Now games are starting to come tick and fast. Between Friday 21 December and 3 January 2019 ( 14 days) there will be four gameweeks and 40 matches. This is of course a great thing for those who loves Premier League. For FPL managers it could be quite an exciting period, but also a difficult one with matches and gameweek deadlines all the time. The four following gameweeks are played as follow:
Gameweek 18: Friday 21 December - Sunday 23 December (Deadline 21 Dec 19:00)
Gameweek 19: Wednesday 26 December - Thursday 27 December (Deadline 26 Dec 11:30)
Gameweek 20: Saturday 29 December - Sunday 30 December (Deadline 29 Dec 14:00)
Gameweek 21: Tuesday 1 January - Thursday 3 January (Deadline 01 Jan 11:30)
As you all know Mourinho has now been sacked and it didn’t come as a surprise for many. For sure something had to be done, but I’m not so convinced all Manchester United’s worries will disappear with Mourinho. Mourinho was the third manager to be sacked by Manchester United since Sir Alex Ferguson left in 2013. Former Manchester United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has now been appointed as the club's caretaker manager until the end of the 2018/19 season and it yet to be seen if United’s problems only have been down to the manger or if there are also the Club hierarchy and players to be blamed for recent struggles. We should though expect to see a motivated and more positive Manchester United team over Christmas. With matches against Cardiff, Huddersfield, Bournemouth and Newcastle in the next four games there could be some bargains and differentials in the team.
This is a review for both gameweek 18 and 19. After gameweek 19 I will be back with an overview- text on gameweek 18 and 19.
Gameweek 18 fixtures:
Gameweek 19 fixtures:
Match previews (gameweek 18)
Wolverhampton - Liverpool
A Friday night game kicks of gameweek 18. The home team Wolverhampton Wanderers are looking to make it four wins out of four, while Jurgen Klopp’s side are hoping to extend their Premier League lead to four points on Friday night with a 15th victory of the season. For Liverpool a win they are guaranteed to be top of the table on Christmas Day. Each of the last four sides to lead the PL on 25 December have gone on to win the title, though the Reds were the last side to fail to do so in 2013/14.
Wolves sits on 7th place in the League, one point behind Manchester United in sixth place, but only three points ahead of Leicester in 12th place. For Jurgen Klopp Wolves will be the 27th different side he has faced in the Premier League. He has beaten all previous 26 sides so far.
Mohamed Salah has been directly involved in 10 goals in eight Premier League appearances for Liverpool against promoted teams, scoring five and assisting five. The Egyptian has scored in each of his last five PL matches versus promoted sides and Those managers who have him in their teams will hope that he keeps this run going.
Wolves should have almost a fully-fit squad to choose from, with Diogo Jota the only absentee due to a hamstring strain. In Liverpool, meanwhile, vice-captain James Milner (hamstring) could be available again but defender Trent Alexander-Arnold (foot) is expected to miss out. Joe Gomez and Joel Matip are both sidelined until the New Year.
Possible starting lineups:
Wolves: Patricio; Bennett, Coady, Boly; Doherty, Moutinho, Neves, Jonny; Costa, Jimenez, Cavaleiro
Liverpool: Alisson; Milner, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Shaqiri, Firmino, Mane; Salah
Cardiff City - Manchester United
This could maybe be seen as the match of the weekend after what has happened in Manchester during the week. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's first game in charge as caretaker Manchester United manager will see him return to Cardiff City, with whom he had quite bad spell as manager in 2014. On paper, Saturday's game should be an easy three points for the Red Devils as Cardiff are down in 16th in the Premier League table but United have won just one of their past six league games, and the Bluebirds are in fine form at home, having won their last three matches at Cardiff City Stadium. If Cardiff wins it would be their first win in the Premier League against Manchester United.
I am expecting players like Pogba and Lukaku to start this game and that they also will get some kind of a new start under their new manager. I read somewhere that Solskjaer at some point had said that he, if he was the manager of United, would build the team around Pogba. Lukaku hasn’t scored for fun so far this season but out of the 31 players with at least five PL goals this season, Romelu Lukaku has scored the highest percentage of them away from home. His five strikes on the road out of six works out as 83 percent of his goals. I could see him score his seventh of the season on Saturday.
Cardiff will be without Ward, Cunningham and Richards while Sanchez, Smalling and McTominay will miss the game for Manchester united. Luke Shaw is a slight doubt. United’s starting lineup is hard to predict with a new manager on board. Cardiff won’t make many changes to their winning team from last weekend.
Possible starting lineups:
Cardiff: Etheridge; Ecuele Manga, Morrison, Bamba, Bennett; Gunnarsson; Hoilett, Victor Camarasa, Arter, Murphy; Paterson
Man Utd:De Gea; Valencia, Jones, Lindelof, Young; Matic, Pogba, Herrera, Lingard; Martial; Rashford
After succeeding with my steem-pick in gameweek 17 (Hazard, 13 points) I was now searching for a player that should do well in gw18 & gw19. The player I have decided to take a punt on is Marcus Rashford (6.9m). This is a “long-shot “, but it could also work out well. Rashford can’t be seen as a sure starter under Skjoelskaer but with Rashford’s recent performances I think he will start, either up front instead of Lukaku or out wide in a three man attack. Manchester United play Cardiff and Huddersfield next and Rashford should do well in those matches.
Good luck in gameweek 18 and 19 and please leave a comment on what you think about the upcoming gameweek(s)!