With two games already off ahead of the Boxing Day fixtures, the following tips are based on the games going ahead as of now. (Edit – it’s less now) Think of these tips like the list you used to send to Santa Claus. It contains the list of what you wanted when you wrote it, […]
As we hurtle headlong through the most chaotic, stressful and controversial FPL Christmas period in history, I would like us all to take a step back and realise what’s really important at this time of year.
Family. Giving. Sprouts. Peace. Goodwill. Resolutions.
Yeah, sod all of them.
What’s really important is that you listen to the absolute BANGER of a Christmas song we released this year. I’m not saying we threatened the Christmas charts, but that Sausage Roll lad had to team up with Elton and Ed to keep us down.
Next year, my friends. Next year.
GW20 Defender: Kostas Tsimikas, Liverpool
Imagine you had the chance to get Andy Robertson into your FPL defence for just £3.7m, and imagine not taking it.
Now imagine not picking Tsimikas for the next few weeks while Robertson is suspended.
This is a gift that not even Santa Claus could deliver, so take it.
GW20 Midfielder: Raheem Sterling, Manchester City
Seemingly on his way out of Pep Guardiola’s plans earlier in the season, Sterling has now started seven of the last eight City league games, racking up six goals and an assist in that time and a whopping 56 points from those seven starts. Now if you carry the one and don’t forget to take for inflation, that’s an average of 8 points per start, which can’t be ignored.
Of course he could be benched at the drop of a hat, but that’s the City conundrum so many have to deal with. Brentford are next up for City and when you compare the form of both teams, this has a spanking written all over it. If Sterling does get the nod to start, he could haul once more.
Oh, and he’s owned by less than 3% of players, amazingly.
GW20 Forward: Emmanuel Denis, Watford
Watford host West Ham at Vicarage Road as they prepare to play their first game since December 10th. To say they’re rested would be an understatement.
West Ham meanwhile have been busily toiling over Christmas and are in a poor run of form. Where once they were MASSIVE, now they’re quite a bit smaller, with just one win their last seven league games. They’ve also started conceding far too many goals, with 14 conceded in their last nine.
Denis is in a rich run of form with four goals and three assists in his last five starts. When you combine all of these facts, you put Denis up front in your team this week.
GW20 Captain: Mo Salah, Liverpool
Liverpool have all their big names back and ready to go.
Leicester have conceded a whopping 33 goals in 19 games this season, and just shipped six goals at The Etihad.
This could be an absolute Salah masterclass, and let’s face it, we all need to Captain the crap out of him before he departs for the AFCON in January.
GW20 Outsider: Lucas Moura, Spurs
The fifth most in-form player in the game right now, andowned by 2% of players.
His team are on the up under a new manager, he keeps getting picked by said new manager, and he’s facing Southampton away next. Spurs have done damage there before…
On the small off-chance that any football actually happens this weekend, I’m going to give you some tips. This hasn’t taken long, there are only five matches still due to take place, and I know many won’t have a full XI to rely on, but sure let’s give it a lash.
Oh, and in true Sesame Street style, this week’s column is brough to you by the word ‘If’.
GW18 Defender: Trent Alexander-Arnold, Liverpool
I could easily say it’s only because of THAT goal.
But that would be to overlook SIX double-digit hauls in 15 starts, the NINE attacking returns and the NINE clean sheets.
If the game goes ahead, and if he doesn’t have the ‘rona and if Harry Kane continues being Harry Kane, then this is an easy pick.
GW18 Midfielder: Kevin De Bruyne, Manchester City
If this game goes ahead, and if KDB doesn’t have the ‘ronaand if he really is back to his best form, then an away game to Newcastle United is almost as delicious as your Christmas dinner.
Get stuck in!
GW18 Forward: Ollie Watkins, Aston Villa
Picked him last week and a goal, an assist and 12 points later I’m going to pick him again this weekend.
It’s only Burnley, like.
GW18 Captain: Mo Salah, Liverpool
Can you remember the last time Mo Salah didn’t score or assist in a Premier League game?
It was Saturday, August 21st in the dreaded early Saturday slot. After his annual opening day haul, the goals and assists dried up. 203,000 players decided that he was a flash in the pan and transferred him out ahead of GW3.
14 goals, 8 assists and 17 bonus points in the next 15 games have made those people look very, very silly indeed. He’s on for 375 points in the season at this pace, and a reminder that he holds the record with 303 points in a season.
