After submitting my article last week, Rashford took a knock playing for United, so I swapped him out late and brought Aguero into the team. This change also led to me taking out Knockaert and bringing in Antonio as his replacement.
By all accounts, it was a pretty poor week. The Aguero decision was much for muchness, because even though Rashford was sub, he came on and matched Aguero’s seven points with a goal.
My backline and goalkeeper were all awful let-downs, with only Monreal (who I’d placed on the bench) picking up anything of note. Even he didn’t keep a clean sheet though, and his seven points were thanks to an unexpected goal down the other end.
Sane was the real star, with 12 points from midfield. It feels as if you need one of him or Sterling each week at the moment to be honest, such is their dovetailing output.
Changes galore as usual, with the following 15 players that I think could make a difference for you given their fixtures this weekend.
Remember last week when I said, “It’s always nice to have early FNF involvement and get points on the board, so I’ll have Hart at home to Brighton?” Dreadful shout. I’m not messing around this week, so I’m going for a ‘big team’ keeper in a game that looks like a home banker. Cech (5.5%) is in, with Arsenal hosting Swansea off the back of three clean sheets on their turf on the bounce in the league. On the bench is Gomes (2.3%), whose Watford side take on Stoke City at Vicarage Road.
I’ve gone all Jose this week, with five at the back and four in midfield, and thanks to the soaring popularity of Monreal, Richarlison and Sane (who’ve all moved above the 10% threshold), there’s a host of new names. With Mustafi still absent, I expect Mertesacker (0.6%) to continue in the heart of defence capably for the Gunners, while a similar situation should see Rudiger (2%) remain in the Chelsea side at Bournemouth. With Liverpool desperately needing change at the back, I think Gomez (2.5%) could drop into a central role, with Lovren handed a ‘rest’. A home game with Huddersfield, who haven’t scored away from home since the opening day, is favourable. Stones (9.6%) completes my lineup, with his superb passing accuracy and matchup against relatively goal shy (three in last five) West Brom. On the bench, Maguire (7.4%) is back on these pages as he takes on managerless Everton in Claude Puel’s first game.
I’m packing the midfield here, mostly due to nicer looking matches than many of the strikers have this week. Zaha (3.8%) remains, with West Ham the visitors to Selhurst Park on Saturday. Ramsey (4.2%) is also back in, after a goal and assist in Arsenal’s rout of Everton last weekend. The Welshman had been pretty wasteful generally, but two late returns will be a confidence boost to the ex-Cardiff man when he faces the Swans. Pedro (2.1%) gets a nod too after a great showing last week, making in two goals in his last two league starts. Izquierdo (0%!!) will surely start for Brighton too after a good strike last Friday, and I’m backing his pace to trouble a sluggish looking Southampton at the Amex on Sunday. Finally, my fifth shout is the definition of a differential: Oxlade-Chamberlain (1.7%). The Ox is yet to start in the league for Liverpool, but played a lengthy part of last week’s game with Spurs and in all honesty, wasn’t that bad. As I said above, I get the impression Klopp will mix things up for Huddersfield’s visit, and I just have an inkling he might think the ex-Arsenal man is ready to go from the off. One thing is for certain; if Oxlade-Chamberlain does start, he’ll be absolutely desperate to impress not just his new boss, but his new fanbase too.
After picking him and then panicking about his injury, Rashford (8.8%) cuts a lonely figure up front this week. I really don’t know what I’ll do if his ownership reaches the 10% mark, that’s for sure. His sublime flick for Lingard in midweek, coupled with an abject Martial showing, makes me certain he’ll start against Spurs on Saturday lunch and I’m hoping for another goal in a big game from him. Gray (1.4%) and Gabbiadini (3%) line up as subs for me, as their fixtures are good, I’m just not wholly convinced I can rely on their attacking returns. Unfortunately, those two are very much ‘best of a bad bunch’ territory this week.
Good luck on getting those green arrows this weekend.
Written by Joe McPhee (@JPMc99)