GW16 reminded me of the importance of ‘The Last Word’ articles that I publish every week 90 minutes before the game week deadline. A Last minute change of heart from Coutinho to our original second choice Kane saw us get a much bigger return. The fear was of rotation and that’s exactly what happened so if you only catch one article each week make sure it is ‘The Last Word’ – make sure you are logged in to view it.
GW16 was a pivotal one in the title race as Man City brushed aside their neighbours Manchester United in a game that saw city run out 2-1 winners. In truth it could have been much more and City will now go in to the game at Swansea as dead certs for the title. There may be a long way to go and anything can happen but it is starting to look like a foregone conclusion.
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City played the derby game without the need for Sergio Aguero which points to him starting against Swansea, but he is not a long term proposition giving the constant rotation.
The chasers all failed to fully narrow the gap to Man Utd with Arsenal and Liverpool only managing draws, although Spurs did manage to claim all 3 points in an emphatic 5-1 win over Stoke City – again, both of these sides failed to keep a clean sheet as predicted.
The biggest disappointment of GW16 was the Chelsea game against West Ham. The visitors lost 1-0 and failed to impress as Hazard, Morata and co failed to score. An away trip to Huddersfield now looks more daunting than it did a week ago, but we will be sticking with Chelsea who have such goof fixtures over the next 2 months.
Vital wins for West Ham, Swansea and Huddersfield mean the scrap at the bottom of the table is as fierce as ever and Crystal Palace continued to fail in their quest for a win with controversy over a late Christian Benteke penalty – with the Belgium in a lot of trouble with his manager for taking the spot kick!
A narrow 1-0 win for Burnley was as predictable as the forecast snow that dumped itself across much of the UK on Saturday and Sunday and Watford again just seem to have lost a bit of their sparkle – perhaps they can get it back with games against Crystal Palace and Huddersfield to come this week.
Leicester City continue to impress under Claude Puel with 3 wins on the trot, the latest an impressive 3-2 win over Newcastle. Riyad Mahrez looks back to his best with 2 goals and an assist in the last 3.
With the game week 17 deadline on Tuesday as we welcome another round of midweek fixtures we will be on hand with all the usual game week tips, captain selections etc. so be sure to keep checking back. It is going to be a busy week!