Sunday, August 28, 2011

Lineup Lessons - Gameweek 3

Szczesny, Jenkinson, Djourou, Koscielny, Traore, Ramsey, Coquelin, Rosicky, Walcott, van Persie, Arshavin.
Subs: Fabianski, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Chamakh, Lansbury, Miquel, Ozyakup, Sunu.

No need to pile on Arsenal's misery here. For the first time that I remember, I don't own a single Arsenal player, and no one even registers on the shortlist. Van Persie took his goal well to remind us of his talent but the surrounding cast compared to Rooney and Aguero is just not there. We can reassess this team when Gervinho and Song return from suspension and (hopefully) new signings arrive.

Aston Villa
Given, Herd, Dunne, Collins, Warnock, N'Zogbia, Petrov, Delph, Agbonlahor, Heskey, Bent.
Subs: Guzan, Ireland, Albrighton, Delfouneso, Makoun, Clark, Bannan.

Luke Young has surprisingly moved to QPR leaving a hole to be filled at right back. If it is to be Herd (who played very well against Wolves) then this case is closed as he classified as a midfielder, but the situation needs to be monitored as if a new signing arrives or Beye (4.5m) gets significant minutes, it could possibly represent cheap access to a side with two clean sheets to their name already.

Offensively this looks like a settled lineup and McLeigh appears to be happy to stick with the 3-man front line. Despite the attacking look on paper, the goals haven't exactly been pouring in with two blanks accompanying the decent display against Blackburn. The concern is what this means for N'Zogbia who is forced to play much deeper and much narrower than he did at Wigan and chances from open play are going to therefore be limited. You'd be surprised if he didn't grab a couple of goals at some point this year but there is little justification for paying 1.0m more than the likes of Brunt or Jarvis, making him hard to justify owning.

Robinson, Salgado, Samba, Givet, Olsson, Emerton, Nzonzi, Dunn, Pedersen, Hoilett, Roberts.
Subs: Bunn, Formica, Petrovic, Rochina, Goodwillie, Hanley, Lowe.

Not too much to say here other than that David Dunn will likely resume penalty duties on his return. Blackburn have very little to offer from a fantasy perspective.

Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Cahill, Knight, Robinson, Eagles, Reo-Coker, Muamba, Petrov, K Davies, Klasnic.
Subs: Bogdan, Sanli, M Davies, Blake, Pratley, Wheater, Riley.

It looks like Cahill will be staying where he is, so if anyone is holding him on the expectation of him playing for a stronger team in the future, I'd give that up now. Like last year this Bolton side cannot be relied upon away from home or against the top sides, thus limiting your starting opportunities to around half of their games played. This is fine as a rotation option but Cahill (at his inflated price) needs to be played every week, hence why I am not on board this season, despite his GW1 heroics.

Eagles and Muamba also drew plenty of attention after GW1 and while I was quick to dismiss Muamba (who actually took a knock here) I thought Eagles might be able to provide some value this year. It's harsh to judge a players playing against a good Liverpool side at Anfield but Eagles looked lost for long stretches of the game and the few set pieces he took charge of were not dispatched with particular quality. The arrival of Tuncay and the way Mark Davies has played off the bench (albeit in a central role) suggests that there is room for Coyle to reshuffle and there is no guarantee that either of these plays will be in the side for a sustained period of time. The price tags still look appealing but start to consider replacements now or be left flat footed in the future.

Hilario, Bosingwa, Ivanovic, Terry, Cole, Ramires, Mikel, Lampard, Drogba, Torres, Malouda.
Subs: Turnbull, Mata, Lukaku, Ferreira, McEachran, Alex, Anelka.

The Bosingwa bandwagon is sure to pick up speed this week after his excellent goal, but there is still remains a nagging concern that Ivanovic might steal minutes at right back when Luiz is fit. At 5.5m you could probably afford to have him sit every 4 weeks or so but if that time share is more like 50:50 then both will be tough to own this year.

