The 2017-18 Premier League season begins today, with Arsenal taking on Leicester City, and there is a full slate of games throughout the weekend. But the cities that host the 20 teams, spread throughout England, have much more to offer than just soccer. Here are six locations worth exploring.
Teams: Manchester United and Manchester City
Manchester has been in the spotlight for its two Premier League football teams and faded rock and house music scenes. It is also one of Europe’s largest university towns. Thanks to rebuilding over the last 20 years, the city of Manchester has become a booming postindustrial metropolis, and the Greater Manchester region is the country’s second most populated area, with 2.5 million residents.
Team: Crystal Palace
South and Southeast London is a conglomeration of formerly independent villages, boroughs, towns and green spaces that have long since been incorporated into London (roughly the equivalent of the vastly different neighborhoods that make up New York City’s five boroughs). And just as a die-hard Upper West Sider can’t imagine going anywhere in Queens other than its airports, for most nonresidents of London’s other half, the south side of the Thames might as well be the far side of the moon.
Traditionally the best restaurants are not usually clustered in theater districts, and the restaurants you do find in those areas tend to prize efficiency over anything else. But in London, at…