It's an incredibly busy week here at blog central. The day job is busy. Son-of-blog is awake more of the time now and requiring our attention and we continue to have a steady stream of people coming over to meet him and trips scheduled to take him to meet others. It certainly leaves less time to write opus-length weekend previews but we'll carry on and do the best we can do. Occasionally that will be minus a rant and today is one of those days so the Suarez family and Liverpool supporters everywhere can rest easy that I won't be commenting on the good, bad, and ugly of their guy Luis outside of maybe recommending him (or not) for your team.
Steven Fletcher - Everton's defense has given up goals, Sunderland (and Fletcher) can't go without an SOT forever, and Fletcher's price has dropped to a reasonable 11.50. Seems like a reasonable confluence of circumstances.
Wayne Rooney - He's had exactly two decent weekends so far but it feels like there's another one coming after two duds in a row. I don't LOVE the value but if you have the money and are looking for points...
Peter Crouch - Another guy that is a) due for a big match and b) facing a great match-up. He's also priced under 10 which helps.
Eden Hazard/Juan Mata - It appears likely that the entire triumvirate of Oscar, Mata and Hazard will be back for the Sunday match with Liverpool. Mata may be too expensive for your tastes but I'd recommend trying to make it work. If not, Hazard is your consolation prize with the hope that Liverpool's questionable fullback situation allows him to go from creator to scorer.
West Brom Options - The match-up is solid against Wigan but who will start between Odemwingie, Long, and Lukaku? Will Gera continue to start? So many rotation questions for such an un-glamorous side.
Marouane Fellaini - More a "hold" than a "buy" for the combative but productive Belgian.
Santi Cazorla - Until Abou Diaby returns, it's hard to build faith in any of Arsenal's attackers other than Cazorla. Presumably everyone is already on this but a) don't give up, he's still producing and b) Fulham still stink on the road regardless of how poorly Arsenal is playing.
Oscar - Hopefully, he didn't do all of his attacking work for the week in Champions League play where he scored. The price is still reasonable and you have to feel good about Liverpool's visit to Stamford Bridge as a solid match-up for the Blues.
Antonio Valencia - He was a popular pick last weekend against Arsenal and, due to some clumsy feet on a great opportunity in front of the net, it didn't work out. The match-up continues to be a solid one at Villa and he seems to be in the middle of a lot of United's best attacking moves.
Michu/Ki Sung-Yueng - The Swansea pair has an attractive match-up against Southampton. It's hard to figure the Swans but it's fairly easy to figure the Saints which makes these two guys look pretty good for a combined price of just over 18.
Zoltan Gera - He's been great value when he's played but there's always a doubt where he's concerned. The fact that his price is creeping up doesn't help either but he's still solidly affordable.
Jobi McAnuff - Home to Norwich isn't the bonus it was earlier in the season but it isn't outside the realm of possibility that Reading scores one or two goals and McAnuff is generally in with the assists when that happens.
Geoff Cameron - He's been racking up phantom defending points and home vs. QPR is about as attractive as it gets.
Sebastien Bassong - His numbers weren't as great as expected given the CS last weekend but away at Reading for a resurgent side doesn't feel like a huge risk for a modest price.
Matija Nastasic - Still very affordable and while Spurs are a more potent attacking force, Nastasic still has solid value.
Sean Morrison - A low risk way to get in on a possible CS for Reading at home against Norwich. This isn't a no-brainer by any means but with a lack of strong defenders for cheap prices, he's a potential enabler.
Rafael - If you have money to spend on a defender this weekend, he's the best combination of price, attacking potential and defending potential in my mind.
Gerhard Tremmel - His price is right and the opposition is ripe for a win if not necessarily a CS. He wasn't nearly as big a drop-off from Vorm as I was worried he would be.
Alex McCarthy - A solid effort combined with a good match-up makes him another reasonable bargain this week. I'd be inclined to recommend Ruddy from Norwich but his price is up in the Cech range after his big weekend last weekend. Ditto Ben Foster whose price has gone up quickly. McCarthy is out with a shoulder injury, so Adam Federici should return in goal.
Amir Begovic - Similar combination of strong player and good match-up but for a slightly higher price.
Petr Cech - If you're going to spend, I like him over DDG because there's always the chance DDG will be rotated.