Paulsy’s Premier Picks – Match Week 17

COVID has started to hit the Premier League and as I write this all games are on for this midweek round. Authorities need to decide what constitutes a outbreak for a game to be called off as many are feeling some clubs have to get on with it and others call the tune. As normal for midweek rounds I keep my preview to three prime points.

Brentford v Manchester United

  • Both sides are depleted due to injury and COVID, the decisive matter is that The Red Devil’s will still be able to field a side with internationals from all the major world nations.
  • Pace is key in football and the Brentford backline are short of that quality, Thomas Frank will need to prevent space behind, if his lineup doesn’t counter that fact it could be a rout.
  • Norgaard v Fernandes and Henry v Sancho are two headline match ups in this game.

One for your FPL – David De Gea £5.1m

Bet Select – Man United win

Norwich City v Aston Villa 

  • After Gerrard’s return to Anfield Saturday he now faces off against the man he replaced, this is a statement game for him more than Dean Smith.
  • The new manager bounce has fizzled out massively for Norwich, they are four without a win and rooted to the bottom of the league.
  • Billy Gilmour has played out of his skin as of late and will once again be looked at to be the standout midfielder, this will be a tough task as the Villa midfield have been the stars for their team  since Gerrard took over.

One for your FPL – Ollie Watkins £7.5m

Bet Select – Aston Vila win

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Manchester City v Leeds United

  • Leeds had City’s number last season drawing at Elland Road and winning at the Etihad. It’s hard to see either of those outcomes at the moment, Leeds have one win in five.
  • Dan James needs to start performing like everyone expected when he left Swansea for Manchester Utd. His talent is undoubted, the time is now to show it as Leeds need a forward line boost.
  • Going 4 points is the outcome if City win, their rivals do not play till Thursday. That fact playing on their mind for nearly two days could be the ideal mind game!

One for your FPL – Oleksandr Zincenko £5,3m

Bet Select –Manchester City win

Brighton & Hove Albion v Wolverhampton Wanderers 

  • Both sides are in shocking form but still find themselves 11th and 9th respectively. A draw is not good enough, winning is vital to take into the Xmas period.
  • Adama Traore could be the difference maker but this is a statement you can say every game. Will he ever take off?
  • Jimenez is a major loss for Wolves, as mentioned in previous previews Brighton would die for a opposition striker.

One for your FPL – Joao Moutinho £4.9m

Bet Select – Brighton win

Burnley v Watford 

  • If your football loving child is playing up before Christmas don’t threaten no presents from Santa, make them watch this game of football.
  • Emmaunuel Dennis is a class act but so is Josh King, with both in the team a goal is always likely to be scored.
  • Is it time for Sean Dyche to leave Burnley? Serious questions need to be asked, their Premier League future is hanging in the balance.

One for your FPL – Emmaunuel Dennis £5.8m

Bet Select – Watford win

Crystal Palace v Southampton 

  • Palace have a terrible history in this fixture but from the four wins in the past three have been at home. Selhurst Park will be electric and hoping for two wins on the bounce.
  • Can the real Wilf Zaha please stand up? Gallagher has been driving this team forward it’s time for the Franchise player to show up.
  • The Saints will be playing for the draw, nil nil would be a dream for Husenhutti as a clean sheet is long overdue.

One for your FPL – Theo Walcott £5.8m

Bet Select – Draw

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Arsenal v West Ham United

  • This is as good a time as ever to play West Ham, volume of games and injuries are starting to take their toll. Drawing with Burnley showed that Saturday.
  • No Auba, no problem at the weekend, we could have easily seen the last of the Arsenal captain on the pitch. If Arteta could move him on then he should not think twice.
  • Soucek has been quiet in front of goal, on Wednesday his battle with Gabriel at corners will be box office.

One for your FPL – Kieran Tierney £4.7m

Bet Select – Arsenal win

Leicester City v Tottenham Hotspur 

  • It will be interesting to see what type of team Spurs can put out after their COVID postponements. Harry Kane has been tweeting like mad lately, he needs to take that form and transfer it to goals.
  • Jamie Vardy was benched Sunday, that is a worrying issue for Tottenham, he will want a piece of the brittle backline from White Hart Lane.
  • A Leicester win will take them above Spurs on goal difference having played two more games, the points on the board is better than games in hand.

One for your FPL –Harvey Barnes £6.5m

Bet Select – Leicester win

Chelsea v Everton 

  • Lukaku should come back into the line up and face his former side, if he can get one on one with Mason Holgate then he could have a field day.
  • Heavy defeat and surely Rafa’s time is up? Maybe the only reason he stays is the lack of viable replacement out there?
  • If Demari Gray wants to prove he is the real deal, pinning back Reece James is as good a place as anywhere to start. Not many wingers win the battle against James, this match up will not decide the game but is more for bragging rights.

One for your FPL – Timo Werner £8.6m

Bet Select – Chelsea win

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Liverpool v Newcastle United 

  • The December nightmare continues for Newcastle and they still have to face both Utd and City. We have no chance of the classic 90s encounters, this will be soooo heavily one sided it’s scary.
  • Over the last five games Liverpool have nearly averaged three goals a game, that’s the minimum they will score on Thursday night.
  • Almiron showed some glimpses on Sunday of the player we thought he maybe, he needs to support Maximin much more. With the cash about to be spent his St James career rides on some positive form before January. That being said he could end up benefiting away from Newcastle while being a bargain signing at the same time.

One for your FPL – Miguel Almiron £5.2m

Bet Select – Liverpool win

Thursday night has the three top games but so much is on the line Tues and Wed night the action could be better than expected.
Good luck if you follow my acca tip, the odds with Sky Bet sit at 683.25/1.