This run he’s on is historic. It’s Vardy Party levels of historic, and he could beat it this weekend if the game happens and if he’s not got the ‘rona.
GW18 Outsider: Gabriel Martinelli, Arsenal
So ostensibly a striker, categorised as a midfielder, taking the place of an ostracised captain, costing £5.2m, owned by less than 1% and has two goals and three assists in the last five games?
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FPL is currently like being in the ring with Katie Taylor. You’re getting pummelled by punches left, right and centre and there’s very little you can do about it. Every time you think you can come up for air, another round barrels into you and you can’t even clear your head. It’s time to rely […]
Hoo Boy is it getting busy!
Just your twenty premier league matches between Tuesday and next Monday for us to wrangle with. Therefore, I’m taking the prudent/lazy/efficient approach and I’m giving you my tips for both GW’s in one fell swoop, so you have plenty of time to absorb these incredible pearls of wisdom and act/ignore accordingly.
Onto GW14 & GW15!
GW14 Defender: Trent Alexander-Arnold, Liverpool
Eleven games played in the league this season.
Seven clean sheets.
Fifteen returns in eleven games, and while a ‘derby’ can always be fraught with the possibility of madness breaking out, Everton are not very good going forward this season. They have a grand total of three goals in their last six league games, four of those were complete blanks and they haven’t scored since GW10.
So, I’m reckoning on a clean sheet and with an attacking return in 73% of games played (yes, you read that right), how could you NOT choose him this week?
GW15 Defender: Tino Livramento, Southampton
FPL players are a fickle bunch, they really are.
All I saw last weekend was a torrent of moaning and whining as a cheap, regularly playing defensive enabler, who everyone left on their bench as he was away to Liverpool, was subbed in to replace Spurs/Burnley/A N Other assets, with zero points to his name.
The man should have been hung, drawn and quartered based on the opinions of those on my timeline. To those of you, I say this:
This is still a great asset to have and next weekend he faces Brighton at home in the ‘El Coastico’, apparently. Brighton are no great shakes going forward, and this will be a fixture that Hassenhutl will identify as a must-win.
GW14 Midfielder: Heung-Min Son, Spurs
Freshly frozen like the best supermarket veg, after a pointless spin to Turf Moor, Spurs face Brentford after having a lovely rest.
While Brentford kept a clean sheet against Everton, that’s not really something to write home about as previously mentioned, and they did concede ten goals in their previous four games since losing Raya.
Son has been on a slight barren run, admittedly. However, Spurs are going to click under Conte at some point, and with Brentford, Norwich and Brighton in their next three, this is the time to trust Son.
GW15 Midfielder: Maxwel Cornet, Burnley
Another player heading into a busy week after a bit of a rest, and with a game against Newcastle United at the weekend, he’s too good to ignore.
Tipped by this very column many weeks ago (with an instant return), he now has become a serious option at just £6.1m and under 3% ownership. Four goals in his last four starts, only blanking against Chelsea, is very decent form.
Newcastle, as discussed regularly on these pages, are terrible defensively. What’s a guy/girl to do?
GW14 Forward: Callum Wilson, Newcastle United
This is it. It must be it.
Wilson came into my team in GW12, played a full part in a six-goal thriller, and didn’t get as much as an assist, bizarrely. He then blanked in GW13, expectedly, away to Arsenal.
But now. Now it’s time. Norwich at home. Midweek. Under lights. Full St. James’ Park roaring them on. Relegation six-pointer.
Cometh the hour, cometh the man.
As Tom Hanks would say himself: WILSON!
GW15 Forward: Harry Kane, Spurs
And if Callum Wilson doesn’t do it, Harry Kane will.
As per my points above about Son, apply them to Kane for this weekend, at home to Norwich.
There’s nothing more to say.
GW14 & 15 Captain: Mo Salah, Liverpool
Yet another return for The Egyptian King in GW13, and I’m not even going to quote the stats anymore, they’re still ridiculous.
Funnily enough though, Salah has plundered far more points away from home this season that at Anfield, with 74 of his 131 points thus far coming on the road. He now faces two trips, to Goodison Park and Molineux.
To say that Liverpool will be ‘up for’ the Everton game is an understatement. This is the ground that shattered their team, hopes and dreams last season. They’re going to be gunning for Everton.
Wolves away is trickier, but, well, it’s Salah.
