LONDON // Champions Manchester United will travel to Swansea City for their first Premier League match under David Moyes, their new manager, while Manuel Pellegrini’s Manchester City are at home to Newcastle United when the season opens on August 17.
United, kicking off their league campaign without Sir Alex Ferguson in charge for the first time since 1986, were handed a tricky opening five matches in fixture lists published yesterday.
The champions then take on the promoted London side Crystal Palace before making the short journey to Etihad Stadium on September 22 for the first Manchester derby against last year’s runners-up City, whose Chilean manager is also in his first season in charge.
The return Manchester derby at Old Trafford is scheduled for March 21.
“Lively start to the season! Let us at them,” the United defender Rio Ferdinand said via Twitter.
Quinton Fortune, the former United utility player, warned Mourinho should be more worried than Moyes about their early clash.
“Mourinho has been boasting about his record against United,” Fortune told MUTV. “He always brings it up.
“But this is a different manager, with a different style of play. If David Moyes brings the same desire and fighting spirit that he had at Everton I am sure Mourinho will find it tough. He is playing a completely different United and I am sure he is worried about that.”
Chelsea, third last season behind the Manchester clubs, start at Stamford Bridge against newly promoted Hull City with Frank Lampard hoping to make a record 18th appearance in an opening fixture of a Premier League season.
Championship winners Cardiff City travel to West Ham United, while Crystal Palace mark their return to the top flight with a home match against Tottenham Hotspur.
The Premier League’s first Welsh derby, between Cardiff and Swansea, is due on November 2 at Cardiff City Stadium.
The season ends on May 11, when Manchester United are at Southampton, Chelsea travel to Cardiff, Arsenal visit Norwich, and Manchester City host West Ham.
The FA Cup final has been moved back to after the end of the league season, with the match slated for May 17.
English Premier League fixtures to watch in 2013/14
Manchester United v Chelsea, August 24
David Moyes’s first Premier League home game at Old Trafford is against Jose Mourinho’s men on the second weekend of the season. Both meetings of these teams ended in away wins in 2012/13.
Manchester City v Manchester United, September 22
Fans of the Manchester duo had to wait nearly four months for the first derby last season; this time only four weeks will lapse before City and the new coach Manuel Pellegrini clash with United.
Cardiff City v Swansea City, November 2
The Premier League’s first Welsh derby. Cardiff City’s Championship-winning campaign was built on the best home record in the league. Michael Laudrup’s League Cup winners will provide tough opposition.
Arsenal v Chelsea, December 21
Chelsea did the double over their London rivals last season, but Arsenal finished the season strongly and Arsene Wenger has been promised investment to strengthen his squad. A mouth-watering match is in prospect at Emirates Stadium.
Liverpool v Everton, January 28
Everton manager Roberto Martinez will be hoping for better luck in derby matches than predecessor David Moyes had. Both teams are hoping to end their European exile, and three points from this game could prove decisive at the end of the season.
Tottenham Hotspur v Arsenal, March 15
These sides have failed to disappoint when facing each other recently; the past six North London derbies have yielded 31 goals.
Crystal Palace v Liverpool, May 3
The penultimate week of the season sees a fixture which could be key at both ends of the table. When this game takes place, it will be more than nine years since the teams last met in London in the Premier League.
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