Gameweek 16 preview

December 13, 2016

Bournemouth v Leicester
Everton v Arsenal
Middlesbrough v Liverpool
Sunderland v Chelsea
West Ham v Burnley
Crystal Palace v Man Utd
Man City v Watford
Spurs v Hull
Stoke v Southampton
West Brom v Swansea

Midweek games always bring that prospect of a bit of tinkering, especially at this time of year with the Christmas fixtures on the horizon. There’s no planning for it. You’ve just got to take it on the chin and hope you’ve got ample on the bench.

Still the Chelsea juggernaut rolls on. This gameweek sees them start a run of four fixtures against bottom half teams. Winning them all to nil is not out of the question. It’s difficult to know which players to hang your hat on. Diego Costa is undroppable at the moment, despite being one card away from a suspension. The defence are expensive, but worth every penny. It might even be tempting to captain one of them – particularly Cesar Azpilicueta, who leads the way for defensive bonuses.

And no other defence can compete. Liverpool and Manchester City continue to struggle. Dodgy keepers and a questionable defensive philosophy make every one of their players virtually unplayable. They’re so unattractive. John Stones has even dropped into the bargain zone.

And their struggles don’t end at the back. Is it the Aguero suspension/Coutinho injury having a negative effect? Managers are growing tired with certain players. Last week, Roberto Firmino was the most transferred player out. Closely followed by Ilkay Gundogan, Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and James Milner. Other midfielders are making their presence felt and it’s no longer a risk to drop these once so reliable players.

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