Drogba (who suffered a mild concussion), Torres and Lampard all looked quiet once again and their lofty price tags make them poor choices at the moment. Drogba's injury might help Torres in the long term as he could get a few games as the lone frontman in a 4-5-1, but still, he looked timid and lacked confidence yesterday and I wouldn't go anywhere near him over the likes of Rooney and Aguero at the moment.

Mata looked sharp when coming on and took his goal a calmness that was lacking from many of his teammates. You would think that when the dust settles he emerges with a starting place in this side and at 9.5m he looks like he could represent the best value in Chelsea's front-six. Unless you're forced into it, it might be a week or two too early to make that move and GW6 (Swa H) looks like a good target date to make such a move.

Howard, Neville, Jagielka, Distin, Baines, Osman, Heitinga, Arteta, Barkley, Fellaini, Anichebe.
Subs: Mucha, Hibbert, Bilyaletdinov, Beckford, Cahill, Vellios, Baxter.

Any previous reader knows I'm not a big proponent of the high priced defender, and while I wouldn't take credit for knowing that Baines will lose penalty duties, it is another reason why it's so dangerous to pay a price which has already accounted for a high offensive points total. Baines may well take the next penalty but everyone he misses (or doesn't take) and with every game that goes by, the chance of him repaying that massive price tag diminishes, yet you feel compelled to hold him on the basis that he must be 'due' for a change soon. If you like him, you'll probably keep him but this should serve as another warning sign.

Schwarzer, Briggs, Hughes, Hangeland, Baird, Dempsey, Murphy, Sidwell, Duff, Dembele, Kasami.
Subs: Etheridge, Kelly, Johnson, Senderos, Gecov, Etuhu, Frei.

The points of interest here are more who didn't play than who did. Johnson and Senderos were developing into good looking squad players but were both benched here. Whether not this was a simple case of a one week rest (Fulham's season has been going on since early July remember) or a more concerted effort to rotate the squad remains to be seen. In both cases I think the low price tags mean they remain ownable in the short term but obviously if the rotation persists then new options needs to be found.

Reina, Kelly, Carragher, Agger, Jose Enrique, Adam, Lucas, Kuyt, Henderson, Downing, Suarez.
Subs: Doni, Carroll, Maxi, Spearing, Shelvey, Skrtel, Robinson.

Adam continues to play a fairly deep role but his set pieces and Liverpool's deliberate build up play allow him to stay involved and he has far exceeded my early season expectations. I'm still a bit cautious regarding owning Adam given the uncertainty of how the team fits together when Gerrard returns but on form to date one would suggest that it would be Henderson on the right or Kuyt/Caroll up top who will miss out. With so many premium options flattering to deceive, Adam deserves our attention once again.

Carroll's price tag (0.5m more than Suarez) made him unattractive initially but his early form and this benching make him even less desirable. Though Suarez is owned by large numbers of other managers, he is simply a better option for the short-medium term.

Man City
Hart, Zabaleta, Kompany, Lescott, Clichy, Toure Yaya, Barry, Silva, Nasri, Aguero, Dzeko.
Subs: Pantilimon, Richards, Milner, Johnson, Savic, Tevez, Balotelli.

We knew Zabaleta was going to get a game at some point and as it turned out this was probably a decent game for it to happen. I think the defensive rankings for City remain as you were with Kompany being the safest to play every week and Richards carrying the higher upside but more rotation risk (I think this rotation risk remains lower than Clichy though). The defense looks slacker than last year with Mancini loosening the reigns a little bit so far. While the unit remains well priced at 6.0m I am less high on them than I was to open the season and it seems likely you will better served with two attacking rather than two defensive options from this side.

As expected Yaya Toure looked much less offensively dangerous with the arrival of Nasri and his fantasy returns have taken a bit hit. Nasri's inclusion also took some of the attention away from Silva, though while that led to reduced points this week, over the course of season I would imagine there are plenty of points to go round for both, who look fairly locked in to get significant minutes each.

