Hello gals and gents Kellz (Zach Kelleher) here! With the Chelsea/SOT double firmly behind us, our busy week continues with the arrival of yet another Double week. Arsenal and West Ham will both play twice, culminating in a midweek clash. However Arsenal face a tough task of overhauling Chelsea at the Bridge and West Ham will play home to QPR before both teams play eachother.
Now what can we gather from this set of fixtures? Chelsea have looked far from stable at the Bridge this season shipping a 2 goal lead to SOT just yesterday and compound that with a loss to bottom of the table QPR at home aswell, one could imagine Arsenal have a shot here. However I expect goals from both sides, so most of us will be banking on the midweek clash for points, and anything gained from the Arsenal @ Chelsea match will just be a bonus. West Ham face a slightly more tricky double home to a QPR side who are in desperation mode and could surprise a team like West Ham if they don't prepare accordingly. But I do believe they will come out on top none the less and the Arsenal match will just be a bonus.
There are some other notable matches this week aswell, so I would try and find the balance you feel is right. I am looking at 4-5 Arsenal players and 2-3 West Ham players sprinkled with some solid single gamers.
Here we go!
GK: Lloris - @2mil, hes a season keeper, I wouldn't drop him for a DG keeper.
GK: Jussi - Home to QPR and away to Arsenal, his price is low which is a bonus and anyone who gambled on boruc last time dispite the scary Chelsea fixture laughed all the way to the bank. Jussi racks up saves and QPR will be shooting on site in order to secure survival. If West Ham can keep a CS at home, he is your prefered DW keeper.
GK: Szczesny - His price is too high for my liking @11.93 especially with his first game away Chelsea. I just don't forsee many pts coming out of the Bridge for defenders or GK's so your hope here is that Arsenal win and keep a CS against West Ham, but going off the reverse fixture, Szczesny may not have many shots to save. I think there are better options this week for buying at retail.
DEF: Gibbs - Pick of the defenders, bombing the wings, getting invloved in attack, but holy snot, his price is high @13.01. However with his attacking ability, Gibbs should be good value this week.
DEF: Verminator - Price is cheaper than Gibbs and is always a threat on goal. He's in my team this week and should be in yours as well. He hasn't hit the same heights as his first Arsenal season, but it's a double so I'm in.
DEF: Rest of the Arsenal defense - Mertesacker @9.12 is lower in price but liable to go absent on occasion and Sagna @9.55 is doing even worse since coming back from injury. If you can't fit in Gibbs/Verm then look here, but I don't expect much. Koscielny is back from suspension and could come into contention at CB with Mertesacker possibly dropping out, so be careful with these three Arsenal defenders.
DEF: West Ham Defense - For value and price look no further than Tomkins @5.76. He should start both and is always getting forward. Otherwise, I'd be looking at W. Reid who has been quite productive but his price is a touch high for me @9.18. Demel and Potts are your other low priced defenders, but I'd be only looking to add ONE West ham defender this week.
MID: Cazorla - duh and duh, lets hope he is going to go big this week. Even at retail, you need him.
MID: Walcott - Probably not going to start both matches as the central striker, but a requirement for this week regardless. It's a double week so spend the money hoping his pace will be too much for West Ham.
MID: The best of the rest Arsenal - Ox, Wilshire, and Diaby all look in contention here. We all know what the Ox is capable of and is nicely priced @7.43. Wilshire scored midweek and was playing in "the hole" and at an even better 6.00. Diaby is starting again after a long injury spell, is very nicely priced @3.68, and can be a very nice darkhorse pick if you don't want Joe Cole who is similarly priced.
MID: The West ham prospects - Nolan, Joe Cole, and Noble were all rested for the midweek cup replay with Utd so I expect all to return to the starting line up. Nolan @7.79 is nicely priced but has failed to have any fantasy impact for some time now. However he has been scoring his goals at home and with QPR likely to conceed, he is my first choice West Ham mid. Noble is just as likely to get a YC as a SC, dispite his FK duties. However he is on PK's and with a bruising QPR coming, might be worth the pick. Joe Cole is a fantastic enabler to get in the big guys.
MID: Single game prospects - Fellaini is in my team currently @10.7 and I am likely to keep him with an away trip to SOT. Michu is more of a hold than buy at retail this week, I don't think Stoke will fall apart as easily as against Chelsea. Gerrard is expensive but playing home to Norwich and has been putting up very consistent numbers in the past 5-6 game weeks. Keep any other discounted player if you feel you cannot let go.
FW: Giroud/Podolski - One will start one might not, can you guess? Podolski should be in your team this week since he is the likeliest to start both. Giroud could come in as a central striker for Walcott like midweek, but his starting status is in doubt. Wait on team news and make your decision there then pray like hell he comes on against West Ham at the 80th minute to score a brace.
FW: C. Cole - The only West Ham forward I would consider since Carrol isn't yet ready to return. However I am inclinded to look elsewhere for my final forward slot as Cole always disappoints me, but the price is right and he will start both.
FW: The bets of the single gamers - Lukaku, only if you took him on the BD. he's playing home to Villa who are now in the mire of the relegation battle. Hard not to see a goal from him here, but I opted for Fellaini instead because of his more likely starting status. Sturrage @10.54 is another great single pick this week after scoring in BOTH his cup debut and league debut. He should be slated for his first EPL start and the match up is solid. A front line of Sturrage, Lukaku, and Podolski will be a popular front line this week.
My current team looks like: Lloris, Verm, Luiz, Tomkins, Fellaini, Cazorla, Walcott, J.Cole, Nolan, Podolski, Sturridge.
I have 4.05mil in the bank hoping for a price change to afford Gibbs for Luiz.
Well that does it for me. I am currently in Seattle, WA training to go back up to Alaska where I work as a Fisheries Biologist for the National Marine Fisheries Sevice so I will probably not be part of the community until April (or I get lucky and get on a boat with internet). So good luck and have a great year gals/gents!