Townsend backing promoted Brighton to survive then thrive in Premier League

City will begin their campaign on Saturday when they play away to newly promoted Brighton and Hove Albion. Brighton haven't reached such heights but they did contest the FA Cup final back in 1983 and would have lifted the trophy were it not for a last minute save from Manchester United's Gary Bailey that denied striker Gordon Smith a virtual tap-in with the game tied 2-2.

Pep Guardiola is keen to make further additions to his Manchester City squad before the end of the transfer window. They will deservedly enjoy the ride but I think the club would view staying up as a bonus.

Gray's representatives spoke to the Leicester hierarchy this summer about the prospect of more game-time for their client and that ambition could hinge on the Foxes' future of Riyad Mahrez.

"We needed to do that this summer because we have one of the oldest teams in Europe".

"It's going to be tough, very tough". As the original superstar Premier League goalkeeper, the Danish legend was instrumental in Manchester United's five league title wins (and the rest) in his time at Old Trafford. Can Manchester City's strategy of creating an entire team of full-backs (including the goalkeeper) possibly work?

"I have a lot of respect for the players I had, I never complained for one bad game or bad defeat, making excuses, never, even in Germany I never said that, never in my life I make an excuse about what happened", he added. We are strong defensively and I predict 1-1.

Liverpool lost an astonishing 18 points from winning positions last season.

"We spent the first three months in the bottom places". We try to attack more fluently, and more times maybe this season, but it's a process to do that and sometimes you need a little bit more time. The league is shaping up to be one of the best to date.

Brighton pulled off a great achievement in securing a return to the top flight but this division is all about quality and, with the best will in the world, their squad doesn't look good enough.

Brighton's home then was the Goldstone Ground, which was sold in 1997 as the club battled against possible bankruptcy, leaving them "homeless" until they moved into their current venue, the Amex Stadium, six years ago. "We've tried to buy good defenders but also creative players and strikers to score more goals".

'It's going to finish. I saw him on the TV last season, but it will depend on how he and the other players adjust to the Premier League. The combative warrior of that first wave of Man United success under Alex Ferguson, the former Ireland captain could drag his side up by the scruff of the neck and lead them to win matches that they thought were long gone.

Guardiola said: "Hopefully next season I will be here and we are not going to spend how we spent this season".