After the week away from the fantasy world when the FA Cup took centre stage, it is now time for us all to review our team selections. Here are my tips for this weekend.
Sit: Sergio Aguero – Forward, Manchester City, 13.5
You know, because he does not play this week. It is defintiely worth holding onto the Argentine as he faces Liverpool, Aston Villa, and Norwich City following this blank game week, and their average defensive rating is seventeenth … out of twenty!
Sell: Alexis Sanchez – Midfielder, Arsenal, 11.0
Alexis has arguably been the most disappointing player since his return from injury, averaging just 2.3 points per game. Want to know something even crazier? The last time Alexis Sanchez scored more than four fantasy points was … drumroll please … October 17th! His price per point ratio is way off and I doubt he rights it against Manchester United and their third ranked defence.
Buy: Harry Kane – Forward, Tottenham Hotspur, 10.1
After my call on Wayne Rooney backfired last week due to injury, I am going to play it safe here with Kane again. Not only is he still leading the league in shot accuracy 64% but Christian Eriksen’s return to form means he will likely get even more opportunities to score in the near future. The matchups are not too bad either as Spurs face three bottom ten defences in their next five matches.
Sell: Diego Costa – Forward, Chelsea, 10.7
One of the biggest mistakes you can make in fantasy is chasing past performances. I do not by any means think this is some beginning of the end situation, but he will likely struggle against what has been a quite literally unbeatable defense. Chelsea are playing much better averaging two goals per game over their last five but, unfortunately for them, Southampton are averaging no goals allowed per game over their last five because they have not conceded at all over that period.
Buy: Mesut Ozil – Midfielder, Arsenal, 9.9
Ozil managed sixteen points against Manchester United the last time they faced each other, so there is no particular need to avoid this matchup, especially if David De Gea misses through injury. Arsenal have the easiest schedule in the Premier League from week thirty onwards so you can plug him in and ride him out until the end of the year.
Sell: Daniel Sturridge – Forward, Liverpool, 9.9
Yes, he scored against Aston Villa but his upcoming schedule renders him basically unownable. Not only will he have blanks in MW27 and MW30, but Liverpool’s next five scheduled matches are all against top ten defences (Manchester City, Crystal Palace, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, and Stoke City).
Buy: Christian Eriksen – Midfielder, Tottenham Hotspur, 8.6
Eriksen is finally spending most of his time behind Harry Kane, and boy has it turned his fortunes around. He has notched three goals and three assists in his last five matches, creating an astounding twenty-seven chances over that same period. As mentioned with Harry Kane, Spurs face three bottom ten defences in their next five matches.
Sell: Romelu Lukaku – Forward, Everton, 8.8
Lukaku has scored just one goal in his last seven matches and has registered just four shots on target in all of 2016! Not only that, but he also faces blanks in MW27 and MW30 which means it is probably time to spend your funds on a different forward from here on out.
Buy: Jamie Vardy – Forward, Leicester City, 7.4
The league’s leading goal scorer is facing a Norwich City side in horrible form, conceding an average of three goals per game over their last five matches! I have seen some comments this week that his shot conversion rate will drop (19 goals on just 41 shots on target), but anyone that has watched Leicester City would understand this is how he and Leicester play.
Sell: Willian – Midfielder, Chelsea, 7.1
Last week’s thrashing of Newcastle United aside, Willian has been struggling a bit lately. Per game his chances created (2), shots on target (1), and successful crosses(1) have all started to trend in the wrong direction. He now gets to go up against Southampton and their impregnable defence? No thank you.
Sell: Manchester City Defenders – 5.3-6.5
Remember how I said to drop all City midfielders? Well as it turns out, Aguero is the only City player worth owning at the moment. Not only do their defenders continually pop inexplicably in and out of the starting eleven, but the next three match weeks are Tottenham Hotspur, and Liverpool. I often advise against clean sheet gambles, and the odds are not even fair here.
Sell: Chris Smalling – Defender, Manchester United, 6.7
Smalling is still owned in a staggering 25.1% of leagues despite being the most expensive defender in fantasy. Now they host Arsenal and their fifth ranked attack with a patchwork defence and likely no David de Gea in net. This money would be better spent nearly anywhere else.
Buy: Mark Noble – Midfielder, West Ham United, 5.4
I have been riding high on West Ham United players lately and Noble is the best differential option at just 0.6% owned. He has a goal and assist in his last three matches and is averaging three shots on target per game despite playing deeper in the formation than the likes of Michail Antonio, Victor Moses, Manuel Lanzini et al. I like his odds of getting on the scoresheet again, this time against Norwich City who have conceded the most goals in the Premier League (50)
Sell: Aaron Cresswell – Defender, West Ham United, 5.6
I know I just spoke about how much I love West Ham players in fantasy but I am done with their defense. I am not saying Sunderland are winning this match but they are more than capable of scoring at least one goal against this Hammers defense that has kept just one clean sheet in their last six matches. Creswell has earned two points or fewer in four of his last five.
Buy: Christian Fuchs – Defender, Leicester City, 4.8
I am finally back in on Fuchs! Now that his fixture hell has passed, Leicester City have an incredibly kind run of fixtures facing five consecutive bottom ten attacks (Norwich City, West Bromwich Albion, Watford, Newcastle United, Crystal Palace). Individually, Fuchs ranks third in assists and seventh in chances created among defenders and is still shockingly just 3.1% owned!
Sell: Ben Foster – Goalkeeper, West Bromwich Albion, 4.9
Yes, he has kept two clean sheets since his return from injury, but the price and fixture list are not particularly kind. With Leicester City, Manchester United, and Arsenal in their next five I would rather bump up to the likes of Frazer Forster, Thibaut Courtois, or Jack Butland.
TEB Fantasy Football League Table (Top 10)
|1||Money Cabaye Success||Matt Jones||+54||1,517|
|2||Crystal Phallus FC||Simon Dixon||+50||1,483|
|4||Chelsea Dagger||David Gilbert||+46||1,473|
|7||Tea and Busquets||Lewis Carter||+48||1,454|
|8||Clunge FC||David Bailey||+36||1,452|
|9||How The Mighty Rise||Clive Mitchell||+66||1,445|