GW14 Outsider: James Maddison, Leicester City
Well, well, well. Look who decided to show up a third of the way through the season? A cracking 16-point haul for Maddison at the weekend has thrust him into my thoughts for the first time this season.
£6.6m and 4.3% ownership, with games coming against Southampton (9-0 remember…), Villa and Newcastle coming up. Interesting…
GW15 Outsider: Jadon Sancho, Manchester United
Well, well, well. Look who decided to show up a third of the way through the season? (Can you see a theme developing here?)
A goal in the Champions League, and a goal at Stamford Bridge, and suddenly Sancho is firmly on the radar. Then a quick glimpse at the FPL fixtures for United and it’s….wait, what?….that can’t be right, can it?
United don’t face a ‘Top 4’ opponent until MARCH 5TH. Seriously, there’s more green on their fixture list than in ‘The Grinch’.
If Sancho discovers his Bundesliga form….
After a full fortnight of petty squabbles, promising signs that evaporated into empty promises and prominent figures making themselves look very, very silly, we can now say goodbye to COP26, pretend that the International break never happened and settle into a veritable orgy of FPL for the next 11 gameweeks. For a quarter of the […]
This week we’ve seen the majority of world leaders descend on Glasgow to have a chat about, well, saving the planet.
David Attenborough scolded them all like children, and in fairness, he’s allowed.
Boris and Biden decided to have a snooze while climate experts were trying to inform them of just how far up shit creek we are without a paddle (Answer: Pretty far up, and it wasn’t a sh*t creek before the Tories allowed their mates to pump raw sewage into it)
Greta Thunberg stood outside and called them all bad names.
COP26? Should be COPONTOYOURSELVES26.
Defender: James Chilwell / Ben Reece, Chelsea
I’ll be honest, you should have either/or/both in your team this weekend as Chelsea host Burnley at Stamford Bridge.
Seven clean sheets for Chelsea and only three goals conceded all season. Both were rested in midweek so should be certain to start.
How to choose between them? Well James is owned by a few % less and is slightly cheaper. So, him, probably.
Midfielder: Emile Smith-Rowe, Arsenal
Regular readers will recall that I tipped ESR as an outsider tip a few weeks ago, stating that he was in the last-chance saloon in my squad. He then blanked, but I spared him and kept him.
Of course, I benched him for the next week when he hauled, put him in for two more weeks, when he blanked, benched him again when he hauled, and I have finally decided to start him every week.
ESR is now showing consistency and this week Arsenal welcome Watford, who conversely are showing incredible inconsistency so far under Ranieri. Concede five, then score five, then lose 1-0 at home. Who knows what will show up at The Emirates?
I’m backing Smith-Rowe to continue his current form which has seen him score three and assist two in his last five starts.
Forward: Jamie Vardy, Leicester City
After a shocking run of form that has seen Vardy pick up just two points in GW’s 9 & 10, Leicester City now travel to play struggling Leeds United, who just about squeaked past Norwich City.
For those worried about a potential European hangover after the Foxes play in the Europa League this week, know this: In three FPL fixtures following a Europa League game, Vardy has scored 8 points, 8 points and…err…1 point, but he was injured at half-time in that one.
Leeds have one clean sheet all season, and even conceded to Norwich. I rest my case.
Captain: Mo Salah, Liverpool
Yeah, he’s just ridiculous, isn’t he?
Ten games. Six double-digit hauls. Ten goals. Seven assists. Sixteen bonus points. Outrageous.
Granted, he’s off the back of a DISASTER last weekend with just an assist, but we must keep the faith.
It’s away to West Ham this week. He’s had fun at the London Stadium in recent seasons. In four away games at West Ham for Liverpool, Salah has five goals and an assist. In eight games in total against West Ham for Liverpool, Salah has nine goals and two assists.
In summary: Salah always hammers the Hammers.
Outsider: Leandro Trossard, Brighton & Hove Albion
How about an out of position midfielder playing up front in an improving, attractive, attacking side, owned by less than 2% and costing just £6.4m.
Oh, and he has two goals, an assist and five BPS this season.
Ladies and Gents, I present to you Leandro Trossard.
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Written by @NiallHawthorne It’s that time of the year again when ‘Wintertime’ begins. The Premier League will no doubt unveil it’s ‘Winter Ball’, which is never blue, even though it feels like it should be. The clocks will turn back an hour, for most. Brexiteers hope and pray it turns back to when […]