Fantasy Football Advice: Week 35

Sports Mole looks ahead to the 35th round of Premier League encounters from a fantasy football point of view.

Neither Sergio Aguero nor Steven Naismith managed to find the net at the weekend, but Sports Mole is still basking in the glory of having profited from our defender tip.

We backed Stoke City full-back Erik Pieters to earn points against Newcastle United and the Dutchman duly obliged by scoring the game's only goal.

In terms of who to avoid, as we predicted Papiss Cisse failed to score, although Steven Caulker kept a clean sheet away at Southampton, which we hadn't anticipated.

Nevertheless, still on a high courtesy of Mr Pieters, here are three players that we believe will be among the points this weekend and a further three that may well prove to be costly.

Who to pick

1. Luis Suarez: Locked in a relegation battle, one of the last players that you would want to face is Suarez. However, for Norwich City's defenders, the prospect of marking Liverpool's Uruguayan frontman will be bringing them out in cold sweats already. The 27-year-old has lined up against the Canaries on five occasions since he arrived in England in 2011, during which time he has scored 11 goals. Norwich have been relatively stingy at Carrow Road, having shipped just 13 goals, but different rules seem to apply when Suarez comes up against the Norfolk-based outfit.

Luis Suarez of Liverpool celebrates scoring his team's third goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford on March 16, 2014© Getty Images

2. Lukas Podolski: With question marks over his future at Arsenal, Podolski has started to show some of the form that convinced Arsene Wenger to sign him. Despite the fact that he has been deployed in a wide role of late, the German international has been presented with numerous chances, two of which he converted with great composure against West Ham United last time out. Providing that he can mirror recent displays at Hull City this weekend, he could well bag more points at the KC Stadium.

3. Branislav Ivanovic: With Atletico Madrid in the Champions League on the horizon, Jose Mourinho may be tempted to rest some of his stars against lowly Sunderland on Saturday evening. However, Ivanovic is suspended for the Atletico clash, which should make him a certainty to start at Stamford Bridge. The visiting Black Cats have scored just 29 goals from their 32 outings this term, so there is every chance that Ivanovic will be part of a defence that keeps a clean sheet. What's more, the Serbian is often a threat in the opposition's penalty area.

Who to avoid

1. John Ruddy: One of the major reasons for Ruddy's inclusion can be found in the Suarez entry above. Since Norwich returned to the Premier League in 2011, while Suarez has scored 11 goals in five meetings between the two clubs, in total Liverpool have found the net 19 times. Also, in each of Norwich's last three matches against the Reds, they have let in five goals. If recent history is anything to go by, it will be a very busy afternoon for England goalkeeper Ruddy.

England goalkeeper John Ruddy catches the ball during a training session at London Colney on October 10, 2013© Getty Images

2. Patrice Evra: He may have scored a wonder goal in the Allianz Arena against Bayern Munich, but Evra's defensive deficiencies were majorly highlighted as Manchester United exited the Champions League. This weekend United are up against Everton, which is likely to see their French full-back pitted against Seamus Coleman and Gerard Deulofeu down the right flank. Both of those two have been in positive form in recent weeks and will no doubt be looking to exploit the player that many perceive to be one of United's major weak points.

3. Rickie Lambert: Firstly, Southampton have had a very impressive season, as has their centre-forward Lambert. There is a growing school of belief, though, that with the team in eighth and in no relegation danger, the players have taken their eye off the ball a little bit. This weekend they travel to Aston Villa, who are in desperate need of the three points in their bid to retain their top-flight status. With that in mind, it wouldn't be a surprise if the home side record a slender 1-0 win, meaning that Lambert isn't among the points.

Liverpool's English midfielder Steven Gerrard celebrates scoring the opening goal from a freekick with Liverpool's Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Sunderland at Anfield in Liverpool, nor
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
3Liverpool23138254282647
4Chelsea23145441162547
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal23116641301139
7Burnley239771920-134
8Leicester CityLeicester238783432231
9Everton2376102538-1327
10Watford2375113342-926
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2367102941-1225
12Crystal Palace2367102133-1225
13Bournemouth2366112435-1124
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2366111939-2024
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2365122131-1023
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2358101729-1223
17Southampton2349102334-1121
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom23310101830-1219
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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