LEICESTER mark another milestone on Sunday by taking on Man United in the Community Shield at Wembley.
After mixing it with big guns PSG (0-4) and Barcelona (2-4) the Foxes are up against big-spending Man United – Jose Mourinho et all.
And while this game is really a glorified friendly both sides will want to lay down markers for the new season. Leicester will want to show they weren’t one season wonders while United will be targeting the title.
Claudio Ranieri’s men have lost one of their star names so far – N’Golo Kante. Others such as Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez look as if they’re hanging around for Champions League football and that’s great news for Claudio Ranieri.
He’s added quality too with Germany goalkeeper Ron-Robert Zieler, Pole Bartosz Kapustka and Nigeria forward Ahmed Musa as well as Nampalys Mendy to replace Kante.
Withe the capture of Paul Pogba for £100m Mourinho has spent like a boss who has to lift the title with centre-back Eric Bailly, attacking midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan and striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, on a fee but big wages, already signed up.
Both sides will want to win this but more importantly be ready for the big kick-off next weekend. I’m tempte dby United at 10-11 with Betfred but will instead go with both to score at the same price with William Hill as there have been plenty in their pre-season friendlies.
In the Championship the biggest game is Sheffield Wednesday v Aston Villa with the Owls expected to go well this season and at least make the play-offs again.
Boss Carlos Carvalhal has brought in Steven Fletcher and Almen Abdi and crucially has kept hold of star striker Fernando Forestieri.
Villa are desperate to return to the top flight at the first time of asking and have given this task to Roberto di Matteo who has splashed £12m on Ross McCormack and with Jordan Ayew and Rudy Gestede there are goals in the team.
Question marks remain over the defence and I reckon Wednesday will edge this one at 23-20 with Betfred.
QPR are another side fancied to do well but I’m not sure if they’ll start with a home win against Leeds.
They’ve lost a few players but Kemar Roofe, bought from Oxford, is an exciting prospect and Garry Monk has brought in keeper Robert Green. Could be a draw at Loftus Road.
In Scotland Celtic launch the defence of their crown at Hearts and will be boosted by Rangers dropping home points against Hamilton on their return.
Celtic have won six of their last seven at Tynecastle and have hit 23 goals in that spell. They should win but are no bigger than 4-6 at Ladbrokes so look at Celtic and over 2.5 goals at 3-1 with Stan James as they have a tendency to concede.
I fear for Aberdeen at St Johnstone after their agonising Europa League exit in midweek, The Dons outplayed Maribor but missed a penalty, had a perfectly good goal disallowed, a man sent off harshly and then scored a joke own goal in injury timee.
It could hardly have been more heartbreaking but they have to pick themselves up quickly for a trip to St Johnstone.
Saints are perennial top-six contenders and tough to beat under Tommy Wright. They’ve lost just two of their last six at home to Dons and while they could win at 13-5 with boylesports I’m going with the less risky draw no bet at 8-5 with 888sport. Aberdeen are 5-4 at McBookie.
Bets to Consider
Leicester v Man Utd btts
Celtic & Btts
St Johnstone draw no bet