After each gameweek, Joseph Crilley is going to be writing an article reviewing all the Premier League games from a fantasy perspective. He will be providing some stats and a brief summary on the performances and prospects of a few of the players. This is the fantasy premier league GW22 review. Last year, Joseph finished with an overall rank of 13k.
FANTASY PREMIER LEAGUE GW22 REVIEW
For each game, I will be providing a stats table containing the following: Goals (G), Assists (A), Shots (S), On Target (OT), Key Passes (KP), Bonus points (BP) and fantasy points (FP). Any statistic highlighted in yellow signifies that the player leads that category for his team. Blue highlight shows the players that registered a fantasy return (goal, assist or clean sheet) and green shows any player that scored 10+ points.
The tables also include the Expected Goals and Expected Assists for each individual player. This is in addition to the expected goals for each team in brackets within the scoreline. BBC Sport provided a very useful piece to help explain this statistic. Essentially each shot is given a score between 0 and 1 as to how likely it is to go in the net. For example, suppose a shot taken from inside the box is worth 0.56; this will be added to the xG tally of the player who take the shot and added to the xA of the player who passes the ball to him. All underlying stats are from the brilliant website understat.com. References to average position come from the twitter site 11tegen11.
The stats tables are all available via the following google spreadsheet link and I will speak about a few key players during the gameweek.
GW22 was the first double gameweek of the season and was rather disappointing, mostly due to the performance of Spurs and especially Kane. The gameweek’s highest captained player was left on the bench against Swansea, though was unlucky to not claim an assist after Alli needed two opportunities to convert from his strikers’ pass. It was a familiar Wembley story for Kane who had 7 shots for an xG score of 0.53, but it was another blank which was a massive disappointment for the 120,000+ managers that used the triple captain chip on him.
His replacement, Llorente, scored the opening, rather dubious, goal against Swansea thanks to a beautiful delivery sent in by Eriksen. The Dane had 8 shots and 3 key passes in the second game and has now returned in 6 of his last 8 games. The hero of the 2nd game was Son who scored a sensational equaliser to continue his wonderful form at Wembley; it’s 6 goals and 4 assists in his last 7 appearances at the national stadium. Due to his cheaper price and better form, the Korean looks by far the best option in the Spurs midfield and owners will have a decision to make about whether to keep him when tougher fixtures start in GW25.
One clean sheet for the backline and investment in Davies looks a wise decision after his rotation partner, Rose, was ruled out with a knee injury and currently has no return date. Trippier picked up maximum bonus against Swansea, but was then rotated and is a prime example as to why there isn’t value in the Spurs defence at the moment.
No clean sheet in either game for the Hammers, though Adrian did make 7 saves at Wembley and the goal against West Brom was an unfortunate deflection. Masauku was positioned further forward and created one decent chance against Spurs; looking at the fixture list, I think it’s worth holding onto one of your West Ham defensive assets for the time being.
All the players with fantasy returns in the first game failed to start the second game; the most concerning player being the popular Arnautovic. He got the assist for the second goal against the Baggies, but picked up a hamstring niggle which saw him miss out later in the week and managers are awaiting news on its seriousness. Carroll bagged a brace which will hurt those managers, myself included, who triple captained him a couple years ago for just a 9-point return.
There was a surprise in the starting XI as De Bruyne maintained his place despite being stretchered off in the previous game. He registered a double figure haul thanks to 2 assists which came along with 3 other key passes and 4 shots including one that hit the woodwork. Silva also started, but had a relatively quiet game while Sterling scored yet again; this time after less than 40 seconds on the clock and he’s a player who will hurt your overall rank if you don’t own him.
The assist for the first goal came from Sané, however the German has yet to score since GW10 so continues to be overshadowed in recent weeks. Similar can be said for Aguero who did get on the scoresheet but could only return 6 points after missing a couple of other chances. Many FPL managers will be looking to him during the injury absence of Jesus, but I would point out that the Argentine has had just one return of more than 8 points since GW6. It’s worth asking the question of whether his cheaper midfield teammates can continue to outscore him, even if the striker starts every PL game for the foreseeable future.
