Against that backdrop, it would be a managerial masterstroke if Hughton can emulate Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe by keeping another modest club from England's sleepy south coast in the top flight.
All three have the pace to change defence into attack quickly, something City lacked in the full-back positions last season.
"I would like in three or four passes to score a goal, but sometimes it's not possible and you have to move them [the opposition] a little bit more, and because our strikers are not Peter Crouch, our strikers are completely different, they are not strong in the air".
"It's going to be tough, very tough".
When manager Chris Hughton surveys the team-sheet for his side's opener against Manchester City, he will see an opposing lineup bolstered by over £200 million of new signings. There's a gulf between Albion and City.
Regardless, United will need to enter the Champions League via a high league finish this year, rather than European competition, if they still want to be regarded as the greatest Premier League side.
"So although it will be hard to get a point or three against Manchester City, it's not impossible". City were interested in signing the 29-year-old last summer, and looked to have rekindled their interest this summer.
"It's important, but it's not absolutely essential to get the season off to a winning start".
Back-up goalkeeper Willy Caballero, full-backs Pablo Zabaleta, Bacary Sagna and Gael Clichy and wingers Jesus Navas and Nolito have all left, while the unwanted Joe Hart has gone out on loan again to West Ham United.
Whether that means lining up against Brighton with a back three and an Aguero/Jesus axis up top, or incorporating the young Brazilian just behind or to the right of his fellow South American within a 4-1-4-1, we will have to wait and see.
Key players: Anthony Knockaert was named Championship Player of the Season past year. "That is the top (and only) priority, and the club will do all it can to achieve that".
"We are here to win the games".
After a summer of exceptionally high spending from domestic teams and overseas, this season should prove to be a spectacular display of all-star football.
City are generally on offer at 6/4 across bookies as their favourites to win the Premier League this season, with the next best alternative, United nearly 2 points higher in the market.
Expect Manchester City to cruise to a multi-goal win. He finished the 2016-17 season strongly, having spent a very long time easing his way back into action, taking his latest return far slower than any of his previous attempts.