This Saturday, the first day of the new season saw my love affair with Manchester United continue to evolve... How did I experience United's victory over Bournemouth? My wife and I took my daughter swimming. Yes, United were beginning a new campaign - but so was my daughter - she was being taught a life skill by her mummy and daddy.
As we draw closer to yet another Premier League season, the big question on everyone's lips here is: are we in for another shock season? Are we going to see another Leicester City rise up and take the crown? Or will the fabled old guard step up this season and reassert their dominance upon the league...
This year, Leicester go into the season as domestic champions, and Pot 1 seeds in the Champions League. In a season where their small squad is undoubtedly going to be stretched, top clubs are going to treat them as rivals. Without Kante, there is a sense that Leicester don't have enough top-level leadership to successfully respond.
With inflated prices for top players at an all time high, and competition for those stars even higher, wealth is now the trickiest simplicity in the modern game. As September edges ever closer, it will be those without the aptitude to manoeuvre in this market who will perish against the financial might of the Premier League's elite.
I may get into legal trouble for not predicting Leicester to finish dead last, but even I'm not stupid enough to assume that they will finish lower than a Hull side attempting to break Derby's record for least points in a season.
You know what? I'm going to try to be an optimist. As avid readers of the Ignorant Fan's column can attest to, I was immensely confused by Boro's purchases this summer. However, I am going to believe in the club. I am going to believe that Karanka's fights with senior players in March have been forgiven and forgotten...
Football is back! It's finally back! As such, its time to dive into some predictions that will be completely forgotten after the first set of results prove them to be completely meaningless. Unless they are somehow accurate at the end of the season, in which case I will be retiring from football journalism to become a full time Paul the Octopus impersonator. I'm pretty sure there's more money in that anyway.
Pogba will form part of a central midfield pair in a 4-2-3-1 formation. He will provide the legs and the energy alongside a sitter, possibly Morgan Schneiderlin, possibly Daley Blind, occasionally 35-year-old Michael Carrick.
Originally published on Sixth Feb Pep Guardiola is truly the genius the Premier League has been missing. But we've known that for a while, haven't we...
A side can take time to gel, but with United fans now having waited so long since Fergie's retirement to challenge for the title, I don't think Mourinho and his team will be afforded this luxury. But maybe this is the kind of pressure they can thrive under. And with this incredible talent coming in to the side, United can become a force to be reckoned with again.
The Spaniard cut his mustard in the best possible manner - sitting in a comfy chair next to his soon-to-be adversary Jose Mourinho in the dugout at Real Madrid. Three years alongside the Special One gifted Karanka some priceless experience: winning La Liga ahead of an impossible rival in the form of Guardiola's previously unstoppable Barcelona, as well as a handful of cup glories.
The Premier League was the first top-flight title Ranieri has lifted, so the forthcoming season is as alien to him as it is to the Leicester supporters. The first assignment will be to persevere through a trying pre-season of speculation and counter-speculation to portray a togetherness and keep producing the fairytale football that shaped the most compelling narrative last season.
It's perhaps worth noting that Guardiola inherited incredible groups of players of players at both Barcelona and Bayern Munich, tasked simply with adapting the focus and putting his own style and tactics into use. He's never before had a challenge like this one that required real building and that is enough to plant a seed of doubt until results can prove otherwise.
I'm quite impressed with Mourinho's PR this summer. His arrival was greeted with questions about whether his inevitable sh*thousery would gel with the supposedly pristine image of Manchester United (not including Rooney and Giggs' infidelity issues, Keane's deliberate maiming of opponents and Fergie's constant whining of course). To counteract these doubts he is going out and buying any and all players with a rating of over 85 in FIFA 16.
If Mourinho can rectify what was Ferguson's greatest mistake at Manchester United, he can save the season before it starts. The pill of a potentially controversial and trophyless year is far easier to swallow when accompanied by the sugary return of a prodigal son. And not just any prodigal son, but one that could quite conceivably go on to become the best player in the world.
N'Golo Kanté, thank you for the memories, but good riddance - this squad cannot carry any avaricious snakes. You would have gone down as a legend at Leicester City, unarguably as one of the greatest in the 132 years of the club's existence, but you have bottled it.