Manchester United 0 – 1 Newcastle United
As a Chelsea supporter, this was almost as fun as watching Chelsea win. Manchester’s struggles continue and David Moyes is certainly on the hot seat now. Manchester lacked creativity and tried to just cross the ball in but that tactic didn’t work too well and they couldn’t create much. Robin van Persie returned from injury and created a few chances for Javier Hernandez but the overall play of United was average at best. Newcastle played hard and their hard work paid off. Yohan Cabaye continued his fantastic run with a goal and owners who stuck with Methieu Debuchy after last week’s negative one point were rewarded with a 20-point outing this week.
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Crystal Palace 2 – 0 Cardiff City
Another game, another win for Crystal Palace. This is the third win in four games for Palace and Tony Pulis looks to have the affect Mauricio Pochettino had on Southampton last season, when he took them from the relegation zone to a respectable 14th place finish. Palace are playing well all around and keeping clean sheets that are leading them to points. Cameron Jerome caused problems for Cardiff and unsurprisingly opened the scoring in the sixth minute. Merouane Chamakh scored in his second consecutive game and looks like what was expected from him early on. It’s hard to say if any Palace players will have a fantasy impact under their new coach, but as of right now I’m only trusting Joel Ward. Cardiff looked poor again but you can trust Steven Caulker in fantasy.
Liverpool 4 – 1 West Ham
West Ham’s defenders outscored Luis Suarez in the second Premier League game in history to see three own goals. Guy Demel, Joey O’Brien, and Martin Skrtel all scored in the wrong net and a James Collins deflection that was registered as a Mamadou Sakho goal could have made that four. Suarez still found a way to be productive, scoring a goal and putting enough shots to target to finish the game with 22 fantasy points. Phillippe Coutinho was instrumental for Liverpool and also did well with 12 points. West Ham continued to struggle and had even more trouble creating without Ravel Morrison, who missed the game due to a suspension. He’ll be back next week. Kevin Nolan was sent off in the 82nd minute to make an already bad day worse. The only question for next week is whether to captain Suarez since Liverpool are playing at White Hart Lane.
Southampton 1 – 1 Manchester City
Southampton had a rough week leading up to this game as more and more players were ruled out by injury. That didn’t stop the Saints as they matched Manchester City’s play and deserved a point. Jay Rodriguez has transformed into a force and continues to cause defenses problems. He only had three fantasy points on the day but that number doesn’t describe his numerous contributions on the pitch. Manchester City should be disappointed that they couldn’t take advantage of Southampton’s injuries but a point away from home is better than none. Sergio Aguero played well and scored the team’s only goal. Yaya Toure was relatively quiet and has lost some of the consistency he had at the beginning of the season. City have a tough matchup against Arsenal next week.
Stoke City 3 – 2 Chelsea
Another surprising result here at the Britannia Stadium. Stoke City recovered from an early Chelsea onslaught to steal three points from the Blues. Chelsea started the game hot and Andre Schurrle opened the scoring in the ninth minute as Chelsea continued to attack. Despite creating many chances, the Blues just couldn’t finish and that allowed Stoke to come back with a Peter Crouch goal late in the first half. The second half was similar but Chelsea slowed down. Schurrle scored a second goal but then left the game with a calf injury. Steven Ireland scored for Stoke and Oussama Assaidi came off the bench to put a fantastic strike in the back of the net in the 90th minute. Chelsea tried to recover in added time but it wasn’t enough and Stoke took all three points. Jose Mourinho’s players continue to be unreliable fantasy producers but Eden Hazard is the team’s engine and should continue playing the majority of minutes. Oscar should be back by next weekend as well. Stoke’s best recent contributor is Ryan Shawcross but his £13.5m price tag could make him hard to fit into your fantasy lineup.
West Brom 0 – 2 Norwich City
Weird things happen sometimes when you have two teams from the bottom of the table facing off but usually you can bet on the home team. That wasn’t the case this time as Norwich showed up to play at The Hawthorns and stole the three points from West Brom. Leroy Fer had a great game and scored a late goal to put the game away. His last five fantasy results are: 16, 0, -1, 16, 15. There is obvious potential there but can you trust Leroy? West Brom don’t have many fantasy contributors either. Morgan Amalfitano could make a case for those who like to experiment but even he has slowed down after a fast start to the season.
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Sunderland 1 – 2 Tottenham
Sunderland got the lead in the first half but wasted an opportunity to leave the bottom of the table. Tottenham picked up some urgency after going down 1-0 and the extra effort paid off when Paulinho tied the game in the 43rd minute. Mousa Dembele caused problems for Sunderland and created the second goal that saw John O’Shea put the ball in his own net. Sunderland have now scored five own goals on the season and are unsurprisingly last in the table. With everyone else in the relegation zone showing some sort of improvement, Sunderland seem to be stuck at the bottom. Tottenham have now gotten two wins in a row but their play hasn’t been flawless and they must play better if they are going to win points against Liverpool next weekend.
Fulham 2 – 0 Aston Villa
Dimitar Berbatov continued his good play and led the line well for Fulham. He deservedly scored a goal from the penalty spot and the Bulgarian seems to be on one of his good spells. Steve Sidwell scored the other goal for Fulham to give them the three points. These were Fulham’s first three points in their last seven games but there is something to look forward to as they’ve played much better under new manager Rene Meulensteen. On the other side of the ball, Aston Villa continued their inconsistency. They won three hard points against Southampton last weekend but failed to pick up anything here in what was an easier matchup. Christian Benteke started the game but failed to score and is in a horrible slump. I would not trust him at this time.
Arsenal 1 – 1 Everton
Arsenal and Everton put on a show at the Emirates. Both teams looked fantastic and took turns dominating possession and attacking the opposition. Mesut Ozil opened the scoring late but substitute Gerard Deulofeu scored a fantastic goal to tie the match minutes later. Olivier Giroud hit the woodwork with just minutes to go in what would have been a goal of the year candidate had it gone it. Giroud finished with only three fantasy points. Aaron Ramsey finished with 10 points despite failing to get an assist or a goal. Ramsey and Ozil will continue producing and are must plays if you own them at a cheaper price.
A lot of great fantasy scores out there as my team got 120 points and only climbed the standings by about 200 spots. How did your team do this weekend?