Football Features

FPL tips and team news ahead of Premier League Gameweek 15

By Mohamed Moallim

Published: 13:32, 3 December 2021

December means one thing when it comes to Premier League action: there’s a fixture seemingly every other day. This congested period is often when the very good start distancing themselves from the pack.

Gameweek 15 starts with an interesting London derby between West Ham and leaders Chelsea before nouveau riche Newcastle United entertain Burnley in a relegation six-pointer. Elsewhere newly-appointed interim boss Ralf Rangnick takes charge of his first Manchester United game against Crystal Palace, while Steven Gerrard faces ex-Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers.

The week ends at Goodison Park on Monday evening — a place visiting Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta once called home. His compatriot and current Toffees manager Rafael Benitez is under severe pressure following a humiliating Merseyside Derby loss.

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FPL tips for Gameweek 15: Seven players to consider

James Maddison, 6.4: Much is now expected of James Maddison following his incredible rise over the past few years. For much of the early stages of this season he’s been playing on the periphery, but Leicister’s creative midfielder turned up across their past two league outings, striking against Watford and then Southampton, bringing his tally for the campaign to three goals. Playing off Jamie Vardy in a deep-lying forward role he should possess a threat to Aston Villa’s oft-shaky defence.

Trent Alexander-Arnold, 7.9: It was a relatively quiet Merseyside Derby for Trent Alexander-Arnold who has been in excellent form of late. Liverpool’s marauding right-back has assisted more goals (4) than any Premier League player across the past five gameweeks, with only Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse (14) creating more chances than his 13 in that same period.

Bernardo Silva, 7.1: There’s a risk attached whenever selecting a Manchester City player given Pep Guardiola’s rotation tendency which should be turned up to 11 given matches come thick and fast this month. Bernardo Silva, who has started and completed the defending champions last nine Premier League fixtures, should retain his spot at Watford and for good reason as he’s struck three goals in City’s last four wins. His five goals to date also makes him the club’s leading scorer.

Diogo Jota, 7.6: This weekend will be Diogo Jota’s second return to Molineux following his move from Wolves in September 2020. That first trip saw him make a 17-minute cameo off the bench, but this time he’s expected to line up from the start in Roberto Firmino’s continued absence. There’s no one in better form than Liverpool’s ‘number 20’ who has bagged more goals (4) than anyone in the Premier League over the last five matches.

Jarrod Bowen, 6.4: It’s now three consecutive league matches without a win for the previously high-flying Hammers and David Moyes couldn’t have asked for a tougher examination than welcoming London rivals Chelsea this weekend. Already in front of their supporters they’ve inflicted defeats on Tottenham and Liverpool with Jarrod Bowen playing a key role. So far only six players have accumulated more non-penalty expected goals (npxG) across the last six matchdays with half of them playing for Jurgen Klopp.

Callum Wilson, 7.5: If the Magpies are going to stave off relegation then Eddie Howe requires a dependable striker, fortunately he’s got on in the guise of Callum Wilson. The four-time England international has lived up to the end of his bargain having registered 31.25% of Newcastle league goals (5/16) to date with four of those strikes coming at home. He was on hand last time out against fellow strugglers Norwich City and Wilson can expect more opportunities against Burnley, who have struggled away from home.


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Team news, injuries and suspensions for Gameweek 15

Aaron Cresswell, who missed the draw against Brighton, remains a doubt for West Ham while Angelo Ogbonna is sidelined with a knee injury. Chelsea could welcome Reece James back after he missed their win over Watford in midweek.

Newcastle are missing the suspended Ciaran Clark but Jamaal Lascelles and Matt Ritchie return from respective bans. James Tarkowski and Ashley Westwood are both available for Burnley, though Phil Bardsley is expected to miss out. He joins Ashley Barnes and Dale Stephens in the physio room.

Stuart Armstrong sits out for Southampton with a calf strain and Jack Stephens will have a late fitness test. Brighton trio Pascal Gross, Shane Duffy and Solly March are all pushing for starts after beginning on the bench last time out.

Ruben Neves is back from suspension but Wolves are missing Willy Boly, Jonny, Hugo Bueno, Yerson Mosquera and Pedro Neto, while Daniel Podence is a doubt. This game comes too soon for Liverpool duo Naby Keita and Joe Gomez while Roberto Firmino, Harvey Elliott and Curtis Jones remain sidelined.

Danny Rose is expected to deputise for Watford defender Adam Masina, who joins Ismaila Sarr, Kwadwo Baah, Ben Foster, Nicolas N’Koulou and Peter Etebo on the sidelines. Phil Foden and Jack Grealish are in contention to start for Manchester City, who could still be without Ilkay Gundogan, John Stones and Kyle Walker.

Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa has Patrick Bamford and Luke Ayling available for the visit of Brentford. As for Brentford, they continue to miss David Raya, Josh Dasilva, Mathias Jørgensen, Julian Jeanvier and Kristoffer Ajer.

Ralf Rangnick will be without Edinson Cavani, Paul Pogba and Raphael Varane for his Manchester United debut. Joachim Andersen, Nathan Ferguson and James McArthur will not be making the trip up north for Crystal Palace.

Giovani Lo Celso is hoping to make his Tottenham return but Cristian Romero is out for the remainder of this year. Milot Rashica remains sidelined for Norwich, but Todd Cantwell should be available for a Canaries side missing Mathias Normann, Sam Byram and Christoph Zimmermann.

Bertrand Traoré sits this game out for Aston Villa who could welcome back Danny Ings. As for Leicester, they must do without Wesley Fofana, James Justin and Ricardo Pereira

Andre Gomes is hoping to feature for Everton, but Calvert-Lewin, Yerry Mina and Tom Davies are still out. Mason Holgate returns from suspension. Arsenal come into this game still missing Bernd Leno, Sead Kolasinac and Granit Xhaka.

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