Following us last week you would have bagged yourself a whopping 24 points from our 4 bargain buys – the Fantasy Football guru never disappoints!
Simon Mignolet (Sunderland) vs Wigan (A)
With the topsy-turvy season that Sunderland are having, you’d hardly expect their goalkeeper to be a wise pick for Fantasy Football… But how wrong you’d be! Belgian stopper Simon Mignolet has been on top form between the sticks for Sunderland this season, and is currently the second highest point scoring keeper in Fantasy Football. Mignolet kept an impressive clean sheet against West Ham last week, and we’re expecting the 24-year-old to do the same against a goal-shy Wigan side on Saturday afternoon.
Mignolet has kept 8 clean sheets already this season, and has made a staggering 87 registered saves on top of that. One of those clean sheets came against Saturday’s opponents Wigan Athletic earlier in the season, as the Black Cats ran out 1-0 winners on an easy day at the office for Mignolet.
Wigan have scored just 3 goals in their last 4 matches in all competitions, and after losing their top marksmen Arouna Kone to the African Cup of Nations last week, we expect that run to continue. The Latics have failed to find the net in 9 matches this season, the second highest of all the goal-shy sides in the top flight, behind Stoke City and Aston Villa (10). Meanwhile, Martin O’Neill’s resurgent Sunderland side have kept 3 clean sheets in their last 5 Premier League matches – and we’re tipping them to make it 4 from 6 on Saturday; giving Mignolet, and in turn you, lots of vital points this week.
Gareth McAuley (West Brom) vs Aston Villa (H)
Out of sorts Aston Villa can’t seem to catch a break at the moment; they’ve slumped into the relegation zone after a poor run of results, suffered Capital One Cup embarrassment at the hands of League Two Bradford City, and now face a tough trip to the Hawthorns against high-flying West Brom as they look to mount a recovery effort for their season.
Villa have lost 4 of their last 5 matches in the Premier League without finding the net, and we expect that run to get even worse when they visit Albion’s fortress, the Hawthorns this weekend.
Albion centre back Gareth McAuley has been an integral cog behind the club’s success this season, helping the Baggies to 5 clean sheets with continuous solid performances at the heart of defence. West Brom have won 7, drawn 1, and lost just 3 of their home matches this season in which the Northern Irish defender has featured, taking apart the likes of Chelsea and Liverpool in the process.
West Brom have won 2, and lost none of their last 4 league meetings with Aston Villa; conceding just 3 goals and keeping one clean sheet in that time. Paul Lambert’s relegation threatened Villains have won just twice away from home this season, and only a late Darren Bent strike saved them from defeat when these sides met in the league earlier in the season.
The Baggies will be desperate for a win on Saturday after suffering late heartbreak away at Reading last week, and what a perfect way to do it against your local rivals. Defensive leader Gareth McAuley will be giving his all to steer his side to victory, keep a clean sheet, and bag you some lovely cheap points in the process.
Raheem Sterling (Liverpool) vs Norwich City (H)
18-year-old Raheem Sterling has been a sensation for Liverpool since his emergence into the first team at the start of the year, and has risen from strength to strength in the top flight. The teenager has dazzled opponents on the wing with his quick feet and sublime vision, and he’ll hope to be on top form when Norwich City visit Anfield on Saturday.
Liverpool have a sensational record against the Canaries in recent years, and in particular in the most recent year! The Reds produced a 3-0, and a 5-2 victory against Norwich in 2012, giving them their 6th and 7th victories over the East-Anglian club in just 8 matches. Sterling was still an unknown schoolboy when his club won 3-0 at the start of the year, but featured heavily in the 5-2 fixture, grabbing an assist in that match.
Young Raheem has scored 2 Premier League goals this season, and has added 5 assists to boot, making him the Reds’ second highest Fantasy Football point scoring midfielder behind captain Steven Gerrard… Though he is half the price!
Norwich City have lost 4, and drawn 1 of their last 5 Premier League games, and will arrive at Anfield with the fear of Luis Suarez and Raheem Sterling tormenting their defence still overhanging from matches past. £5.6 million for a top class, top 6, high point scoring midfielder is a Fantasy Football no brainer! Transfer Raheem Sterling into your team this week and reap the point benefits.
Carlton Cole (West Ham United) vs QPR (H) and Arsenal (A)
It’s a double match week for West Ham in gameweek 23, with the Londoners facing two fierce capitol derbies against QPR and Arsenal. In a week where the Hammers will face two shaky sides, we’re tipping solo striker Carlton Cole to earn you points in abundance.
West Ham’s home form has been exemplary this season, picking up 6 wins and losing just twice in the Premier League. At home against QPR, the Irons have won 2 and lost none of their last 3 matches, with their last loss coming way back in 1993. When the sides met earlier in the season, a Carlton Cole inspired West Ham side ran out 2-1 winners against Rangers, with the big English striker grabbing an assist in that match.
West Ham’s midweek opponents Arsenal have lost 2 of their last 4 home games without scoring, and have looked increasingly vulnerable in recent weeks. With Carlton Cole on the prowl at the Emirates, the Gunners shaky form may just continue.
West Ham main striker, Andy Carroll is expected back in the next few weeks, but while he remains sidelined Cole will take responsibility of firing the Hammers up the table. Cole has scored twice and grabbed 3 assists since replacing the former Liverpool striker in the West Ham set-up, and while he’s rated at just £4.9 million, he’s a deal worth snapping up!