Gameweek 36 preview

April 27, 2012

This is the gameweek that may well decide the season – our season, and the Premier League season. We’ve got 14 games to chew over this week. So, I want some triple figure scores by Wednesday. There are two gameweeks left after this. If ever there was a time to make your late move, then this is it. It’s your last chance to avoid mid table obscurity or top ten also ran.

So who is playing twice, and what are the options?

Liverpool play Norwich away and Fulham at home. Norwich will score. Fulham will score. Liverpool- who knows. It’s cup final weekend on May 5th. Gerrard has been in and out of the team over recent weeks, so may be rested for Wembley. As may other key players. But let’s be honest, even their key players aren’t worth a lot of fantasy points.

Fulham play Everton and Liverpool away. Either side of checking out Penny Lane, Another Place, Albert Dock and riding the ferry, Clint Dempsey could add to his leading midfielder total. Criminally overlooked in the recent player of the year awards, Dempsey is the most potent attacking midfielder in the country, whose form hasn’t dipped and slipped, unlike Silva, Bale, Walcott etc.

Stoke are at home against Arsenal and Everton. It’s a tough place to go blah blah blah bollocks. To be fair, the last time they were beaten at home was by Valencia. One more win for Arsenal should land them Champions League footy next season, but they’re going to their least favourite place. Expect Pulis’ team to kick lumps out of Arsenal, but for Arsenal to ultimately win. I’d fancy Stoke to score in both games. Maybe Crouchy would be a good bet to get a goal in each. But clean sheets are unlikely.

Everton are at home to Fulham, and away to Stoke. Everton are a team in form. As usual, it’s come too late for them to win anything, or mount a European challenge. Clean sheets are possible, and there’s a good selection of players who are playing well – Osman, Hibbert, Fellaini, Pienaar and Jelavic. My advice – follow the Jelavic road.

Chelsea have two home ties against QPR and Newcastle. Chelsea should be flying, but will be mindful of the fact that they have more games left than any other team. And all of them are tough for different reasons. QPR, without pre-match handshakes, and plenty of pre-match tension won’t be a walkover. Newcastle will be pissed off that all their hard work may amount to nothing if their opponents do win the Champions League. I’m sure they’ll still want to fnish fourth, and my head says two home wins. Mata, Lampard and maybe even Torres to get some good points this week.

Newcastle are away to Chelsea and away to Wigan. Despite Wigan’s recent good spell, an away win is on the cards. Cisse will score more goals than Wigan. Whether he can score more goals than Chelsea is another matter. Six points out of these two games could plant them in third, and then it’ll probably be a case of hanging on and hoping for the best over the last two games. Stick with Cisse – he’s your best captaincy bet for this gameweek by some distance.

Bolton continue their fixture catch up playing Sunderland away and Spurs at home. Dare I say it –  that Muamba heart attack tactic has paid off. Having those games in hand has worked a treat. No-one has pulled away from them. The other threatened teams have all played a game more. Win both of these, and they could end the week in 15th. That’s the incentive. Petrov, Eagles and N’Gog all put in good scoring performances last week. They proved that no matter how naff the team, if they’re playing twice, pick ’em.

Lastly Spurs. They have Blackburn at home, then Bolton away. Both are must win games. Spurs’s star players have faded. Gareth Bale would have been booted out of my team a long time back if it weren’t for the fact I only bought him at 8.8 million, and I’d be seriously out of pocket selling him. And there’s still always the chance he’ll turn it on for a game. Which he may do this week – as may Van Der Vaart, Adebayor, Modric, Walker, Lennon and Defoe. They can’t go on losing. Against two relegation threatened teams, they should win. Clean sheets have been hard to come by, but the aforementioned attacking players are always worth a punt.

United, City and Arsenal don’t play twice. So who do you replace? That’s the real quandary – bearing in mind City and United play each other, and could well cancel each other out. There’s the risky option of transferring out your United and City players for one week. Bringing in Jelavic, Crouch, Petrov or maybe Pogrebnyak for one week only. In the hope they’ll get a goal or two – or three. And then re-instate the big boys the following week. Just a thought. Good luck.

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