You know that dreaded feeling you get when you wake up after a big night out and remember you have to open your phone to see all of the drunk messages you sent? That is precisely how I felt this week knowing I would have to open up FPL and assess the weekend’s damage. Let’s just say it was as bad as expected.
We came back from the International break with two weeks of green arrows to follow up on but unfortunately for us we couldn’t make it the hattrick. In a season where there have been more downs than ups we hit our lowest score of the season. 32pts on a 41pt weekly average sent us spiralling down to a position of 1.6m leaving us with an uphill battle to achieve our pre-season targets.
The combined total points from our two GK’s was 1! Jack Butland, rightly benched, came up against Manchester City in plainly ridiculous form and scored a big fat zero. Which in all fairness was quite good considering he took more punishment than a Kardashian in one of their ‘home videos’. We did however have a little more hope for Rob Elliot delivering but he conceded two goals against a Southampton team that had only scored five goals all season.
At the back I stupidly left Phil Jones on our bench. I absolutely knew Jose Boreinho would try and kill the game but was sure Liverpool would score. In his place we had Harry Maguire with 2pts, Sead Kolasinac with 1pt and Kyle Naughton with 6pts.
Our midfield once again flattered to deceive as they combined for just 14pts between them. David Silva accounted for half of those but given that City scored seven I’d have hoped for a little more from him. In terms of goal scoring it is clear that Raheem Sterling and Leroy Sane are the go to guys in the City midfield, with David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne pulling the strings.
Up top was a painful one. Our strikeforce that come in at a combined £33.2m managed to score 8pts total. That obviously includes Harry Kane’s captain points. As much as Kane’s Wembley woes have been highlighted it is fairly startling when you look at it. Four home league games have yielded just 7pts, with Bournemouth, Swansea and Burnley included whilst the four away games he has scored 40pts. I’m absolutely adamant this changes sooner rather than later but it’s really giving us a headache.
Thankfully GW8 is now firmly in the rearview mirror so it’s onwards and hopefully upwards as we enter GW9. We have decided to avoid a transfer this week as I feel those we have all have favourable enough fixtures. It just feels as though two FT’s next week could be more beneficial.
For the first week in a while we have a real headache in goal. Both GK’s have a nice home game but Jack Butland just about gets the nod. Bournemouth have failed to score in five of their eight games so far, none in their last two and sit second bottom of the league. Stoke probably feel a bit fragile after last week but I’m confident that Palace score against Rob Elliot’s Newcastle.
Our back three cautiously welcomes back Phil Jones in place of Kyle Naughton. We are absolutely aware that Mourinho has said he is injured but we’ve heard this before. If he is in fact injured then we just have Naughton come in but I’m not running that risk. Harry Maguire against Swansea and Sead Kolasinac against Everton make up the back line.
Our midfield looks a little better than last week with only Henrikh Mkhitaryan playing away and he could certainly have harder games than Huddersfield. Six goals conceded in their last two games United will hopefully be given a little more license to attack this weekend. David Silva, FPL’s second highest scoring midfielder, will possibly have a slightly harder task in facing Burnley. The Clarets have the fourth best defensive record this season and after conceding two goals against Chelsea in GW1 they have only conceded four in the next seven. Manchester City could be a different prospect and you just have to fancy City to score goals in any game this season. Matt Ritchie and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting make up our midfield four. The same as our two GK’s they face home matches against the bottom two. After racking up four assists between GW3-5 Ritchie has blanked in three straight. There appears to be a small amount of knock on effect with Jonjo Shelvey returning from his ban. With him sharing set piece duty it appears to limit ritchie’s appeal. This is something I will bypass this week but certainly food for thought. EMCM has also had a minor drought with just one assist in four since his brace against United so we will be hoping he can bounce back to scoring ways against Bournemouth. Much like Ritchie he is under a little scrutiny and could be sacrificed for an alternative budget midfielder soon.
Up top it’s the same three obviously and we simply cannot have a repeat of last weekend’s sh*t show. Harry Kane will be looking to finally score his first league goal at Wembley when Liverpool and their comedy club back line come to town. Surely he has to break his home drought soon! He lines up with Jamie Vardy who has blanked in consecutive weeks. He faces a Swansea defence who have been a damn site more resilient this year than I had expected. Just eight goals conceded in eight games suggests this could be a tougher matchup than hoped. Although we should remember what happened the game after Ranieri was sacked last year. They came out and played their best game of the season. So let’s see if we get a similar reaction this weekend. Last up is Romelu Lukaku. The Premier League’s top scorer has come under some minor scrutiny in the last week. With his very quiet display against Liverpool people are back to questioning his ability to score in those games. Whether or not you believe this to be true he will be facing a Huddersfield team at The John Smith’s where Spurs comprehensively dismantled them a few weeks back. Surely United bounce back and win well.
The team is set and the matches are semi-favourable. We have to see an improvement on last week and I’m sure we will. I can’t possibly have another week where I’m too scared to look.
This week leaves us with a genuine decision on captaincy and we will once again leave that for you capable lot. The poll is below and all all votes appreciated! Thanks again for reading and good luck this week!
Written by FPL Guru (@FPL_Guru)