The Big Kick Off: All you need to know!


With the excitement as high as it ever gets for us fans – with the big kick off just hours away – ClaretandHugh – with the help of the BBC and Premier League website – has taken a look at the various changes which have hit the Premier League this season.

As we prepare to see the new Hammers jump into action on Sunday, here’s the key facts on a season which has seen a record summer spending spree; which manager are in and out and the new rules introduced for this campaign.


O The Premier League will kick off on a Friday for the frst time when Arsenal entertain Leicester at the Emirates this evening Kick off: 7.45

O As of yesterday clubs have invested £1.034bn on signings which should see it finally overtake the record £1.165bn of last year.

O Man City has splashed out over £200m on new signings – the first time an English club has reached that figure in a single window.

O Manchester United have completed the biggest deal of the summer so far by paying Everton £75m for striker Romelu Lukaku, while manager Jose Mourinho took Nemanja Matic off Chelsea for £40m.

O Chelsea spent £60m on Alvaro Morata and Arsenal took Alexandre Lacazette for £46.5m deal for frontman Alexandre Lacazette. and Liverpool brought in £34m winger Mohamed Salah.

Bosses in and out:

O Frank de Boer became Palace manager after Sam Allardyce’s resignation. De Boer has won four Eredivisie titles as boss of Ajax, but lasted just 14 games in an ill-fated spell at Inter Milan last season.

O Southampton axed Claude Puel and appointed former Alaves boss Mauricio Pellegrino – their fourth change in four years..

O Watford waved goodbye to  Walter Mazzarri replacing him with Marco Silva, who resigned as Hull City manager after being unable to save the club from relegation to the Championship.

O Leicester City named Craig Shakespeare was confirmed on a new three year deal at leicester City after successfully taking over from sacked Claudeio  Ranieri in  2016 champions Leicester City confirmed him on a three-year permanent deal.

New rules


O Players who dive or feign injury will face bans under new Football Association regulations. A panel will review footage each Monday looking for cases of simulation. Any player unanimously found guilty of diving will be given a suspension.


Pitch patterns and designs will no longer be allowed at stadiums in the Premier League. Rules state that the playing surfaces must contain no markings other than the traditional horizontal and white lines.


The official competition match ball will be the Nike Ordem V, described as giving “optimal touch and feel with its updated bladder”. A hi-vis version will be introduced when the clocks change from British Summer Time to Greenwich Mean Time in the autumn.


Visiting fans  will be able to take in the action from closer than ever before. Premier League clubs have agreed to a new rule where away supporters will be seated together at all stadiums and at least one block of away fan seats will be made available pitchside.

Tickets for away fans will remain capped at £30.

Video replays for doctors

Video technology will be allowed into technical areas in an effort to better protect players from the damages of concussion. Club doctors and physios will now be able to watch replays of any injury sooner after it has happened. Previously, footage could only be reviewed in the tunnel.

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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon


  • Hammer64 says:

    There is a table the paper this morning showing the ‘net spend’ this window. Man C the most of course. Spurs bottom, with no players in yet. We are about halfway with about £20m net spend, below Watford, Leicester, Bournemouth, Huddersfield plus other more likely big spenders. The Carvalho deal if it happens would make a big difference. But a lot is still going to happen in the next 2-3 weeks.

  • Lazurus. rises like a salmon says:

    Any new developments on carvallo basil ? 😉
    Spuds ain’t bided for him yet then 😎😎
    Can’t wait to see Herrera. Mata , Ali. And all the usual suspects get banned and listen to the bullshyt defence from managers like moremonio, let’s see if the panel which is made up of ex pros. Our trev, sinc is one, show any bias , if Jenna’s was on it it would be a farce. He talks complete and utter bollow 😉

    • West Ham Fan No 32 says:

      IS that Jenna’s Jameson Laz I have heard he is a t1t or an @ss depending on your preference 😉

      • Radai Lama says:

        Hahahaha Jenna Jameson loves a good dive 😂😂

      • Lazurus. rises like a salmon says:

        It appears I’m not allowed to reply in that manner i did 32 😂😂😂
        Tippex ninja is now striking like zorro in heat😂😂
        So I hope they are studying the video they ought to and not Jenna,s pro ballers does M.O.T .D 😂😂😂


      • Lazurus. rises like a salmon says:


        • Lazurus. rises like a salmon says:

          Hope they don’t take to long ! Otherwise the wine will turn to port 😂
          We would all like this one over the line asap , he’s a slippery dippery levy is 😎🔪

  • Radai Lama says:

    You can spend as much as you want 64 but if you spend it on 12 shyt players it means nothing.We proved that last season with a lot of our buys.
    Huddersfield might have spent more but i bet their fans would rather have our signings so far compared to theirs.They have signed lots of middle of the roaders thats all.
    Like i said before i dont care how much we spend if its spent on the right players.Spending 80 mill proves naff all if its spent on a load of turd 😁

  • West Ham Fan No 32 says:

    On the VAR I may have been mistaken but I think I heard that the 4th official would be able to unofficially use it to assist referees on the field with some decisions ? Doesn’t seem to make sense what I said I know which is exactly what I thought when I heard it being discussed.

    • Radai Lama says:

      4th official did that during one of the Confed cup matches didnt 32.Sort of unofficially gave a heads up to a ref about something that happened he missed.I saw it happen somewhere anyway during a match.

      • West Ham Fan No 32 says:

        Yep mate I saw some interview on TV where they said that ref’s could use the VAR this season even though it’s not official until next season.

  • Hammer64 says:

    Don’t shoot the messenger Radai! I just thought the figures might be of interest. We were below WBA & Brighton too, but you are dead right-quality not amount spent. I am not a fan of big spending. I want the club to be safe in the PL but I don’t want us to chase some daft dream of Champ L & end up in financial doo doo.

    Thing is, does this FFP still apply ffs? Cos some of those clubs I mentioned must have revenues way below ours. I also saw a stat for wage bills – 2015/16. Ours was £85m, on a par with Saints but well below PL average. So the owners seem to me to be on the right track…

  • Radai Lama says:

    Dont shoot the messenger.If only i could 64 😂
    I dont understand ffp stuff.At the moment im enjoying listening to the Spud lads im working with imploding about their wage structure & how all their best players are going to naff off soon if Levy carries on being a tight arse 😁😁

  • Hammer64 says:

    Blimey I dread to thInk what you might do to them if you fancy shooting your own fellow supporters Radai! Actually I am having quite nice thoughts now about what you might do to them- bury a few In concrete maybe. Yeah that crafty git Levy has a few last minute ‘swoops’ lined up I reckon.

    The the ffp is a mystery- if it still exists. Some moan about our owners trying to stick to it, but I think it is now just a guide to being sensible. I was pleased to see that our wage/ revenue ratio was low. I also saw that Leicester,in their second season in PL had a wage bill only £5m less than ours. And they were under some sort of ffp threat from when they were in the Championship .

  • Radai Lama says:

    Why do we want Kane GW we have Poppodom😁
    Yeah i think youre right 64 it is to try to stop clubs kiccking the arse out of spending but im sure they have many ways round it.I know some say it doesnt exist but it definately exists because clubs have been done because of it but i dont know how stringent the big cheeses are about enforcing it too the max.
    Actually the Spuds lads are cracking blokes,just a shame they support that load of shyt.I think they have better things too say about our signings & other Irons stuff than some of our own bloody fans 😂😂

  • Hammer64 says:

    On ffp I know Leicester were ‘being investigated’ but that was by the Football League for their spending getting promoted. But that all seemed to go quiet. QPR were also in some sort of trouble from their last time in the PL but not sure how that ends up either. I read somewhere that the PL began to lose interest a bit when the Big PL clubs started making threats about going off to form their own European Super League if they gait too much hassle from the PL. And yes there are definitely ways round it.

    Yeah I have a good mate who is a Spud. He always says ‘where did all this stuff start? Years ago we just hated the Gooners & you just hated Millwall’. I don’t remember much anti Spurs / Arsenal/ Chelsea stuff when I was growing up.

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