Saturday January 2 2016
West Ham United v Liverpool
12.45pm GMT, Upton Park, London
West Ham came from behind to beat Southampton 2-1 on Monday. They have only lost two of their nine home games and are unbeaten in their last seven at home. The win over Southampton was their first win in nine games though and they failed to score in four of those games too.
It's not easy to see which West Ham players might do well for fantasy managers, but Manuel Lanzini and Domitri Payet are possibilities if they're fit to play.
Liverpool just about managed to win 1-0 away to Sunderland on Wednesday night, but they will have two days less to rest before this game. They have only won four of their 10 away games and have only managed 11 goals in those games. They have put some poor results behind them to win their last two games and they kept clean sheets in both games too.
Liverpool's defenders have done well in recent games while Chrustian Benteke might just be finding the form which led to his transfer to Liverpool.
I think this will be a very close game and the chances are it will end with the honours even.
Arsenal v Newcastle United
3pm GMT, Emirates Stadium, London
Arsenal won 2-0 at home to Bournemouth on Monday to end the year at the top of the table. Only City have won more games at home and only United have conceded less goals at home. They have won four of their last five league games and this could possibly be their best chance to win the league in 12 years.
Mesut Ozil has to be in any fantasy manager's team while Olivier Giroud, Aaron Ramsey, Theo Walcott and Arsenal's defenders should be considered too.
Newcastle were beaten away to West Brom on Monday and they're in the relegation zone two points from safety. Only the bottom two have lost more away games than Newcastle and no other team has scored less goals on the road. They have lost their last two games without scoring, but their defence does seem to have improved in recent games.
Newcastle players haven't exactly set the fantasy world alight, but Georginio Wijnaldum has done well sporadically at home and Rob Elliott hasn't done so badly in goal either.
Arsenal should be good enough at home to win by a few goals.
Leicester City v Bournemouth
3pm GMT, King Power Stadium, Leicester
Leicester lost top spot on goal difference when they drew 0-0 at home to City on Tuesday night. They have only lost one of their nine home games, but no other team in the top half of the table has conceded more goals at home. They had scored in each of their first 17 games, but have failed to score in their last two.
Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy are must haves for fantasy managers despite their lack of return in their last two games.
Bournemouth were beaten 2-0 by Arsenal on Monday night, but they're still three points above the drop zone. They have taken as many points at home as they have on the road and only six others teams have scored more goals on their travels. That defeat at Arsenal was their first defeat in seven games and they have shown enough in those games to suggest they will avoid the drop.
Bournemouth players haven't exactly set the world alight for fantasy managers.
I think Leicester will get back to winning ways with a couple of goals to spare.
Manchester United v Swansea City
3pm GMT, Old Trafford, Manchester
United drew 0-0 at home to Stoke on Monday, but Louis van Gaal is still at the helm. They have only lost one of their nine home games and no other team has conceded less goals at home. They haven't won in six league games, but they have kept a clean sheet in more than half of their league games.
If any United players are to be considered for fantasy managers their defenders must be the best options.
Swansea got a good point away to Palace on Monday to move them two points clear of the bottom three. They have only won once in nine away games while only Newcastle and West Brom have scored less goals away from home. They have only won two of their last 15 league games, but they have kept clean sheets in their last three.
With their current defensive record Swansea's defenders could possibly be considered by fantasy managers.
I think United might just get the win they so badly need in this game.
Norwich City v Southampton
3pm GMT, Carrow Road, Norwich
Norwich got a very important win at home to Villa on Monday to move three points clear of the relegation zone. They have only lost three of their nine home games and no other team in the bottom half of the table has conceded less goals at home. They have won two of their last three league games and will feel they have every chance of getting something from this game.
Norwich players haven't exactly excelled for fantasy managers, but Nathan Redmond, Wes Hoolohan and Robbie Brady haven't done too badly.
Southampton led at half time away to West Ham on Monday, but ended up losing 2-1. They have only won two of their nine away games, but only five other teams have conceded less goals on their travels. They have only taken four points from their last seven games even though the only win in those games was a 4-0 thumping of the current leaders.
Shane Long has looked good in the last couple of games for Southampton and could be worth considering for fantasy managers if he can keep his place.
I have a feeling this will be a very close game and it will probably end in a draw.
