Written by @CraigHazell – (that’s important!)
#FPL GAMEWEEK 38
DEFENDER: ROB HOLDING, ARSENAL
The last Bolton defender I had in my fantasy team was Ivan Campo back in the day. Rob Holding carries that torch now, playing for Arsenal of course since his unspectacular transfer. He’s 4.0m and scored 22 points in his last 4 games, looking like a certain starter in Arsenal’s back line. I don’t think Arsenal will clinch that 4th spot but I do think they will beat Everton with a clean sheet so that’s all we care about right? In fact, even Arsenal fans don’t want them to win. Weird.
MIDFIELDER: JOSH KING, BOURNEMOUTH
King Josh, Josh King. Because he deserves it. He isn’t in a side vying for European football but it is an absolute travesty that only 19% of you deem him fit enough to be in your squad. Much to Bournemouth’s dismay, this could be his last game for the club and he won’t even know it yet.
Surely, big names will come calling for a guy who has scored an incredible 16 league goals. SIXTEEN. For Bournemouth. For a guy who is classed as a midfielder. In among all the DGW furore, King quietly but confidently tore up the Premier League, averaging an astonishing 9.85 points per game since gameweek 24, not to mention being the 7th best scoring midfielder in the game for only 6.2m. That puts him above Ozil, Coutinho, Sterling, Firmino, Walcott, Barkley, Silva, the list goes on. He’s this season’s Dele Alli and 81% of you didn’t take him! Shame on you.
FORWARD: JESUS, MANCHESTER CITY
Another team needing a result to confirm their European adventure next year is Man City and even with Aguero back playing, it’s hard not to love Jesus in a way that makes you look forward to Sunday rather than dread it. 8 shots on target, 6 goals is his incredible Premier League tally and it’s very exciting to see what he and Sane can do next year if they stay injury free. It is telling that Pep threw him back in for 4 consecutive starts and shows that his lack of experience means very little as he continues to eat up Premier League defences like he was having a kick about at home. Enjoy him while he is under 10m for the last time in his fantasy career.
CAPTAIN: COUTINHO, LIVERPOOL
In the race for Champions League football, Liverpool really have been dealt a kind fixture with Middlesborough at home, who say farewell to the Premier League for what feels like the 17th time in my lifetime. Coutinho is quite simply, too good for Boro and indeed Liverpool if rumours about Barcelona are to be believed. Even if Sturridge starts Coutinho probably remains the most likely goal scorer on the pitch and with Liverpool’s ability to make a drama out of a seemingly easy result, it could easily be one of those 4-3s with Coutinho dragging Klopp’s side kicking and screaming just like Stevie Gerrard used to do.
OUTSIDER: SAM VOKES, BURNLEY
The refreshing side of no DGW is being able to go back to thinking smartly about choices other people might not have in mind, rather than tossing a coin between Sanchez or Kane. While Burnley buck the trend of picking players from teams who are playing for something, they are up against West Ham who gave up a while ago. This week they released a club video of their players watching a recap of their season ‘gogglebox’ style….before the season has even ended! And people accuse them of complacency.
Burnley have had a fantastic year and seem to be one of the few teams really enjoying their football right now. None more so than Sam Vokes who has 3 goals in two games and will fancy an afternoon in Lancashire against a small travelling support and an apathetic squad. As an extra calculated gamble, Daniel Sturridge could play his last game for Liverpool in a tie of utmost importance. I wouldn’t bet against him IF he starts.