Everton will be grateful of a home game against Watford on the opening day of the season as the following few weeks of the season look treacherous.
The release of the new fixtures sees Everton face the newly-promoted Hornets at Goodison Park on August 8. The game is a repeat of the opening day of the 2006/07 season, the last time Watford were in the top flight.
However, Roberto Martinez’s side will have to hit the ground running – something they didn’t do last season – as they then face an awkward start to the 2015/16 campaign.
The Blues will face last season’s top eight over a run of nine games between August and October.
After a trip to Southampton on August 15 Everton will then face Man City, Tottenham and Chelsea all in a row. Then after games away at West Brom and Swansea Martinez’s side face successive matches against Liverpool, Man Utd and Arsenal.
The slight positive is that the Arsenal and Liverpool games come directly after midweek European matches – should Liverpool reach the group stages of the Europa League. The return derby against the Reds at Anfield is scheduled for Febraury 27.
The festive period sees Everton play three games at Goodison, against Leicester on December 19, Stoke on December 28th and Tottenham on January 2. Newcastle United are the Boxing Day opponents at St James' Park.
A conseqeuence of their tough start means that Everton’s run-in looks relatively kind, with games against Watford, Southampton, Crystal Palace, Bournemouth, Leicester and Norwich.
However, with many of those teams likely to be in a relegation scrap it is unlikely Everton will be given an easy ride by any of them.
The 2015-16 season starts (and ends) earlier than normal due to next summer's European Championships, with Everton bringing the curtain down on their domestic season versus Norwich at Goodison on May 15th.
Be sure to check out all the full fixtures over at the Premier League’s official site.
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