Thursday, July 9, 2009

2009/10 Game Launched

The new fantasy season is upon us, and a few thoughts initially spring to mind:

Rule changes
Not too much to note here, aside from two interesting tweaks to the rules:

1. "If you don't use your free transfer then you'll be able to make an additional free transfer the following gameweek. These saved transfers don't accumulate and can only be used the following gameweek". This allows for a build up of two free transfers for one gameweek which make double gameweeks even more valuable.
2. Creation of the 'emergency captain' selection tool. This suggests that if your captain does not play your most valuable/in form player will take the armband from him. This is not a major issue, as there are very few times when a marquee player does not play without us knowing with sufficient time to the make the adjustment.

Position changes
A couple of interesting classifications here that could lead to decent value being found:

Andrey Arshavin (M) - Rightfully moved from a Forward to a Midfield makes Arshavin a bit better value though at 11m he is still pricey. I very much liked the look of him in half a season last year and he is on my radar going into the new season.

Theo Walcott (M) - like Arshavin, the English winger has been correctly moved to midfield which again creates extra value. At 8m though I think he is overvalued until he improve on the consistency of his performances.

Ricardo Gardner (M) - the Jamaican has been some what out of favour in the Gary Megson era and this reclassification to midfield basically removes any value Ricardo may have offered.

Yuri Zhirkov (D) - not a reclassification as the Russian has only just come to England but interesting none the less. The left back can, and often does, operate on the wing and with only the inconsistent (though improving) Malouda ahead of him with a decent left peg, Zhirkov may register some minutes in a more advanced role. At 7.5m the rule makes have clearly recognised this and I would stay away until he has proven to be Ancellotti's first team full back or winger.

Clint Dempsey (M) - fantasy favourite Dempsey retains his midfield classification and again provides decent value due to the advanced role he often undertakes.

Nadir Belhadj (M) - provided great value at times last season, though the move to midfield diminishes this somewhat. Could still provide decent value at 5m but is not worth too much attention right now.

Savio (M) - A bit of a flyer here but the youngster has been tipped for stardom by Zola, and with only Ashton and Cole on the books as recognised strikers, the Ugandan may well get a chance to shine up front for the Hammers. Probably not worth buying out of the gates but definitely one for the shortlist.

I am looking at the opening fixtures now to help get a jump over the crucial early part of the season. It is worth noting that many teams miss at least one gameweek over the first 5, with Villa due to miss two as things stand. Further analysis on this to come soon.

Finally, I have re-started the league (code 51315-1622o) so please rejoin and tell your friends so we can enjoy another great season of fantasy discussion.

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