The remainder of this week’s slate of games takes place on Wednesday night with all but six of the Premier League’s teams taking part. We may see the debut of new Liverpool defender Steven Caulker in the evening’s biggest game at Anfield and elsewhere Spurs welcome Leicester in another top of the table clash. Get the low down on every game right here.
Chelsea v West Brom
Chelsea can displace opponents West Brom for 12th position in the table by extending their unbeaten run to five games at Stamford Bridge. The omens look good as the Blues haven’t lost a league game at home to West Brom since 1978 and have regained a lot of their solidity since Guus Hiddink arrived as boss. Diego Costa has scored three in his last two Premier League games for Chelsea and has already scored against the visitors this season. All eyes will be on Tony Pulis to see whether he welcomes Salomon Rondon and James McClean straight back into the first team following three game bans. Over that trio of games, West Brom gained six points and pulled nine points clear of the drop zone. In typical Pulis style, West Brom will come for a draw and that much is clear when you see they have scored just six goals and conceded eight on their travels this season, both the second best in the Premier League.
Who to pick
Willian, Chelsea ($7,500)
Diego Costa, Chelsea ($6,500)
Chris Brunt, West Brom ($4,000)
Stephane Sessegnon, West Brom ($3,900)
Liverpool v Arsenal
Arsenal lead the way at the top of the Premier League and have the best form of any side over the last six games, the only blip coming against Southampton. Even though the doom merchants have been gathering around Jurgen Klopp of late, Liverpool have won two of their last three games and are still adjusting to the new boss. James Milner has been a big miss when you consider he leads the team with 2.1 key passes per game and only Alberto Moreno tops that number. Each side’s striker has prospered against their respective opponents in recent years. Christian Benteke has three in his last four games against Arsenal whereas Olivier Giroud has helped himself to two goals in his last three appearances against Liverpool. Arsenal have also won three of their last six games at Anfield.
Who to pick
Alberto Moreno, Liverpool ($4,600)
Christian Benteke, Liverpool ($5,900)
Olivier Giroud. Arsenal ($7,700)
Theo Walcott, Arsenal ($5,800)
Man City v Everton
Everton will need to bring their ‘A’ game to the Etihad to have any chance of toppling a team that owns the best home record in the Premier League. City have scored an eye-watering 29 goals at the Etihad this season (Everton are second on 23). Yaya Toure has hit some form from midfield and has three goals in his last four games. City also have David Silva and Sergio Agüero back from injury but are still missing Vincent Kompany. Everton have only lost once away from Goodison Park and that was at Arsenal, one of only two sides ahead of Man City in the Premier League. Even so, they have won just once in six games and that was at relegation threatened Newcastle. This clash also involves two of the most prolific marksmen in the Premier League in Sergio Agüero and Romelu Lukaku. Agüero’s 111 minutes per goal is second to only Callum Wilson (109 mins per goal) whereas Lukaku is back in fourth on 118 minutes per goal.
Who to pick
Yaya Toure, Man City ($6,300)
Sergio Agüero, Man City ($8,400)
Romelu Lukaku, Everton ($8,300)
Leighton Baines, Everton ($4,600)
Southampton v Watford
Where form is concerned this is a bit of a mismatch. Aston Villa and Sunderland are the only two teams on a worse run than Southampton and the home club’s sole win in the last six was a 4-0 hammering of Arsenal over Christmas. That game is very much the exception where goal-scoring is concerned. Southampton have registered a measly six goals in six games and four of them came in that very game. Basically, since Graziano Pelle’s goals dried up and he subsequently went down injured, Southampton have well and truly suffered. For the visitors, things are rosy. The Hornets have lost just twice on their travels this season and even then it was at Man City and Leicester. Odion Ighalo has 14 goals this season and shows no sign of slowing up form-wise after bagging seven in the last seven games. There have been at least three goals between these two sides on the last four occasions they have met at St Mary’s, Watford winning three of them and scoring three goals each time.
Who to pick
Ryan Bertrand, Southampton ($3,500)
Steven Davis, Southampton ($3,100)
Odion Ighalo, Watford ($6,800)
Ben Watson, Watford ($3,700)
Swansea v Sunderland
Another relegation six pointer pits Swansea City against the Big Sam revolution currently underway on Wearside. Swansea arrested a run of seven home games without a win by beating West Brom on Boxing Day and the omens are good for them making it two as Sunderland have not won at Swansea since 1963. Swansea are still struggling for goals, have only scored three in their last six games and sorely need a new striker to pick up where Bafetimbi Gomis left off in August. Sunderland have similar problems up front. Jermain Defoe did score a brace against Aston Villa on January 2nd but he has not scored consistently this season and has just six goals in 16 total appearances. What Defoe has done is score in his last two games against Swansea and an early goal for the visitors will result in a demonstration of how to shut up shop away from home, by Sam Allardyce. Unfortunately, Sunderland have lost three away games on the trot and even though Swansea are poor, they’ve kept two clean sheets in a row at home and their problems are very much at the other end of the pitch.
Who to pick
Gylfi Sigurdsson, Swansea City ($5,700)
Wayne Routledge, Swansea City ($3,200)
Jermain Defoe, Sunderland ($4,500)
Patrick van Aanholt, Sunderland ($3,700)
Stoke v Norwich
Just six points separate these two sides in the Premier League and it’s one of the toughest fixtures to call because of that. Stoke’s home form has been very patchy and in that sense it’s hard to predict whether they will get the win. What I can say is that all of their home fixtures so far apart from three have been against teams in the top 10 and when taken in that context their 44% win-rate at home is a good one. Bojan has scored in his last two games at the Britannia Stadium and was injured when the sides met back in August. Alex Neil has a handful of new players raring to go following a busy start to the transfer window yet Steven Naismith won’t be allowed to depart Everton for a week at least. Wes Hoolahan’s importance to the cause cannot be stressed enough and he has quietly accrued six assists thanks to his team-leading 1.7 key passes per game.
Who to pick
Bojan, Stoke ($4,300)
Ibrahim Afellay, Stoke ($2,700)
Wes Hoolahan, Norwich ($3,300)
Nathan Redmond, Norwich ($4,000)
Tottenham v Leicester
Spurs can move to within a point of second placed Leicester by beating them in a game that will say a lot about the title aspirations of both. Mauricio Pochettino’s men have only lost once at home this season but have drawn four of their 10 games and a stalemate could be on the cards. Harry Kane has scored four goals in his last three games against Leicester, where he had an unsuccessful loan spell before hitting the ground running with Spurs. Kane averages 3.7 shots per game and has gone two league games without scoring. It all points to a good afternoon for the England striker. Leicester have not won in three straight games and even more worryingly haven’t scored in those games. Even worse than that, Jamie Vardy has not netted in four games and that counts as a major draught for the England frontman. Claudio Ranieri has tightened things up at the back and they have conceded a stingy one goal in three games, which came against Liverpool, Man City and Bournemouth. Spurs have only lost once at home this season and Leicester have only lost once away, suggesting that something has to give…or, more likely, it’ll be a bore draw.
Who to pickSon Heung-Min, Spurs ($3,900)
Dele Alli, Spurs ($5,200)
Jamie Vardy, Leicester ($7,200)
N’Golo Kante, Leicester ($3,100)