Notable Fantasy Performances
Aston Villa v Chelsea
A game notable for the return of Fernando Torres. He scored, assisted twice, and got a bonus point for a grand total of 13 points. Ivanovic got a brace and stole three bonus points for a massive 16 point Gameweek.
Fantasy wise, both performances are a one off this season, and both Torres’s and Ivanovic’s purchases would be a punt, at best. However, Torres would be a massive differentiator for the double Gameweek 36, when Chelsea have two home games (QPR and Newcastle).
More consistent returns can be had from Juan Mata, who registered his twelfth assist of the season and his fifth in eight games.
Everton v West Brom
Baines followed his 15 point Gameweek with a fine clean sheet and three bonus points. Everton are looking likely to finish the season with a bang, yet again, and Baines could be set to provide big returns. The bad news is that Everton’s schedule is hard to navigate for Fantasy managers. Two decent games against Norwich (A) and Sunderland (H) is followed by a blank Gameweek 34 and an away game versus Manchester United.
And then the epic double Gameweek 36.
Many a manager will be getting him in after Gameweek 35, and I think he’s simply too expensive to bench for two Gameweeks in a row.
Fulham v Norwich
Dempsey came through for me (as a captain pick) and delivered a BAG (Bonus, Assist, Goal). Fulham haven’t returned a clean sheet four consecutive games, making the more expensive Fulham defenders undesirable.
Ruiz assisted and grabbed bonus points. He’s an excellent player but is classified as a forward in the FPL game. He isn’t consistent enough to warrant one of the three forward places but could hold promise for next season, should he be reclassified.
Manchester City v Sunderland
Larsson reminded us why he is still a relevant Fantasy asset, with two fine goals. However, before the City game he had not scored or assisted in the league since December eleventh.
More exciting is Sessegnon, who made an instant impact with two assists.
Bendtner kept up his spectacular form, with his fourth goal in five games.
Sunderland’s fixtures are tough, but they continue to perform under Martin O’Neill. A punt on Bendtner for the third striker spot or Sessegnon in the fourth or fifth midfielder spot are solid and should provide healthy returns.
The prospects for Manchester City players are less exciting. With Aguero injured, Balotelli getting a negative review by Mancini despite his two goals, Dzeko underwhelming, Silva out of form, Nasri not playing, and Yaya Toure not delivering it’s hard to see any value in City players at the moment.
Interestingly, Kolarov has the highest points per game of all defenders but unfortunately plays to seldom to be useful.
QPR v Arsenal
Mark Hughes must have breathed a sigh of relief at the final whistle in QPR’s 2 – 1 win over Arsenal. Taarabt scored and could be a punt for the desperate.
Walcott scored Arsenal’s consolation goal, and Van Persie grabbed an assist. Both players should be high on your list for the run-in.
Wigan v Stoke City
The revival of Moses continues. He has now scored over three points in four consecutive Gameweeks and could become Wigan’s hero this season.
It’s unlikely though, because of a small problem: Wigan’s schedule. They face Chelsea (A), Manchester United (H), Arsenal (A), and Fulham (A) in their next four games.
Other players in both teams aren’t exciting Fantasy options.
Wolves v Bolton
Wolves decision to sack Mick McCarthy must now be ranked as one of the major blunders of the season.
Bolton won their third game in a row. One can’t help but feel happy for them, following Muamba’s heart attack.
Bolton have two double Gameweeks, the 35th and the 36th. Their players should be hot shit because of that, but no one really stands out in Fantasy terms. Petrov could be a punt, but the sensible option is an investment in the cheap Adam Bogdan at £4.0. He isn’t likely to grab a clean sheet but will get you the regular two points in addition to save points four times in two Gameweeks.
Newcastle v Liverpool
Liverpool’s slump continues and you should be thinking hard about selling your Liverpool players.
The Fantasy focus centers around Papiss Cisse and Ben Arfa, who have exploded in the last few games. Cisse has seven goals in seven games for Newcastle for a massive 7.6 points per game. Ban Arfa has two consecutive gameweeks of double digit scores and is exciting cheap midfield option.
It should be noted that Ba should have been credited with one of Ben Arfa’s assists which is frustrating for Ba’s owners.
Tottenham v Swansea
Tottenham’s fierce four, Van der Vaart, Adebayor, Bale, and Lennon, all delivered. Tottenham have a fixture list worth looking at and a tasty double Gameweek 36.
The problem is whether to invest before or after the blank Gameweek 34. It negates the benefit of an extra game in Gameweek 36 if you don’t have the full eleven players returning points in Gameweek 34.
Sigurdsson kept up his amazing returns for Swansea and has an impressive six goals, three assists, and eight bonus points in only eleven games since joining Swansea on loan in January.
Blackburn v Manchester United
Blackburn put up one hell of a fight, but were finally defeated by persistent United pressure.
Valencia put in yet another game winning performance and the United defence delivered their fourth clean sheet in as many games.
Gameweek 31 Captain Picks
From Gameweek 25 onwards, I’m documenting whether I’m passing the test with my captain picks. If a captain pick scores over three points in the Gameweek it is considered a success and I am also noting double digit Gameweek scores.
In the Friday Foreplay for Gameweek 31 I recommended Dempsey, Rooney, and Van Persie as the captain picks. Dempsey was the winner of the round, returning double digit returns while Van Persie delivered a modest five points, and Rooney a dissapointing blank.
Quality of captain picks from Gameweek 25 onwards:
- Good captain picks: 12/21
- Double digit captains: 5/21
Any comments on the round? How did your team do? Did you choose the right captain?