The battle lines have been drawn between Sky Sports and BT as both companies have now released full details of the Premier League matches to be broadcast throughout the first half of the new season.
Liverpool's opening day clash against Stoke City will be the first game of the season, with newcomer BT Sport to show the match.
That won't be the only time Sky show United in the opening weeks of the season: the broadcaster has intentionally blocked BT from showing any of the reigning champions' matches by picking up rights to show United's subsequent games against Chelsea and Liverpool.
The Daily Telegraph reports that Sky used its first pick rights - which it has for 20 of the 38 weeks - to ensure that United fans will have no choice but to keep their £50-a-month subscriptions if they want to watch the team in action.
On weekends when Sky exercises its first choice, BT is left with fourth pick. The upshot is that Sky will show games involving United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur on the opening weekend, while BT have only a clash between likely mid-table strugglers Liverpool and Stoke. (Only kidding, Reds fans!)
BT won't get to show United until a month into the season when the champions play plucky Championship play-off winners Crystal Palace. That could prove to be a smart move, however, since it has an excellent chance of being the first ever top flight match in which United's goal tally reaches doubles figures.
Sky's front-loading of United matches is designed to keep them the natural destinatio of fans, but the tactics might yet cost them: with strict rules on how often each team can be shown (and minimum numbers of times they must be shown), BT could end up with rights to more of United's matches in the crucial later stages of the season.