Well hello to you. If you’re here, you’re presumably looking for some fantasy football tips ahead of the Premier League weekend. I would say that is very brave. That said, things are on the up in DB Towers. My gameweek 9 score of 57 comfortably beat the average of 43. Brace yourselves, but that pushed my overall rank up to 87,236th. Do we have a top 100k graphic? No? Nobody would have seen that coming, I suppose. For the first time in my history of writing this column, the only way is down. What lies ahead?
We’ve got a big game to look forward to on Monday night as Tottenham welcome Man City. As I’ve said before, a grand occasion for the supporters and neutrals but an FPL nightmare. I think Man City are as close to fixture proof as you can get, so I’m not too worried about them as even their full-backs are more potent than most mid-table midfielders. Well, Mendy is, at least. Spurs though, they just keep bumbling on. They’re not far off the pace at all in the league but their Champions League campaign has been a little disastrous. Does that suggest better teams will punish them? I think we’ll get our answer to that on Monday. Tottenham don’t have a great run of games, a few tricky away games mixed in with clashes with the top 4 and I think your Tottenham money could be spent elsewhere. Obviously, sell Kane at your own risk.
The same could be said of Mo Salah. Those who have stuck with him during his relatively barren spell must be patting themselves on the back after his winner last week at Huddersfield. He added two more in the Champions League on Wednesday and provided his early withdrawal was rest rather than injury, he should be well placed to provide more points at home to Cardiff. The same can be said for Mane & Firmino too as Liverpool look like the FPL team to bank on this weekend. That might be harsh on Cardiff, who got their first win last weekend and managed to hold Tottenham to just one at Wembley. Liverpool don’t have a cup tie in midweek so with a full week to rest after this one, there shouldn’t be any surprises on the team sheet. I hope.
The Europa League means we see three of the other FPL favourites on Sunday afternoon. Chelsea are off to Burrnley in the non-televised 1.30 PM kick-off and the big question mark is over Eden Hazard’s back. He was clearly not at the peak of his powers last weekend against Man Utd and the injury was enough to rule him out of Thursday’s game against BATE. He probably wouldn’t have played much part anyway but it is a concern. Personally, I will stick with him in light of his upcoming back-to-back home fixtures but I’d await further updates before bringing him in this week. If you have him, hold him, otherwise, just hold tight unless Sarri gives him the green light.
Arsenal are on fire at the moment, notching up their 11th straight win with victory over Sporting Lisbon on Thursday night. Aubameyang has scored four in his last two league outings despite only appearing as a substitute in both, whilst Lacazette has a rare off night against Leicester having been in great form leading up to that game. Pick either one, they both know where the goal is. The Gunners are off to Crystal Palace on Sunday, which isn’t easy by any means but they are not in particularly good form and the real question will be whether Arsenal can keep Zaha quiet. I expect Arsenal to win even if they don’t, being quite honest.
The final game of the weekend is Man Utd against Everton. The Man Utd mystery goes on, are they any good? A point at Stamford Bridge would suggest a corner has been turned but they have struggled to get going at home this season and it’ll be intriguing to see what happens here. Anthony Martial has 3 in his previous 2 so at £7.3m and classed as a midfielder, that’s probably the best value on offer here at the moment.
Brighton have a nice run of games on the horizon which brings twin defensive towers Dunk and Duffy into my thinking. Both were imperious against a blunt Newcastle and even if tougher tests lie ahead, they are a threat at both ends of the field. The usually reliable Glenn Murray (£6.6m) went off with a head injury last weekend and it remains to be seen if he’ll be fit for Saturday’s home game with Wolves.
Leicester are also on a nice run of games and a home clash with West Ham is just the beginning. Jamie Vardy isn’t particularly cheap whilst James Maddison is up to £7m but Pereira is £5.1m and classed as a defender but has appeared on the right of midfield in many games this season.
It looks like Liverpool this week – Salah gets my vote but Mane and Firmino are equally good choices. If Liverpool aren’t your bag then either of Arsenal’s strike pair seem a solid pick. If you want a niche pick then *glances at who is playing Newcastle* Danny Ings is the way to go. Southampton haven’t scored in a while but if ever you needed a team to end a run, Newcastle are the team.
Things are going a little too well. It’s going to hurt when things come crashing down but I’d like you all to remember me as a hero. After much deliberation last week, I used my two transfers to sell the crocked Lee Peltier for Andy Robertson and Zaha for Jimenez. One of those transfers went far better than the other.
Begovic, Trippier, Bellerin, Alonso, Robertson, Salah, Hazard, Hughes, Jimenez, Aguero, Wilson. Subs: Walcott, Neves, Wan-Bissaka, Fabianski.
Some things to sort out here. Begovic (away at Fulham) or Fabianski (away at Leicester)? Start Walcott away at Man Utd instead of Jimenez away at Brighton? This is all before I even use my transfer. I think I want to sell Trippier for Shane Duffy but that seems like a football suicide. But then I’ll have delicious funds to upgrade Jimenez, which is really my new motivation in life. That and getting rid of Theo Walcott.
Whilst I continue tearing my hair out, all that is left for me to do is to wish you good luck and may all your arrows be green. The deadline is 2 PM on Saturday, so you’ve got an extra few hours to mindlessly think of your options. See you next week.