Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Predictions For Premier League Gameweek 24

It's that time of the week again when I attempt to predict the outcomes of the upcoming Premier League games. I managed to get one perfect scoreline, six correct outcomes and four incorrect last week. It means I'm still fourth in my predictions league for the moment at least.

Here's a look at how my predictions league stands.

Pos.      Player.                          Week.      Total.
___      ______                          ____        _____
1.         antonius_ronny_s           70            1475
2.         AblockGooner              65            1245
3.         RSun624                       40            1230
4.         JamrockRover               95            1135
5.         ahujag                           85             1125
6.         Rutland Gooner             40             1000
7.         birchy1962                    40             1000
8.         TheDognash                  70              985
9.         goonerdhanesh                0              965
10.       Plasticninja                    75              925

Tuesday January 29

Aston Villa v Newcastle United

7.45pm GMT, Villa Park, Birmingham

Villa have only taken two points in their last six games and they blew two goal leads in both of those games. They are only one point above the relegation zone and have only won two of their 11 home games. They have the worst defensive record in the league and relegation is a very real possibility for them.

Christian Bentdke might be the only Villa player worth considering for fantasy managers.

Newcastle are in even worse form than Villa and they have lost 10 of their last 13 league games. They're only a point ahead of Villa and they are the only team without an away win this season. They have signed plenty of new players in the transfer window and they need those new players to perform very quickly.

It's not easy to know which if any players are going to shine for Newcastle for the rest of the season.

This is a real relegation six pointer and I think it could end up all square.

Prediction: 2-2

Queens Park Rangers v Manchester City

7.45pm GMT, Loftus Road, London

QPR are still rooted to the foot of the table and they're five points away from safety. They have only won two games so far and they have drawn far too many. No other team has scored less home goals than QPR.

I can't see any QPR players that look likely to perform for fantasy managers.

City have only lost one away game and only Swansea have a better defensive record away from home. They managed to close the gap to the leaders to five points and they won't give up their title without a fight. They need to score more goals away from home though and turn a few of their draws into wins.

David Silva and Carlos Tevez are probably the best fantasy bets in the City team with Matija Nastasic as an outside bet.

I think City will be too strong for QPR and take all three points.

Prediction: 0-2

Stoke City v Wigan Athletic

7.45pm GMT, Britannia Stadium, Stoke

Stoke have only lost one home game so far, but their defence has slipped badly in recent weeks. They have conceded 13 goals in their last four games and taken only one point in the process. They will still fancy their chances at home to a team in the relegation zone.

With Stoke's defence struggling in recent weeks it might not be a bad idea to avoid their defenders.

Wigan have taken only five points in their last 10 games and they're back in the relegation zone. They have managed to win three away games and have performed better defensively away from home though. It will be a long hard fight against relegation for them but it's something they're used to.

There aren't too many Wigan players performing well enough to be worth taking a gamble on.

I think Stoke will get back to winning ways with a narrow victory.

Prediction: 1-0

Sunderland v Swansea City

7.45pm GMT, Stadium of Light, Sunderland

Sunderland have won five of their last eight games and moved up to eleventh in the league. They have a good defensive record at home but they haven't scored too many goals at home either.

Stephen Fletcher, Simon Mignolet and Adam Johnson are probably the best fantasy choices in the Sunderland team.

Swansea have got the best defensive record away from home in the league. They are not an easy team to beat but they still play good football. They have a Capital One Cup final to look forward to and they're still in the top half of the league.

Miguel Michu is Swansea's best fantasy performer but he hasn't scored well in the last few games. Sam Davies and Jonathan de Guzman could be the players to look at right now.

I can see this being a very tight game and ending in a draw.

Prediction: 1-1

Wednesday January 30

Arsenal v Liverpool

7.45pm GMT, Emirates Stadium, London

Arsenal got their first league win of 2013 with the 5-1 thrashing of West Ham last week. No team has scored more home goals than Arsenal although their defence hasn't been as strong as it should be at home. They are four points off a top four place and need to take all three points in this game to keep up the pressure on the teams above them.

Theo Walcott, Santi Cazorla and Olivier Giroud are probably the best fantasy choices among the Arsenal players.

Liverpool haven't beaten any of the teams in the top half of the table yet this season. They have only three wins in 11 away games and have struggled for consistency all season. Their FA Cup defeat to Oldham at the weekend was a real blow to them.

