Ok. One more week to go ’til another DGW. Is your team prepared for what’s to come this weekend? A few massive fixtures for clubs at both ends of the table this weekend- let’s see how they’re shaping up!
Man City v West Ham
The Citizens have lost the title. Boo. Hoo. They have the perfect chance cement their top 4 berth this weekend against the Hammers, who are positively woeful on the road. City have only lost 1 home game all year, and haven’t drawn a game in their last 8- meaning a City win is quite likely.
Carroll has his best scoring record against City, having netted 4 times when playing them. Aguero and Silva are both fit according to Mancini, so they should attract some investment this week- and rightly so.
Everton v Fulham
Everton need a win here if they are realistically going to challenge for a spot in Europe next year. Fellaini’s role is still unconfirmed- with Gibson a doubt he could be a chance to slot into the DM slot alongside Osman. I’m tipping an Everton win here- Fulham have never been entirely convincing at home- and Everton always have the wood over them.
I’m expecting a big game from Anichebe, while Berbatov unfortunately doesn’t tempt me at all- strikers have a history of being duds against Everton with the midfielders doing the damage.
Southampton v West Brom
I’m quite convinced Southampton will win this, and quite comfortably. West Brom have been ordinary to say the least when playing away, with their last away win coming in February against those spuds over at Anfield. Southampton’s home form has been quietly brilliant, and without a loss in their last 6 I can see this being a win for the Saints.
Rodriguez should start as should Lambert, while Shaw is still a doubt for his owners. Brunt is set to miss for the baggies witha knee problem, meaning Long and Lukaku might start up top together.
Stoke City v Norwich
Euuuugh Stoke. Bloody hell I hate them. The win last week was their first win in 8 games, and against a lowly QPR side who have nothing to cheer about. We all know Stoke’s defensive ethos, while Norwich pretty much play the same style when away from home. This game has a 0-0 written over it- so I’ll be chucking a few bucks on that!
Wilson is set to miss again leaving Wilkinson to cover at LB, while for the Canaries Turner is confirmed out, leaving Barnett to play alongside Bassong at CB.
Wigan v Tottenham
Wigan are my nemesis in these previews. They win games they shouldn’t , they lose games they shouldn’t and are just a general basket case! If they want to survive they’ll have to start picking up now, and without any injuries to their first XI they should look to grab at least a point at home. Kone is one I’ll be keeping my eye on for the Double, he is extremely slippery and defenders have struggled to deal with him so far.
Tottenham has welcomed back Lennon, meaning that Dempsey or Sigurdsson will miss the start for this one. Bale is back in and should definitely be locked in for the big C if you have him- Wigan are leaky at the least at home.
Newcastle v Liverpool
This is the game I’ve been most looking forward to as there is always goals in it. I’m expecting it won’t be too different this week, with both sides form being indifferent they will look to gain the upper hand.
Liverpool are without Suarez for the remainder of the year, which I think will benefit Coutinho a lot more than Sturridge… I’ll be monitoring him this week!
For Newcastle, Sissoko and Cisse are strong options, I reckon the pair will link up to do some damage to a relatively slow Liverpool centre half line.
Reading v QPR
Basement battlers go at it here. Nobody should have any Reading players at all in their team, but QPR will look to score (and score heavily I think they will) through Townsend and Remy. Reading always leak goals so I think the R’s are a good shout to put some fantasy returns on the board… but they are at the bottom for a reason.
Chelsea v Swansea
Swansea have been somewhat of a bogey side for Chelsea, after failing to beat them all year (they’ve met 3 times). Benitez rotated for Europa, meaning Mata, Ba and Hazard should all start, while Lampard might miss after featuring for the best part of 90 minutes on Thursday.
Swansea have a full squad to choose from, with Michu fit to lead the line. I’m not expecting much though- he tends to do more damage when dropping deep from midfield.
I’m bullish about the fantasy prospects in this game- only because Swansea love to play keep-offs when they’re playing away.
Arsenal v United
Oooooh how I want to see this guard of honour. You’d be a brave man to captain RVP, given Ferguson’s “hint” midweek that he might give his fringe players a run. If he decides to go for Chelsea’s points record of 95 though- he will hand the Dutchman a start. Rooney is in the same boat- I’d be much more content with Aguero as a gun forward.
Arsenal are playing tickety-boo by playing Cazorla on the wing in an attempt to dominate possession- but it’s up front the biggest question remains. With Giroud out for 3 games following his red card, will it be Walcott or Podolski to lead the line. I think Walcott is in the driver’s seat having played there already this year- but the call is Arsene’s… unfortunately.
Aston Villa v Sunderland
Another basket case of a game round off this weeks action. Villa have been up and down all year, but big, bad, bustling Benteke has been a fantasy key in the back half of the year. Bad news for him is that since Di Canio took over Sunderland, they have only conceded 2 goals- to Chelsea in the first game- while the last two games have been clean sheets!
Sessegnon has become a strong option in the midfield after a more attacking emphasis was placed on the Black Cats by the Italian, while Graham might be a nice P.O.D if you’re looking to make up a few points. I reckon Sunderland will have the Villans covered here.
Well that’s it for this week- sorry for the briefer roundup- I’ve been bloody ill for about 2 weeks now.
Take it easy guys