In soccer, nothing is really limited aside from the total time of the game. Shots can vary in a game from 1 to 40 and team possession can range from 35% to 65%. Therefore the presence of other good players can help fantasy production for both individuals. 2 + 2 really can equal 5.
Readers will know my love for Cesc Fabregas and based on stats my decision to bring him in was foolish. However, what isn't factored into the stats to date is the return of Robin van Persie who when fit is one of the ten best players in the league. I looked at the stats from last season to see how the two performed with and without the other player in the league. I then extrapolated the data to give a 38 game season's worth of data based on the trends observed
- Without Van Persie: 18 goals, 8 assists
- With Van Persie: 23 goals, 34 assists
- Without Fabregas: 12 goals, 0 assists
- With Fabregas: 27 goals, 27 assists
I am not expecting this kind of production when the two are fit (which is probably a couple of weeks away anyway). However, this is the kind of event you need to factor into your decisions and purely historical analysis cannot account for this, without doing separate research as laid out above. I therefore feel that Fabregas is still worthy of consideration despite his disappointing form, even if I must concede that he is not a top level option right now. Indeed, my main rationale for holding him is a lack of interest in any of the other high priced midfielders.
I'm sure this might be a bit controversial given manager's dissapointment with Fabregas this year so please post some comments below or @plfantasy and let the fun begin.