Gary Lineker makes bold title call as he details Man Utd ‘difference’ after Hojlund transfer

Ciaran McCarthy
Gary Lineker, July 2023
Gary Lineker in attendance at Wimbledon

Gary Lineker has named Arsenal as his Premier League winners for the coming season, while he is not sure new Manchester United signing Rasmus Hojlund is “going to make the difference”.

Arsenal had their best season in a good few years last term. Indeed, they’d not finished in second place since the 2015/16 season, under Arsene Wenger.

Mikel Arteta’s troops fought hard in search of the title for the entire season. They were the leaders for a good chunk of the campaign, before Manchester City eased past them towards the back end and won the title by five points.

After signing Kai Havertz, Declan Rice and Jurrien Timber, former top-flight forward Lineker feels the Gunners will go one step further this season.

“I’m tipping Arsenal to win the title this season — maybe just to avoid being predictable but I do think they have had an impressive summer in the transfer market,” he told The Sun.

“Rather than demoralising them, going close and missing out last season will benefit Mikel Arteta’s side. Being in the title race has given them an experience that they didn’t previously have.”

The experience of being in the title fight and missing out might mean things are different for Arsenal down the stretch this season and they go a step further, but it’s a bold call given they missed out last season and City have made improvements to the side.

A lot of sides around them have also improved in the transfer window, though. Manchester United have added Andre Onana, Mason Mount and Hojlund to their side.

Lineker feels the former pair are going to be impactful players for the Old Trafford outfit.

“Onana’s greatest strength was David de Gea’s real weakness. Sure, Onana will make some cock-ups but the benefits of having a keeper who can play will outweigh those moments when he gets things wrong,” Lineker said.

“Mason Mount is another good signing. He’s an under-rated player because a lot of what he does goes under the radar — he presses so well and works hard.”

However, the most expensive of the trio, Hojlund – who united spent £72million for – is the one Lineker is predicting to add the least to the side initially.

“United have spent a lot of money on 20-year-old Danish striker Rasmus Hojlund from Atalanta and I can’t say I have seen a lot of him,” Lineker added.

“Perhaps they see him more as one for the long term but I’m not convinced he’s going to make the difference for them.”

READ MORE: Redknapp makes shock Man Utd title prediction as he claims Pep has a ‘hell of a job’ at Man City this season