At the back, we saw the return of Stones who missed a golden opportunity, but was able to keep his clean sheet after being withdrawn early. Now priced at 5.4mil, if managers have missed the boat on Otamendi, he looks a great budget alternative.
The Algerian is in wonderful form having only blanked once in his last 9 games and scored a wonderful volley during the week. He also had an assist, but the only worry is that the improved performances are due to a prospective move during the transfer window. If he moves to a Premier League club, he could be an even more intriguing fantasy option.
His teammate Albrighton matched his output in this game and has shown some good recent form with 1 goal and 3 assist in his last 4 games which makes him a good option at 5.5mil.
There was an air of inevitability about the goal from Hazard after the number of sellers looking to raise funds for double gameweek players. He had 6 shots in total and it will be interesting to see if he can find more goals other next few fixtures which look good on paper.
It was a day to forget for his partner in attack, Morata, though. He had 3 wonderful opportunities which combined for an xG score of 1.13, but he somehow failed to convert any of them. As an owner myself, it was extremely frustrating to watch, but there are positives in the aforementioned fixtures and the opportunities that he is getting.
Christensen finally returned to the starting XI after missing the last couple with illness, but there was to be no clean sheet. That doesn’t stop Alonso returning points, who scored his 6th goal of the season and has now risen to 7.3mil. He looks to be worth the price though; he’s on free-kicks, is often in the box and also is the target from corners with his near-post runs.
Liverpool’s Fab Four
Only Mané started against Burnley and scored his first goal since GW14 and could be one to watch if a January transfer for Coutinho goes through. The Brazilian also missed the FA cup tie on Friday and it seems that we may have seen the last of him in a Liverpool shirt.
Salah was absence due to a thigh injury which meant he was the most sold player of the gameweek; however, it is looking likely that he will be back next weekend for the game against City. There was a rest for Firmino and once the City game is out the way, there are some decent fixtures on the horizon for Liverpool. Therefore, a double-up on their attack is still viable, depending how they cope without Coutinho. It is worth mentioning that the FA has said it will launch an investigation into allegations by the Everton RB/CB Holgate that he was racially abused by Firmino during Friday’s FA Cup fixture. On a side note, Lallana is back from injury and had 5 shots and 5 key passes; 7.3mil for a player who previously had a 178-point campaign.
A poor showing from the Watford man against the league leaders; he failed to register a single shot or key pass. The next three fixtures look good, so I would suggest holding, but there is an argument to sell given the emergence of some options in his price bracket.
It’s all about Lingard currently in the United attack and the academy graduate scored another cracking goal. He had 5 shots in total and 6.2mil is a great price for an in-form attacker for one of the top teams. He is significantly cheaper than Pogba who was improved in this game in a more advanced position and picked up a couple of assists. However, there doesn’t seem much reason to bring in the Frenchman right now given the form of Lingard.
Successive clean sheets for the United defence and it looks essential to have one of their assets in your side; De Gea and Jones are the obvious options.
Cheap Everton options Calvert-Lewin and Kenny both failed to start, and the former’s place looks in serious jeopardy after the new signing of Cenk Tosun. It may be time to move on to other cheap options, though as FFG mentioned in his team article, a playing bench doesn’t have quite as much importance now the festive season is over.
Elliot was absent with an injury and his replacement Darlow had a great game, so I’d be surprised to see the budget option come straight back into the team.
Similarly, Loftus-Cheek was missing with his own injury, though he seems more likely to reclaim his place in the starting XI.
The most impressive stats of the gameweek came from Ibe who had 7 shots and 6 key passes with 1 assist during the New Year’s lunchtime game. Wilson scored in the same game and should get some good playing time over the next few weeks due to injuries to other strikers at Bournemouth.
No returns for any of Arsenal’s ‘golden triangle’ and I wonder if the injury to Jesus will mean the Pep aggressively moves for Sanchez during this window now.
The Burnley defence is starting to struggle a little with just one clean sheet in the last four games and their next two home games are the Manchester clubs. However, their fixture schedule from GW27 is very strong and it would be wise to have a member of their defence in your team for then.
That concludes the GW22 review. Feel free to post any questions or feedback in the comments section or you can find me on Twitter.
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