Saturday, November 22, 2008

Gameweek 14 Diary

My team is a total mess at the moment. I stupidly chanced replacing Berbatov with Defoe who I thought would recover from his cramp - wrong! Anyway, lets see how things play out before I give up just yet:


15:03 Traore, Alex and Defoe all miss out so I'm using my bench (which is weak) to the max this week. Unless Ronaldo goes nuts I'm looking at a 40 point week at best here, especially if Zaki doesn't make it back on Monday.

15:05 The big news at Arsenal is that Almunia will captain the side (keeping it warm for Cesc I bet) and Gallas is out. I used to thing Gallas was asound player but his actions of late have been disgrace. Its a young side for the Gunners with Hoyte, Djorou, Song and Bendtner all featuring. The bench is full of kids including Vela and Ramsey. Good game to watch for potential fantasy bargains.

15:07 Going back to Pompey, Traore is a sell now for me. With Kranjcar and Diarra both missing out he should be in that side but Adams obviously doesn't rate his as high as Redknapp did. Belhadj is the natural replacement you would think.

15:08 Steinsson gets the first goal of the day at the Riverside. The icelandic right back is having a very nice season and is now held by 7% of players, which will surely rise after his second goal of the campaign.

15:10 Two nil to the Wanderers after a strike from Matt Taylor who adds to the assist earned 2 minutes ago. Great day for 0.3% of people who own him (ie his girlfriend and his auntie). Sorry Matty, you're overpric at 5.7m

15:19 Not much going on, so a quick chance to speculate on future transfers. Benjani (6.7m) is in City's lineup again and it looking like a genuine buy prospect. A new emerging strategy would be to own 3 mid range strikers (Saha, Yakubu, Zaki, Benjani etc) and rotate 2 of 3 and splash the cash saved on getting Liverpool and Chelsea defenders.

15:22 Unbeliveably Crouch scores for Pompey to heap my misery on. I was going to get the big man but I decided at the last second to risk Defoe. My new number one rule is to make sure I get 11 x 90 minutes every week and go from there.

15:31 Really slow day today and very little to talk about. Hopefully it'll be a quiet week for everyone and I can get by on a Liverpool clean sheet and a Ronaldo brace. Hull knocking on the door at Fratton Park and Marney has one cleared off the line - gutted. That would have been a nice bonus from my sub.

15:38 Paul Merson describes the Stoke-West Brom game as as the worst he's ever seen and hopefully my 0-0 prediction will come true and Olsson will storm off my bench with a 6 pointer.

15:47 City take the lead and its that man Ireland again. I cannot believe he keeps doing it, i just didn't think he was that good! Luckily that should take points from some managers with Arsenal defenders but Ireland is so widely held that the scorer could have been much better!

15:50 A pretty dire first half from both a neutral football fan and fantasy manager perspective. The key this week so far seems to be clean sheets and I think you will need at least three to have a decent score. Ireland the only scorer who is widely held. Not a peep from big names like Anelka, Lampard and Torres. Hopefully the second half will be much better.

16:05 A quick check of which is finally functioning shows that Steinsson is credited with the assist for Taylor's goal and so has 10 points already and is half way to a clean sheet. Could be a monster game for the Icelandic hard man. I'd make a snide comment about his homeland's economy but I'm actually a big Steinnson fan and wish I had enough faith in Bolton to sign him.

16: 11 Despite my recent discussion that I don't like Ireland, the City chat rooms are buzzing with praise with many saying he's their best player. At 6.4m he is still not overpriced and is well on my radar to replace Valencia, even though his price is sure to rise again this week.

16:13 All Chelsea at the bridge and Newcastle surely can't keep this up for 40 minutes. Chelsea aren't peppering the goal but the ball hasn't been in their half in the second half.

16:14 Michael Turner nets for Hull and gets his third of the season. That makes me feel better over the benching of Traore! Marney crossed but it was flicked on so I doubt he'll get the assist. Tony Adams is my new nemesis after his treatment of Traore so I'm all over Hull for this one.

16:16 Robinho (my other consideration to replace Berbatov) makes it 2-0 at blue camp and Arsenal are in dissaray. By all accounts the goal was a peach and worth watching later.

16:21 Bendtner misses another chance and is showing he really isn't the answer for a title challenging side (consider that United, Chelsea and Liverpool have subs like Tevez, Anelka and Babel when everyone is fit). This teams needs about 4 new players (although the same could be said about Pure Juice!).

16:23 Pompey back in front through Glen Johnson who scored from 30 yards.

16:25 Robinho denied a second as he is given offside after following up an Ireland shot that was bobbled by Captain Almunia (that phrase just does not sound right does it?)

