Thursday, 28 November 2013

Predictions For Premier League Gameweek 13

It's that time of the week again when I attempt to predict the outcomes of the upcoming Premier League games. I fared well enough last week with six correct outcomes and four incorrect, but crucially I had no perfect scores. It means I stay in ninth place in my predictions league as the leaders continue to move further away from me. Here's a look at how the top 10 in my predictions league stands.

Pos.    Player.                             Week.    Total. 

1.          Paul Kingston                            95            990

2.          Wayne Hubbard                        110          905

3.          KildareGunner                            65           835

4.          Abu K                                        65           780

5.          Karl-Yngve Lund                        90           765

6.          Sulabh                                       15           760

7.          MickTheGooner                         90           725

8.          Gaurav Ahuja                             45           670

9.          Michael Sheehy                         70            645

10.        TheDognash                              70           615            

Saturday November 30

Aston Villa v Sunderland 

3pm GMT, Villa Park, Birmingham 

Villa did very well to get a draw after going 2-0 down at West Brom on Monday night. They haven't been great at home so far though with four defeats and only six goals in six games. They've managed to move five points clear of the drop zone and a win against the bottom club would put them safely in mid table. 

Christian Benteke is going through a dry spell at the moment and it's not easy to see which other Villa players might perform for fantasy managers but Brad Guzan hasn't done too badly.

Sunderland are back at the foot of the table after losing at Stoke last week. They have only one point and two goals in six away games and only Palace have scored less goals than them. They also have the worst defensive record in the league and have to improve on so many fronts if they're going to get out of the mess they're in.

Like Villa the Sunderland players aren't exactly impressing at the moment.

I think this will be a very close game and could well end in a draw.

Prediction: 1-1

Cardiff City v Arsenal

3pm GMT, Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff

Cardiff got a great point at home to United on Sunday and showed their never say die spirit to equalise so late on. They have beaten City at home already, but their lack of goals Is their biggest problem. They will relish another home game against one of the big boys and will do all they can to cause another upset.

Peter Whittingham is worth considering for fantasy managers due to his set piece deliveries.

Arsenal are four points clear at the top of the league and have taken 13 points from their six away games. Only United have scored more away goals than them and only West Ham have conceded less. Some of their injured players are returning and they look like they might have a real chance of putting in a title challenge.

Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Ozil haven't performed for fantasy managers in their last two games but surely that will change soon. Theo Walcott, Santi Cazorla and Per Mertesacker all look like they could be good options too and Olivier Giroud continues to impress.

I think Cardiff will make Arsenal work very hard for a result, but Arsenal will just edge it.

Prediction: 1-2

Everton v Stoke City

3pm GMT, Goodison Park, Liverpool

Everton should have beaten Liverpool last week, but yet again they are drawing too many games.  They're unbeaten at home and only one point outside the top four, but they could do with scoring a few more goals. A home game against Stoke is a game they have to win if they have any real top four ambitions. 

Romelu Lukaku showed how good he can be last week with Kevin Mirallas impressing even though he should have been sent off. Phil Jagielka, Seamus Coleman and Leighton Baines are all worth considering too although Baines is injured.

Stoke got a much needed win at home to Sunderland last week and they seem to have found their shooting boots again. Maybe they're starting to remember how to play actual football now that Tony Pulis has departed. They have taken only four points from their six away games and traditionally have struggled on the road in the Premier League.

Asmir Begovic, Erik Pieters and Ryan Shawcross have been Stoke's best fantasy bets so far, but Charlie Adam might just be a candidate now they're scoring goals.

I think Everton should be strong enough at home to win this game.

Prediction: 2-1

Norwich City v Crystal Palace

3pm GMT, Carrow Road, Norwich

Norwich put in a good display away to Newcastle last week, but came away with nothing. They have only won two of their six home games and will need to do better at home if they're going to stay up.They're in a perilous position and need to take the three points off one of the four teams below them.

With two goals in his last two games Leroy Fer could possibly be the Norwich player to shine for fantasy managers.

Palace got their second win of the season last week away to Hull and all of a sudden they're off the foot of the table. They had lost their previous five away games and only Sunderland have scored less goals away from home. They're the lowest scorers in the league and look like they lack the quality needed to stay up despite Tony Pulis taking over the reins.

I can't see any Palace players to recommend to fantasy managers.

This could be a tense nervous affair but I think Norwich will manage to win it.

Prediction: 1-0

West Ham United v Fulham 

3pm GMT, Upton Park, London

West Ham are only outside the relegation zone on goal difference and haven't got a fit striker available to play. Only the bottom two have scored less than them and they have only taken four points in six home games. If they're going to steer clear of the relegation zone they need to get some of their strikers fit and they need to beat Fulham too. 

West Ham defenders had been good up until recently but Ravel Morrison could be a good option in midfield now that they are leaking more goals. 

