Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I (literally) should have seen this coming

As I look out of my living room window I can see the spires of the City of Manchester stadium and yet I did not foresee the fantasy impact of their transfer deadline dealings. I was a little higher on Robinho than some of the critics but I thought there were better options available in his price bracket (van Persie 9.5m, Santa Cruz 8.9m, Agbonlahor 8.2m and Defoe 8.2m). However, Robinho has scored 2 in 2 and notched an assist this week to give him 15 points in 2 games (a PPMS of 0.833 ahead of all but Zaki and Defoe). With van Persie being rested against Bolton I am starting to worry about Wenger tinkering too much with van Persie's playing time. Robinho therefore looks to be an interesting prospect at 9.2m, especially when you consider they play the likes of Newcastle, Stoke, Hull, Bolton and Spurs over the next 8 weeks.

Robinho's play also seems to have inspired others around him and Shaun Wright Phillips look well and truly settled back at Eastlands. At 8m his price has increased 0.5m in a couple of weeks but he still looks to be a steal on current form. Jo at 8m also looks like a player who might benefit from all the extra attacking options around him and may be a nice option if you're looking to differentiate your team (only 2.8% hold him).

Stephen Ireland continues to be great value at 5.9m and is now held by over 20% of the league. Elano is still expensive at 8.6m though consistent playing time along with penalty and free kick duties would still make him decent value. Petrov's value has crashed to 7.2m and he could be a steal when he's back from injury. However, with these talents alongside Michael Johnson (6M), Gelson Fernandes (4.8m) and Vincent Kompany (5.5m) someone is going to miss out and fantasy owners should monitor the situation for indications of Mark Hughes' best eleven.

A good indicator may be the Liverpool home game in two weeks where Hughes will surely field his best eleven (barring injuries). It may be worth waiting until then to commit yourself to the likes of Johnson, Kompany or Ireland but you will be safe taking Robinho and Wright Phillips who are likely to figure in as many games as possible.

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