Who can challenge Chelsea in 2016-17?

Chelsea boss Antonio Conte completed the final piece of his jigsaw with the signing of N’Golo Kante from Leicester City. In 2015-16, Chelsea former manager Jose Mourinho claimed that his Blues were a team without a striker but his capture of the Frenchman attacker propelled the West London outfit to their fourth Premiership title.

Chelsea will begin the new campaign as Premier League favourites, with Matchbook are currently offering odds of 6/1 for Chelsea to win but what of the sides below them? What do these clubs need to do to gain some hope for 2016-17?

Manchester United

The worrying factor for United fans could be the departure of Juan Mata to somewhere else. The Spaniard has settled in at Old Trafford and was a key player of the previous season so why does Jose Mourinho seem so prepared to sell him on?

Transfer rumours surrounding the likes of Paul Pogba continue and we can expect another summer of big spending but the future of Juan Mata could be the most critical development in United’s hopes of maintaining a title challenge.

Manchester City

The fact that City’s owners have chosen Pep Guardiola for the new campaign. The club were quick to sack Manuel Pellegrini when things started to go wrong but perhaps the German will get a chance to his title success.

Whatever happens, this is a crucial summer for City from a transfer point of view. The club secured the signing of IIkay Gundogan and Leroy Sane to live up to expectations, they are considered as title contenders. The one certainty is that Gundogan needs to deal shrewdly and get off to a good start or he will be gone by Christmas.

Arsenal

After a positive end to the season where they finished second, many feel that Arsenal are in a good position to challenge for the title next time around. Perhaps they are one or two signings away from that point so once again, this is another vital window for the Gunners and their manager Arsene Wenger.

A striker is a prime concern and Alexandre Lacazette from Lyon really ticks all the boxes. The France international has plenty of experience and therefore shouldn’t need time to bed in and get used to English football. Meanwhile, Gunners are rumoured to be looking for a new striker, who can play up front on his own.

Liverpool

Liverpool’s transfer policy becomes increasingly bizarre and the signings of Sadio Mane, Joel Matip and Loris Karius are unlikely to frighten any opposition. Having brought a number of flops into Anfield last term, the Reds continues to take huge gambles and along with teams such as Spurs and Southampton, the best that the Merseysiders can really hope for is a top four finish.

As for Chelsea, they will continue to spend in the summer window but little needs to be done at Stamford Bridge. With Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli is a prime target for a second time, Conte will need to look for a back up striker, but ahead of a spending frenzy, the West London unit look to be in pole position for the new campaign.