A busy week in the Premier League that has seen two rounds of matches played in a short space of time which has meant points galore up for grabs. Heading into the fixtures this weekend, here are my tips for your fantasy teams.
Start: Sergio Aguero – Forward, Manchester City, 13.5
The City talisman currently sits fourth in goals scored (14), but has the highest goals per game at .84. This week he has the pleasure of playing the third worst defence in the league, Aston Villa, who have conceded a whopping fifty-one goals already this season. Aguero is not only a must start, but a must captain.
Buy: Diego Costa – Forward, Chelsea, 10.8
I do not mind admitting I was dead wrong on Costa. He has notched three goals and two assists in his last five matches. Sure he has some tough matches coming up, but there are few players that play better in big matches. He does have a blank in MW30 (due to the FA Cup), so if you already have three players on blanks you should not buy him.
Sell: Eden Hazard – Midfielder, Chelsea, 10.8
Do not be distracted by his assist midweek. Let us not forget that MW28 was the first time the Belgian has scored more than three points since October third. He does have really tough matchups on the horizon (Stoke City, blank MW30, and West Ham United), but has tended to wilt more in them than his Brazilian counterpart.
Buy: David Silva – Midfielder, Manchester City, 9.8
I have an unhealthy love for David Silva, so take this one with a pinch of salt. He has looked much better in his last two matches, Capital One Cup Final included, and faces two of the three worst defenses over the next three weeks. If he has not turned things around by MW31, feel free to forget his name for the rest of the season.
Sell: Daniel Sturridge – Forward, Liverpool, 9.9
Even if he comes back fully fit, which is never a guarantee, his next five weeks are spent facing four top ten defences and a blank MW30. However, he may well be worth picking up late in the season as Sergio Aguero and Harry Kane have tough run-ins while Sturridge has a relatively easy schedule over the last five matches (Bournemouth, Newcastle United, Swansea City, Watford, West Bromwich Albion).
Buy: Christian Eriksen – Midfielder, Tottenham Hotspur, 8.6
The Dane has disappointed over the last two matches, but the underlying statistics suggest Eriksen could be in for a breakout soon. With ten shots on target and eighteen chances created in his last five, Eriksen is due a goal and an assist and while Arsenal will prove a tough challenge, Aston Villa and Bournemouth probably will not.
Sell: Romelu Lukaku – Forward, Everton, 8.8
Not only has Lukaku managed just six shots on target in 2016, but he has a troublingly low 50% shot accuracy for an ‘elite’ striker. Now things get even tougher for the Belgian big man as he faces five top ten defences and a blank MW30 over the next six weeks.
Buy: Gylfi Sigurdsson – Midfielder, Swansea City, 7.1
Sigurdsson is finally turning things around, and he has done it against tough opposition with two goals and an assist in his last five matches. Now things get decidedly easier for ‘Siggy Stardust’ with matches against Norwich City, Bournemouth, and Aston Villa who average out to the eighteenth worst defence in the league.
Sell: Graziano Pelle – Forward, Southampton, 7.8
Pelle is a bit of a sneaky play with Shane Long and Charlie Austin both out through injury, but I am not interested. He has managed just sixteen shots on target and 34% shot accuracy this season, with his last goal coming on November 1st. With loads of good forwards out there, I see no need to take a risk on Pelle.
Buy: Xherdan Shaqiri – Midfielder, Stoke City, 6.4
Shaqiri is finally starting to show the quality that Stoke expected when they bought him last summer. He has a goal and two assists in his last three matches as well as three shots on target and seven chances created. You do not have to love the matchup this week but Chelsea have failed to keep a clean sheet in four of their last five matches so there is every chance that Shaqiri is involved in a goal this weekend.
Sell: Toby Alderweireld – Defender, Tottenham Hotspur, 6.4
You will be hard pressed to find a more biased Spurs supporter, but Toby’s performances just do not justify his hefty price tag. His last assist was January 3rd and his last goal came on November 12th and he now seems to be little more than a glorified clean sheet gamble. Spurs have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last three outings and even if they do, you could get someone like Dier in at a much lower price.
Buy: Michail Antonio – Midfielder, West Ham United, 5.4
He has been averaging a whopping 7.4 points per game over his last five matches with three goals over that same period. The next three matches (Everton, Chelsea, and Crystal Palace) are no cakewalk, but sometimes you have to roll with form over fixtures. At 5.3 Antonio is a steal.
Sell: Scott Dann – Defender, Crystal Palace, 5.9
He was an incredible fantasy defender earlier this season, but his time has come. With no clean sheets in 2015 and goals too unpredictable to rely on his 5.9 price is just too high for what you are getting. Then factor in the next four weeks Palace face three top ten attacks and a blank MW30 and you have yourself a recipe for a dropped player.
Buy: Marcus Rashford – Forward, Manchester United, 4.6
After his incredible two goal, one assist performance against Arsenal he was inevitably going to come back down to Earth, but there is no shame in struggling against a very underrated Watford defence. With uncertainty around his playing time he is basically a striker version of Matty Targett. He will get you points if he plays.
Sell: Cameron Borthwick-Jackson – Defender, Manchester United, 4.0
CBJ had four weeks to make the job his own, but unfortunately picked up an injury and missed the last two. He is doubtful for the start this weekend, has a blank MW30, then faces three consecutive top five attacks (Everton, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur). Oh what could have been.
TEB Fantasy Football League – Top 10
|1||Money Cabaye Success||Matt Jones||+35||1,594|
|3||Crystal Phallus FC||Simon Dixon||+30||1,554|
|4||Tea and Busquets||Lewis Carter||+57||1,550|
|5||Chelsea Dagger||David Gilbert||+40||1,547|
|7||Wei’s Tight Shorts||Mark Bailey||+45||1,542|
|9||Clunge FC||David Bailey||+33||1,522|
|10||How The Mighty Rise||Clive Mitchell||+28||1,517|
The online gaming industry has grown to become a huge part of the sporting experience including fantasy football. This concept began in the US and was more commonly known as ‘rotisserie’ or ‘roto’ where participants put together fictional teams based on real players in professional sport such as baseball. It increased ten fold as the internet became more an more accessible and you can get fantasy games in all sports now.
It is not only fantasy games that have flourished. Online betting and gaming has become a multi million pound industry. From just fifteen websites in 1996 to 200 in 1997 with revenues exceeding £583 million in the late nineties. By 2008 worldwide revenue had reached £15 billion.
Today there are thousands of online gambling sites just like the UK’s reputed casino website featuring poker, roulette, blackjack and virtual sports to name just a few.
With the industry flooded with easy access to such games it is easy to become addicted which has become a big problem so please gamble responsibly.