Pick of the week – GW15

For the third time in a week, a new gameweek is here, and Pick of the Week is here to give you some tips for this weekend’s games at FantasyBet.

This midweek, we had some amazing football, featuring floodlights, goals in all 10 matches, and most of the “big guns” winning their match. Aston Villa finally won again, Southampton lost their second in a row in their “week or terror” and Leicester lost. Again.

Let’s start with a quick look at our chosen ones from the mid-week fixtures:

Wilfried Bony was involved when Swansea did their job, beating QPR 2-0 at home. Bony assisted his teammate Ki Sung-Yueng, who gave Swansea the lead 12 minutes before the full-time whistle. That means 5 points in the book, which is okay. It’s not amazing, but it’s not too bad.

Leighton Baines and Everton disappointed many fantasy managers, including us. Hull managed to grab a point, and popped the clean sheet score for Baines, who also picked up a yellow card for his late challenge on Elmohamady. That means, one petty point, in addition to our unconditional wrath.

Yaya Touré did not manage to make an influence for fantasy managers, in spite of Manchester City scoring four goals. That means two tiny points in the book. We feel cheated!

All points combined, 8 points is way below our expectations. To all who followed our advise: we’re sorry, but that’s (fantasy) football sometimes (why didn’t we pick Agüero??)

Let’s move on to take a look at the schedule ahead.

The weekend will kick off in Newcastle, where the home team welcome the team-to-beat this season. Chelsea has been lethal this season, who is coming from a comfortable 3-0 win against Spurs. Even withouth Diego Costa, others stepped forward and took their responsibility: Replacement Didier Drogba shone with both a goal and assist, and the replacement’s replacement Loic Remy also got on the scoresheet during the 24 minutes he was on the pitch. Newcastle, on the other hand, is in reasonable form, especially home, where they have won their last three. In fact, only Man City has managed to go home from St. James’ Park with three points in the bag this season. Perhaps this is going to be tougher than expected for the league leaders.

On a final note, Newcastle has won this match the last two years, and the Toon army would most certainly be ecstatic if they were able to do it again.

In an anticipating Monday Night Football, we have another big test for Southampton: In-form Manchester United. Southampton is almost through their top four-examination, where their top four contention were put to the test. Both Manchester teams and Arsenal features in this “exam”, and Saints have gotten nothing out of the first two. Are they about to fail their exam?

Manchester United has been finding the right track recently, but have been quite weak away from Old Trafford this season. Perhaps this is the possibility for Southampton to show their intent this year. United will climb into third position with a win, passing Southampton who could, symbolically enough, be out of the top four if they lose on Monday night.

Aston Villa finally scraped a win this weekend, with savior Christian Benteke back in action. They’ll have an excellent chance to keep the momentum going and gain some confidence when they face bottom placed Leicester, who just can’t seem to get things right these days.

Things are running smoothly for Man City these days. 4 wins in 5 matches, and the gap to Chelsea has now shrunk to 6 points before Everton pay their visits to Etihad this weekend. We’ve witnessed Man City win against Sunderland and Southampton in impressive fashion lately, and not many would leave Roberto Martinez’ boys much of a chance of getting anything from the Saturday evening fixture.

Brendon Rodgers and Liverpool has been able to turn around the bad streak of results the latest week, with wins against Stoke and Leicester. They face Sunderland this Saturday, who will be trying their best to get their first win at Anfield since 1983. 15 meetings in the league have resulted in eight Liverpool wins and seven draws. This is Liverpool’s chance to winning three league matches in a row since their 11-win streak last season.

Pick of the week

So, these are the chosen three this weekend:

1. Sergio Agüero

It should come as a surprise to no one. No further elaboration should be necessary. Just pick Agüero. Next please!

2. Christian Benteke

Let’s call this the gamble of the week, since Benteke in no way has been able to show what he’s good for, except for the excellent winning goal at Selhurst Park in the midweek. Injuries and suspensions have ruined the season so far, but we believe Aston Villa might find some traction now, and Leicester at home could be a good fit for the strong Belgian.

3. Christian Eriksen

The young Dane has become one of the most exciting offensive talents in the Premier league after his move from Ajax last year. He is making an average of two key passes each game he plays, but it has only materialised into one assist so far. His main influence has been his goalscoring potential. 5 goals in 14 matches is decent, taking into account that Tottenham score an unimpressive 1.29 goals each match. Spurs is matched against Crystal Palace at White Hart Lane this weekend, which could be a good chance for Tottenham to strike one back, lead by Eriksen, after the heavy 0-3 defeat to Chelsea in the midweek.

That wraps it up for now. Remember to submit your teams for this weekend’s games. The registration closes 20 minutes before kick-off of the first match, and the deadline for submitting a lineup is 10 minutes before kick-off.

Eirik Henriksen

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