It is probable that none of the trio of Wayne Rooney, Luis Suarez and Gareth Bale will play for their clubs this weekend, but they are still likely to overshadow the action.
With Liverpool striker Suarez suspended for the first six games of the season and Tottenham forward Bale injured, Rooney is the only one of the three who has a chance of featuring.
Rooney made his first appearance of the summer on Wednesday in England's 3-2 victory over Scotland at Wembley after recovering from hamstring and shoulder complaints.
Whether he plays for Manchester United against Swansea on Saturday remains to be seen, with Chelsea having had two bids for the wantaway striker turned down.
Manager David Moyes on Thursday repeated United's stance that he is not for sale and played his cards close to his chest on whether Rooney could play at the Liberty Stadium.
He told Sky Sports News: ''I think I need to see how he is when we get back. When I get back I will try and assess him.
"I watched the game last night [Wednesday], I thought for the 65 minutes he played he did well, ran around and got himself some fitness, but it was his first real outing in a competitive game.''
Liverpool have been equally firm in telling suitors Arsenal that Suarez will not be leaving, and boss Brendan Rodgers tried to draw a line under the issue on Thursday.
''For me Luis Suarez is very simple," he said ahead of the season opener against Stoke on Saturday.
"I will start off by saying there has been so much written and said about Luis over the last few months.
''From our perspective there is a standpoint from the club and myself that has not changed.
''What I want to concentrate on is the players that are available for this weekend so I won't be speaking any more about Luis Suarez until he is available."
Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas said ahead of their clash against Crystal Palace on Sunday that Bale, who has been courted by Real Madrid all summer, is not fit enough to be involved in the squad.
Bale scored 26 goals for Tottenham last season and would leave huge boots to fill if he did go, but club-record signing Roberto Soldado has already set himself a similar target.
The Spaniard, who joined Spurs from Valencia earlier this month for £26million, said: "I have tried to score (20 goals a season) and every time I have done it.
''This season I am going to try my best from the first day to get back to scoring because they signed me because of this reason.
''My objective is to score more than 20 goals. With the help of my team-mates I can do it.
"The Premier League is a much more physically strong league than Spain. But the football is also played at a higher tempo and I think this will benefit me.''
As well as Moyes, four other managers are preparing for their first matches with new clubs.
For Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho, Sunday's clash with Hull will be a return to the Stamford Bridge hotseat six years after he left, while Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini takes charge of his first Premier League game on Monday against Newcastle.
Mark Hughes takes Stoke to Anfield while former Wigan manager Roberto Martinez's Everton side play Norwich at Carrow Road.
Saturday's other matches see Arsenal meet Aston Villa, Sunderland host Fulham, Southampton travel to West Brom and Cardiff visit West Ham.
Saturday's Premier League Fixtures
Liverpool vs Stoke
Arsenal vs Aston Villa
Norwich vs Everton
Sunderland vs Fulham
West Brom vs Southampton
West Ham vs Cardiff
Swansea vs Man United
Sunday's Premier League Fixtures
Crystal Palace vs Tottenham
Chelsea vs Hull
Monday's Premier League Fixture
Man City vs Newcastle