EPL Game Breakdown: October 22nd

It’s week nine of the Premier League this weekend and things get started on Saturday with no fewer than eight clashes. All of those games have been rounded up here with current form, set piece takers and player picks. As always, you can hit me up on Twitter @JamieHinksDK.

Bournemouth vs Tottenham

Sunderland v Arsenal - Premier League

Vitality Stadium, 12:30 BST (07:30 EST)


Bournemouth Breakdown

Eddie Howe’s side have won three straight home games after last week’s 6-1 victory over Hull City and go into this game high on confidence. Junior Stanislas scored twice, Steve Cook, Callum Wilson, Charlie Daniels and Dan Gosling all adding a goal each to complete the rout. Before that game they kept two straight clean sheets at home, but have already suffered heavy defeats to both Manchester sides. Spurs are on that level and came away from this ground with a big win last season. Harry Arter, Brad Smith, Max Gradel and Lewis Cook are all expected to be out, Marc Pugh possibly returning.

Bournemouth Set Piece Takers

Corners – Junior Stanislas, Jordon Ibe

Penalties – Junior Stanislas

Bournemouth Player Picks

Junior Stanislas ($7,200) – The wide man is coming off two goals and one assist against Hull City and don’t let the fact it’s Spurs up next put you off him.

Charlie Daniels ($5,400) – Daniels is up against his old club and had a goal and an assist in his last appearance for the Cherries. Spurs use width and this should allow Daniels to rack up the tackle points too.

Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Breakdown

Spurs remain the Premier League’s only unbeaten side following a 1-1 draw at West Brom, Dele Alli scoring a late equaliser as Spurs struggled to score without Harry Kane. It’s little surprise that they lead the Premier League in shots with 147 attempts, but they are also the overwhelming leaders for corners with 65. It goes to show how much joy you can have by taking one of their set piece takers. Tottenham have also kept four clean sheets, which is out in front as the most in the Premier League. Danny Rose is a doubt, Toby Alderweireld and Harry Kane the definite absentees.

Tottenham Set Piece Takers

Corners – Christian Eriksen, Erik Lamela

Penalties – Vincent Janssen

Tottenham Player Picks

Dele Alli ($8,700) – Alli has two goals in three games for Spurs and is starting to hit the form that made him such a dangerous player last season.

Christian Eriksen ($9,300) – The Dane has three assists in the Premier League this season and 3.4 shots per game.

PLAY Fantasy Footy This Saturday


Arsenal vs Middlesbrough

Arsenal v Manchester City - Premier League

Emirates Stadium, 15:00 BST (10:00 EST)


Arsenal Breakdown

Gunners fans are starting to believe that this could be their year and Arsene Wenger’s side have now won their last six Premier League games following last weekend’s triumph over Swansea City. Theo Walcott grabbed two in that clash, Mesut Özil the other. Arsenal are now the Premier League’s joint top scoring side with 19 goals and have kept three clean sheets. Only one of those clean sheets has come on home soil, but they are free-scoring and the win points are almost guaranteed for whoever plays in goal right now. Santi Cazorla faces a late test and none of the other injured players will return.

Arsenal Set Piece Takers

Corners – Santi Cazorla

Penalties – Santi Cazorla

Arsenal Player Picks

Theo Walcott ($8,900) – It’s now eight goals and two assists this season for Walcott as he shows just what a threat he can be when he stays fit.

Mesut Özil ($8,200) – One of Arsene’s streakiest players, Özil has four goals and one assist in his last two games for the club including a first hat trick in the rout of Ludogorets that was worth 49.5 fantasy points.


Middlesbrough Breakdown

Boro fans are still yearning for a second Premier League win of the season and absorbed another loss last weekend, going down 1-0 to Watford at the Riverside Stadium. Aitor Karanka’s team have actually been better on their travels and lost just one game, their sole win of the campaign also coming away from home. Scoring goals has been a real problem for the promoted team and their seven goals scored is only better than Sunderland and Burnley. Boro have 194 tackles this season and that is more than any other side.

Middlesbrough Set Piece Takers

Corners – Stewart Downing

Penalties – Grant Leadbitter

Middlesbrough Player Picks

Stewart Downing ($7,400) – Downing continues to score double digit fantasy points every week, something that is rather unique amongst a group of players that isn’t playing well.

