GW10 FPL REVIEW FROM @FANTASYGAFFER
Every selection isn’t a winner, but this is three weeks on the bounce that the top touted player on YIRMA has scored fantasy points for fun. Last weekend, Wilfried Bony did the business. This weekend it was Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez. The Chilean had another fine outing, scoring a brace and earning three bonus points to secure a second consecutive 16pt outing. Fantasy premier league managers must begin to consider him in the same breathe with the rest of the class at the position as his GW10 performance left him atop the heap in the Official League with 70pts through 10 weeks.
It’s all well and good to take it to credit for another in a string of quality picks, but we’re not raising the issue of Alexis’ performance merely for your unadulterated adulation, his 70 points leaves him 14 points ahead of Diego Costa, 16 points clear of Dusan Tadic and 9 pts clear of Cesc Fabregas. Think about that for a moment, there is a player who is averaging nearly a point better per game than Cesc. It’s nearly unfathomable as the Spanish meastro pulls the strings at Stamford Bridge. He did it again this weekend, assisting his ninth goal of the season – bringing his total of goal contributions to 10 in 10 with his loan goal scored GW8 against Palace. This also marked the seventh game in which he recorded an assist and eight in which he’s recorded a goal or assist. This is important because Cesc is – by a wide margin – the most consistent performer in the FPL. To put it another way, he has recorded 6pts+ in seven of 10, and twice been in double-digits. Alexis has four matches where he’s recorded 2 or fewer points including 0 points when he missed GW5 and 1pt efforts in GW2 and GW6. For the fantasy EPL draft perspective, please read: Chelsea March as Oscar Scores.
Consistency is an important consideration when picking a starting XI. While every side needs one or two Raheem Sterlings, those pixie-dust enchantresses with 13pt potential, must be off-set with players like Graziano Pelle. It is a bit unfair to lump Pelle in with the working class, as he’s had both a 13pt (GW4) and 15pt (GW8) outing this term. But his consistency has seen him record very few 2pts days of late. After punching the clock on two workman-like shifts in the opening two weeks of the season, the Saints’ frontman has gone for 2pts just twice in eight games, recording a goal or assist in six of those fixtures and collecting nine bonus points in that span. That is the same number of bonus points as Sergio Aguero in the same span, and trails on Diafra Sahko’s 11pts for best tally across the past eight weeks.
The phenomenal record of Sahko came to an abrupt stop this week as a shoulder injury kept him out Hammers’ 2-2 draw with Stoke and ended his run of bonus points in five straight. The Senegalese forward has been a revelation in recent weeks, and now highlights a collection of players with loads of potential seemingly limited only by the fickle mortality of their bodies. Dahko, Papiss Cisse, David Silva, Mesut Ozil, Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey and Daniel Sturridge could easily find themselves in an starting XI following the winter transfer window. Each has shown the ability to be a quality asset on the pitch (most importantly that 2-D pitch we play upon), and each has struggled to stay on it this term. There is hope, as the fine Ben Dinnery has indicated he expects Sahko back for GW11, and that Sturridge may return for today’s Champions League encounter with Real Madrid. Ramsey joined Theo Walcott on Arsenal’s bench for their romp over Burnley, with the former seeing 28′ and the later running out for his first 11′ of the season. While Ramsey has shown the best form this season, Theo Walcott is one season removed from a 14 goal, 13 assist, 194 point massive in 2012/13. Still just 25-years-old, it’s perhaps too late to say the boys a bit special, but certainly fantasy managers can dream on his potential return to the form he displayed at 23.
Injured to start the season, Walcott’s £9.0m price hasn’t moved and he is 0.4% selected. That prices him above teammates Ramsey (£8.8) and Ozil (£8.9), but also leaves him fairly priced against the top end of midfield talent. And it is our contention that that is where he should be judged. Wenger’s side currently boasts Alexis, Ramsey, Walcott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Welbeck, Arteta, Cazorla, Wilshire and Podolski (with Ozil and Giroud injured). But there can be little doubt that a healthy Walcott deserved his name in the squad sheet over all but, perhaps, Alexis. And Wenger has shown his willingness to use the England international as a #9, which is good news for those looking to invest in Walcott and gray clouds for those 18.1% (must be watching a different player than I am) who remain invested in Welbeck. The truth is Welbeck’s not been awful with two goals and two assists across 649′. But he has gone for 1pt four times and 2pts twice, collecting just four bonus points along the way. Given the form of Alexis, the positional preference of Wishire, Ramsey and Santi, it is easy to envision Arsene Wenger tabbing Walcott to lead the line. If that happens, his £9.0 cost of acquisition will not seem very high, with his midfield designation allowing FPL managers to reap the larger goal return and not having to sacrifice another player from their fantasy XI.
I’ve covered several other matches including Spurs victory at Aston Villa (Lamela and Kane deliver), The Reds’ loss on Tyneside (Liverpool drops three points) and Blue reign over Manchester (Smalling sent off) on my own site as well. Until next week – watch this space: 5 FPL Players You Must Pick for the best tips on the game inside the game.
To read Fantasy Premier League draft stats and analysis, please visit the Togga Blog where you can find the sister post to the one you’ve just read. You can follow the author @FantasyGaffer on Twitter.
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