HULL CITY have the toughest start to the new Premier League season, based on last term’s league positions.
The newly-promoted Tigers have a daunting schedule in the seven weeks before the top-flight shuts down for the second international break in October.
Before that fortnight gap, City have home games against reigning champions Leicester City, Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United (5th in 2015-16), Arsenal (2nd) and Chelsea (10th).
Hull also head to Swansea City, Burnley and Liverpool before that second international break of the campaign.
It is a tough opening and the East Riding club know just how important a positive start can be in the Premier League.
In 2013-14, the Tigers were eighth with 11 points after seven games and went on to stay up comfortably. A year later, Hull had eight points at the corresponding stage and were 11th but went on to be relegated.
The Yorkshire Post have ranked all 20 teams by where they finished last term, with Burnley, as champions of the second tier, 18th, Middlesbrough 19th and play-off winners Hull 20th.
Adding those rankings up and dividing by seven to represent the number of games each team will play by the start of the October international break then provided an average position for each clubs’ opponents.
Hull, with an average ranking of 8.00, top the table, just ahead of Southampton (8.14) and Watford (9.14). Saints’ opening seven opponents include Leicester, Arsenal, Manchester United and West Ham, while Watford must also tackle the Gunners, Jose Mourinho’s Red Devils and Hammers.
Based on last season’s league positions, West Brom (13.42) have potentially the easiest start along with Everton (13.28). The highest placed team from 2015-16 that the Baggies face in the opening weeks is West Ham, while Ronald Koeman’s men will face five clubs who finished 14th and below last term.
Middlesbrough’s start is the 12th toughest thanks to meetings with Stoke (9th), Sunderland (17th), West Brom (14th), Palace (15th), Everton (11th), Spurs (3rd) and West Ham (7th).
1st: Hull 8.00
2nd: Southampton 8.14
3rd: Watford 9.14
4th= Burnley 9.42
4th= Liverpool 9.42
6th: Swansea City 9.57
7th= Manchester City 9.85
7th= Manchester United 9.85
9th= Leicester City 10.14
9th= Stoke City 10.14
11th: Sunderland 10.28
12th= Middlesbrough 10.85
12th= Arsenal 10.85
14th= Bournemouth 11.42
14th= Chelsea 11.42
16th: West Ham 11.71
17th: Tottenham 11.85
18th: Crystal Palace 12.71
19th: Everton 13.28
20th: West Brom 13.42