17th June 2015: New season fixtures released and it’s West Ham at home up first

Afternoon everyone (or no-one, as is currently the case) and this morning fixtures for the new season were announced after the generator did its thing.

We begin with back-to-back London derbies as Slaven Bilic brings West Ham to Emirates Stadium, before we visit Crystal Palace. You can see the full list here and proceed to ponder the difficulty rating of the start, middle and end and what it means for any title challenge.

I’m just glad there’s no Champions League play-off tie to distract us from what will surely need to be a strong start if we are to challenge. Avoiding any repeat of last year, when too many draws left us way off the pace so early on, is obviously the aim.

Also, preventing any chance for the insufferable Jose Mourinho to again gloat about how his bunch of anti-footballers led the league from first day till blah blah blah would be good. Not that I think they have the faintest glimmer of repeating that fluke, but still.

And speaking of the Portugeezer, he’s reported to have demanded Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in any deal for Petr Cech this summer.

“I wonder what planet Jose’s on?”

Good luck with that one, Jose.

Elsewhere, not much happening really. Julian Draxler’s agent has played down rumours of a move for his client and suggested the youngster must first concentrate on regaining full fitness.

And the Euro Under 21 tournament gets underway today and there’s little Arsenal interest as far as I can recall without bothering to look it up. I think Serge Gnabry might be involved for Germany who play today and of course, Calum Chambers and Carl Jenkinson are part of the England squad who begin their campaign tomorrow evening against oft-linked William Carvalho’s Portugal.

Can’t think of any other Arsenal players involved but it is a good chance to scout up-and-coming talent from across the continent if you’ve nothing better to do. Like me.

See you soon

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