Steven Gerrard is in excellent form for fantasy managers at the moment and Luis Suarez has been all season.

I think Arsenal have enough to get all three points as long as they can play at their best.

Prediction: 2-1

Everton v West Bromwich Albion

7.45pm GMT, Goodison Park, Liverpool

Everton have only lost three of their 23 league games, but they have drawn 11 of them. They're fifth in the table with real hopes of a top four finish and are a very hard team to beat. They need to turn more of their draws into victories if they're going to reach the promised land of the top four.

Marouane Fellaini is still the best fantasy bet at Everton, but Leighton Baines has come good again in recent weeks.

West Brom got a draw against Villa in their last game to end a run of three defeats in a row. They have a good home record, but they have lost six of their 11 away games so far. They're still safely in the top half of the table and that's a good return for them in any season.

I still think West Brom share their points out among the team and none of their players are gaining enough points to pick for fantasy managers. Romelu Lukaku might just be the exception to that rule in recent weeks though.

I think Everton will get the three points to keep up the pressure on the teams above them.

Prediction: 2-0

Norwich City v Tottenham Hotspur

7.45pm GMT, Carrow Road, Norwich

Norwich have taken only one point in their last six games and they're sliding back towards the wrong end of the table again. They have a pretty good home record though with only three defeats in 11 games and have taken some notable scalps. They need to find the defensive stability that was the hallmark of their great run a while back.

Robert Snodgrass is probably the Norwich player most likely to perform for fantasy managers.

Spurs are doing very well in fourth place at the moment, but the FA Cup defeat to Leeds on Sunday was a blow. They have won six of their 11 away games so far and only United have scored more goals on the road than them. There's still a long way to go but they have to be favourites to keep their top four spot.

Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon are probably the best fantasy players in the Spurs team at the moment but they need someone to put away the chances they're making.

I think Spurs will have too much attacking strength and get the win they want.

Prediction: 1-3

Fulham v West Ham United

8pm GMT, Craven Cottage, London

Fulham have only won two of their last 15 league games, but they're still six points clear of the drop zone. They have only won four of their 11 home games and they will need to improve on that if they are to stay clear of the relegation dog fight.

Dimitar Berbatov still looks like the Fulham player most likely to succeed.

West Ham have only won once in their last eight games and they're only a point ahead of Fulham. They have faded badly after their good start to the season and they need to get a few more wins on the board. They have only managed six goals in 11 away games which is the lowest tally of any team so far.

It's tough to see what West Ham players to choose at the moment.

I think Fulham just about have enough to take the points at home.

Prediction: 2-1

Manchester United v Southampton

8pm GMT, Old Trafford, Manchester

United have won 10 of their 11 home games and are the joint top scorers at home along with Arsenal. They're five points clear at the top of the table and looking good to win the title. Despite their defensive frailties they have only conceded two goals in their last four league games.

Robin van Persie is the outstanding fantasy choice among the United players with Patrice Evra and Rafael da Silva doing very well too. It's hard to know which other attacking players to choose from the United squad though.

Southampton have only lost twice in their last 13 league games and they're now four points clear of the drop zone. They have only won twice away from home though and it will be a huge task for them to get anything from this game. If they are going to stay up it will be because of their ability to score goals.

Rickie Lambert is the best fantasy option in the Southampton team and Jason Puncheon isn't a bad choice either.

I think Southampton will make a game of it but United's firepower will see them home.

Prediction: 3-1

Reading v Chelsea

8pm GMT, Madjeski Stadium, Reading

Reading have won three of their last four league games, but they're still in the relegation zone. Only Wigan have conceded more goals than Reading at home and their defence could still be their downfall. They have only lost three of their 11 home games so far though.

Despite the recent upturn in their fortunes it's still not easy to see which Reading players to pick.

Chelsea have won six of their last eight league games but it's the ones they didn't win that have caught the headlines. They have won seven of their 11 away games and only City and Swansea have conceded less goals away from home. They have the players to be challenging for the title but their home form has more or less ruled them out.

Juan Mata, Cesar Azpilicueta and Demba Ba are probably the best fantasy bets among the Chelsea players at the moment.

I think Chelsea will get their eighth away win of the season.

Prediction: 1-3

That's it for this week but as usual free to point out where I may have gone right or wrong as the case might be.

See you next week.

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