Gary Neville believes the upcoming Premier League season will be a two-horse race, ultimately determined by this summer’s transfer dealings.
The former England defender is convinced one of the Manchester clubs will be lifting the trophy in May while predicting that current champions Chelsea will struggle.
“I said last season that the title would come to Manchester and I was wrong — but I think this year it will,” said Neville.
“I think Chelsea will dip a little bit. Not in a negative way, but just having the Champions League will bring different challenges. I think Tottenham will be strong, but I feel that either United or City will win it, but I’m not sure who.”
Speaking on Sky Sports, he added: “I say it every year, whoever recruits best wins the league. Chelsea getting N’Golo Kante was a masterstroke and Eden Hazard and Diego Costa came back to form. All the clubs are going for the same players, they’re all expensive and controlled by agents.
“So, whoever has the best relationship, the best contacts and is willing to put the money in will probably do it.”
Raheem Sterling, meanwhile, believes it is essential Manchester City win at least one trophy next season after a barren first year under Pep Guardiola.
“We need to be winning trophies. We need to be getting that Premier League title back,” Sterling told the club’s website.
“For me, that’s the most important thing for next year to be the best team in England and we’ve already made some fantastic signings this summer that will only strengthen an already strong squad.”
City’s pre-season gets underway on Friday when they play rivals United in the US.
“We’ve made sure we put the work in during the off period our runs and our exercises to come back ready for pre-season and we’ve been working hard all last week,” Sterling continued.
“We want to be firing from the first minute. Pre-season will be tough but we’re really looking forward to it, especially playing Man United in the States.
“It will be an amazing experience and as always, a tough game against them.”