When the Premier League serves up a mid-week treat there is always one thing most fans forget – to set their fantasy football team!
It’s understandable given that tinkering with your pun-named dream eleven is a ritual saved for the weekend but as the home stretch begins Gameweek 25 will be just as important to your overall score as any other!
So as a way of helping you remember to be ready for Tuesday and Wednesday’s fixtures we’ve suggested five players who might help boost your points this Gameweek.
This week’s easy clean sheet comes at the Emirates as bottom of the league Leicester City travel to North London. The Gunners have kept clean sheets in three of their last five home games in all competitions and the Foxes have failed to register in two of their last four. So if you want to bag that clean sheet on the cheap then why not bring in young full-back Hector Bellerin?
The 19-year-old Spaniard has shown maturity in recent weeks looking assured defensively and offering a lot going forward. He’s worth just £4.5m and has racked up 24 points in the last four Gameweeks. With all that in favour of the defender he’s a cheeky little gamble worth taking!
Eden Hazard had a strong game against Aston Villa and could be the key as Chelsea host Everton. With Diego Costa still one game away from a return for the Blues, the Belgian attacking midfielder will continue to be the go-to man to cash in on Chelsea’s goals. He’s created one and scored one in his last two.
The Toffees looked fairly sound defensively against their Merseyside rivals but did allow plenty of time and space on the ball for the quick-footed Jordon Ibe. He gave Bryan Oviedo plenty of work to do as he filled in for Leighton Baines and created plenty of problems for Gareth Barry and James McCarthy as he drifted into central areas
With Hazard operating in a similarly free roaming role – and significantly trickier too – he could prove to be too much for an Everton side that has kept just two clean sheets on the road in all competitions this season.
Patrick Van Aanholt
Left-back Patrick Van Aanholt has been a key man for Sunderland this year as they have spent more time attacking the left-flank than any other side (42%). His pace saw him bag an assist in his last home outing against Burnley and he helped put together a
tidy clean sheet.
There’s no need to remind anyone of QPR’s fate on the road this season and as their life without a manager drags on you’d hardly expect the Hoops to buck their away from home hoodoo on Tuesday night. If QPR are as drab as we expect them to be then a clean sheet for Van Aanholt is almost a certainty and his probing down the left flank could help him to an assist – all for just £4.2; worth a flutter!
The arrival of the Spanish midfielder at Villa Park seems to have buoyed Aston Villa somewhat and he topped it off by providing the assist for the club’s first Premier League goal since December 20. The 22-year-old also got on the score sheet when Paul Lambert’s men saw of Championship high-fliers Bournemouth in the FA Cup.
While the quality of Villa’s strikers is well established with the likes of Christian Benteke, Gabriel Agbonlahor and Andreas Weimann the biggest criticism of the side was the approach play and service to those forward men. The signing of Gil seems to have rectified that somewhat and could prove helpful as Villa prepare for a huge six-pointer with fellow strugglers Hull City on Tuesday night.
It’s a big match for Crystal Palace this week as Alan Pardew hosts his former club Newcastle United. The Palace players look to be very motivated to win games for the former Toon boss and no player will be more grateful for his place in the team than Dwight Gayle.
The striker was overlooked under Neil Warnock but Pardew has re-established him in the starting lineup – and that has seen a return of 28 points over the last four Gameweeks.
In that time Gayle has registered 14 shots on goal bested only by Harry Kane’s 18. His desire to get his team goals will be important as Pardew hopes to get one over his former employers. The Toon have conceded in all but one of their last 12 matches and if anyone’s likely to make that trend continue on Wednesday night it’s the £5.0 priced Dwight Gayle.