George Friend ($4,800) – The Englishman is averaging 3.6 tackles and 4.6 interceptions per game. Expect those numbers to increase after what is expected to be a busy afternoon against the Gunners.

Burnley vs Everton

Arsenal v Burnley - Premier League

Turf Moor, 15:00 BST (10:00 EST)


Burnley Breakdown

If Sean Dyche manages to steer the good ship Burnley away from relegation for the first time in three times of asking, it will be thanks in no small part to their home form. At Turf Moor they have already won twice, including a 2-0 victory over Liverpool, and need to gain as many points as possible from the remaining 14 home games to stay up. Like fellow promoted side Middlesbrough, Burnley struggle to score goals and have just six this season – the joint worst total in the division. They also rank dead last for shots with a total of 68. Andre Gray is serving the last game of his four-game ban and his absence is hitting their production hard. Steven Defour is also out injured.

Burnley Set Piece Takers

Corners – Johann Berg Gudmundsson

Penalties – Sam Vokes

Burnley Player Picks

Tom Heaton ($4,000) – No one has made more than Heaton’s 39 saves this season and the total includes an 11-save outing last weekend against Southampton.

Johann Berg Gudmundsson ($5,400) – Dyche will need the former Charlton midfielder to be at his best from dead ball situations if Burnley are to grab a goal.


Everton Breakdown

After a terrific start to the season, the Toffees are now three games without a win and were lucky that City were so profligate from the spot in last week’s 1-1 draw at the Etihad. Romelu Lukaku scored their only goal in that one and has six goals in his last five games for the team. Ronald Koeman’s charges have made 178 tackles this season, second only to Boro, and lead the way in the long ball table. Aaron Lennon faces a test but Leighton Baines is still out.

Everton Set Piece Takers

Corners – Kevin Mirallas, Leighton Baines, Ross Barkley

Penalties – Leighton Baines, Romelu Lukaku

Everton Player Picks

Romelu Lukaku ($9,200) – You can’t argue with the statistics and they show that the Belgian centre forward has six goals this season. Diego Costa is the only man with more.

Yannick Bolasie ($8,000) – Bolasie already has three assists this season, the same amount he had for the whole of last season, and is one of just three Evertonians averaging over 10 FPPG.

PLAY Fantasy Footy This Saturday


Hull City vs Stoke City

Arsenal v Stoke City - Premier League

KCOM Stadium, 15:00 BST (10:00 EST)

Hull City

Hull City Breakdown

Hull are plummeting down the Premier League at a rate of knots. After winning the first two games, the Humberside outfit have not triumphed in six games and had a terrible day out down on the coast against Bournemouth last weekend. The only bright point from that game was a goal for Ryan Mason that briefly restored parity before Bournemouth scored another five goals to win 6-1. Hull’s ‘keepers have been a busy bunch, combining to make 38 saves this season and only Burnley can boast a higher return in that column. Even so, no team has conceded more times than Hull’s 20. Andrew Robertson is out until December and Moses Odubajo has been ruled out for the remainder of the season after suffering a setback.

Hull City Set Piece Takers

Corners – Robert Snodgrass

Penalties – Robert Snodgrass

Hull City Player Picks

Robert Snodgrass ($7,400) – Snodgrass still managed six crosses last weekend against Bournemouth and has 15.6 FPPG for the season as a whole.

Stoke City

Stoke City Breakdown

Stoke finally got a first win of the season last time out and the 2-0 win against Sunderland, courtesy of a Joe Allen double, mean the Potters are unbeaten in three games in the league. That was also Mark Hughes’ side’s first clean sheet of the season. Stoke sit inside the top five for tackles with 165, just one ahead of Saturday’s opponents Hull and it suggests that this clash of two bottom half sides will be a hard fought one. Allen is a slight doubt.

Stoke City Set Piece Takers

Corners – Xherdan Shaqiri, Joe Allen

Penalties – Bojan Krkic, Marko Arnautovic

Stoke City Player Picks

Joe Allen ($6,200) – It’s now three goals in two games for Allen and he is benefiting from Hughes’ decision to play him as a number 10.

