (12.30am). City will only be in action on Tuesday (3.15am) when it travels to Wolves.

Early leader Arsenal has a home game against fellow Londoner West Ham and looks strong enough to notch its second win of the campaign.

The great news for the Gunners is that top striker and captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has signed a new three-year contract.

Fixtures (Malaysian time)

Everton vs West Brom (7.30pm)
Leeds vs Fulham (10pm)

Manchester United vs Crystal Palace (12.30am)
Arsenal vs West Ham (3am)
Southampton vs Tottenham (7pm)
Newcastle vs Brighton (9pm)
Chelsea vs Liverpool (11.30pm)

Leicester vs Burnley (2am)

Aston Villa vs Sheffield United (1am)
Wolves vs Manchester City (3.15am)