It hasn’t really been a great few weeks for Everton.
The trickier away games were always going to test the mettle of Roberto Martinez’s side and be the true judge over whether or not they could make the Champions League, and sure enough after experiencing just two league defeats all season a month ago they’ve now lost five.
Back-to-back-to-back losses at Liverpool, Tottenham and Chelsea in which they failed to score a goal have seen them slip away from contention for the top four, with that trio now just three of the six clubs above them in the table.
At home they are usually a different proposition though, and that should be the case at Goodison Park on Saturday against an admittedly improved West Ham.
The Hammers have managed to grind out wins over middle-of-the-road teams of late, but the Blues are better than that, and you can expect their efforts to be led by the Belgian Kevin Mirallas (£7.5m).
A return from injury for Mirallas’s compatriot Romelu Lukaku (£8.2m) could ensure that the wide man plays a little deeper on the left, but he’s arguably more dangerous from there as he can drift inside and fire off a few shots at goal.
Mirallas scored in his last two league appearances at Goodison, with five of his six Premier League strikes this season also coming at the ground.
As the Blues seek home comforts and strive to get closer to the elite clubs again, he is a man that Roberto Martinez will be relying upon.
Elsewhere on a slightly reduced weekend due to the League Cup final, it goes without saying that you’ll be without players from Wembley rivals Manchester City and Sunderland, as well as their scheduled league opponents Manchester United and West Brom. City and Sunderland will also miss out on the messiness that is Gameweek 29, too.
Of those that are in action this weekend though, attention will be drawn to the free-scoring Liverpool once again.
Daniel Sturridge (£10.4m) became just the second player in Premier League history to score in eight successive games in the win over Swansea last weekend, and whilst he should certainly be featuring in your team as a potential captain as the Reds go to Southampton this weekend, there are cheaper midfield options from the Reds who also deserve attention.
Jordan Henderson (£6.3m) also scored twice in that Swansea win to become the latest player to pass 100 Fantasy points this season, but it has been Raheem Sterling (£5.7m) who has been really impressing of late.
The winger scored twice against Arsenal and provided a fine assist for Sturridge in the Swansea game, and whilst he could impress in what should be an open game, Saints Adam Lallana (£8.1m) and Jay Rodriguez (£6.6m) will fancy their chances against the Reds’ dodgy defence.
Tottenham will look to bounce back from their damaging loss at Norwich as they host Cardiff at White Hart Lane, where defender Jan Vertonghen (£6.9m) will be confident about his side’s chances of keeping a clean sheet.
Following their Champions League trip to Turkey, Chelsea face a derby clash with Fulham in which Fernando Torres (£8.1m) could start, whilst Swansea’s Wilfried Bony (£7.2m) is a man in fine goalscoring form ahead of their home clash with Crystal Palace, for which the hosts will be sweating on the fitness of midfielder Jonjo Shelvey (£5.3m).
The Hull front two of Shane Long (£5.7m) and Nikica Jelavic (£6.9m) could continue their impressive partnership as the Tigers host Newcastle, whilst Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud (£8.7m) will be in confident mood going to Stoke following his brace against Sunderland.
The Frenchman took his league tally to 12 goals this season with that double strike last weekend, and although chances might be at a premium at the Britannia, he can certainly take at least one.