Back To The Drawing Board
Poor showing in GW9 fuels Fantasy Premier League rethink
Gameweek 9 of the 2017/18 Fantasy Premier League season was one to forget as a wave of non-starters played havoc with our scoring capabilities.
While it is easy to knee-jerk and throw in a whole host of changes when this happens, it is often more prudent to retain a calm head, taking stock of the overall picture.
So, let’s go back to the drawing board and have a look at where we stand.
In goal Robbie Elliot and Lukasz Fabianski continue to rotate well and their short-term fixtures remain favourable.
Our defence, on the other hand, needs some attention. The Arsenal duo of Héctor Bellerín and Sead Kolašinac have now seemingly nailed down the wing-back spots and both look good for GW10. However, the Gunners have a real mixed bag of upcoming fixtures, with games against Spurs, Manchester City and Manchester United on the horizon, so we will need to have options available to us.
The Seagull’s ever-present Lewis Dunk will almost certainly be needed over the next few gameweeks but it is Spurs’ Ben Davies and Newcastle United’s Ciaran Clark that have us scratching our heads. The latter now looks far from an assured starter, with Florian Lejeune making a strong case for a starting spot, while Davies, who has served us well, suddenly finds himself with some stiff competition for Tottenham’s left-sided defensive role.
The return to fitness of Danny Rose and Serge Aurier’s ability to play on either flank could see Davies consigned to the bench in the coming weeks.
In the middle of the park, Burnley’s Robbie Brady has taken more corners than any other Premier League player but the underlying threat just doesn’t seem to be there, with the Irishman having failed to make the most of a kind run of home fixtures.
Although his Crystal Palace side were hammered 4-1 by Bristol City in the Carabao Cup, Ruben Loftus-Cheek did manage to play the full 90 minutes, so he may be pushing for a Premier League start again sooner rather than later.
Christian Eriksen is no longer the highest scoring midfielder, having been overtaken by Leroy Sané in GW9 but he’s still expected to make a telling contribution despite Spurs being in the midst of some really difficult fixtures.
Dušan Tadić continues to frustrate but we’re happy to persist with the Serbian international, however, Raheem Sterling failed to live up to his star billing in GW9, as Pep Guardiola opted to leave the winger kicking his heels on the bench.
Gabriel Jesus fared slightly better than his Manchester City team-mate, getting a 14 minute cameo run-out but it now seems increasingly likely, that the ability to make the right call on Guardiola’s key players will prove pivotal to FPL success as the season unfolds.
Our other attackers have also come in for a bit of stick lately. Roberto Firmino is stuck on 2 Premier League goals for a troubled Liverpool side, with his game minutes already beginning to take a hit, so a home game against Huddersfield Town looks like a good opportunity for him to get back on track, assuming he starts of course!
Romelu Lukaku is still without a Premier League goal in October but he’s only 6 points behind Harry Kane in the overall standings and he will get the chance to close that gap when the Red Devils entertain Spurs at Old Trafford on Saturday.
So, what have we decided to do?
We’re going to make a double swoop, utilising that extra free transfer we have been preserving. Davies is replaced by Harry McGuire, with the difference in funds and our pending balance, enabling us to upgrade Brady to Watford’s Richarlison.
Claude Puel’s arrival at the King Power should ensure that the Foxes find a bit more defensive solidity, while the Hornets’ Brazilian winger continues to impress, having already collected 3 WhoScored Man of the Match awards in his 9 Premier League appearances to date.
Choosing a captain for GW10 was no easy task either but we’ve opted to go for Jesus on the back of his lofty position in the latest Armband rankings.
It’s over to you Pep!