Here’s the GW4 “ones to watch” for Midfielders on the Barclays fantasy premier league in the buy hold or sell format. This will give the best midfield players at a variety of price ranges using a range of stats to make my case
If you haven’t read this before, I think there are 2 ways of approaching the midfield. Either go for 4 players you want to play and have a £4.5m 2 point bench filler who’s main characteristic is gametime security. Or have 3 regular players and then rotate the other 2 who will be something like £5.0m. If the bonus point system is going to favour defenders then the latter looks the best option. With the bonus system favouring clean sheets and goal scorers I’m now looking at having 2 qualty midfilders and a rotating 1 of 3 in a 4-3-3- system.
I’ve provided the following stats to support the player choices and to guide you in your decisions. I’ve now moved this to this year:
1. Goals and assists this year. I’ve now started using this years stats although its very early to draw a picture
2. Time per point scored this year. This is how many minutes it takes for a Barclays fantasy premier league point to be scored over the course of last season. The lower the better obviously. I’ve now moved to this years stats
3. Rotation risk. High, medium or low. High is the greatest risk of rotation.
4. Fixture ease ranking: The link is at the bottom of the article but essentially I’ve ranked all the teams by the ease of the first 6 fixtures. The team with the best ranking ie 1 will have the easiest next fixtures of any of the fantasy premier league teams over the next 6 games.
5. Consistency: The % of times that the player got a goal or assist or 2 point minimum bonus as a % of games played
6. I’ve also ranked them in their categories as who i think is currently the best choice
1. Walcott (£9.5m) BUY
- Goals and assists: 0 goals 2 assists Time per point scored: 20.8 mins . Rotation risk: low. fixture ease ranking: 3rd. Consistency: 2/3 66%
Just need to monitor that the heavy tackle last night in the WCQ was ok and that he returned to the pitch as the injury wasn’t an issue. Excellent shooting stats and also creating chances. Excellent fixtures the only negative is whether you buy him or Giroud. Walcott is the more consistent player if last year is anything to go buy and Giroud the streaky scorer against poorer opposition. At the moment the addition of Ozil would probably make me favour Giroud who should be the main beneficiary. Walcott is still a great choice and although I avoid doubling up on attacking players this is as close as it comes.
2. Silva (£9.4m) HOLD (injury doubt)
- Goals and assists: 1 goals 1 assist. Time per point scored : 13.8 mins . Rotation risk: medium. fixture ease ranking: 18th. Consistency 2/3 66%
Started well including his shooting stats which haven’t always been that impressive. Continued creating chances as well. The negatives are an injury which may mean he misses the Stoke match and the fixtures which are among the toughest that any team has. In a time where defenders and goal scorers are rewarded with bonus points. Midfield positions maybe squeezed. I haven’t decided whether I will keep Silva or Hazard as ideally I would like coverage of both teams irrespective of fixtures but for the moment I’ve classified him as a hold.
3. Hazard (£9.3m) HOLD (injury doubt)
- Goals and assists: 0 goals 1 assist. Time per point scored: 24.5 mins . Rotation risk: high. fixture ease ranking: 12th. Consistency 33%
Really good underlying shooting and creating chances stats and although the game against Everton is a tricky one the next game is home to Fulham which could be a goal fest. The tricky thing with Chelsea though is rotation. Waiting for the Fulham game is all well and good as long as he plays. I wouldn’t sell though if you still have him I would hold on unless we get some more negative information on the injury which seems like it will be ok for Everton. The next couple of games should give us a feel to how Mourinho will line up his team. At the moment I’m thinking Eto’o may end up the best coverage given the form of Ba and Torres but a couple of games should make things clearer
4. Eriksen (£8.0m) BUY
A new purchase with no data but I can tell you last year he got 10 goals and 17 assists for Ajax. I can see AVB going 4-2-3-1 with Eriksen behind Soldado and being a real offensive force. If you’re going to take the gamble now is the time to do it before a Norwich home game. I think he will be the best option next to Soldado as I can see Lamela playing on the right which wont get the returns that Eriksen has potential before
5. Coutinho (£9.0m) HOLD
- Goals and assists: 0 goals 0 assists. Time per point scored: 28.4 mins . Rotation risk: low. fixture ease ranking: 1st. Consistency 0/3 0%
Got off to a howler and not getting in to the box and shooting at all. The fixtures are very good though and for that reason I would probably urge a little more patience.
