Photo: Jurgen Klopp will oversee his first Community Shield match today as Liverpool take on Arsenal in the traditional season opener at Wembley Stadium (Getty Images)
The 2020-21 English Premier League season gets underway today with the traditional season opener, the Community Shield game between FA Cup winners Arsenal and league champions Liverpool starting at 11:00am.
Mikel Arteta will begin his first full season as Arsenal manager with a test like no other as he takes on Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool who were last season’s runaway winners of the EPL.
It has barely been a month since last season came to an end and the new season will start with players getting very little rest in between, which means that the managers will be mindful of injuries, even at this early stage of the season.
For Klopp, starting the season on a winning note will be an important signal to send to those who would dare to take their crown.
Liverpool were almost imperious last season as they ended a 30 year wait to lift the premier league title and will be aiming to hit the ground running.
Liverpool finished last season an incredible 43 points above Arsenal, but suffered one of their rare league defeats to the Gunners after the restart.
With just about two weeks to prepare for this game, both teams are not be expected to be at their sharpest, but both will want to take something away from the contest, as a statement of intent for this new season.
The teams have met three times previously in the Community Shield in 1979, 1989 and 2002. The Reds won the first two while the Gunners came out victorious when last they met.
Arsenal enjoy a good record in the Shield matches, winning their last three appearances in a row and seven of their last nine overall.
While most of the winners of the Community Shield do not go on to win the league, with times being as strange as they are, winning any type silverware could provide just the boost teams need, in the age of Covid-19.
Arsenal have not won the premier league title since the 2003-04 season and will want to set the tone under their new and ambitious manager, Arteta.