It’s Tuesday, what are you doing here? Midweek Premier League action means you got a double dose of FPL, as week 14 is assigned to the midweek fixtures. Last time out, I scored 59 points, beating the average of 43 and seeing me receive the coveted green arrows to shoot back up to 50,014th. This is good news. But how do we build on that for week 14? I have some ideas…
None of the top 6 sides are having to face each other this week, and really a lot of the fixtures pit the teams in the upper echelons against some of the struggling sides. Starting with Tuesday evening, Watford vs Man Utd is probably one of the more well matched fixtures on current form, and it’s hardly a gimme for Mourinho’s men. Romelu Lukaku blanked again at the weekend and I for one will be binning him, as they face Arsenal and Man City after this and the big Belgian has been poor against their closest rivals. Spurs, who are having a sticky spell, are away to Leicester, which is another tricky game but I think Spurs are better suited away from home and will hope Leicester will come out and attack them. Keep hold of your Spurs players if you have them, as they don’t have a bad run of games over the festive period (a trip to Man City aside).
Onto Wednesday then and Arsenal have a lovely looking fixture at home to Huddersfield. The Terriers gave a very good account of themselves against Man City on Sunday in front of their own fans but on the road is a different story. Arsenal are starting to get into a good habit of winning this sort of game and I expect Sanchez, Lacazette and co. will have a good time. Chelsea at home to Swansea is another where I expect a handsome home win, given Swansea’s recent struggles. For that reason I’ll be looking at Morata in for Lukaku but Hazard is an as good if not better option. Runaway leaders Man City will doubtless add another hatful of goals to their collection with a home game against Southampton, but as usual I have no idea who Pep will play. The fact Gabriel Jesus only got about 15 minutes on Sunday suggests he will probably start, but what do I know? I thought he’d start on Sunday. Liverpool are at Stoke, and it seems it doesn’t matter where Mo Salah plays he will find a way to score. Liverpool though have options, and you’d expect Sadio Mane to be recalled after missing all but the final few minutes of their draw with Chelsea on Saturday. Adam Lallana also made a return so we’ll see where he slots in when everybody is fit – I suspect it might be bad news for Gini Wijnaldum but there are a lot of games to come.
That leaves us 4 games we haven’t covered so far. Bournemouth and Burnley is a bit of a clash in styles, which makes it hard to predict. Burnley have been very well organised all season and don’t concede many, whereas Bournemouth only know how to play one way and usually find a way to score. Again, if you have Burnley players I’d probably keep them in for this. West Brom and Newcastle will be an ugly match, it looks like Alan Pardew is going to be in the WBA dugout sooner or later which will probably mean it’s safe to pick WBA players again, for the first few months anyway. Brighton and Crystal Palace will probably also means goals. Palace always seem to score twice and it’s just a matter of how many the opposition get. Pascal Gross didn’t score at Old Trafford but still walked away with three bonus points – a very rare thing indeed. Brighton have been good at home and this is sort of a derby, not a local one but they don’t like each other. I’m backing there to be goals anyway. That leaves Everton and West Ham, two clubs going through it a bit at the moment. West Ham had the quickest sacking/replacement of a manger on record whereas Everton have the slowest. Either way I would avoid both from an FPL perspective for the time being.
The deadline is 6.45pm on Tuesday – I’m willing to bet it’ll be one of the most forgotten deadlines of the season but I have told you so it’s not my fault, ok?
I’d say Hazard and Morata are good choices this week, I prefer them over Man City players because of their guaranteed minutes. Don’t get me wrong, I fully expect Man City to score a hatful but I have no idea which 11 will be on the pitch. Take your pick out of Sterling, Jesus, De Bruyne and David Silva, but expect the unexpected from Pep.
In terms of my own team, it’s Morata for Lukaku for me. Morata has back to back home games followed by trips to West Ham and Huddersfield. I fancy him to fill his boots, I might even find a way to get Hazard in too for Eriksen but I’ll hold fire on that for the time being.
De Gea, Monreal, Daniels, Mee, Salah, Eriksen, Loftus-Cheek, Brady, Morata, Kane, Vardy Subs: Elliot, McArthur, Cedric, Fernandez
It’s a quick turnaround so not too long to think about what you want to do, but I wish you good luck and may all your arrows be green. See you on Friday.