6. Paulino (£7.0m) HOLD
- Goals and assists: 0 goals 0 assist. Time per point scored: 38.6 mins . Rotation risk: low. fixture ease ranking: 2nd. Consistency 0/3 0%
Spurs have 2 good fixtures (NOR H, CAR A) next before the Chelsea game so I would persevere until then. He has the best shooting stats of any midfielder in fantasy premier league at the moment. However, I think new signing Eriksen will dilute him though and push him deeper so its only a hold because of a couple of good fixtures
By the way I haven’t included Ozil. You may have seen my piece in the bandwagon article (link below) which goes into some detail but essentially he’s an assist based player and I worry without goals and the fantasy premier league favourtism of the bonus towards goals whether he is a good choice. I would love to be proved wrong as he’s one of my favourite players but he will be carefully monitored.
Mid price midfielders
1. Mirallas (£7.5m) SELL
- Goals and assists: 0 goals 0 assists. Time per point scored: 28.5 . Rotation risk: low. fixture ease ranking: 11th. Consistency 0/3 0%
Good underlying shooting stats but no returns in 3 games against relatively easy opposition and subbed 3 times as well. The next 2 fixtures (CHE H, WHAM A) are difficult and now is the time to sell for me
Nolan (£7.1m) SELL
- Goals and assists least year: 10 goals 2 assists. Time per point scored last year: 20 mins . Rotation risk: low. fixture ease ranking: 7th. Consistency 24%
A player who only scores, doesn’t assist and is a pure streaky scorer against poor opposition. Started well against Cardiff and should have scored against Newcastle. Backed up by good underlying shooting stats as well. Has 4 reasonable fixtures before GW7 when away to Spurs and home to City. Plays in a midfield 3 but gets in to the box regularly. Consistency rate is appalling and the only reason he’s on my list is that West Ham are still in a run of good fixtures. Home to Stoke is a great fixture for him.
Snodgrass (£6.4m) SELL
- Goals and assists least year: 0 goals 0 assists. Time per point scored: 33.8 mins . Rotation risk: low. fixture ease ranking: 13th. Consistency: 0/2 0%
Away to Spurs this weekend and has made a disappointing start along with the whole Norwich Team. Fixtures are about to get harder as well.
1. Brady (£5.1m) BUY – Hull have some good fixtures coming up (CAR H NEWC A) for a start and Brady with set pieces and pens has to be the favoured option as Steve Bruces side will struggle to score from open play
2. JWP – (£4.5m) BUY – 1 return in 3 games and seems to have held his place. has had a good share of set pieces as well
3. Barkley (£4.8m) HOLD – Returned in 1 of 3 games. With Chelsea at home this weekend I would probably watch the bandwagon for a weekend rather than be leaping on it. Has the new transfers to deal with in Barry and McCarthy plus Gibsons return. Lukaku joining in GW5 should provide the finishing touches to chances created. A note of caution here is that although he is playing behind the striker he hasn’t produced any underlying stats of note apart from shooting outside the box alot. Has got the shot to do that but only Bale in recent seasons has made this a reason to buy a fantasy premier league player. I still think he will hold his place over Osman though so definitely not a sell
4. Whittingham (£5.0m) HOLD – Has set pieces and penalties. Has 1 assist from 3 games to date. Same gametime risk as Kim though if Cornelius comes in to the side.
5. Bo-Kyung Kim (£5.0m) HOLD – No returns in 3 and no underling stats its an inauspicious start for the attacking midfielder who ad such a good pre-season. Next 2 games are HUL A and TOT H. I would sell before the Spurs game if no returns from Hull. has some gametime risk when Cornelius comes in to the side.
6. Henderson (£6.0m) HOLD – Not returned yet but has got fixtures on his side so if you own him I would keep the faith
Ok on to forwards next. Here’s the bandwagons link which will give you my views on the most transferred in and out players in fantasy premier league
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