16:27 Chelsea and Liverpool still being held at home and its a big 25 minutes for the top two, as both look to land a body blow to their title rivals. Chelsea seem to be more likely to score though Liverpool have been exceptional in the last 15 minutes this season.

16:30 Alonso on for Mascherano. Wow calm down Rafa, don't go too gung ho! What does Ryan Babel have to do to get a chance with his team. Yes, he's incredibly inconsistent when he's on he's all but instoppable.

16:31 Got to think that Scolari will earn his money now. I fancy Kalou or Ballack to come on and nab the winner. Total shots: Chelsea 11, Newcastle 2. Can they make it count though?

16:35 Adams compounds my Traore related misery by bringing him on, denying my ability to sub him. Meanwhile, Pogatetz scored for Boro and denies Steinsson a monster day. Still a great outing mind.

16:36 Its all over at the Riverside as Bolton's record signing Elmander gets his second the season.

16:42 Stoke take the lead over West Brom and there goes Olsson's clean sheet. What a miserable performance from my team so far. I dread looking at the league table as I'm all but certain my once 100 point lead at the top has been evaporated in 3 weeks. If Fulham score in the last 10 I;m down to single digits!

16:45 Robinho limps off at Middle Eastlands to put a worrying footnote to an otherwise great day for Mark Hughes. More on that injury when info comes through.

16:47 Hull have equalised, have that Adams! Pamarot own goal under pressure from the legend that is Deano Windass, his first in the prem since 2002.

16:50 Penalty for City, and its Sturridge who sticks it away. 3-0, would you believe it. City now have 19 goals in 7 home games, incredible. What might happen when they can start spending money in January?

16:55 No late drama today for Liverpool and they have to settle for a home draw with poor travellers Fulham. Nothing lost on fellow leaders Chelsea as they are held by JFK's Newcastle. United with a chance to claw 2 points back on their rivals when they entertain Villa in half an hour. Hopefully that one will be 3-3 with Ronaldo and Young notching 3 a piece.


Silent Jay said...

"Exactly", on the Traore comments. I was almost sure he'd start. But Adams not only seems to rate him less than Harry, he doesn't seem to rate him at all. I'd just about put money on him moving to Spurs in January.

Not much else happening so far. Other than my GK conceding 2... at home... against Bolton. (And Schwarzer keeping a CS at Anfield so far. I wish I could have only one goalie on my team; would save me picking the wrong one every week.)

Silent Jay said...

And as I type, Steven bloody Ireland scores... again. (I don't like him for some reason. He's to me what Traore is to Adams.) What the heck do I have Robinho for??

Chris Glover said...

I feel EXACTLY the same. I just don't like Ireland but I have no idea why. Nothing against City, in fact I quite like watching them. I like Ireland in general, but not the midfielder! I almost brought Robinho in this week for Berbatov but having managed to watch some of the game online he looks v quiet.

Silent Jay said...

Lol. Good to know I'm not the only one. I think it might just be because he looks like a total tool. That, uh, "hairdo" really doesn't do anything for him. And he grins a little too much and too big. Or something.

I know the perfect way to shut him down, of course - get him in my team! But... nah. Although... depending on transfers (and potential value increase) I might get him short term for Arteta, who I'm losing faith in.

Silent Jay said...

Meant his current hairdo, not the one in your photo, of course.

Silent Jay said...

Ah, in my efforts to find a working live-stream, Robinho has gotten one himself. Alrighty.

And Turner gets one for Hull to ruin the clean sheet for Pompey. (Needless to say I just replaced Turner with Belhadj for this week. Excellent stuff, as always.)

Ibracadabra said...

Every week, I wonder if my team from the previous week would score higher than my team from the current week and the answer is almost always yes...

Oh well, for some reason I kept Ireland and got clean sheets from Cech/Agger/Arbeloa so I'm on 46 points with Zaki and Bent to go...

Still clean sheets on the bench (Luke Young and Schwarzer) while starting Traore (1 point) are nice gut shots as well...

Silent Jay said...

Well, it was an agonizing ordeal, but I got Ireland for Arteta last night. His value is up 0.1 already, so if nothing else, I should at least get a little profit out of him.

As for this week - if Bent, Zaki and Arteta can manage 5 or 6 goals between them, I might just end up with a respectable score...

Chris Glover said...

Ibracabara - 46 with a couple of guys to play (nothing from Bent though) is a good effort this week seeing as the big four all failed to score. I'm bitter Alex was said to be in lineup on friday then missed out (I could have switched him for Ivanovic if I knew).
I'm reliant on my out of form strikeforce of Cole and Zaki to rescue my week. Yeh right!