Xherdan Shaqiri ($7,800) – Last week’s 11 fantasy points was comprised of eight crosses and a couple of shots (one on goal) as Shaqiri hit the kind of total we’ve come to expect.

Leicester City vs Crystal Palace


King Power Stadium, 15:00 BST (10:00 EST)

Leicester City

Leicester City Breakdown

Leicester’s Premier League form continues to lurch from one crisis to another, last week’s 3-0 loss at Chelsea making it three games without a win domestically. They are still unbeaten at home this campaign but have only won two games, but have not lost in over a year at the King Power. There are plenty of worries for Claudio Ranieri, namely that Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy have combined for just three Premier League goals this season. Things are no better at the other end, 14 goals conceded one of the worst totals. It’s little surprise that they are in 13th place. Vardy, Wes Morgan and Andy King could all be absent for this game.

Leicester City Set Piece Takers

Corners – Riyad Mahrez

Attacking Free Kicks – PLAYER NAME

Penalties – Riyad Mahrez

Leicester City Player Picks

Riyad Mahrez ($8,800) – It’s definitely not time to give up on Mahrez just yet, the Algerian showing his undoubted talent by scoring in the Champions League win over Copenhagen.

Islam Slimani ($7,700) – Palace are still without Scott Dann at centre back, something that plays into the hands of Leicester and Slimani.

Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace Breakdown

Palace suffered a blip at home to West Ham last weekend, losing 1-0 and ruing a missed penalty by Christian Benteke. That was their first loss in six Premier League games and the first time they failed to score in the same time frame. More of a worry than that for manager Alan Pardew is that Palace have still not kept a clean sheet this season. In their favour is a league-leading 232 crosses, as well as 54 corners and 163 tackles to illustrate that every week Palace’s players are good fantasy plays. Scott Dann is expected to make the bench for this one.

Crystal Palace Set Piece Takers

Corners – Jason Puncheon

Penalties – Christian Benteke

Crystal Palace Player Picks

Andros Townsend ($9,000) – Townsend has kept his fantasy scoring at a high level all season and averages 14.3 FPPG. The most impressive part is that he has scored just one goal this season and his scoring has not dipped below 11pts once.

Christian Benteke ($8,400) – Think of last week’s game as a blip in a season where Benteke has three goals in his first six games for Palace.

PLAY Fantasy Footy This Saturday


Swansea City vs Watford

Watford v Arsenal - Premier League

Liberty Stadium, 15:00 BST (10:00 EST)

Swansea City

Swansea City Breakdown

Bob Bradley’s first Premier League game in charge of Swansea ended in a narrow defeat, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Borja Baston both scoring in a 3-2 defeat. Bradley set them up in a 4-2-3-1 formation that used Sigurdsson as the lone striker, Leroy Fer in attacking midfield, and Modou Barrow and Wayne Routledge out wide. The Swans are yet to win a home game this campaign but that comes with the caveat that they have played Man City, Chelsea, Liverpool and Hull, the latter match the only game they were expected to win. Modou Barrow and Fernando Llorente are both doubts for the home team.

Swansea City Set Piece Takers

Corners – Gylfi Sigurdsson

Penalties – Gylfi Sigurdsson

Swansea City Player Picks

Modou Barrow ($5,800) – Barrow laid on an assist in the defeat by Arsenal on a 14 fantasy point day and it was his second assist of the season.

Leroy Fer ($5,500) – The attacking role that Fer is being allowed to roam in has allowed him to stay steady on 10.4 FPPG this season. Against a Watford side that has kept just one clean sheet, expect Fer to build on his goal total.


Watford Breakdown

Watford got their third win of the season last time out, fantasy specialist Jose Holebas scoring the only goal of the 1-0 win over Boro. The Hornets have already scored 13 goals this season, a total that is sixth highest in the Premier League, and play a style that relies heavily on the wing backs bombing forward. Watford have not won in South Wales since November 2008. Daryl Janmaat remains out and both Miguel Britos and Isaac Success are doubtful.

