We are getting dangerously close to the point where the difference between our FPL Updates XI and S**thouse XI is almost indistinguishable. Another sub average week means we have now only registered 3 green arrows in the last 18 gameweek’s. Slowly slipping into Sam Allardyce territory.
When your goalkeeper and back three account for 23pts and your captain scores a goal it seems almost impossible to drop down the rankings but that’s what happened. We have moved back outside the top 1.5m so with just 14 gameweek’s left we’ve got a battle on our hands to push for a top 100k finish.
A few weeks ago we had a goalkeeper who couldn’t keep a clean sheet to save his life and another who couldn’t even get a game for Hull. Now we have Ben Foster with two cleanies in three and Eldin Jakupovic with 19pts in his last two. It’s funny how much can change in a just a matter of weeks in the FPL. What isn’t funny is we have failed to see a single point from Jakupovic given that he’s been benched for both.
At the back I couldn’t be happier. Taking into account form and fixtures I’m not sure I’d want a different back three than Leighton Baines, Chris Brunt and Marcos Alonso right now. 18pts between the three of them is great any single week so long may it continue.
Our midfield isn’t quite as pleasing. 6pts between the four starters is the stuff of nightmares. To compound matters we dropped Eden Hazard last week for Kevin De Bruyne. Just our luck that we do that the week that Hazard channels his inner Maradona. Alexis Sanchez and Matty Phillips returned 2pts whilst Tom Davies was benched for the first time in five games and his yellow card ensured he picked up a big fat zero. This was worse than most Tinder dates I’ve had.
Up top was a little better as captain for the week Zlatan Ibtahimovic scored. 12Pts will do but it was a little disappointing that he missed out on bonus. He has now scored in 12 of the 24 gameweek’s and it is only the second time he has missed out on bonus when scoring a goal. Alongside him we had another goal from in form Andy Carroll. Unfortunately he was replaced on 55 minutes so an extra point and bonus were missed. Last up was actually the biggest disappointment of the weekend, Christian Benteke. A home tie against Sunderland is the stuff that FPL dreams are made of. Not this week though. Benteke registered 6 shots on goal from inside the box without a single return from them. Is his time up as part of the FPL Updates XI?
Well, not much a cliffhanger here because the simple answer is no. With the impending gameweek 26 blanks for Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal and Southampton we are keeping our powder dry and saving this weeks free transfer to use next week.
At this stage of the season it is all about successfully navigating your way through the blank gameweek’s and the double gameweek’s. If we are going to make a New England Patriots style comeback we are going to need to be near perfect in all decisions made.
So with no transfers made let’s have a look at our gameweek 25 line up.
We bench Eldin Jakupovic AGAIN. If he scores higher than 5/6pts again this week I’ll be close to giving up. Granted he scored 19pts against United and Liverpool but I just cannot see him picking up a clean sheet at the Emirates. Cue him saving a penalty from Alexis Sanchez. I’m sure any of you that know me or happen to follow me will know that I have a canny knack of tempting fate with these sorts of things. So in the interest of helping you readers out, bookies are offering 16/1 on Arsenal to miss a penalty. Oh yeah, it means Ben Foster starts for us. Is back to back clean sheets too much to ask?
We’ve gone with a back four and because I’m painfully deluded I’ve started Nathan Ake. I’m sure he will get some game time soon and if he doesn’t this week we will just get a sub in anyway. We’ve also started Marcos Alonso alongside him in the same game. Chris Brunt against West Ham and Leighton Baines against Middlesbrough make up the four, all playing away from home this week.
Our midfield three simply have to deliver more than the pathetic 6pts they scored last week. To be honest I’m pretty hopeful that Alexis Sanchez will do that on his own against Hull. Under Marco Silva Hull have improved hugely. 7Pts from their last four games has been incredibly impressive given the opposition but I’m expecting an Arsenal win by a couple this week. Matty Phillips makes it a trio of WBA players for us again and Kevin De Bruyne, fresh from being awarded best Belgian player playing abroad this week, faces Bournemouth down on the South Coast.
Up top we have no change, including the captain choice. Zlatan Ibrahimovic keeps the armband for his match against Watford at Old Trafford. A team that have conceded in 13 of their last 14 matches. Zlatan is currently joint top scoring FPL striker on 140pts now and just one goal of the top scoring charts. Let’s hope he fills his boots this week. The only reason Christian Benteke is still in the team because we have a few players with a blank week next week. If City, United and Arsenal were playing in gameweek 26 I can assure you he would be out. As it is we have saved the transfer and he has a difficult fixture away to Stoke. Anything more than 2pts will be pleasing but unexpected. Last up is actually a real concern for us. Andy Carroll, at the time of writing, is a big injury doubt. He’s actually up against our WBA defensive duo so if he misses out it’s not the end of the world. Tom Davies is our first sub to come in if he’s absent.
So there we have it, our gameweek 25 line up. This is a week we need stability. If we can deliver a respectable score whilst saving the transfer for the blank next week then I’ll be happy. Our lack of cover from Spurs, and to a lesser extent Liverpool, hurts far less given that they are playing each other this week. I am also seriously hoping Diego Costa stays quiet as he is very likely our transfer in next week for Zlatan. Could do with his price not increasing.
Good luck to everyone. Well, any of you outside the top 1.5m. Anyone inside can you please start having bad weeks please! Thanks.
Written by FPL Guru (@FPL_Guru_)