Up front, Aguero looks like as good of an option as anyone not named Rooney and that pair look to have distanced themselves from everyone else in the early running. Dzeko is one of the hardest players to forecast right now as the shadow of Tevez looms large but remained unused again today. If he's playing he is clearly outstanding value at 8.5m and with Balotelli apparently out of the picture completely, at worst Dzeko looks good for a couple more weeks of good returns. If you're happy with the rest of your squad his ceiling may be worth chasing, even if you end up having to cut him again in a few weeks.

Man Utd
De Gea, Smalling, Jones, Evans, Evra, Nani, Cleverley, Anderson, Young, Rooney, Welbeck.
Subs: Lindegaard, Ferdinand, Berbatov, Giggs, Park, Hernandez, Fabio Da Silva.

Though Nani had his best fantasy game of the season, he was once again overshadowed by a phenomenal performance from Ashley Young. We've discussed this several times before but it bears reiterating that Young is the better option in this side for now, and we can review this when Valencia returns to full fitness and some rotation will inevitably happen.

We've also said before that Rooney is the best option around at the moment and this game only underlined that fact. Penalty duty, set pieces and all around play in a great side all point to an elite option and his current lack of competition makes him almost impossible to drop.

Rio Ferdinand was almost fit enough to start this one and should return next week. That should push Evans (who didn't look too convincing) out of the side and end his run as a great budget option.

Krul, Simpson, S Taylor, Coloccini, R Taylor, Lovenkrands, Cabaye, Tiote, Gutierrez, Obertan, Best.
Subs: Soderberg, Smith, Ba, Marveaux, Sa Ameobi, Vuckic, Ferguson.

Not too much to add here. The defence remains a decent option though will always be unreliable as they proved this week with a decent fixture. The front options are fairly uninspiring.

Ruddy, Barnett, De Laet, Whitbread, Naughton, Hoolahan, B Johnson, Crofts, Tierney, Holt, C Martin.
Subs: Rudd, R Martin, Morison, Jackson, Pilkington, Fox, Bennett.

From what I have seen, no one is emerging from this team as a legitimate option right now and while Holt (who received some pre-season attention) took his goal well, I haven't seen enough to suggest he is anything more than a wild punt at the moment.

Kenny, Perone, Gabbidon, Hall, Connolly, Taarabt, Faurlin, Derry, Buzsaky, Smith, Agyemang.
Subs: Murphy, Bothroyd, Helguson, Ephraim, Hewitt, Andrade, Harriman.

I haven't seen their game this week, so I'll hopefully have more to add after reviewing the chalkboards/stats but until then, there are few options here to excite us so far.

Begovic, Huth, Shawcross, Woodgate, Wilson, Pennant, Whelan, Whitehead, Etherington, Walters, Jones.
Subs: Sorensen, Collins, Soares, Pugh, Upson, Wilkinson, Shotton.

The team looks settled now and the defence is once again emerging as a legitimate budget option. Woodgate (4.5m), while fit, is an excellent cheap link and should be strongly considered for anyone needing to move Evans this week.

Mignolet, Bardsley, Brown, O'Shea, Ferdinand, Cattermole, Larsson, Gardner, Colback, Gyan, Sessegnon.
Subs: Westwood, Wickham, Richardson, Vaughan, Ji, Bramble, Elmohamady.

Another lineup that looks fairly settled though isn't providing too much excitement. I thought Gyan caught the eye as their most promising attacking option and if there's no way you can stretch to the 9.5m range, he deserves some consideration. The fixtures look tough though so temper your expectations if you do make that move.

Vorm, Williams, Taylor, Caulker, Rangel, Britton, Sinclair, Dyer, Routledge, Graham, Agustien.
Subs: Moreira, Tate, Dobbie, Lita, Moore, Allen, Gower.

