Gameweek 15 preview

December 4, 2015


05 Dec 12:45 Stoke v Man City
05 Dec 15:00 Arsenal v Sunderland
05 Dec 15:00 Man Utd v West Ham
05 Dec 15:00 Southampton v Aston Villa
05 Dec 15:00 Swansea v Leicester
05 Dec 15:00 Watford v Norwich
05 Dec 15:00 West Brom v Spurs
05 Dec 17:30 Chelsea v Bournemouth
06 Dec 16:00 Newcastle v  Liverpool
07 Dec 20:00 Everton v Crystal Palace


December is upon us. It’s the month in which you least want a major injury crisis. Unlucky Arsenal. Alexis Sanchez’s legs have been threatening to give way for a few weeks now and that finally happened last weekend. Add to that the knock suffered early on in their game against Norwich by Laurent Koscielny, and the unexpected news that Santi Cazorla will miss at least the next three months with a knee injury, and it leaves the Gunners with a very depleted squad. Just as well then that they play all of the bottom four in the five December gameweeks. It’s probably worth mentioning the the fifth gameweek is taken up with a home tie against Manchester City. Cazorla and Sanchez’s form hasn’t been the best. Had Mesut Ozil been injured Arsenal fans may view the coming month with a little more trepidation. Ozil will play, and be the man most expected to score big as they welcome Sunderland to the Emirates. Sunderland have never won there in the Premier League, but do come into the game in some kind of form since Big Sam took charge. There’ll probably be no better time to play Arsenal all season.

One player expected to make a long overdue starting return to Premier League action is David Silva. Kevin De Bruyne top scored last week and starred with Silva in taking Hull apart in the League Cup in midweek. His return will compensate for the possible absence again of Sergio Aguero, who is fast becoming too expensive a risk to invest in, much like last season. Silva has started just five league games this season – but contributed six assists. He’s good enough to pick up from where left off despite the five game lay-off. Stoke will have been pleased to see Ryan Shawcross serve his one game ban in their midweek cup tie. Silva’s return won’t guarantee automatic points against the current form defence in the league.

The only game in which Liverpool have failed to score under Jurgen Klopp is his first in charge against Spurs back in mid October. In recent weeks they’ve hit six past Southampton in the cup and four past Manchester City. This does not bode well for Newcastle. There’s even a threat that Daniel Sturridge might play. Sturridge’s injury problems mean his ownership is down to just 1.6% across the whole game. I don’t think any Buckets managers have him in their line ups. Maybe it’s asking a bit much to turn your back on Vardy, Kane, Lukaku or Ighalo, but if you were feeling brave, I’d back Sturridge for at least a double hat trick and three bonus points.


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