Here’s Rob Reid the FPL Vet with his fantasy premier league wildcard review and thoughts moving forward. Rob finished with a rank of 22k last season 4,701 in 2015/16 and 7,810 in 2014/15.
fantasy premier league – Rob Reid (the FPL Vet) with his wildcard review and thoughts moving forward
To start things off, here’s a reminder of my team at the end of GW7.
It was actually quite a good GW in terms of my overall score and improvement in rank, even though I only had 4/11 players return + a clean sheet on the bench. I’d pre-planned my team to play my Wildcard in GW8 and decided to stick with this strategy, and it looked like a good call at the time with lots of niggly injuries and doubts surrounding players over the international window.
In the end I settled on the following team for GW8:
GW8 – 50 points (average 41), 100k green arrow, OR 400k OTV £102.1
A bit of an odd week all in all. My defence was an absolute car crash that began with Ben Davies’ unexpected absence and ended with a rather dull 2 points from Simpson on a blustery Monday night. I wouldn’t however have done any better with my old defence with Bailly absent for Man United.
The first big positive was that I had 2 returns from my 3 initial starters in midfield, with Choupo-Moting coming off the bench for 2 points in lieu of Davies’ no-show to ultimately give me a 4 man midfield.
In the end I could have picked any of the City options I’d considered but luckily I picked the highest scoring choice in Sterling. Richarlison then provided a welcome assist in the Saturday night game, even if it was pretty soft penalty.
Salah blanked and missed a great chance, but I’m not too worried about this as his stats for the season are so good and he returned big time in the UCL, albeit against a lower standard team in Maribor. It’s a tough GW9 fixture against Spurs, but I fancy there will goals in this one especially with the hosts coming off a tough game at the Bernebau on Tuesday as well.
Of the players I transferred out, frustratingly there were returns for 3 of my former midfielders. Speaking of Spurs again, Eriksen was their matchwinner against Bournemouth and he continues to outperform his statistics, proving what a quality player he is. Atsu’s assist was rather dubious in my opinion, but he still is a nice budget option moving forward.
Finally £4.5m Tom Carroll got his first return of the season. It’s unlikely I would have played him though had I stuck with my old team so I’m not too down on that. All in all, in terms of overall parts my old and new teams returned fairly similar scores.
My strikers provided a mixed bag, but did better combined than my previous set-up. Jesus was superb against Stoke and I’m really glad I doubled up on City in midfield and attack. I hope he keeps his starting place this weekend, though I’m very aware (as I’m sure we all are) that Aguero is waiting in the wings! Kane was the big disappointment, a blanking captain always frustrates me. A Lukaku blank wasn’t a huge surprise, he was quiet and actually pretty lucky not to be sent off so it could have been worse! I expect the big money strikers to put things right over the next couple of weeks. Lukaku has a nice fixture this week and Kane’s stats are still amazing and he can score against anyone.
I must confess, I’m not sure how I feel about my GW8 score in the end! Part of me is very underwhelmed. Post-Wildcard I guess the natural expectation is for serious fireworks and massive overall gains. 50 points and only 3/11 returns therefore is a bit of a disappointment on this basis. I would have scored something fairly similar with my old team as well, though I’d have probably taken a -4 or -8 to do it.
However, having taken some to time digest this a bit through the week and think about it more philosophically, I’m actually fairly happy with things. If someone had offered my a 100k rise pre-gameweek, I’d have certainly taken it and I feel I’m in good shape moving forwards. I’ve also been in the position in previous seasons where I’ve Wildcarded and my team has exploded for a couple of weeks and then gone backwards – I’ve probably not planned far enough in advance and been rather short-sighted.
We’ll see what the next few weeks bring to see if this is the case. The final positive is my Team Value looks very healthy so far in a season of fewer rises and more drops. Hopefully I can continue to grow this.
Here’s my team as it currently stands for GW9.
I’m not planning any transfers at this stage so I can carry 2 into GW10 – ah the luxury! I’ll wait for the Friday Press Conferences though and make a final call after that. Luckily I have the day off work on Friday so will be able to keep tabs on things before the Friday night deadline (DON’T FORGET FOLKS!) The one thing I’m not sure on is who I will captain. Jesus looks the obvious choice but as stated earlier, I’m nervous of his minutes. He could end up playing an hour or he could end up having a 30 minute cameo at the end for 1 point. I expect Burnley to offer a bit more resistance than Stoke as Dyche is pretty shrewd at setting his team up to contain. That being said, if City score early this could be another massacre with attacking points galore. This also makes Sterling a possible armband option and he looks more secure minutes wise after being subbed earlier in the UCL.
The other options for me would be Kane or Lukaku. Kane has a tougher fixture but I expect this to be more open. There is of course the whole Spurs/Wembley thing, but Liverpool have been defensively awful on the road this year and I just can’t see Klopp turning up and parking the bus. Lukaku I’m sure will be heavily backed this week. Huddersfield have had lots of cracks appear since their flying start and this could also end up with the Manchester team piling on goals at the end. Lukaku has been pretty quiet though in his last couple of games and there’s still rumours abound he’s carrying a knock. It’s a tough call.
Looking beyond to GW10, if I do carry my transfers I’m looking at a couple of things. First up is the return of Morata and Aguero – changing Lukaku and Jesus for these looks a plausible option. The second option is some defensive tinkering. I’ll be watching Wimmer and Simpson’s minutes this weekend after they were both subbed off early in last week’s games. I’m also looking at Davies as a possible sale, with Jones an option if he stays fit. United do have a tricky GW10 & 11 but United’s defensive record is superb so far so that wouldn’t be as much of a worry for me.
If I make any changes this week, I’ll post them on Twitter today (Friday) with the Fantasy Football Geek handle in the Tweet. Whoever you do for this week, all the best for GW9 and beyond – may your arrows be green!
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