Fulham have lost their last four games and conceded 11 goals in the process. They're in the relegation zone and Martin Jol might not have much longer in the manager's seat. They have actually done better away from home with six points which is a lot better than they usually do on the road.

I don't think there are any Fulham players worth considering for fantasy managers.

It's hard to know which way this game will go and it might just end in a draw.

Prediction: 1-1

Newcastle United v West Bromwich Albion

5.30pm GMT, St. James' Park, Newcastle 

Newcastle have won their last three games in a row to move up to eighth place and they're only two points off the top four. They have only lost one of their six home games and seem to be finding some consistency to go with the talented players they have. As long as Loric Remy keeps scoring they will have a good chance of making further progress.

Remy is by far the best fantasy choice in the Newcastle team with Yohan Cabaye possibly worth considering too.

West Brom went 2-0 up early on at home to Villa on Monday night, but they couldn't hold on to their lead and ended up drawing 2-2. They're not easy to beat away from home with only one defeat in six games, but they have drawn four of those games. A win would put them two points behind Newcastle, but it won't be an easy task for them. 

Gareth McAuley is probably the best fantasy bet in the West Brom team and Shane Long has to be considered too with three goals in his last two games.

I have a feeling this will be a very tight game and might end up a draw.

Prediction: 2-2

Sunday December 1

Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester United

12.00pm GMT, White Hart Lane, London

Spurs have struggled to score goals this season but their defensive record had seen them through until last week's six goal thrashing at City. Only Hull and Palace have scored less goals at home than  Spurs and they haven't scored in their last three games. If they can't sort out their inability to score goals their season could be going nowhere fast. 

Until last week Hugo Lloris, Jan Vertonghen and Kyle Walker were all good fantasy buys and I think they might still be.

United were twice unable to hold on to their lead away to Cardiff last week and ended up drawing 2-2. They're the top scorers away from home but they have been letting in too many goals away from home for their own good. They're only seven points behind the leaders but still don't look like they have what it takes to defend their title.

Wayne Rooney is the United player impressing most at the moment with Patrice Evra doing well too. 

It's not easy to predict how this game is going to go but I have a feeling it will end in a draw.

Prediction: 1-1

Hull City v Liverpool 

2.05pm GMT, KC Stadium, Hull

Hull still have the best defensive record at home along with City and Southampton, but the defeat at home to Palace last week was a blow for them. They have taken 11 points in their six home games despite being the joint lowest scorers at home. Their opponents at home haven't been the toughest so far, but Liverpool will put that defensive record to a real test. 

It's not so easy to see any Hull players who might excel in this game in particular.

Liverpool have only won two of their six away games and conceded 10 goals in the process, but they're still second in the table. Only City have scored more goals than them and Luis Suarez is absolutely on fire at the moment with nine goals in seven league games since returning from suspension. They have had only had one clean sheet in their last eight games and showed a real defensive vulnerability at Everton last week.

Suarez is a must have for fantasy managers at the moment with both Daniel Sturridge and Steven Gerrard doing very good too.

I think Liverpool will have too much firepower for Hull and will win by a couple of goals.

Prediction: 1-3

Chelsea v Southampton 

4.10pm, GMT, Stamford Bridge, London

Chelsea have won five of their six home games and only City have scored more home goals than them. Despite not being at their best yet they're only four points behind the leaders and look like they have a very good chance of winning the league. If they're going to do that they will have to improve away from home, but their home results can't get much better.

Eden Hazard, Oscar and John Terry are the Chelsea players looking best for fantasy managers.

Southampton have the best defensive record in the league but they have only scored four goals away from home. They're still in a good position in the league but they are in the middle of a very tough run of games. It will be a tough task for them to get anything from this game and they will have to perform better than they did at Arsenal last week to do so.

Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert, Dejan Lovren, Jose Fonte and Artur Boruc have all done really well so far this season but they won't find it easy to continue that form in their current run of games.

I think Southampton will make a real game of this one, but Chelsea will get a narrow victory. 

Prediction: 2-1

Manchester City v Swansea City

4.10pm GMT, Etihad Stadium, Manchester

City are in sparkling form at home having won all six games so far and scored 26 goals in the process. They have scored more goals at home than any other team has scored home and away combined and they also have the joint best defensive record at home. They beat Spurs 6-0 last week and will be hoping for more of the same against Swansea.

Sergio Aguero is a must have for fantasy managers and has to be made captain when they are at home. It's hard to ignore Yaya Toure and Alvaro Negredo too while Costel Pantilimon, Pablo Zabaleta, Jesus Navas and Samir Nasri are worth considering also.

Swansea got a good win away to Fulham last week but a trip to City is a different thing altogether. They have won three of their six away games though and will feel they have a chance despite City's spectacular home record. They have struggled after Thursday night European games this season though and a trip to City could be a big ask.

I can't see any Swansea players excelling for fantasy managers at the moment and they might be better off avoided for this week at least.

It's hard to see anything other than a resounding win for City in this game.

Prediction: 3-0

That's it for this week.

See you next week.

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