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Unique circumstances mean Manchester United face Villa on a Friday night


Aston Villa will host Manchester United on a Friday night in their opening home game of the new Premier League season.

The match will be played on 14 August because of "unique circumstances" and televised live on Sky Sports.

West Midlands Police rejected a Saturday match because of an English Defence League march, and United are in Champions League action the following week, ruling out Sunday, 16 August.

Friday night football is part of the new TV deal for the 2016-17 season.

Dozens of Premier League games have been played on a Friday - the majority on Good Friday or Boxing Day, although a handful have been played at other times of the year.

Before that, the BBC televised top-flight matches live on a Friday night between 1983 and 1985.

The Premier League said the Friday night match was a "one-off" for this season.

Up to 10 Friday night Premier League matches will be broadcast live from 2016-17 as a result of the latest rights deal, agreed in February, which runs until the end of the 2018-19 season.

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