After a week full of ridiculous cup results, it is time to take a quick look at the fallout from around the grounds, any injuries that may be of concern and who is in top form… EDIT: Injuries updated, a few more blows to managers…
- Richards has been ruled out for at least a further two months, possibly more after seriously injuring his knee. I felt he could have provided a good option into Mancini’s defence at just 5.7, now I once again only see Kompany as the only viable option…
- Both Chris Smalling and Phil Jones are nearing a return for United, which could affect two things. Rafael’s starting place could come under scrutiny, however his recent form suggests he is safe for now. More importantly it could tighten up United’s defence as SAF’s injury woes ease. Only time will tell.
- Demel has been ruled out for a further 2 weeks and we now have to make a decision. With West Ham’s poor fixtures anyway do we just hold and place him last on our bench? At 4.1 I think this is all we can do, there are not many other options that are more appealing over the next few weeks while Demel is missing.
- Mirallas could return this week for Everton, posing the question as to what strike force they will start with. Jelavic may not be a lock, however I believe he will start again this week.
- Gibbs, Szczesny, Diaby and Gervinho have been ruled out this week. Gervinho has been ruled out for 3 weeks with an ankle injury, surely paving the way for Walcott to start. Gibbs is starting to concern me, another 1 week injury that is extending forever longer. Calf’s can be a pain, it may be time to think of moving him on if you have him. Although an away trip to the reds may not have been fruitful anyway…
- Ba has been ruled a 50/50 chance for this weekend according to Pardew, and while he took the time to boost Cisse‘s confidence I feel Ba may be benched. Have back up on hand anyhow… EDIT: Pardew has rated him a good chance, make of that what you will…
- Cuellar has been rated a doubt for Sunderland, the same week I bring him in… please don’t do that to me
- Ramirez is back in contention this week for Southampton, he is on my radar loud and clear.
- Berbatov concerned a few managers midweek with a rib injury, but it looks like he will be fit for this weekend.
- The biggest news lately has been that of a hamstring complaint for Mata. He is still hopeful of playing this weekend and while that could be doubtful due to Chelsea’s incredible depth it shouldn’t be too serious.
- Arsenal has been way off the ball recently, and a trip to United will provide a huge test. After being 4-0 down to Reading after just 36 minutes questions have to be asked. There will be goals aplenty, and I feel they may come from mostly one end… who knows, however RVP screams captain to me.
- Chelsea has been in cracking form on the other hand, they were unlucky to go down against United in the EPL and bounced back last night. Goals are flowing and Hazard should be amongst them this weekend, captain options aplenty.
- Man United have been scoring at least 3 goals a game seemingly with ease, they should do the same against a weak Arsenal defence this weekend. Rooney could be a risky option whilst playing midfield, Valencia is another maybe option. RVP is your only lock on for points and he is a captaincy lock this week and beyond. Expect big things this weekend.
- Mata has been tearing it up also, a couple of assists to his name again midweek. After playing 120 minutes midweek there are questions on his starting spot this weekend… I’ll back him to start but not with any confidence, Hazard a better captaincy option this weekend if that’s what you’re looking at.
- Walcott scored a scintillating hat-trick playing in a central position and Wenger has sung his praises. While he will most likely be rested this weekend he could finally come to life at home to Fulham. He could start to provide a real POD if he can nail a starting spot.
- Finally Benteke scored another brace for Villa in the league cup, suggesting he is hitting top form. Preferred over Bent by Lambert as Villa’s number one striking option at 6.5 he may be a bargain, that is if Villa can get their act together.
Just some other news from the midweek fixtures, as you may have heard, 21 goals were scored in two games between Arsenal and Reading, then Chelsea and Man United… Incredible. The big news for fantasy owners as far as game time was concerned, Mata played the full 120 while Hazard came off the bench to score a penalty. If he is indeed on penalty duties without Lampard then his values increases yet again. Sagna was rested and Jenkinson played the full 120 also, suggesting he will be rested and Sagna will start yet again. Mertesacker should be safe for a start after Koscielny played the full 120.
That’s it for this week, good luck for tomorrow and the rest of the weekend, let’s hope all the guns fire! Cheers.