Aside from Manchester City, there aren’t many teams that stand out for gameweek 35. But seasoned fantasy football players will have had an eye on gameweek 36 for a while now, with eight teams set to “enjoy” a double header. Obviously, don’t go in two-footed and fill your team with Stoke and Fulham players just to take advantage of the double gameweek – zero x 2 is still zero remember! But with gameweek 36 in mind, we like the look of Newcastle United and Liverpool. Both have winnable home fixtures this weekend and play twice in gameweek 36.
Manchester City may well be another side with one eye on gameweek 36, when they face Manchester United at the Etihad. But before even considering reducing the deficit between themselves and title rivals United, City must take care of Wolves on Sunday or they could go into the big game as many as eight points adrift of the Premier League summit. But City certainly have no reason to fear Terry Connor’s side, having already put five past them in the League Cup at Molineux earlier in the season. Roberto Mancini’s title-chasers have been in free-scoring mode since losing at the Emirates and face a Wolves side that has conceded 41 goals at home this season – the worst record in the Premier League. Let’s face it: there are goals here. Last week we said Carlos Tévez (£11.9m) hadn’t done enough this season to justify his price, but we were wrong. If you’ve got Tévez and his Argentine team-mate Sergio Agüero (£11.1m) in your fantasy team, you’re going to do well this week. David Silva (£9.6m) looked useful again at Carrow Road last week, although Gnegneri Touré Yaya (£7.7m) and Adam Johnson (£7m) could prove better value-for-money.
Newcastle are enjoying a terrific run of form at the minute with five straight wins in the league and as such find themselves in the race for Champions League football next season. They face a Stoke side in fairly indifferent form at St James’ Park on Saturday, before the double gameweek, when they play struggling Wigan and top four rivals Chelsea. Tony Pulis’ team has scored just 11 goals on the road this season and in all fairness look like they’re already on the beach. Hatem Ben Arfa (£6m) and Yohan Cabaye (£5.8m) could prove absolute bargains over the next two gameweeks. Meanwhile, a shut-out against Stoke does not seem out of the question, so Danny Simpson (£4.7), Mike Williamson (£4.2m) and Tim Krul (£5m) could also be worth considering. Several fantasy football players will now be on the Papiss Cissé (£7.8m) bandwagon, given his form. Following an excellent first half of the season, Demba Ba (£7.1m) has seen his value drop after failing to find the net in The Toon’s last nine games. Now could be the time to gamble and bring him back in if you can’t afford Cissé.
It’s been far from a vintage season for Liverpool, but after reaching the FA Cup final, Kenny Dalglish should be fairly confident going into league games against West Brom, Norwich and Fulham. We didn’t expect to be saying this, but Andy Carroll (£9.1m) could be worth considering. The big man popped up with two crucial goals late on in Liverpool’s last two games and is proving that he can in fact be a handful for opposition defenders. When looking at Liverpool players, it’s difficult to look beyond Reds talisman Steven Gerrard (£9.5m), but with the double gameweek, the likes of Craig Bellamy (£6.8m) and Rodríguez Maxi (£7m) should be given some game time and always seem to do the business when they’re on the pitch.
Others worth considering
Although they’re in shocking form, with just one league victory in their last eight league games, fantasy football players would be very brave to ignore Spurs. As they chase Champions League football, their next three games are against relegation-threatened QPR, Blackburn and Bolton. Since Tottenham’s form is so bad, we’d advise you to only really look at their top scoring players, i.e. Brad Friedel (£5.7m), Benoît Assou-Ekotto (£6.2m), Gareth Bale (£9.1m), Rafael van der Vaart (£9.5m) and Emmanuel Adebayor (£9.1m).
With that sentiment in mind, Chelsea players could also be a decent bet. It can be difficult to second guess the manager on the Chelsea starting line up, but with Branislav Ivanovic suspended and David Luiz injured, Gary Cahill (£5.5m) should slot in alongside John Terry in the back four. That’s a great price and could free up funds for the big hitters like Frank Lampard (£11m), Juan Mata (£9.5m) and Didier Drogba (£10m). If you’re inclined to take on a bit of a gamble, we quite like the look of Daniel Sturridge (£6.6m) and Saloman Kalou (£6.7m), who both have goals in them and ought to play some part over the next couple of gameweeks.
Other double gameweek players in fairly decent form we’re looking at are Robert Huth (£5.6m), David Wheater (£4.4m), Clint Dempsey (£9.4m), Damien Duff (£6.1m) and Tim Howard (£5.4m).
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