Swansea had a very good defence last year and the addition of Vorm has allowed that to transfer to the Premier League. The best part about Vorm (and Al Habsi below) is that while clean sheets won't always be there, his save totals should prevent too many 2 point performances and at 4.0m he looks like the perfect half to a rotation combo.

Friedel, Corluka, Dawson, Kaboul, Assou-Ekotto, Lennon, Modric, Kranjcar, Bale, Van der Vaart, Crouch.
Subs: Cudicini, Huddlestone, Pavlyuchenko, Defoe, Bassong, Walker, Livermore.

Defoe hasn't started the season too well and this game illustrates that he isn't even certain to start anymore. He doesn't even register on my shortlist right now. Van der Vaart and Bale didn't have the best of times but considering the opposition it's too early to right this talented pair off yet. Spurs' fixtures look better from here on and given the lack of attention they're receiving, there could be some differential options here.

West Brom
Foster, Reid, Tamas, Olsson, Shorey, Brunt, Scharner, Mulumbu, Morrison, Tchoyi, Long.
Subs: Fulop, Thomas, Dorrans, Dawson, Jones, Cox, Fortune.

I didn't see West Brom's game this week so I've not too much to add here. The players with fantasy potential (Brunt and Long) continue to play while Odemwingie is conspicuous in his absence. The teams deserves monitoring but clearly isn't firing on all cylinders just yet.

Al Habsi, Boyce, Caldwell, Lopez, Figueroa, Gomez, Diame, Watson, Moses, Rodallega, Di Santo.
Subs: Kirkland, McCarthy, Thomas, McArthur, Sammon, Jones, Stam.

Like Vorm, Al Habsi's true value lies in the fact that he can deliver clean sheets and also good save totals. A very good options in a rotation strategy.

Hennessey, Stearman, Berra, Johnson, Ward, Jarvis, Henry, O'Hara, Hunt, Fletcher, Doyle.
Subs: De Vries, Elokobi, Kightly, Vokes, Hammill, Milijas, Foley.

Like West Brom, I like the talent in this team but you have to accept that it won't click every week. The best fantasy options look to be fairly engrained in the side and it is especially encouraging to see McCarthy stick with the two men up top, even when away from home. The game didn't give us any clues as to which of these options will be the best for the remainder of the year, though it did suggest they will at least all get their chance to prove their worth.


Moe Vawda said...

The fpl is just pathetic this season.Takes forever to update the scores while last season was around 2 hours.sick of it

EddieO said...

Moe, I think this will improve. There's certainly a lot they can do to make it more efficient. The site is also very active in small windows. At the end of each session of matches 100s thousands of people all hit refresh for their team at the same time. Then the update their leagues and look at every other player above and around them for all their leagues. The new BP system also has to filter through as its no longer done by red nosed piss head reporters putting a pin the team list. :) Certainly a bit of a pain!

PeteB said...

Not sure whether to keep Luke Young or not. I think I'll wait and see. Any thoughts?. Surprised that Senderos didn't play as well.

CDI said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
CDI said...

The Senderos thing worries me as well as I only just brought him into my team based on the info I recieved on this site. The bonus system this season makes things way more interesting as its not just an auto 3 to the highest goal scorer ( young over rooney this week for example).

By week 7 the site should be running smoothly. They tweeked alot of things they prob shouldn't have and are now paying th price. Even after the update this morning bonus points weren't added to league totals which is just shockingly bad.

I was gonna give arsenal a break but I just can't. Based on what I have seen so far this season they have bout a 0.85% chance at a top 4 finish. Not sure whats going on behind the scenes there but if by wednesday serious money hasn't been spent I expect RVP and most of the team to put in transfer requests in january.

Steven said...

I got killed this week. Without Young and not captaining Rooney.. bad choices. Also, even with 4 goals, it still feels like way too much of a risk to run with Dzecko. Although, perhaps he could settle in as the #2 forward.. I just don't see that happening with Tevez waiting in the wings. There is more talent there with him and Aguero up front.

