A few tricky fixtures to call this week. With Arsenal enjoying such a fine run of form, you’d back them to extend their unbeaten run at Loftus Road tomorrow, while Manchester United’s trip to Ewood Park on Monday night could prove extremely lucrative for the Red Devils. But, we’re looking at Bolton and Chelsea for the next two gameweeks.
Spurred on by the good news surrounding Fabrice Muamba’s condition, Bolton earned a vital three points against Blackburn last weekend. That victory marked back-to-back wins in the Premier League for Owen Coyle’s side and a game at seemingly doomed Wolves before a home fixture against travel sick Fulham gives the Trotters a great opportunity to pull away from the drop zone. On loan Arsenal midfielder Ryo Miyaichi (£4.9m) has impressed since arriving at the Reebok and will free up plenty of cash for the big hitters in your fantasy team. Meanwhile, Martin Petrov (£5.1m) is always a threat with his set pieces and will pop up with the odd goal as well. The Bolton strikers aren’t exactly in sparkling form at the minute, but Ivan Klasnic is probably the best bet among the forwards. The Croat is a slight gamble, given that he hasn’t racked up 90 minutes for some time now, but he’s still Bolton’s most potent goal threat.
Chelsea have been enjoying the cups since interim boss John Terry Roberto Di Matteo took charge and the Blues will now look to transfer their excellent European performances into some Premier League form. They will need to pick up points from their next couple of games before that Champions League spot becomes a distant dream and could well do the business against a goal-shy Aston Villa tomorrow. A home game against relegation-threatened Wigan follows, while top four rivals Spurs have tricky fixtures at home to Swansea and away to Sunderland. With all the defenders fit, it’s difficult to guess who’ll partner JT (£7.4m) at the back, so we’re really looking to the midfield. Juan Mata (£9.6m) and Frank Lampard (£11m) seem expensive, but they’re more than likely to repay your faith in them during the next couple of games. Up top, it’s a toss up between Didier Drogba (£10.1m) and Fernando Torres (£9.9m). Again, it’s hard to say who’ll be given more minutes to impress, but we’re leaning towards the £50million man.
Others worth considering
As we’ve been saying recently, you’d be taking a huge gamble to overlook the form (and upcoming fixtures) of Manchester United. Obviously, you’ll want the likes of Wayne Rooney, Danny Welbeck and Ashley Young, but at this stage of the season, it could also be wise to consider some of the fringe players as Sir Alex looks to keep the squad fresh. Ji Sung Park (£6.7m) always seems to perform when he’s picked, while youngsters Paul Pogba (£5.5m) and Tom Cleverley (£5.1m) are also worth a mention as they could also prove to be bargains.
Arsenal are also looking pretty impressive at the moment as they look to make it eight wins on the bounce against QPR tomorrow. Alex Song (£5.9m) is unlikely to make way for anyone in the midfield and has been laying chances on a plate for the likes of Van Persie and Walcott.
Newcastle could pull 11 points clear of Liverpool if they beat the Reds at St James’ Park on Sunday and you’d be wise not to ignore the form of Papiss Cisse (£6.9m) and Hatem Ben Arfa (£5.5m). Demba Ba’s (£7.7m) value has dropped in recent weeks but we’d say he’s definitely due a goal and should certainly not be overlooked.
Finally, we’re backing Stoke for their games against strugglers Wigan and Wolves. Tony Pulis’ side should at least be able to avoid defeat against the basement boys and might even pick up a couple of cleanies along the way. Asmir Begovic (£4.5m) seems to have re-established himself as the Potters No.1 and is looking like a safe pair of hands behind the ever-reliable and solid Ryan Shawcross (£5.2m).