Gameweek 13 preview

November 27, 2014

29 Nov 12:45 West Brom v Arsenal
29 Nov 15:00 Burnley v Aston Villa
29 Nov 15:00 Liverpool v Stoke
29 Nov 15:00 Man Utd v Hull
29 Nov 15:00 QPR v Leicester
29 Nov 15:00 Swansea v Crystal Palace
29 Nov 15:00 West Ham v Newcastle
29 Nov 17:30 Sunderland v Chelsea
30 Nov 13:30 Southampton v Man City
30 Nov 16:00 Spurs v Everton

 

We’re a third of the way through. Uriah’s have been top of the Buckets League since gameweek four. They built a commanding lead up to week nine of 41 points, but have seen that slowly chipped away over the last three gameweeks to just 12 points. As we approach the second third of the season, the end of the fourth month and the start of the winter schedule, are we about to see new leaders of the Buckets League?

It seems unlikely we’re about to see new leaders of the Premier League. Chelsea have established a six point lead over Southampton and an eight point lead over City. They’ve almost twice as many points as Arsenal and more than twice as many points as Liverpool. It’s no surprise that a large amount of teams have the full quota of Chelsea players. There’s not a great deal of rotation going on at Stamford Bridge either. It’s pretty much the same eleven every week barring injuries and/or suspensions, meaning managers can be reasonably confident of opting for the likes of Willian, Oscar and Azpilicueta if they’re finding it difficult to squeeze in Fabregas, Costa, Hazard or Ivanovic. Their march towards the title shouldn’t be hindered by an on/off Sunderland team this weekend.

Positions may alter below Chelsea however, as Southampton head into a tough run of fixtures. The Saints must face Aguero (as Man City will now be known), United, Everton, Chelsea and Arsenal (twice!) between now and the break for the FA Cup third round in the first week of January. It will be interesting to see how they cope, how many points they manage to pick up, where they end up in the league, and most importantly for the purposes of this blog, whether there’ll be a mass cull of their players from Buckets squads. Graziano Pelle and Dusan Tadic have only managed two assists between them since their 8-0 hammering of Sunderland. It already could be time for a rethink on their attacking options. Their most reliable players are Nathaniel Clyne and Ryan Bertrand, but it’s highly likely there won’t be as many clean sheet points available to them over the next six weeks or so. Although, as they proved in their draw at Aston Villa last week, both are more than capable of picking up goals and assists.

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