Gameweek 4 preview

September 13, 2012


15 Sep 12:45 Norwich   v   West Ham
15 Sep 15:00 Arsenal   v   Southampton
15 Sep 15:00 Aston Villa   v   Swansea
15 Sep 15:00 Fulham   v   West Brom
15 Sep 15:00 Man Utd   v   Wigan
15 Sep 15:00 QPR   v   Chelsea
15 Sep 15:00 Stoke City   v   Man City
15 Sep 17:30 Sunderland   v   Liverpool
16 Sep 16:00 Reading   v   Tottenham
17 Sep 20:00 Everton   v   Newcastle

Back to normal this week – a full complement of fixtures, and no team playing twice. And hopefully, no postponed fixtures. Although the international break may have been unkind to some squads with Cole, Terry, Van Persie and Kagawa all picking up knocks while away on duty. Aguero may be back. Rooney probably won’t be.

Chelsea face QPR, so for those that clung on to Hazard, Ivanovic, Torres etc can move them off their bench and back into their starting XI’s. Note Anton Ferdinand is “doubtful” aswell. Do us all a favour and keep all three of them off the pitch. Away from the hysteria surrounding the game, it should be another easy win for Chelsea, maybe another clean sheet, and possibly another bunch of Hazard assisted Torres goals. QPR could give debuts to Julio Cesar and Stephane M’Bia, arguably their two biggest name signings from deadline day, but it also looks like its going to take a few more weeks for the entire team to click. You could probably pick a starting XI of players they bought in August. Yes, it’s finally time to drop Shaun Derry.

Arsenal could continue their run of clean sheets. It’s been a tough start for Southampton, who have played both Manchester teams, and now face a tough trip to the Emirates. Although it’s worth remembering that Southampton have scored two goals against both Manchester teams, and led against both Manchester teams, and saved penalties from both Manchester teams.

Michael Owen signed for Stoke this week. Don’t go picking him. Waste of time. He’s cheap for a reason. He won’t play too much. Yet, I wouldn’t put it past the former Liverpool, Real Madrid and Manchester United man to come off the bench and grab a late one against City this weekend. Because that’s what he does. He won’t score another till April. So – no, Manchester City might not get that first elusive clean sheet this weekend, and neither might United. Wigan at home may look like a banker, but the red defence has been shaky, and Wigan have got this knack of pulling surprise results out of the bag. If Van Persie plays, they should score enough, but Fergie’s already chopping and changing his keepers, which is a bad sign. Don’t bank on any United defenders yet, until we get into the meat of the season and they go on that predictable run of unbeaten games just after Christmas.  

Any other new signings made on deadline day have had two weeks to bed into their new teams. Some got off to a flying start. Steven Fletcher scored two on his debut and has that dodgy looking Liverpool defence to terrorise this week. His value has surprisingly stuck at 7 million, so not too many managers are taking chances on him just yet. Tottenham should play Clint Dempsey, but maybe not Hugo Lloris, as they go in search of a win. Southampton smashed their transfer record to buy Gaston Ramirez. He has to start. So should Pablo Hernandez at Swansea. And Javi Garcia and Maicon could come in for City.


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