Shame on me for captaining Suarez over Rooney though, UGH.

Oh did I mention a tree fell down outside my house and I haven't had power for a day + now? :) AHH.

Steven said...

Courtesy Hurricane Irene.. Rhode Island..

Davefevs said...

Hurrah. the first week I've managed to pick the correct keeper...GW1 Al-Habsi not Given, GW2 Given not Krul, but GW3 Given. My Young and Nani combo paid off, or at least it would've had Rooney not bagged a hat-trick! Need to revisit Nani after the International break. The way Adam and Henderson have settled in at LFC together with my favoured Kuyt / Suarez may be the tweak needed. Dzeko is an interesting one, I had in GW1 as my captain, but the quality of Aguero and Tevez still an option, I wonder how much they'll rotate the 3. At £8.5m he's fantastic value if playing. Finally, anyone picking penalty takers (Rooney aside) much be pondering their choices!

....and a final finally (!), I like Young's assists for Rooney's FKs.

EddieO said...

CDI, your statement, "The Senderos thing worries me as well as I only just brought him into my team based on the info I recieved on this site", is completely out of order! You might get some insights from this site, and others like it, but its completely up to you to take responsibility for your own selections!

Steven, I agree there are risks with Dzeko but his great value and offers something different to Aguero and Tevez. I think the latter two are likely to be rotated ahead of Dzeko who should get plenty of game time.

I also capt Suarez over Rooney but I'm cool about it, its a long season and there ups and downs. Suarez could have scored twice and had two gilt edged pens denied him.

I have Dzeko in this week, took a risk on injury to get the inevitable price rise. I'll also try to shape find a way to get A Young in my side and agree with Chris that Nasri will reduce the effectiveness of the king of assisting the assist'or - Silva.

Steven said...

@Eddie0 Good call, patience is important. But I also know that these 4 goal individual performances and 8 goal team performances don't come by very often and it's nice to be able to cash in on them. Hopefully there are a few more that I can cash in on. I also might look at swapping out Silva for Young (or Nasri). Hard since Silva was so vital for the first 2 games, but a player like Nasri can change the dynamic significantly. Going to give that one some time.

hey_its_chris said...

I already have 3 Man U players on my team so I'm considering dropping Nani to pick up Rooney and sticking with United's cheap defenders.

I'm thinking about picking up Dempsey because of the Blackburn matchup. I know he's a bit overpriced but money doesn't really matter, and if it doesn't work out I'll just transfer him next week. I just want to get on the Rooney bandwagon.

Any thoughts on this / alternatives to Dempsey worth a look?

GK: Given/Begovic
D: Smalling/Richards/Bosingwa/Phil Jones/Gibbs

Colin said...

REgarding Dzeko. He is more of an out and out goal scorer than Tevez or Aguero. I'm not so convinced that if Tevez stays at City that he shuold take minutes from Dzeko. That's not to say he won't, but I think to keep the balance of their attack he would be more likely to rotate with Aguero, which might make it difficult to own him. Situation at City makes it very difficult to know how to play it. I would love it if Tevez got a last minute move to Inter this week...

Davefevs said...

Colin - I imagine there's a lot of people hoping that Tevez goes, thus assuring the fantastically priced Dzeko lots of minutes.

Alex to Arsenal, that might be a good £6m if it happens.

Transfer windows - what fun...lucky we've got best part of a fortnight to sort out our teams.

CDI said...

EddieO, that quote wasn't ment as a slight on the info provided here at all. It was ment as a complement but I guess I phrased it wrong. I'm aware I pulled the trigger a little early but I had to move fast as I knew price rises were coming. I'll be more careful in the future to try and avoid confusion.

Steven said...

CDI - He'll be in next gameweek I bet.

Gummi said...

I agree with Colin. I think it likely that Tevez could rotate with Silva/Nasri/Aguaro in a 4-2-3-1 system with Dzeko upfront.