Liverpool dominated the Premier League this past season and ended 30 years of hurt waiting to bring the title back to Merseyside.
The rest of English football’s top clubs were nowhere really, but there is a variety of reasons to explain that.
Deposed champions Manchester City may feel on reflection that not signing a replacement for former captain Vincent Kompany was a mistake.
Without the Belgian’s leadership qualities and defensive stature, Pep Guardiola’s rearguard just hasn’t looked as solid.
Some naysayers highlighted Kompany’s fitness issues throughout the latter stages of his Man City career, but he was a big match player. While the Etihad outfit may address the strength-in-depth at centre back this summer, domestic honours may be all they are playing for next season.
Everything depends on whether a European ban for Financial Fair Play breaches is upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
City have their appeal hearing soon, but cannot effectively plan for the future without knowing the outcome.
Speaking of suspensions, Chelsea were not allowed to make any signing last summer, but Frank Lampard has wasted no time splashing the cash on attacking reinforcements.
Morocco international Hakim Ziyech and Germany forward Timo Werner will both be playing at Stamford Bridge next season.
Manchester United, meanwhile, look a force once again as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has Paul Pogba back fit and in the same midfield as winter window masterstroke signing Bruno Fernandes.
The pair have got the Red Devils playing very much on the front foot once more and supplying attack with plenty of chances.
It may seem strange to find that Liverpool are not favourites to retain their crown won so easily in the 888sport Premier League betting on the 2020-21 title race.
The competition should be stiffer from these familiar rivals, however, and if Man City don’t have Champions League football to look forward to, then regaining top spot in English football is their sole goal for the new season.
There are a lot of ifs, buts and maybes – chief among them just how the transfer window will work between campaigns – yet Jurgen Klopp may find it harder to retain the title than winning it.
Outside of these usual suspects, Leicester City should be in the mix for European football again if Brendan Rodgers can keep hold of talents like Ben Chilwell and James Maddison.
Despite their own Asian investment, Wolves remain overachievers with a modest squad at Molineux.
There should also be more to come from North London duo Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur who both changed coach in the past season with Unai Emery replaced by Mikel Arteta at the Gunners and Jose Mourinho in at Spurs for Mauricio Pochettino.
A greater sense of competition over the Premier League title will only add to the excitement for a campaign which culminates in Euro 2021.
Many footballers will be playing for places at the tournament finals, and some simply have to raise their game to be sure of making their national team rosters.
- Preview: England vs Ukraine Preview – prediction, team news, line-ups
- Travel & accessibility details for four key Champions League ties
- Liverpool not for sale, insists owner John Henry
- Manchester United vs Leicester City Preview – Prediction & Potential line-ups
- Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Liverpool Preview – Prediction, how to watch & Potential line-ups