Thursday, 19 December 2013

Predictions for Premier League Gameweek 17

It's that time of the week again when I attempt to predict the outcomes of the upcoming Premier League games. Last week went pretty well for me with one perfect scoreline, six correct outcomes and three incorrect. It meant I moved back up to eighth in my predictions league, but there's still a long way to go to catch the leaders. Here's a look at how the top 10 in my predictions league stands.

Pos.    Player.                        Week.    Total

1.         Paul Kingston              155       1185

2.         Wayne Hubbard          170       1160

3.         MickTheGooner            65       1020

4.         Abu K                           105      1000

5.         KildareGunner              120       985

6.         Karl-Yngve Lund            25        880

7.         Sulabh                           35        845

8.         Michael Sheehy           125       840

9.         Gaurav Ahuja                85        770

10.       goonerdhanesh            90        740

Saturday December 21

Liverpool v Cardiff City

12.45pm GMT, Anfield, Liverpool

Liverpool are in great goal scoring form at the moment and back up to second in the table. They will go top for a few days at least if they win this game and only an Arsenal win over Chelsea will prevent them from being league leaders at Christmas. They have won seven of their eight games at home with only City scoring more home goals and only Hull conceding less.

Luis Suarez is an absolute must for fantasy managers this season and he just had to be captain too.

Cardiff got a much needed win against West Brom last week and it gave them a little breathing space in the fight against relegation. They have only won once in eight away games and only Sunderland have scored less goals on the road. Cardiff have only managed four goals in their last eight games and need to find a way to score more.

It would take a brave fantasy manager to include Cardiff players in their team, but Steven Caulker, Ben Turner, David Marshall and Peter Whittingham have all performed well so far.

I think Liverpool will have too much offensively for Cardiff and win by a few goals.

Prediction: 3-0

Crystal Palace v Newcastle United

3pm GMT, Selhurst Park, London

Palace have been reborn since the departure of Ian Holloway and look like they have a genuine chance of staying up. They fought right to the end in their 2-1 loss at Chelsea last week and had only conceded one goal in their previous five games. They have managed to win three of their eight home games which is pretty good considering only Villa have scored less goals at home.

Marouane Chamakh is the in form player for Palace with Barry Bannon and their defenders worth considering too.

Newcastle have taken 16 points in their last seven league games and are up to sixth in the table. They have won four of their away games and lost the other four and they tend to win the close games. If they're to continue their progress this is the type of game they need to win but Palace won't make it easy.

Loric Remy hasn't scored for a few games now, but he still looks like a good fantasy purchase along with Yohan Cabaye and maybe Yoan Gouffran.

This could be a very close game and I have a feeling it will end in a draw.

Prediction: 1-1

Fulham v Manchester City

3pm GMT, Ceaven Cottage, London

Fulham conceded four goals away to Everton last week and will not relish the visit of free scoring City. They have looked better since the departure of Martin Jol but their defence has been very suspect. They have only won two of their eight home games and have lost seven of the last eight overall.

Dimitar Berbatov has scored twice in his last two games and can be a good fantasy choice when he goes on a run.

City are an unstoppable machine at home, but they have only taken eight points in eight away games. They won 6-3 at home to Arsenal last week, but they have lost to Cardiff, Aston Villa and Sunderland and that's certainly not championship winning form. If they can sort out that away form they will be clear favourites to lift the trophy at the end of the season. 

With Sergio Aguero injured Alvaro Negredo could be the City striker to have while Yaya Toure, Pablo Zabaleta and David Silva are all very good fantasy choices too. 

Despite City's poor away form I still expect them to win this game comfortably.

Prediction: 1-3

Manchester United v West Ham United

3pm GMT, Old Trafford, Manchester

United got back to winning ways away to Villa last week, but they have lost their last two home league games. They have only won three of their eight home games and only managed eight goals in the process which is so unlike United at home. They're 10 points behind the leaders but face a run of games where they will feel they can get themselves back in with a shout. 

With Robin van Persie injured Wayne Rooney is the United player most likely to succeed and Patrice Evra isn't doing too badly either.

West Ham have only won once in eight away games and have only won one of their last nine games. They have struggled to score goals but they have a fairly good defensive record away from home in particular. They're only a point above the relegation zone and have to face United and Arsenal in their next two games.

Jussi Jaaskelainen is by far the best fantasy choice in the West Ham team.

I can't see anything other than a win for United in this game despite their recent troubles at home.

Prediction: 2-0

Stoke City v Aston Villa

3pm GMT, Britannia Stadium, Stoke

Stoke have failed to score in three of their last four games, but they beat Chelsea in the game in which they did score. They have only lost one of their eight home games and only Hull have conceded less goals at home. They're still finding goals hard to come by, but they have moved five points clear of the relegation zone.

Asmir Begovic and Ryan Shawcross continue to be the Stoke players most likely to succeed for fantasy managers.

Villa have taken 12 points in their eight away games as their counter attacking game sees to work so much better on the road. Only Sunderland have taken less points at home than Villa, but their away form has seen them move six points clear of the drop zone. A trip to Stoke is never easy, but Villa will feel they can get a result from this game.

