Arsene Wenger made two surprise decisions last week, one of which damaged many FPL managers hopes of large GW35 points hauls as the Frenchman left Aubameyang on the bench for visit of West Ham to the Emirates.
Despite Auba starting on the bench, he still managed to grab an assist but it is our members who benefitted most from our Raheem Sterling first pick captain shout as the forward returned 22 points with the armband. With a couple of important European semi-finals before we get to game week 36 (Liverpool on Tuesday and Arsenal on Thursday) it is time to start those preparations for the final week of April before we head in to the double game week 37 that is hotly anticipated by Fantasy Premier League managers.
Game Week 36 Top Picks
We take a look at the top GW36 fixtures and will also round up the best of the rest.
Liverpool Vs. Stoke
Liverpool have a quick turnaround to their second leg Champions League semi final which could well point towards some rotation again from Klopp as he prepares for the visit of Stoke City. This is a must win game for the Potters if they are to stay in the Premier League and by the same token it is one that Liverpool need to win to help fend off Spurs who will only be behind them on goal difference should they win their game in hand. With Chelsea sniffing around in 5th spot it is still a game that Klopp needs to take seriously after they succumbed to a West Brom second half comeback last weekend.
Mo Salah was rightly crowned PFA Player of the Year on Sunday evening and he remains the key threat after scoring goal number 31 last weekend. Sadio Mane is the other danger man whilst Firmino could well be rested again with Danny Ings impressing at the Hawthorns. Stoke earned a decent point at home to a good Burnley side but this should be too much for them and could seal their relegation.
Salah may well be the captain choice for GW36 but there will be a lingering doubt over him being rested ahead of the second leg against Roma so pick your vice captain wisely should you choose to go with the Egyptian.
Burnley Vs. Brighton
No clean sheets in the last 5 games for Burnley means that the usual tactic of grabbing some cheap defenders from them hasn’t worked so well of late. Brighton also struggle to keep to it tight at the back and with the Seasiders looking pretty safe from the threat of relegation we have this chalked off as a home win. 6 goals in 8 games for Ashley Barnes puts him right up there in terms of strikers in form and this looks like a good chance for him to add to his tally.
Swansea Vs. Chelsea
Swansea were battered by a rampant Man City last weekend and although the visit of Chelsea to the Liberty Stadium won’t represent the same sternness of test, it will hardly be a walk in the park either. Both sides desperately need the points and it is Olivier Giroud who looks the difference for Chelsea of late – and they now seem to be getting the results they desperately need. Two goals from his last substitute appearance and then a goal in the cup when starting against Southampton have put him up there and this could be a good game for the Frenchman.
Morata still looks indifferent and commands too much of a fee to back but with plenty of differential in Giroud he could be a savvy choice.
West Ham Vs. Man City
Any thoughts of Man City taking their foot off the gas were well and truly quashed by their performance against Swansea. It wasn’t just the result that impressed but the preparation, attitude and ruthlessness that shone through and had all the hallmarks of worthy champions. West Ham were torn apart against Arsenal last week and this looks like being no different. The Hammers should be safe from the ‘R’ word but they would prefer to put any lingering doubts to bed with a win here. It is unlikely though.
Sterling was the star man against Swansea and should have had even more points had Jesus converted the penalty he had won. KDB was also sublime along with David Silva who we simply don’t have enough superlatives to describe. Take your pick from that three and cram them all in to your side if you can.
Man Utd Vs. Arsenal
Arsene Wenger has ensured some real battles with Man Utd over the years and although his relationship with Mourinho might not be as tempestuous as it once was with Sir Alex Ferguson, he will want one last hurrah against his old foes. His Portuguese counterpart will also be preparing for an important win as United look to secure second place in the league which he can all but do with victory here.
United have been impressive against the bigger teams of late with wins of Spurs and Man City in the last few weeks. This looks a fascinating encounter and one that will have two completely different approaches. The main advice here is to select who you ordinarily would from these sides and don’t concern yourself with the calibre of opposition.
One thing to take in to consideration is that Arsenal will have played Athletico Madrid in the Europa League on Thursday night and won’t have the same preparation that Jose will enjoy.
If you are looking for some value then Lacazette could well be it – however, he will feature heavily on Thursday so don’t be surprised to see him start from the bench against United.
Spurs Vs. Watford
Spurs face another trophy-less season after losing in yet another FA Cup semi final! They can still snatch third place from Liverpool though if there is any kind of slip up from Jurgen Klopp’s side and that has to be their remaining motivator. Harry Kane hasn’t looked quite right since returning from injury but this has to represent a significant chance for the England hitman.
The player in form for Spurs is Christian Eriksen who has a fantastic chance to add to his recent goals as Spurs prepare to face a Watford side that continues to play out the season in spectacularly mediocre fashion.
A clean sheet should be on the cards for Spurs so opting for a defender is a good idea and with two very winnable games in GW37 it is worth stocking up.
The Best of the Rest
It was on off day for the Crystal Palace forwards against Watford at the weekend and they will be hoping to get back to scoring ways against Leicester City in GW36 who have been inconsistent of late. Zaha represents the biggest threat although he only has one game in next week’s DGW. Jamie Vardy does have a DGW next week and could be a worth a punt.