The 2016-17 Premier League campaign begins this week as Leicester City prepare to defend the most unlikely title in the division’s history.
The Foxes must adjust to life without midfield lynchpin N’Golo Kante and Tottenham have to respond to the disappointment of their statistical dominance going unrewarded.
Liverpool will hope to improve considerably on an underwhelming finish following the promise of Jurgen Klopp’s arrival, while Chelsea need to display more bite and Manchester United have to rediscover their attacking intent.
Here, we crunch some of the most telling 2015-16 Opta numbers to find out what to expect from all 20 teams this season.
84.2 per cent – Arsenal played the most passes (21,249) with the highest accuracy (84.2 per cent) last season. Mesut Ozil set the tone for that technical excellence, leading the team for assists (19), chances created (146) and successful passes (1,964).
67 – Bournemouth had the second worst record in 2015-16 for goals conceded (67) and Eddie Howe will want his players to improve at the back in their second top-flight campaign.
111 – Joey Barton led Burnley for tackles with 111 as they won the Championship, but the former Manchester City captain has departed for Rangers, leaving a pressing vacancy for a combative presence in the centre of the field.
20th – Chelsea recorded the fewest collective number of blocks, clearances and interceptions (1,448) in the Premier League last season. Expect that to change under hard taskmaster Antonio Conte.
5 – Four Crystal Palace players (Scott Dann, Yannick Bolasie, Yohan Cabaye and Connor Wickham) were joint top scorer for the Eagles with just five goals apiece in 2015-16. Manager Alan Pardew needs a marksman.
394 – Everton faced the second most shots (394) of any team in a campaign that cost Roberto Martinez his job. His successor Ronald Koeman must ensure the defence offers their goalkeeper more protection.
559 – Hull had the most efforts in the Championship last season but were 19th of 24 teams for accuracy. The managerless Tigers will have far fewer chances to hit the back of the net in the top flight.
175 & 156 – N’Golo Kante registered the most tackles (175) and interceptions (156) for Leicester as the Foxes stunningly won the title, but the France international has left a void to fill following his lucrative move to Chelsea.
8th – Liverpool ended up eighth in 2015-16. Despite the feel-good factor following Jurgen Klopp’s arrival, they have never finished lower in the Premier League.
0 – Not a single Manchester City player saw red in the Premier League last season. Will they continue to keep it clean under Pep Guardiola?
293 – Manchester United, once synonymous with attacking flair under Alex Ferguson, fired off the second lowest tally of efforts in the league last term (293, excluding blocked shots).
31 – Middlesbrough had the best defensive record in the Championship, conceding just 0.67 goals per game (31 in total). Carrying that on at a higher level could prove crucial to their survival hopes.
6th – Southampton recorded their best finish in the Premier League in 2015-16. Claude Puel faces a big task to equal or better that after succeeding Koeman at St Mary’s Stadium.
18.7 per cent – Stoke City had the lowest cross completion percentage last season (18.7), despite boasting the talents of Marko Arnautovic and Xherdan Shaqiri in attacking roles.
15 – Jermaine Defoe top-scored for Sunderland with 15 goals, almost single-handedly keeping the Black Cats in the top flight. Will he fire again with David Moyes having replaced Sam Allardyce at the helm?
1,601 & 99 – Ashley Williams led Swansea for successful passes (1,601) and interceptions (99), highlighting the importance of the captain, reportedly a priority Everton target, to the Welsh club.
3rd – Tottenham achieved their best Premier League finish yet, but it was a disappointing outcome for Mauricio Pochettino’s men, who were top or joint top of the 20 teams in six statistical categories, including shots on target, fewest goals conceded and fewest shots faced.
1st – The 2015-16 campaign was the first time in three attempts Watford have preserved their top-flight status, after previously going straight back down in 1999-00 and 2006-07.
21.7 per cent – West Brom played the most long passes of any team in the Premier League (21.7 per cent of their total passes), while having the lowest overall pass completion percentage (70.0).
9, 12 & 119 – Dimitri Payet was the undisputed star for West Ham last season, joint top scoring alongside Andy Carroll with nine goals, while creating the most chances (119) and supplying the most assists (12).
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