Sunderland v Aston Villa
3pm GMT, Stadium of Light, Sunderland
Sunderland lost at home to Liverpool on Wednesday night and they're now seven points from safety. Only Villa have lost more home games and scored less home goals than Sunderland, but no other team in the bottom half of the table has conceded less goals at home. After a mini revival they have lost their last five games and relegation is looming.
I can't see any Sunderland players to recommend to fantasy managers at the moment.
Villa lost 2-0 away to Norwich on Monday and they're now 11 points from safety with the season half way over. Only Sunderland have lost more away games than Villa while only Sunderland and Norwich have conceded more away goals. They have drawn three of their last five games, but they haven't won in 18 games and that must surely lead to relegation.
If any Villa player is going to do well for fantasy managers it's probably Jordan Ayew and he's suspended for this game, but realistically they're best off avoided.
This is a real relegation six pointer and I think Sunderland will just about get the better of it thanks to home advantage.
West Bromwich Albion v Stoke City
3pm GMT, The Hawthorns, Birmingham
West Brom got a very important win at home to Newcastle on Monday to keep clear of the bottom three. Only Villa have lost more home games than West Brom and only Everton have conceded more goals at home. That win against Newcastle was their first win in six games and their first clean sheet in nine.
I can't see any West Brom players who might make a difference for fantasy managers right now.
Stoke got a very good 4-3 win away to Everton on Monday after trailing 3-2 at one stage. They have only lost two of their 10 away games and only five other teams have conceded less goals on the road. They have won eight of their last 13 league games and have kept clean sheets in eight of those 13 games too.
Despite letting in three goals on Monday Stoke's defenders are doing very well for fantasy managers at the moment along with Marco Arnautovic.
I don't think there will be too many goals in this game and Stoke are the more likely team to come out on top.
Watford v Manchester City
5.30pm GMT, Vicarage Road, Watford
Watford had a man sent off at home to Spurs on Monday and then lost to a very late goal. They have lost four of their 10 home games and only three other teams have scored less goals at home. This is the third game of a very tough festive schedule and they have only taken one point so far from the games against Chelsea and Spurs.
Odion Ighalo has made himself a must have for fantasy managers while both Troy Deeney and Huerelho Gomes as well as the Watford defenders have done well too.
City drew 0-0 away to Leicester on Tuesday night and they're only three points behind the leaders. They have only won three of their nine away games, but only Palace have a better defensive record away from home while only 3 other teams have scored less goals on their travels. They have only won three of their last eight league games and have not won in their last six away from home.
Kevin de Bruyne, David Silva and Yaya Toure are all very good fantasy choices at the moment.
I think this will be a very close game, but City might just get the better of Watford despite their poor away form.
Sunday January 3
Crystal Palace v Chelsea
1.30pm GMT, Selhurst Park, London
Palace could only draw 0-0 at home to struggling Swansea on Monday in a game they really should have won. They have lost four of their 10 home games and have taken more points away from home than at home. They're unbeaten in six league games and have kept clean sheets in three of their last four.
Palace defenders have done really well for fantasy managers recently and every manager should have one of them in their team.
Chelsea got a good draw away to United on Monday, but they need to start winning games. They have only won once in their nine away games and only three other teams have scored less goals on the road. They are unbeaten in three league games and that's their best league run so far this season, but they haven't won away from home since August.
Diego Costa will be back from suspension in this game and he looks like he could be the Chelsea player to have if they are going to improve.
I think this will be a very close game and the chances are it will end in a draw.
Everton v Tottenham Hotspur
4pm GMT, Goodison Park, Liverpool
Everton led twice at home to Stoke on Monday, but ended up losing 4-3. They have lost four of their 10 home games and no other team has conceded more goals at home although only City have scored more goals at home. They have only won once in their last six games and find themselves in the bottom half of the table despite being the third highest scorers in the league.
Romelu Lukaku has made himself a must have for fantasy managers while Ross Barkley has done very well too.
Spurs left it until late on Monday to get the winner away to Watford and cement their place in the top four. They have only lost one of their nine away games and only Palace have conceded less goals on the road. They have won their last three league games and have the best defensive record in the league so far this season.
Harry Kane is the Spurs player to have at the moment with Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli and all of their defenders worth considering too.
I think this game could go either way, but it might just end in a draw.
That's if for this week.
See you next week.