With much needed rest, heading into GW 23 our favorite matchups are: Chelsea vs. Leicester, Huddersfield vs. West Ham, Tottenham vs. Everton, and Arsenal vs. Bournemouth.
Forwards: Kane (c), Morata, Lukaku
After a disappointing double gameweek with Captain Harry falling short of expectations, we are keeping the arm band on him going into GW23 given the home matchup against Everton. Funes Mori, Coleman and Baines are all expected to miss this weekend’s matchup.
Everton have failed to win 18 of their last 19 away matches while Tottenham are undefeated in their last 10 home matches. Kane and Co should easily put this one away. Morata makes our side as Chelsea’s loan striker. We don’t expect any major changes to Conte’s 3-5-1-1.
Chelsea have scored at least 2 goals in their last 3 matches and Leicester is a side that usually gives up goals (There have been over 2.5 goals scored in Leicester’s last 7 games).
Leicester only recently ended a four-match winless run in with a 3-0 win over mid-table Huddersfield. We think Morata is probably the second best captaincy option this week though his lack of consistency (particularly with his feet) gives Harry Kane the edge.
Lukaku will likely roll a lot of heads but given Stoke’s poor form recently, we think United stands a pretty good chance of at least putting this game away by a two goal margin. Romelu Lukaku, Chris Smalling and Marouane Fellaini all returned to first-team starts in Manchester United’s 2-0 win over Derby.
With Zlatan sidelined, any questions about Lukaku’s potential benching are diminished. Man Utd are undefeated in 27 of their last 28 home matches while Stoke have failed to win their last 6 away matches. The Stoke side even managed to lose to Coventry in the FA cup resulting in Mark Hughes’ dismissal.
In midfield, we are opting for Alli, Lingard, Zaha, and Atsu. Dele Alli and Tottenham have one of the best fixtures this weekend. While normally we would including some City/Liverpool players, we do think the power matchup between the two clubs is one to avoid.
On the budget side, we like Lingard, Zaha, and Atsu. Lingard has been one of top ~6MM midfielders this season. With Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young are both available for United’s matchup, the entire side should get a boost in the backfield, allowing for the side to open up the offensive opportunities. Zaha and Atsu are our other budget options.
Palace continue to distance themselves from the relegation zone and have scrapped together a nice set of results in recent weeks. Crystal Palace are undefeated in 10 of their last 11 matches Zaha should still be utilized as a cornerstone of Palace’s offense however we are slightly worried about the squads extended injury sheet. Andros Townsend and Jeffrey Schlupp both found themselves injured after the FA Cup.
RLC remains a doubt along with Connor Wickham, Mamadou Sakho, Scott Dann, Jason Puncheon and Joel Ward. Newcastle is set to face the worst team in the league, Swansea which is grappling with injury issues. Angel Rangel is expected to miss out while Kyle Naughton serves the last of a three-match ban this weekend. Renato Sanches also suffered a hamstring injury during the team’s 0-0 draw with Wolves.
Defensively, we think Chelsea, Arsenal, United, and Tottenham are all excellent shouts to keep clean sheets. Newcastle, West Ham, West Brom, and Palace could be sneaky discount options as they also play teams which have offensively struggled. Teams with the lowest shots per game on goal (in rank order) are: Swansea, Brighton, Watford, Everton, and WBA.