Nik Argiropoulos

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AM's Week 15 Player Picks

Thursday, December 05, 2013


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KEEPERS
Simon Mignolet - Yeah I had Gazzaniga last week, and yeah he was a bust. It's always a big risk being drawn to a keeper costing 1.00 as there's usually a reason he's so cheap. At the moment I'm going to play it safe with the keeper from the stand-out fixture and I expect Mignolet to keep a clean sheet against West Ham.
Boaz Myhill - If you're not looking to spend double figures on your goalie then I feel the best option is West Brom's Myhill, facing Norwich at home.
Julian Speroni - Don't fancy Mignolet or Myhill? Then you could gamble on Speroni, with Crystal Palace looking increasingly solid at the back and facing low-scoring Cardiff at home.

 

DEFENDERS
Glen Johnson - England's attacking right-back hasn't produced a truly big score for a couple of weeks but given his fixture against West Ham I reckon he remains the best choice if you're spending big on a defender.
Stephen Caulker - I've marked Crystal Palace v Cardiff down as a 0-0 draw in my work prediction league and feel there could be good fantasy points available for the defenders on show. Caulker has been a rock this season, producing solid scores almost every week, so he could be an excellent choice for Week 15.
Joel Ward - See above but substitute the name Ward for Caulker.
Ben Davies - Fully recovered from injury now and the full back is starting to return some impressive hauls once again. I fancy a Swansea win at home to Hull, possibly with a clean sheet, so Davies is high on my list and could make my final XI.
Billy Jones - Returned against Newcastle in Week 12 before getting a rest last night, Jones should be back for West Brom against Norwich, a game the home side should win comfortably.
Carl Jenkinson - The young defender replaced the injured Bacary Sagna for Arsenal's game against Hull and was excellent, raiding down the flank, grabbing an assist and a clean sheet for 15 points. If Sagna remains out I'll be tempted to hang on to him against Everton.
Jon Flanagan - His price has dropped after a very quiet game against Norwich but Flanagan should retain his spot at left-back and remains a very cheap way to cover the likely Liverpool clean sheet vs West Ham.
Bryan Oviedo - After recommending him to our readers via this column in Week 13 I cannot believe I missed the boat. Why? Well, I'd scanned the predicted line-ups last Saturday morning and most UK Papers has Gareth Barry starting a left back, so I dropped Oviedo. Two games, two goals, two clean sheets and 40+ points later it's safe to say I'm crying in to my cornflakes on a daily basis. If you have him he should remain in your team until Leighton Baines returns.

 

MIDFIELDERS
Steven Gerrard - The Anfield captain remains 2nd in the overall midfield points scorers for the Yahoo game thanks to his three goals and five assists, as well as his corner taking which, more often than not results in a point for a successful cross. I had him in my team against Norwich and he'll remain there for West Ham.
Yaya Toure - Breaking up attacks, starting attacks, late runs in to the box, strong in the air, calm finisher, free kick specialist and now penalty taker - is there anything Yaya can't do? Tricky game at Southampton but City look to be over their away-day pain and he could dominate midfield.
Philippe Coutinho - If you're struggling to afford Gerrard, or feel it's worth having two Liverpool midfielders in your team, then Coutinho is well worth considering. The little man has racked up double figures in four out of the past five weeks and could have a field day against West Ham.
Jonjo Shelvey - The man with the worst goal celebration in football is making the most of Michu's absence with some eye-catching performances playing just behind the striker, and he's an excellent choice at home to Hull in Week 15.
Samir Nasri - Magnificent against Spurs and Swansea, quiet against West Brom, but that could've been down to tiredness. He was removed early in that game but with David Silva still out he should start at Southampton and is worth a look.
Aaron Ramsey - I've run out of words to describe him. Ramsey must be in your team.
Mesut Ozil - The same applies to Ozil if he keeps up his recent form, averaging 12 points per game over the past three weeks.
Andros Townsend - The England winger has found himself on the bench for the past few weeks but Aaron Lennon will probably need a rest at Sunderland so expect Townsend to start at Sunderland and he knows he has to make a big impact to earn a regular place back in the first XI.
Stephane Sessegnon - Rested against Manchester City but Sessegnon should be restored to the starting line-up for the home game at Norwich and this is exactly the sort of match the West Brom man tends to perform in.

 

STRIKERS
Luis Suarez - 13 goals in 9 games. Home to West Ham. Captain. Simples.
Sergio Aguero - Grabbed another goal and was subbed with half an hour to go at the Hawthorns on Wednesday night so Aguero is unlikely to be rested for the tough game against Southampton. I'm keeping him for the long-haul and expect another strong performance alongside Alvaro Negredo (who was rested in Week 14).
Eden Hazard - The Chelsea winger is showing his very best form at the moment and was sensational as he pulled Chelsea through to a hard-fought victory at Sunderland. I've brought Hazard in to my team for the first time this season for the winnable game at Stoke.
Javier Hernandez - If Robin van Persie is fit then he must be considered against Newcastle, but the fact he didn't even make the bench against Everton suggests he's still struggling. With Rooney suspended it means Chicharito will probably start and he almost always scores when given an opportunity. We'll get the line-ups for Manchester United and Newcastle before the deadline so can check out the situation on Saturday.
Shane Long - One of the hardest-working strikers in the Premier League, he had a quiet game against Manchester City but has been leading the line well for West Brom and comes up against a Norwich side who leak goals for fun on the road.
Olivier Giroud - Unexpectedly rested for the Hull game, Giroud should be refreshed and ready to face Everton. It's a very difficult game but when you've got the likes of Ozil, Ramsey, Cazorla and Wilshere feeding you the ball you will always get chances.
Dimitar Berbatov - Rumours are circulating that the Bulgarian forward wants to leave Fulham in January, which will probably explain his fantastic performance against Tottenham last night. Long-term fans of the Premier League will remember Mark Viduka used to do a similar thing when he wanted a move / was coming to the end of a contact, and I can see Berbatov pulling out another good performance at home to Aston Villa and through the rest of December.

 

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So those are the players I'm considering for my Week 14 Yahoo team. For now I have the following saved on my own team page:

 

Starting XI: Mignolet, Jenkinson, Flanagan, B.Davies, Y.Toure, Ozil, Gerrard, Ramsey, Hazard, Aguero, Suarez
Subs: Paulinho, Bardsley, Spence, Harper


I like it but there may be changes. I'm thinking of downgrading Mignolet to Myhill to free up £6million which will allow me to upgrade either Flanagan or Jenkinson. Paulinho may also be downgraded to provide even more cash, but again this would likely be spent on the defence as I'm happy with my midfield and attack. Although saying that, maybe I could squeeze Shelvey in somewhere.

 

Check back here on Rotoworld on Friday for all the team and injury news coming out of the manager's press conferences to assist you with your final decisions. There will be a lot of info to process after a full Premier League schedule in mid-week, so we'll make sure we've got you covered.

 

How's your Week 15 team looking? Anyone NOT captaining Suarez?



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Nik Argiropoulos is a London-based soccer writer for Rotoworld and co-founder of Never Manage Alone. You can find him on Twitter @nikarg.
Email :Nik Argiropoulos





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