Manchester City will open their September schedule with a home game against Newcastle United at the Etihad Stadium this weekend, hoping to get back to winning ways after they were held to a 1-1 draw at Wolves on Saturday.
The man with the whistle for the tactical battle between Pep Guardiola and Rafa Benitez will be 47-year-old Kevin Friend of Leicestershire.
Friend did not take charge of a single Premier League game involving the eventual champions last season, but was in charge of the Carabao Cup tie with Wolves in October, which the Blues won on penalties after extra time.
Saturday’s visitors Newcastle had three games under Friend last season, two in the league and one in the FA Cup. Two of them were defeats to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge and the other a 2-2 draw away at Southampton in October 2017.
Full list of match appointments for Manchester City vs. Newcastle:
Referee: Kevin Friend
Assistants: Simon Bennett, Derek Eaton
Fourth official: Craig Pawson