Qingdao FC will host Cangzhou Mighty Lions FC at the Yuexiushan Stadium on Wednesday, with three points at stake in the Chinese Super League.
The two sides will be looking to start the new campaign on a positive note by getting maximum points on matchday one.
The hosts narrowly avoided relegation with their 14th-placed finish last term, while Cangzhou Mighty Lions FC would have been relegated, having finished bottom of the pile.
However, the dissolution of last season's champions Jiangsu Suning ahead of this campaign saw them retain their spot in the top-flight.
Qingdao FC vs Cangzhou Mighty Lions FC Head-to-Head
The two sides have clashed on 10 occasions in the past and Cangzhou Mighty Lions have a better record.
The Hebei outfit have six wins and two draws to their name, while Qingdao FC were victorious in two previous games.
Their most recent meeting came in September 2020 when a late strike by Chen Pu helped Mighty Lions pick up a 1-0 away victory.
The two sides gained promotion to the top-flight last season and struggled to adapt to the higher level, evidenced by their low finish on the log.
This will be Qingdao FC's first game since their 4-1 aggregate loss to Shenzhen FC in the 13th-14th place playoff fixture last season. Cangzhou suffered a 2-1 aggregate defeat against Wuhan Zall to finish in last place in the league.
Qingdao FC form guide: N/A
Cangzhou Mighty Lions FC form guide: N/A
Qingdao FC vs Cangzhou Mighty Lions FC Team News
The hosts have no known injury or suspension worries ahead of the game.
Cangzhou Mighty Lions
Manager Afshin Ghotbi has a full squad to choose from for the trip to Qingdao.
Qingdao FC vs Cangzhou Mighty Lions FC Predicted XI
Qingdao FC Predicted XI (4-3-3): Li Zhizhao (GK); Jiang Weipeng, Fang Xinfeng, Li Peng, Jagos Vukovic; Fredrik Ulvestad, Denis Popovic, Romain Alessandrini; Bari Mamatil, Dejan Rajonjic, Zhu Ting
Cangzhou Mighty Lions Predicted XI (4-4-2): Zhang Zhenqiang (GK); Yan Zihao, Yang Yun, Stoppila Sunzu, Zheng Kaimu; Zheng Zhiyun, Luo Jing, Adama Diomande, Cheng Zhinglu; Andre Senghor, Muriqui
Qingdao FC vs Cangzhou Mighty Lions FC Prediction
The two sides are of almost equal strength and will struggle to find a better chance to pick up three points than in this game.
However, they are likely to cancel each other out and we are predicting a score draw in a conservative fixture.
Prediction: Qingdao FC 1-1 Cangzhou Mighty Lions FC