Fantasy football advice: Week 12

Sports Mole looks ahead to the Premier League weekend from the point of view of fantasy football managers.

Well, talk about being brought back down to earth with a bump. After two weeks of raking in the fantasy football points, we let ourselves down with our advice for week 11.

Both Sergio Aguero and Romelu Lukaku failed to find the net or set up a teammate, while Gary Cahill and Gerhard Tremmel shipped a hefty five goals between them. It meant that Gary Hooper's converted penalty for Norwich City counted for very little.

We also owe an apology to Crystal Palace goalkeeper Julian Speroni, whom we have placed on the avoid list for weeks now. At the 11th time of asking, the Argentine finally kept a clean sheet!

So, now it is time for redemption. Below, we've selected the players that we feel are worth picking this time around and those that are best being avoided.

Who to pick

1. Luis Suarez: Everton have been relatively watertight at the back so far this season, but then again they haven't come against strikers of Suarez's calibre too often. The Uruguayan has been in fine form since his return from suspension, scoring eight goals in seven appearances. What's more, he also appears to enjoy playing against Liverpool's fellow Merseysiders, having found the net on three occasions from four outings against the Toffees in all competitions.

Luis Suarez of Liverpool celebrates completing his hat-trick during the Barclays Premier League match against West Brom on October 26, 2013© Getty Images

2. Loic Remy: Newcastle United may have struggled to bring in fresh faces during the summer, but the one player that they were able to capture is proving himself to be a useful recruit. The French international has scored seven goals in total, including strikes against Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur. The Magpies will play host to Norwich City at the weekend - a side that have conceded 14 goals from five matches on the road. If the Canaries show similar goodwill to Remy, he's likely to punish them.

3. Gareth McAuley: For those looking for a cheap defensive option, you could do a lot worse than McAuley. The West Bromwich Albion centre-back put in a man-of-the-match performance last time out against Chelsea. On Monday evening he will face an Aston Villa team that has struggled to create goalscoring chances, particularly away from home. The Northern Ireland international also showed at Stamford Bridge that he is a threat in the opposition's penalty area.

4. Dimitar Berbatov: One goal from 10 Premier League outings is hardly prolific, so why is the mercurial Bulgarian included on this list? In truth, it's a gut feeling. Rene Meulensteen, who worked with Berbatov at Manchester United, has just been appointed to the coaching staff at Craven Cottage and he recently vowed to get the best out of the striker. On Saturday, Swansea City will be the visitors to West London and so far Michael Laudrup's men have conceded 15 goals in 11 matches. There won't be many better chances for Berbatov to rediscover the goalscoring touch.

Dimitar Berbatov© Getty Images

5. Petr Cech: Jose Mourinho is famed for building his teams on solid foundations. So, he will have been deeply disappointed by his side's displays in their last two matches, where they have let in four goals. No doubt he will demand that his players are more stubborn at the back when they visit West Ham United, who have scored just five goals from as many matches at Upton Park. With all that in mind, a clean sheet for Cech is a real possibility.

Who to avoid

1. John Ruddy: The Norwich goalkeeper has started to take on Speroni's residence among this selection! He will be charged with the task of stopping Remy this weekend, which has revealed above, is no easy feat. Ruddy has seen 21 shots end up in the back of his net this term. Add to that the fact that Norwich have conceded 12 goals from their last six trips to Tyneside and the England international is probably worth dodging.

2. Roberto Soldado: The Spaniard recently claimed that he is close to producing his best football for Tottenham Hotspur, but his performances on the pitch do not necessarily back his opinion up. After all, three of his four Premier League goals have come from the penalty spot. It's not all been poor on his part, though, because at times Andre Villas-Boas's tactics have left him isolated as a lone centre-forward. Against Manchester City on Sunday, it could be another lonely afternoon for Soldado.

Spur's Roberto Soldado in action during a friendly match against Espanyol on August 10, 2013© Getty Images

3. Ben Turner: Cardiff have been relatively strong at the back in front of their own supporters to date and in fairness have done little to suggest that they are due a hammering. However, on Sunday they will play host to a Manchester United side that can boast an in-form Wayne Rooney, as well as a fully-fit Robin van Persie, who opted to sit out Holland's recent international matches to ensure that he was fresh for his club. If those two are on top of their game, there is arguably very little that Turner and his fellow defenders can do to thwart them.

4. Chico Flores: Since winning the League Cup in February, Swansea's Premier League form has not been that far off a side battling against relegation. They haven't been helped by the amount of goals that they have conceded - 15 in total. Even if they do keep a clean sheet, Chico could well cost points in fantasy football terms by getting booked. He's been cautioned four times this season - only Mathieu Flamini on five has more.

5. Juan Mata: One of the Premier League's biggest mysteries this season has centred around Mata and his lack of starting action under Mourinho. Having picked up one point from a possible six, you'd potentially expect the Chelsea boss to ring the changes for their visit to West Ham. He may well do, but Mata may have to again settle for a place among the substitutes, particularly when you consider that he has been globe-trotting with Spain while on international duty.

Sergio Aguero of Manchester City celebrates scoring the second goal during the UEFA Champions League Group D match between Manchester City and CSKA Moscow at the Etihad Stadium on November 5, 2013
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Fantasy football advice: Week 11
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City65102121916
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd65101721516
3Chelsea6411125713
4Tottenham HotspurSpurs6321105511
5Liverpool63211211111
6Watford6321910-111
7Newcastle UnitedNewcastle53026429
8Huddersfield TownHuddersfield62315329
9Burnley62316519
10West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom52214408
11Southampton622245-18
12Arsenal521278-17
13Everton6213411-77
14Swansea CitySwansea612337-45
15Stoke CityStoke6123510-55
16Leicester CityLeicester6114912-34
17Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton511347-34
18West Ham UnitedWest Ham6114613-74
19Bournemouth6105411-73
20Crystal Palace6006013-130
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