The former England boss, 63, is charged with guiding Leicester into the promised land of the Barclays Premier League after an eight-year absence.

After a huge summer outlay of around £10million, the Foxes hierarchy want promotion - and nothing less will do.

The Swede steered the club to a respectable 10th-placed finish last term and has spent the summer assembling a squad capable of lasting the distance in the 46-match marathon that lies ahead in the npower Championship.

Lee Peltier, Neil Danns, Kasper Schmeichel, Sean St Ledger, David Nugent, Paul Konchesky and Matt Mills have all arrived at the King Power Stadium.

The Foxes, owned by Thai businessman Vichai Raksriaksorn, have paid substantial transfer fees and enticed their new recruits with huge salaries, yet Nugent could prove their shrewdest acquisition.

The 26-year-old, who won his only England cap in 2007, arrived on a free transfer at the end of June after four years at Portsmouth.

"He is a high-calibre footballer and has played in the Premier League and at under-21 and international level for his country," Eriksson said.

"David is hard-working and will score goals for us, while creating opportunities for others.

"We are very pleased to have him on board."

Leicester's ambition is clear but the fight for promotion looks set to be more fiercely contested than ever.

West Ham are under pressure to bounce straight back from last season's relegation.

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce, who guided Bolton into the top flight in 2001, has seen players leave but Kevin Nolan's £5million arrival from Newcastle on a five-year contract said much for the club's desire to return to the elite at the first attempt.

Nolan was central to Allardyce's success at Bolton and, now reunited at Upton Park, they could prove an ominous force.

Hammers co-owner David Gold declared: "With the appointment of Sam and now the signing of Kevin Nolan we have put a stake in the sand and shown our commitment to the fans.

"It shows we mean business at West Ham United.

"Kevin Nolan has put a real statement of faith in the club and our new manager and we have made a statement to our supporters that we intend to get straight back up into the Premier League."

Birmingham, relegated on the final day of last season, are also expected to be in the mix for a top-two finish.

New boss Chris Hughton has brought in Chris Burke and Marlon King on free transfers but key men such as Roger Johnson and Craig Gardner have jumped ship.

Perhaps Nottingham Forest can have a greater say in the promotion race after two years of play-off heartache.

Steve McClaren, back in England after spells in Holland and Germany, lacks nothing in ambition and the return of former favourite Andy Reid could prove a significant addition to a youthful squad.

Middlesbrough flirted with relegation last term after Gordon Strachan's disastrous, short-lived reign before showing signs of gradual improvement under Tony Mowbray.

The Boro boss has kept changes to a minimum at the Riverside Stadium during the close season and his men look set to compete alongside the likes of Reading and Cardiff for a play-off berth.

Blackpool boss Ian Holloway won many admirers last season and will hope to challenge for an immediate return to the Premier League despite the loss of talismanic skipper Charlie Adam.

Paul Jewell's reputation took a severe battering at Derby and prized asset Connor Wickham was sold to Sunderland, yet Ipswich look primed to launch a credible challenge this term.

Jewell has recruited Lee Bowyer, Michael Chopra and a host of other squad players.

Brighton have a new stadium and a bright young boss in Gus Poyet, so expect the feelgood factor to keep them well afloat in the Championship, at least for the first half of the season.

Burnley and Leeds fell just short of the play-offs last term and neither side looks likely to trouble the leading contenders this time around.

The lack of spending at Elland Road has done nothing for Ken Bates' popularity with the Leeds faithful and they may be forced to settle for a season of mediocrity, while a mid-table finish is probably what fans of Portsmouth, Millwall, Derby and Watford are expecting too.

Yet mid-table anonymity is better than a relegation scrap - which Crystal Palace, Barnsley, Doncaster, Coventry and Peterborough look set to feature prominently in.