Fantasy Premier League: Gameweek 25 Review
Written by @NiallHawthorne
This game mocks us all.
It sits there behind its firewall, snuggled up in its server, thumbing its nose at all of us who pour over form and fixtures, slaving away to ‘crack the code’ and ensure maximum points in each and every Gameweek. It cackles maniacally as millions transfer in Mahrez, knowing full well that the Algerian temper-tantrum has chucked all his toys out of his pram and gone for a ginormous sulk. It smirks knowingly as millions of eyes light up when they see that Aguero is at home to West Brom and the ‘Captain’ button is clicked fervently in the hours before the deadline.
Y’see, this game knows all. It knows that 99% of us were backing Aguero or Firmino or Kane, and This Game knows that 99% of us are short-sighted eejits. It knows that of the 15 players to hit double-figures this week, only one would be a striker, and his name is Callum Wilson. Evil I tells ya. Pure, undiluted evil.
Not content with trolling us with a Callum Wilson 12 point haul, this game also threw in a 12 point Junior Stanislas and a 14 point Nathan Ake. Oh, did I mention that they were away at Chelsea? That’s right. Bournemouth, away at Chelsea, smashing them, rampaging through Stamford Bridge slaying Antonio Conte’s boys as their ‘Milkybar Kid’ manager smiles sweetly on the touchline, like butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth. The saccharine assassin.
This game then decides that the joint top-scoring player of GW 25 should be a man called Sam Clucas. As one wag put it on Twitter on Tuesday night; ‘Siri, what’s a Clucas?’ Indeed. 15 points at home to Arsenal for a player so nondescript that Match Attax printed 85% more Sam Clucas cards this season than Eden Hazard cards. Seriously, go find a young person who collects Match Attax and ask them how many Sam Clucas swaps they have. You probably won’t get an answer though as the very mention of his name will have them whimpering in a corner. He’s ginger too y’know.
The other joint top-scoring player in GW 25 is perhaps the biggest troll of all that this game could have inflicted upon us. Yes, Theo James Walcott is back. 15 points and just watch as the lemmings of FPL jump on the Walcott Express in their droves. This game knows that will happen, because it knows most of us have the memory span of a common Donald Trump. I’ve been a ‘Walcott Wally’ too many times in the past to fall for it again. Nope, not this time. Not happening.
What? Only £7.2m? *sweats profusely*
While the usual suspects such as Sterling and De Bruyne were racking up points at The Etihad, I can’t have been the only FPL player with Aguero as Captain that turned the air blue (sky blue, obviously) upon hearing that Fernandinho had opened the scoring. Fer.Nan.Din.Ho. This game…
If you had a Burnley goalkeeper and a Newcastle defender you would have been praying for a goalless snooze-fest at St. James’ Park, and while goals went in at both ends, many prayers were answered. A penalty save from Pope and a Lascelles goal ensured that particular double-act returned 21 points. What this game takes, it sometimes gives back…
This game has made it easy for us to pinpoint where the points are coming from when Liverpool are playing. You get in Salah and/or Firmino, you avoid their defenders, and you reap the rewards. So far, so very, very simple. Yet this game just loves to stir things up and hence you have 14 points for Emre Can at Huddersfield. We shouldn’t have been surprised though. The immaculately coiffed German is playing for a new contract…In Italy.
If you’re one who likes a gamble, likes to roll the dice, likes to mix things up, then this game would have rewarded you handsomely – if you decided that Orestis Karnezis was the gamble for you. What do you mean ‘Who is Orestis Karnezis’? The Watford stopper, in just his second appearance, keeps a clean sheet, gets 3 BP’s and 10 points. Mr. Javi Gracia (no, that’s really his name, it’s not a misprint I promise) is known for ensuring his teams are hard to break down, so you might want to watch that Hornet shaped defensive space…
The final player of merit that this game decided should get some of the spotlight is Mark Noble, who scored his second goal in three games and has now racked up 5 BP’s in that time. Is he about to explode into form? No, he’s not. He’s so harmless he can’t even light his own farts. We all know that Noble gases are non-flammable. They’re also supposed to be odourless, but Mrs. Noble has debunked this scientific theory after he’s had a vindaloo.
So we move onto a very short ‘Villain Of The Week’ section, and let’s all have a long, hard stare at Phil Jones, who racked up a stunning -2 total in GW 25 thanks to a cracking finish into his own net, a yellow card for hacking down Harry Kane, and a special extra -1 point for excessive gurning and sweating. A fine night’s work for a player who has accumulated a staggering 16 BP’s this season. That high-wire act was always likely to come crashing down at some stage, and he managed it on the greatest stage of all, Wembley. Now THAT’s a curse.