Predictions for English Premier League Gameweek 9
It's that time of the week again when I attempt to predict the outcomes of the upcoming Premier League games. I didn't do too well last week, with only one perfect result, four correct outcomes and five incorrect outcomes. It meant I dropped from second place to fifth place in my predictions league.
Here's a look at how the top 10 in my predictions league stands.
Pos Player Week Total
___ _____ ____ ____
1. antonius_ronny_s 150 770
2 . Plsticninja 80 565
3. goonerdhanesh 135 540
4. RSun624 105 540
5. JamrockRover 30 525
6. ahujag 160 450
7. Meikku 90 450
8. AblockGooner 80 445
9. sakura 60 445
10. nawa87 50 415
Aston Villa V Norwich City
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images
Saturday October 27, 12:45 p.m. BST, Villa Park, Birmingham.
Villa find themselves just outside the relegation zone with only one win in their first eight games. The promise they showed a few weeks ago has slowly faded, and they need to take all three points in this game. They are the joint lowest scorers in the league, and that's a statistic which had to change if they are to improve their lot.
Villa players are probably best avoided for fantasy managers at the moment.
Norwich managed their first win of the season at home to Arsenal last week. It moved them out of the relegation zone, but it could be just a temporary position for them. Like Villa, they are the joint lowest scorers in the league, but they do look more likely to score goals.
Grant Holt has been doing well recently and could be worth considering for fantasy managers.
I have a feeling Villa might just get the better of a tight game.
Prediction: Villa 2-1 Norwich
Arsenal V Queens Park Rangers
Clive Mason/Getty Images
Saturday October 27, 3 p.m. BST, Emirates Stadium, London
Arsenal were very poor in their defeat to Norwich last week, and no better in midweek against Schalke. They are falling off the pace in the Premier League and have failed to score in three of their eight league games so far. They have got the best defence in the league, though, and they have to find their attacking flair in what is a must-win game for them.
At the moment, Santi Cazorla seems the best fantasy bet among the Arsenal players.
QPR are still rooted to the foot of the table without a win in their first eight games. Mark Hughes is under severe pressure, and he needs to win a game very soon. Only Southampton have conceded more goals so far, and QPR have really struggled to score too.
Arsenal need to win this game to steady the ship, and I think they will just about do it.
Prediction: Arsenal 2-1 QPR
Reading V Fulham
Ryan Pierse/Getty Images
Saturday October 27, 3 p.m. BST, Madjeski Stadium, Reading
Reading are without a win, and only QPR are below them in the table. They need to get their first win since their promotion, and they have a chance of doing so in this game. They haven't been well beaten in any of their games yet, but they need to get something out of those close games.
Jodi McAnuff is probably the best of the Reading players with four assists in their seven games.
Fulham have won four of their first eight games and are comfortably in the top 10. Only the top three teams have scored more goals than Fulham, but they have leaked quite a few goals too. Fulham don't usually travel too well, but they have looked a little better on the road this season.
John Arne Riise and Dimitar Berbatov look to be the Fulham players most likely to perform to me.
I can see this being a very close game and probably ending up in a draw.
Prediction: Reading 1-1 Fulham
Stoke City V Sunderland
Richard Heathcote/Getty Images
Saturday October 27, 3 p.m. BST, Britannia Stadium, Stoke
Stoke have only managed one win so far, but their five draws see them safely in a mid-table position. They are never an easy team to beat at home, and they will be favourites to win this game. They don't score too many goals, and they don't concede too many either, which doesn't exactly make for great viewing.
Asmir Begovic and Peter Crouch are the Stoke players most likely to succeed for fantasy managers.
Sunderland have only won once as well as Stoke, and they have drawn five times too. They are the joint lowest scorers in the league, but their defence can only be bettered by Arsenal and Chelsea. There have been fewer goals in games featuring them than any other team.
Stephen Fletcher is still the only Newcastle player to score so far this season and the obvious fantasy choice among their players with Simon Mignolet as an outside bet.
I can see this being another very close game, with both teams finishing equal at the end of it.
Prediction: Stoke 1-1 Sunderland
Wigan Athletic V West Ham United
Clive Mason/Getty Images
Saturday October 27, 3 p.m. BST, DW Stadium, Wigan
Wigan are yet again just above the relegation zone with five defeats in their first eight games. They have taken only one point in their last five games, and they need to rediscover their form of late last season. They are a good team to watch, but they need to score a few more goals.
Arouna Kone looks like he could be the best choice for fantasy managers among the Wigan players.
West Ham have done very well to win four of their first eight games, but five of them were at home. They have taken plenty of points off teams that are struggling at the wrong end of the table, and they will look to do the same against Wigan. They're not exactly great to watch, but their methods are effective.
