#FPL Gameweek 19 Preview
Written by @CraigHazell
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DEFENDER: CRAIG DAWSON, WEST BROM
If you went with my Scott Dann pick for Boxing Day, you’ll have been cheering Palace’s 0-0 bore draw with Bournemouth as much as I was and I now feel some pressure to do what Kevin McAllister’s cousin could never do and that’s deliver a clean sheet. For the record that was Home Alone Kev McAllister not Corrie McAllister although the joke works depending on how dark/libellous you want to be. I’ve had my eye on Craig Dawson for a while as a potentially valuable squad member. West Brom have really struggled for clean sheets in recent weeks which isn’t usually Tony Pulis’ M.O. but Newcastle at home could be the perfect springboard for their first in a while. It’s also worth keeping an eye on Swansea who have two shutouts in two games and all players are at rock bottom prices due to their recent form.
MIDFIELDER: WILLIAN, CHELSEA
Chelsea haven’t exactly turned things around since Jose’s high profile departure and a home draw with Watford shut a fair few West Londoners up about the Hiddink effect. That said, the only Chelsea player to come out of this season with real credit is Will.I.An. He is Chelsea’s top point scoring midfielder and still cheaper than Hazard, Pedro, Fabregas and even Oscar as well as being the man who stands over most attacking free kicks. Whilst I don’t believe that Chelsea are going to miraculously get better, Willian isn’t shy of so called big games and I think Man United vs Chelsea has real potential to be perhaps the dullest game anyone has seen this year. Set pieces therefore become a the most likely outlet for a goal and our man Willian is likely to be the man behind them.
FORWARD: ODION IGHALO, WATFORD
I’m fed up trying to be clever and failing. It didn’t do me any good when I corrected a teacher’s spelling in year 8 and it isn’t doing me good now. I’m just going to say that out of the oligarchy of strikers we are all picking, Ighalo offers the best chance at a goal or two this week. I genuinely think Barcelona would shudder at the thought of playing in Watford right now (insert your own easy joke here). Tottenham are in decent nick and obviously Kane is worth a goal but Watford are absolutely flying and I don’t see why they wouldn’t win. I’d also keep an eye on their ridiculously long odds if you fancy making a few quid.
CAPTAIN: MESUT OZIL, ARSENAL
The Leicester versus Man City game will push a lot of people to rule out their usual captain choices as Mahrez, Vardy and KDB become a bit of a risk. Of course they’re actually a risk and being bold could well profit but I will most likely be putting Ozil in as captain. Arsenal should never have lost to Southampton and it will surely be their worst display of the whole season. The Emirates crowd will be unforgiving from the start against Bournemouth and will have their angry letters penned should Arsenal fail to win and you don’t need me to tell you, if they score, Ozil assisted.
OUTSIDER: SHANE LONG, SOUTHAMPTON
It would be frankly criminal for me not to use Shane Long as the outside bet this week after his phenomenal performance in the aforementioned match against Arsenal. Long tore Mertesacker apart and James Collins will have watched that match and sent his wife out for some big boy pants in the sales. He is 0.4% picked and with Pelle 75% chance of playing then he stands a good shot at starting. Also, why the hell wouldn’t you start him? Saints hadn’t won in 5 and completely changed their shape to accommodate Long and in doing so turned over the supposed best footballing side in the league.