Watford Set Piece Takers

Corners – Etienne Capoue, Jose Holebas

Penalties – Troy Deeney

Watford Player Picks

Jose Holebas ($5,700) – The second highest priced defender on this slate scored 25 fantasy points last week and averages 10.2 FPPG.

Troy Deeney ($7,600) – Deeney has scored three goals in his last five games and don’t let the 6.6 FPPG average put you off.

West Ham vs Sunderland

Arsenal v West Ham United - Premier League

London Stadium, 15:00 BST (10:00 EST)

West Ham

West Ham Breakdown

The Hammers finally got a long overdue win last weekend, the 1-0 win at Palace courtesy of a Manuel Lanzini goal that was well worked down the left hand side by Dimitri Payet and the returning Aaron Cresswell. It was also West Ham’s second clean sheet of the season and the fact that Cresswell is suspended means they could be hit with the same problems at the back once more. Slaven Bilic’s side have conceded the second highest number of goals in the league this season (17) and it will be a big worry that Cresswell is missing.

West Ham Set Piece Takers

Corners – Dimitri Payet

Penalties – Mark Noble

West Ham Player Picks

Dimitri Payet ($10,400) – Payet’s 9.75 fantasy points in last week’s win was a disappointment and you can expect him to return to the level of performance he managed against Middlesbrough, a game where he had 27 fantasy points.

Manuel Lanzini ($6,400) – Lanzini pulled in a second 20 fantasy point haul of the season against Palace and is starting the find the form that made him such a threat last season.


Sunderland Breakdown

Another week, another loss for David Moyes’ Sunderland who went down to Stoke 2-0, a side that couldn’t buy a win before facing the Black Cats. Moyes’ team are rock bottom of the Premier League on just two points and are the joint lowest scoring side with six goals. Sunderland are in the midst of an injury crisis with Patrick van Aanholt and Lamine Kone the only two likely to be close to a return this week.

Sunderland Set Piece Takers

Corners – Wahbi Khazri

Penalties – Jermain Defoe

Sunderland Player Picks

Jermain Defoe ($7,400) – If you can stomach taking a Sunderland player, make sure it’s Defoe. Up against one of his many former clubs, Defoe already has four goals after eight games and is facing the league’s second worst defence.

Wahbi Khazri ($6,600) – Sunderland’s injury crisis has played into the hands of Khazri, who is getting much needed game time. In his two starts, Khazri has reached double figures and should do the same again this week.

PLAY Fantasy Footy This Saturday


Liverpool vs West Bromwich Albion

International Champions Cup 2016 - Chelsea v Liverpool

Anfield, 17:30 BST (12:30 EST)


Liverpool Breakdown

Liverpool got Mourinho’d on Monday night as the Reds failed to score for only the second time this season. It means their 18 goals is now just the second highest number in the top flight and they have also dropped from the top of the shots league, 144 shots only good enough for third position. What they have got in their locker is 4,854 total passes, the highest of any Premier League side. They don’t like to cross the ball but the fact they keep the ball in the centre of the pitch more means more shots. In three home games they are unbeaten this season, James Milner and Georginio Wijnaldum both doubts for the fixture.

Liverpool Set Piece Takers

Corners – James Milner

Penalties – James Milner

Liverpool Player Picks

Philippe Coutinho ($8,800) – Coutinho is one of the most prolific shooters in the Premier League and already has three goals and two assists this season.

James Milner ($7,600) – Milner should be fit for Saturday’s game and if he is then you must pick him. Milner averages 15.8 FPPG and for a defender that is incredible.

West Brom

West Brom Breakdown

Tony Pulis’ side are unbeaten in four Premier League games following the 1-1 draw against Tottenham Hotspur that saw Nacer Chadli score against his former club. The draw specialists have been involved in four stalemates, more than any other Premier League side, and a fourth straight draw this weekend would be no surprise. Pulis has no injury worries and a full set of players to choose from.

West Brom Set Piece Takers

Corners – Matt Philips, Chris Brunt

Penalties – Nacer Chadli

West Brom Player Picks

Nacer Chadli ($7,200) – Chadli has four goals and two assists since moving to the club in the summer.

James McClean ($6,300) – McClean has had double digit fantasy points in three out of the last four games, including a 15 point outing against Spurs last week.