With four goals, two assists and four bonus points in eight games, Kevin Nolan is west Ham's outstanding fantasy player, and he's still available at a good price.
I can see this being yet another close game and ending all square too.
Prediction: Wigan 1-1 West Ham
Manchester City V Swansea City
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
Saturday October 27, 5:30 p.m. BST, Etihad Stadium, Manchester
City are still unbeaten in the defence of their Premier League crown despite their Champions League struggles. They are a formidable team at home and showed great fighting spirit to win from behind and down to 10 men at West Brom last week. They will see a home game against Swansea as an ideal chance to close in on the two teams ahead of them who play each other this weekend.
Yaya Toure and Carlos Tevez are probably the City players most likely to score fantasy points at the moment.
Swansea brought their run of five games without a victory to an end by beating Wigan last week. It leaves them comfortably in mid-table, but they will do very well to get anything out of this game. Despite looking very good at times Swansea still look like things could go wrong for them this season.
Miguel Michu and Wayne Routledge are the Swansea players doing the business for fantasy managers at the moment.
I can't see anything other than a comfortable victory for City in this game.
Prediction: City 3-0 Swansea
Everton V Liverpool
Alex Livesey/Getty Images
Sunday October 28, 1:30 p.m. GMT, Goodison Park, Liverpool
Everton are still in the top four after eight games, and playing very well too. They have only lost once so far, and they must be favourites going into this local derby. With two of the teams above them playing each other, there is a chance for Everton to close the gap on them.
Leighton Baines, Steven Pienaar and Nikica Jelavic look to be the best fantasy bets in the Everton team, although Pienaar is suspended this week.
Liverpool have moved up the table with seven points in their last three games. A win in this game would be a huge boost for their confidence and for their fans' pride too. They have been leaking too many goals this season, and they won't really improve until they sort that out.
Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez are the Liverpool players who are performing best for fantasy managers.
I think Everton are playing well enough to get the win their fans crave.
Prediction: Everton 2-1 Liverpool
Newcastle United V West Bromwich Albion
Stu Forster/Getty Images
Sunday October 28, 3 p.m. GMT, St James Park, Newcastle
Newcastle have only lost twice so far this season, but they're drawing too many games and struggling to score goals too. There are a lot of expectations on them because they did so well last season, and they need to start turning those draws into wins. They are an impressive team at home usually, and they will be looking to make amends for their last home league performance when they lost 3-0 to United.
Demba Ba is by far Newcastle's best performing player, with Hatem Ben Arfa being the next most likely to do well for fantasy managers.
West Brom came very close to getting a draw at home to City last week, but they were beaten in injury time. They haven't won away from home yet, and it's their four home wins which have them so high in the league. They will still think they have a chance against a Newcastle team which were in action in the Europa League on Thursday night.
James Morrison and Shane Long are looking quite good for West Brom at the moment, with Ben Foster and Gareth McAuley possibilities too.
I think Newcastle will get a much-needed win in this game.
Prediction: Newcastle 3-1 West Brom
Southampton V Tottenham Hotspur
Paul Gilham/Getty Images
Sunday October 28, 3 p.m. GMT, St. Mary's, Southamton
Saints have only four points so far this season, but they have taken them all at home. They have scored more goals than any of the other teams in the bottom half of the table, but they have the worst defence in the league too. They have to tighten up at the back to get clear of the relegation zone, but they just don't look capable of it at the moment.
Adam Lallana and Rickie Lambert look to be the Southampton players most likely to score fantasy points.
Spurs' recent good run came to an end when Chelsea put four goals past them last week. They're still in a pretty good spot n the table, and a win in this game could see them move back into the top four. They will see a game against the worst defence in the league as an ideal opportunity to do just that.
Gareth Bale and Jermaine Defoe would seem to be the best choices among the Spurs players for fantasy managers.
Spurs should be too good for Southampton and will surely take all three points.
Prediction: Saints 1-3 Spurs
Chelsea V Manchester United
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images
Sunday October 28, 4 p.m. GMT, Stamford Bridge, London
Chelsea are unbeaten and have won seven of their eight league games so far. They have been impressive in those games, and a win in this game could lay down a marker for the rest of the season. They will look to get at a United defence which has struggled at times this season.
Juan Mata, Eden Hazard, Branislav Ivanovic, Gary Cahill and Fernando Torres are all currently worth a punt for fantasy managers.
United have lost twice already this season in the league, but they have no draws to their name either. They're in second place, four points behind Chelsea, and a win would close that gap to a single point. They took a gamble to rest a few players in their midweek game, and it just about paid off with a narrow come-from-behind home victory over Braga.
Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney are probably the United players most likely to succeed for fantasy managers.
Prediction: Chelsea 2-2 United
That's it for this week, but feel free to tell me where I may have gone right or wrong as the case might be.