Gameweek 18 preview

December 23, 2016

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

It’s the Boxing Day fixtures. Or at least eight of them are. We’ve 30 games taking place over a 10 day period encompassing three gameweeks. The only day between the 26th December and 4th January without a Premier League game is the 29th December.

Two of those three gameweeks will complete December. The current manager of the month table looks like this…

same The Craggy Islanders
Adrian Roche
53 273
same Yeboah’s Right Foot
Paul Murray
64 271
up Cooksters
Peter Cook
59 257
up Aquamar 15
Noel Driver
56 247
down FC Caligula
Ajay Supeda
44 245
up INIT FC
Mustafa khan
50 242
down Kebab Eaters Utd
Paul Howard
42 237
up Go Buffoons Go
Jitesh Lakhani
55 237
up Hucking Fell
P Hawkins
63 233
10  down Biscuitmen
Chris Morton
39 233
11  up Dj daz
darren frankland
73 233

 

Not all that different from the actual league table with our top two seemingly fighting it out for the £60 prize. Might be even worth playing a chip. An Ibrahimovic hat trick against Sunderland on a triple captain could bring someone into contention.

He’s the man most likely, particularly this weekend with Diego Costa suspended. He fell way off the radar following a five week run up to gameweek 11 where he didn’t register a single goal or assist and picked up two bookings. He was dropping out of teams at an average rate of 200,000 a week in the worldwide game. And when Aguero picked up his suspension only 73,000 took the punt on bringing him back in. That’s 73,000 in comparison to 317,000 opting for Harry Kane. Ibrahimovic has outscored Kane 25-6 in that time. That’s potentially a 40+ point swing if you factor in captain picks.

And now that Costa is out for a game, is it worth considering bringing him in to replace the Chelsea man? Well, it depends when and for how much you bought Costa. Those who have had him since the early days might not fancy the hit. It’s only a week and given Costa’s form, dispensing of his services might not be worth it in the long run. I doubt even the most disciplined of managers would be able to simply kick Costa out for a week and then instantly replace him once the ban is over. What if Ibrahimovic scores that hat trick?

There may be another way. Those 317,00 cursing Harry Kane’s sudden dip in form have a ready made way in. Kane should have filled his boots at home to Burnley and Hull. Four points from those two games isn’t good enough. Also note that United’s fixtures up to FA Cup week are also much more favourable.

Merry Christmarse.

 

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