A new Premier League season is now underway, and some pretty intriguing questions greet the 20 teams vying for this title. Can Liverpool, which lost out on last year's championship by a single point, find a way to get past defending champs Manchester City? (Both teams already won big in their first match.) Can former star players Frank Lampard and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer thrive as managers for Chelsea and Manchester United, respectively? And what teams will be facing a relegation battle as the season marches to its May conclusion?
We'll get some early answers today this weekend, during the first round of action in the 2019-2020 Premier League. And if you're already kicking yourself for missing some of the opening matches, don't worry: there are many streaming options available to fans of football (or soccer, depending on which side of the Atlantic you hail from.)
Here's how to watch the 2019-2020 Premier League, including your options for using a VPN should you find yourself on the road at any point during the season.
When does the 2019-2020 Premier League season start?
The opening match in the 2019-2020 Premier League season took place on Friday, Aug. 9 when Liverpool thumped Norwich 4-1. After six more matches on Saturday, three are taking place on Sunday, Aug. 10 to wrap up the first round of games.
For the most part, Premier League matches take place on Saturday and Sunday, though there's the occasional mid-week set of matches on Tuesday and Wednesday, and every now and then, a match will take place on either Friday or Monday. Saturday kickoff times are typically at 7:30 a.m. ET, 10 a.m. ET and 12:30 p.m. ET. Sunday kickoffs can vary, but typically matches start at either 9 a.m. ET or 11:30 a.m. ET. (Remember, since the games are taking place in England, there's a five-hour time difference between there and the east coast of the U.S., which can mean some pretty early kickoff times, particularly if you live in the Pacific time zone.)
With 20 teams in the Premier League, each teams plays 38 matches — one home, one away against every other team — so the 2019-2020 Premier League season runs through May 17, 2020.
How can I use a VPN to watch the 2019-2020 Premier League?
Given that there's 10 months between now and when the Premier League season draws to an end, at some point you're likely to be traveling when a critical match is taking place. If you still want to watch the Premier League should your travels take you outside the U.S., you can always turn to a virtual private network, or VPN. With a VPN in place, you can appear to be surfing the web from your home country, letting you access the same streaming services, even if you're in another region.
Not sure which VPN is right for you? We've tested many different services and our pick for the best VPN overall is ExpressVPN. It offers superb speeds and excellent customer service. But you've got other VPN options as well. Here are our top picks.
ExpressVPN: We think the speed, security and simplicity make ExpressVPN second to none. During our tests, we saw fast connection times, and we're impressed by the service's ability to access more than 3,000 services spread out across 160 locations in 94 countries.
One month of service at ExpressVPN costs $12.95, but you can lower that to $6.67 a month if you opt for a year of service, with ExpressVPN throwing in three additional months for free. There's a 30-day money-back guarantee if you're not satisfied.View Deal
NordVPN: Go with NordVPN if privacy is your biggest concern. This service, which costs $11.95 a month, uses 2084-bit encryption. It also works well with streaming services, which can come in handy for watching the Premier League. You can lower your monthly cost by signing up for an annual plan.View Deal
IPVanish: You can connect up to 10 devices at once when you opt for IPVanish, making it a good option for when you're traveling. A special offer cuts the monthly rate to $7.50 and you can save even more by opting for a longer plan.View Deal
What channels air the 2019-2020 Premier League matches?
In the UK, Sky Sports and BT Sport broadcast Premier League matches, with the bulk of the action airing on Sky Sports. (BT Sport typically carries the early kickoff game on Saturday along with midweek matches.) If you don't subscribe to Sky Sports, Now TV offers passes, including a season-long pass for the Premier League.) Canadian football fans can watch the Premier League on DAZN.
In the U.S., NBC holds the rights to the Premier League, with most of the matches airing on cable via the NBC Sports Network (NBCSN). Some of the late kickoff matches on Saturday or Sunday will appear on the main NBC channel, so you don't need anything more than an HD antenna to pick up those games. (Occasionally, NBC will farm out matches to some of its other cable channels, such as CNBC, but that's only on certain occasions. On the final matchday of the season, when all 20 teams kick off simultaneously, NBC has aired all 10 matches at once spread across different cable channels.)
How I can I livestream 2019-2020 Premier League matches?
You've got two options when it comes to live streaming Premier League matches — one if you've got a cable subscription and one that's open to anyone who's willing to pay up to watch more soccer.
Matches airing on NBC or NBCSN also stream on the NBC Sports website as well as through the NBC Sports app (Android, iOS). That means you can watch the 2019-2020 Premier League through a web browser, mobile device or set-top box, but you'll need to sign in with your login info from a cable or satellite TV provider to take advantage of this option.
If you don't have cable — or you want even more matches besides the ones appearing on NBC's over-the-air and cable channels — you can turn to NBC Sports Gold. That's a standalone package that offers access to 140 matches throughout the 2019-2020 Premier League Season. NBC promises at least four matches for each club will be available during the season through NBC Sports Gold.
Pricing starts at $40 for the Matchday Pass. That covers the entire season, and only lets you watch the games as they happen. The $65 Premier League pass gives you access to matches on-demand, including the ones that aired on NBC and NBCSN. Highlight shows and other Premier League-related programming are also included. As noted, you don't need to pay for cable on top of your NBC Sports Gold subscription.
Can I watch the 2019-20 Premiere League if I've given up cable?
If you don't want to pay up for an NBC Sports Gold subscription, there's another way to get Premier League action without subscribing to cable. You will need to sign up for an over-the-top streaming service that includes NBC's channels, though. While that's a monthly subscription, it includes other channels in addition to NBC and NBC Sports Channel.
If you decide to go this route, make sure to opt for a service that includes at least NBC Sports Channel (and maybe CNBC for those times when matches air on that channel). You'll also want to confirm that the streaming service you choose includes your local NBC affiliate. Local channel availability can depend on what market you live in.
Here are your streaming service options if you want to watch Premier League matches this season.
AT&T TV Now: The renamed DirecTV Now includes NBCSN in its $50-a-month Plus package. You'll find other NBC channels in that package, too, for those times when matches appear on channels like CNBC and USA.
Sling TV: Some good news — Sling TV is running a 40% off sale, so you can subscribe to the Blue package that includes NBCSN for $15 a month. Unfortunately, NBC is only available in select markets with Sling.View Deal
What do I need to know about the 2019-2020 Premier League season?
Manchester City has won the last two Premier League titles, and they're favored to retain their crown this season. (A 5-0 thrashing of West Ham United in the season's opening match isn't going to cause the bettors backing Man City to rethink their prediction.) Liverpool, last year's runners-up, are in the best position to end Man City's reign, but considering that they lost just one match last season and still finished second, edging out ManCity figures to be a big challenge.
The top four finishers in the Premier League qualify for the lucrative Champions League. Besides Man City and Liverpool, contenders for the top four spots include Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United. Some Premier League watchers think unheralded teams like Wolves, Everton or Leicester City could pull a shock and sneak into the Top Six of the Premier League.
Aston Villa, Norwich and Sheffield United are newcomers to the league this year, having won promotion from the second tier of English football last season. They'll be looking to avoid finishing in the three bottom spots of the Premier League this season, as those teams wind up relegated.