Premier League 2020-21 Fixtures: Battle of Nigerians On Opening Weekend

The 2020-21 Premier League season will see a meeting of champions on the opening weekend with champions Liverpool pitted against Championship winners Leeds in fixtures released on Thursday.

Nigerian duo Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfred Ndidi will face off against compatriot Semi Ajayi as Leicester City travel to West Bromwich Albion.

Bukayo Saka could be on from the start in the London derby between Championship playoff winners Fulham and Arsenal at Craven Cottage.

The opening round of fixtures will take place on the weekend of 12 September.

However, Odion Ighalo will not be in action as Burnley vs Manchester United and Manchester City v Aston will be rearranged.

Those two games will not be played on the opening weekend to give City and United 30 days since their defeats in the quarter-finals of the Champions League and the semi-finals of the Europa League respectively.

Chelsea and Wolverhampton Wanderers’ opening matches are both scheduled for Monday, 14 September after their slightly earlier European exits.

The Blues are at Brighton, while Wolves go to Sheffield United.

The other opening weekend fixtures are Crystal Palace v Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur v Everton and West Ham United v Newcastle United.

Exact dates and kick-off times will be confirmed when the television selections are made. Matches will be played behind closed doors amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Premier League Fixtures Opening Weekend (exact dates to change)

Crystal Palace v Southampton (12 Sep)

Fulham v Arsenal (12 Sep)

Liverpool v Leeds United (12 Sep)

Tottenham Hotspur v Everton (12 Sep)

West Bromwich Albion v Leicester City (12 Sep)

West Ham United v Newcastle United (12 Sep)

Brighton v Chelsea (14 Sep)

Sheffield United v Wolves (14 Sep)

Burnley v Manchester United (later date)

Manchester City v Aston Villa (later date)

Notable Derbies

The first big derby of the season will be on Merseyside when Alex Iwobi’s Everton hosts Liverpool on 17 October.

Ighalo’s loan expires at the end of the year and he would hope to be leave the Reds with fond memories by being on the scoresheet when Manchester United rekindle their age-long rivalry with Leeds on 19 December at Old Trafford. The return game holds at Elland Road on 24 April.

Manchester City, who finished second last season, face title rivals Liverpool at Etihad Stadium on 7 November, with their other game on 6 February.

Selected Derby Matches (all dates subject to change)

17 October – Everton v Liverpool

5 December – Tottenham Hotspur v Arsenal

12 December – Manchester United v Manchester City

16 January – Wolves v West Brom

20 February – Liverpool v Everton

6 March – Manchester City v Manchester United

13 March – Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur

1 May – West Brom v Wolves

With the season starting a month later than usual because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the games will come thick and fast.

The upcoming campaign will be five weeks shorter than a standard season because of the late end to 2019-20 – and the winter break has been scrapped.

Arsenal and Liverpool meet in the Community Shield on 29 August, with players then going on an international break for the Nations League before the Premier League starts.

There are rounds of Premier League games due on 26 December, 28 December and 2 January over the festive period.

The final league fixtures will be on 23 May 2021 – eight days after the FA Cup final.

The Champions League final is on 29 May, with the delayed Euro 2020 starting on 11 June.