What is it with pesky red arrows as you enter the FA Cup break? In GW22 I wrote how one of the most frustrating things in FPL is picking up some unwanted red arrows the week before FA Cup fixtures because you have longer to be annoyed and make tilty decisions. And bizarrely enough we had it again in GW24. We have only had 3 sets of reds across our last 11 GW’s and 2 of those have coincided with the 2 breaks so far.
As frustrating as it was we did actually outscore the GW average of 50pts as we hit 52. Therefore we only saw a small drop in rankings as we fell from 59k to 65k. Still well on course for our seasonal aims.
Nick Pope started again and failed to register any points of note again. Just 1 clean sheet in the last 6 games now and actually only 5 saves across the last 4 weeks. Slightly alarming stats but on the plus side he does have a fairly decent run of games coming up so hopefully there can be a tide turn.
At the back Marcos Alonso and Phil Jones continued their exceptional run with 6ptd and 9pts respectively. 4 clean sheets in a row for Jones whilst Alonso has registered at least 6pts in 8 games straight. Absolutely stunning from him. Unfortunately Andrew Robertson could only score a single point as Swansea stunned Liverpool.
Our midfield was a little underwhelming. Assists for Raheem Sterling and Marko Arnautovic with Heung Min Son and Mo Salah blanked. 14pts between them will generally lead to red arrows.
The same could be said for our strikeforce to be honest. Roberto Firmino and Callum Wilson combined for 4pts with Harry Kane saving us a little bit. The correct captain choice again delivered us 16pts and helped counter some the points others scored from Kun Aguero.
We are certainly going to need an improvement on that score this week as we look to maintain our position. We have one free transfer and the trigger was pulled.
Arnautovic (OUT) – Shaqiri (IN)
Unfortunately I realised about 37 seconds after I pressed confirm that I had f*cked it. With Marko Arnautovic out I went straight in and swapped him for Xherdan Shaqiri. He’s £1m cheaper and has great fixtures. What I completely forgot was we already have Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting. 2 Stoke mids is most certainly not a good look for any FPL team. Note to self, do not make transfers when sitting in a boring work meeting.
I have resisted the biggest temptation to drop Harry Kane for Sergio Aguero too so we run with just the 1 transfer made.
Nick Pope starts in goal again and hopefully he can keep a Newcastle team at bay that have just 3 goals in their last 5 games.
Our back line stays the same. We were tempted to drop Phil Jones at Spurs but Mourinho has a penchant for a difficult away cleanie. It also helps that I don’t trust either bench defender keeping one. Andrew Robertson has just 3pts across his last 3 starts so a trip to Huddersfield can hopefully remedy that. Marcos Alonso last with the visit of Bournemouth. The form he’s in he’s legitimate armband material.
Our midfield welcomes in our new (unnecessary) signing Xherdan Shaqiri. The Swiss playmaker looked good against Huddersfield last time out but his output for the last few months has been a bit wanky. A new gaffer and a great run of games I’m quietly confident he can deliver. Exactly the same reason that we also include his team-mate Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting. Heung Min Son has the toughest match up whilst Mo Salah and Raheem Sterling have very high potential weekly ceilings against distinctly average teams.
Callum Wilson hits the bench this week as we run with a front 2. Harry Kane against United and Roberto Firmino away at Huddersfield. Both scored in the FA Cup but were part of very disappointing team results, so hopefully they can get back to winning ways this weekend.
I can’t decide if I feel this is a week we score 30 and bomb or if it’s a week we could nicely surpass the GW average. Either way it’s a midweek GW and I bloooody love them.
As per usual the captaincy poll is below so all votes appreciated. You guys have done a cracking job so far.
Good luck to everyone and thanks for reading.
Written by FPL Guru (@FPL_Guru)