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Andre's views on fixtures

Posted on 19 June 2013  - 15:12

Andre Villas-Boas described next season’s Barclays Premier League opener at Crystal Palace as ‘a tough start’.

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We’re scheduled to travel to Selhurst Park on Saturday August 17 – all fixtures subject to change at this stage.

Palace finished fifth in the Championship and were promoted via the play-offs after beating Brighton in the semi-final and then Watford at Wembley.

“Selhurst Park is always a difficult stadium to go to, it’s a London derby and a tough start,” said Andre.

In a fascinating first month, we face last season's League Cup winners Swansea at the Lane on August 24 before the first North London derby at the Emirates on August 31.

In-between, we have the Europa League play-off over two legs on August 22/29.

Apart from the early derby date with the Gunners, eye-catching matches include back-to-back games with Chelsea and West Ham (September 28/October 5), the Manchester clubs City and United (November 23/30) and then Chelsea and Arsenal (March 8/15).

“At certain times of the season we have compact fixtures with the top teams again,” added Andre. “So, for example, last season we had Arsenal and then Manchester City, both away, and we have the same this time.

"November and December is when we gathered many points last season (we had a run of seven wins in nine, November 25-January 1) and we will look to do the same again. This time we go to Old Trafford on New Year's Day, a huge game.

“I’m looking forward to next season. I think there will be big changes in every team and the managerial changes (at Chelsea, City, United) will see different ways of playing. Other teams will look to create strong teams and we will look to do the same, and build a strong, competitive side.”