Gameweek 23 preview

January 22, 2016

23 Jan 12:45 Norwich v Liverpool
23 Jan 15:00 Crystal Palace v Spurs
23 Jan 15:00 Leicester v Stoke
23 Jan 15:00 Man Utd v Southampton
23 Jan 15:00 Sunderland v Bournemouth
23 Jan 15:00 Watford v Newcastle
23 Jan 15:00 West Brom v Aston Villa
23 Jan 17:30 West Ham v Man City
24 Jan 13:30 Everton v Swansea
24 Jan 16:00 Arsenal v Chelsea


We’re a week away from the transfer window closing and teams are freshening up their squads. It’s resulting, as usual, in more players leaving than coming in, but there have been a few interesting additions that could spark some fantasy interest.

Charlie Austin is the biggest name (so far) to come in from elsewhere. He’ll likely start straight away in the continuing absence of Graziano Pelle, and can be bought for £7 million. Austin grabbed 18 goals and eight assists last season for QPR. Anywhere near half that would represent a good return.

Jonjo Shelvey’s value decreased over time during the first half of the season at Swansea. His switch to Newcastle could rejuvenate him. If one game is enough to go by, it already has. He was indirectly involved in both of Newcastle’s goals last week. Against a plummeting Watford side he could score some proper assist points. He’ll have to watch that temper of his though.

Bournemouth will be hoping that Benik Afobe is the goal getter they need to replace the long term injured Callum Wilson. He grabbed his first goal in his second start last weekend, and he’ll only set you back £6.1 million. They’re up against Sunderland tomorrow who haven’t kept a clean sheet in two months.

Also strengthening their forward options are Norwich with the purchase of Steven Naismith from Everton. Naismith is capable of a goal – he bagged a hat trick at 17 points in one week back in September – and can play anywhere across the front line. He’s good enough and to get an immediate start for Norwich and with a run of games could be a useful addition to a fantasy line up. Especially at just £5 million.

Following on from the scoring returns to action of Dimitri Payet and Sergio Aguero in recent weeks, Alexis Sanchez is in line for some gametime this weekend. His price as dropped during his injury lay off to £10.8 million. Mesut Ozil is definitely in line for an instant return after missing last Sunday’s game against Stoke. It is against Chelsea though. An despite Chelsea’s shit season, they did beat the Gunners back in September in the Mourinho days. A lot will probably depend on the battle between Diego Costa and the Arsenal defence. Costa’s been showing glimpses of goalscoring form and fantasy usefulness since Hiddink took charge. Might it be best to leave him benched this weekend?

Just a reminder about the Buckets Cup. The preliminary round starts in gameweek 28. Twenty teams will receive a bye into the first round proper in gameweek 29. Those teams are Sergio Five 0 as last year’s winners and the 19 highest scoring managers of the week. Thus far we have 18 different managers of the week. So as we stand if you’ve won a manager of the week award, you’ve got a bye. This will probably change. Go Buffoons Go!!!, Greensmeansbusiness, GrievousAngelRangel and Pretty Schitty City are the teams most at risk of losing their bye. They all won their MOTW prizes with scores in the 50’s. If you’ve set your sights on a cup victory, best post a high score soon to give yourself a head start.


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