Brad Guzan has been doing well for fantasy managers this season but not in recent weeks.

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

Prediction: 1-1

Sunderland v Norwich City

3pm GMT, Stadium Of Light, Sunderland 

Sunderland have the worst home record in the league, but they have played seven of the current top eight at home already. They need to take points at home to the teams in the bottom half of the table and Norwich would be an ideal team to start against. Sunderland have the worst defensive record at home, but that's probably a direct result of the teams they have played.

It's hard to know which Sunderland players might do well for fantasy managers, but their defenders have done a lot better in recent weeks.

Norwich have lost six of their eight away games and have the worst defensive record away from home. They have taken 10 points in their last six games to move five points clear of the relegation zone. A win in this game would leave them comfortably in mid table as the hectic Christmas schedule approaches.

Leroy Fer and Gary Hooper still look like reasonably good fantasy purchases in the Norwich team.

Sunderland have to win this game and I have a feeling they will get that win.

Prediction: 2-1

West Bromwich Albion v Hull City

3pm GMT, The Hawthorns, Birmingham

West Brom parted company with Steve Clark last week after a poor run of results saw them slip dangerously close to the relegation zone. They have lost their last four league games in a row and have only won two of eight at home. After losing to Norwich and Cardiff in their last two games they cannot afford to lose at home to Hull.

With West Brom's recent form it's not easy to pick any of their players, but that could change with a new manager.

Hull have done very well at home, but they have only taken four points from their eight away games. Only Sunderland and Palace have taken less points away from home and only Norwich and Sunderland have conceded more goals away. If they're to stay up it's crucial for them to keep up their home form.

Allan McGregor continues to be the outstanding fantasy choice in the Hull team.

I think West Brom will get a much needed win a week too late for Clarke.

Prediction: 2-0

Sunday December 22

Southampton v Tottenham Hotspur

1.30pm GMT, St. Mary's Stadium, Southampton 

Southampton have steadied the ship a little with a home draw against City and a point away at Newcastle. The have the best defensive record in the league despite not winning any of their last five games and have only lost once in their eight home games. They will feel they have every chance of beating a Spurs team who were thumped by Liverpool last week.

Adam Lallana still looks like a good fantasy bet and maybe Jay Rodriguez is worth considering too.

Spurs parted company with Andre Villas Boas last week after losing 5-0 at home to Liverpool. No other team has won more away games than Spurs though and only Everton have a better defensive record on the road. Despite the thrashings by both City and Liverpool it would seem Spurs biggest problem is their lack of goals with only 15 in 16 games.

With a new man in charge maybe Spurs will find their shooting boots again and Roberto Soldado could be the man to benefit.

This is a tough one to predict but I can see it ending all square. 

Prediction: 1-1

Swansea City v Everton

4pm GMT, Liberty Stadium, Swansea

Swansea can't seem to get any consistency and haven't managed to win two league games in a row yet this season. They have only won two of their eight home games and have been far better defensively away from home. They will have their work cut out against a very good Everton team, but Swansea might find their consistency now that they can forget about the Europa League for a couple of months.

Jonjo Shelvey is impressing in midfield for Swansea and possibly worth a fantasy punt.

Everton are only four points behind the league leaders and have only been beaten once this season. They have the joint best defensive record in the league and have scored 13 goals in their last five games. They have drawn more games than any other team though and have only won three of their eight away games. 

Romelu Lukaku, Seamus Coleman and Phil Jagielka are probably the best fantasy choices in the Everton team, but Tim Howard, Kevin Mirallas and Stephen Pienaar are hard to ignore too.

I think Everton will continue their fine run with another three points in this game.

Prediction: 1-2

Monday December 23

Arsenal v Chelsea

8pm GMT, Emirates Stadium, London 

Arsenal are still on top of the league but they will have to win this game to stay there if Liverpool win on Saturday. They have taken 19 points in their eight home games so far, but have only taken one point in their last two games. They looked tired as they shipped six goals at City last week and will have been greatful for the nine day break before this game.

Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Ozil continue to be the Arsenal players excelling for fantasy managers while Per Mertesacker and Wojciech Szczesny are good options too.

Chelsea have had their troubles away from home, but they're only two points behind Arsenal. They have only won three of their eight away games, but have won four of their last five games and scored 14 goals in the process. They won at Arsenal in the Capital One Cup, but won't find it quite so easy against a virtually full strength Arsenal team.

Eden Hazard is the best fantasy option in the Chelsea team. 

This should be a very close game and I think Arsenal will be good enough to take all three points. 

Prediction: 2-1

That's it for this week.

See you next week.


  1. common... These are all obvious predictions. This season within top 5 or 6 teams , one or the other team has dropped points every week. and City away form is not convincing and United are dropping points at Trafford. We can look at an upset in those 2 games...

    1. As an Arsenal fan I hope you're right but considering the opposition I have to stitck with my predictions. I don't think Arsenal to beat Vpchelsea is obvious