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Gameweek 21 Preview: Bonus Double Gameweek

Written by @ Niall Hawthorne

This is supposed to be a game of skill.

A game where you see who is going to play, you see who is not going to play, you select the best players you feel will deliver the most points. That’s the skill element. Of course,there is also luck, both good and bad, like any game. 

However, as we head into 2022, the skill element has been removed as we have no idea who will play or won’t play. I’m not even talking about individual players here; I’m talking about whole fixtures. As I type, two matches have already been called off for this weekend, but Chelsea v Liverpool looks dodgy, not to mention a couple of others.

So, my ability to show off my SKILLZ is removed, much to my frustration. I know that many of you (because I see your Twitter feeds) are feeling a similar sense of frustration with both the situation and the FPL organisation. 

To you all, I tell you this. 

It’s just a game. Never forget that. 

Onto GW21!

GW21 Defender: Dunno, don’t know who’s playing – Let’s guess at Harry Maguire, Manchester United

Stop giggling! 

I’m being serious! 

Aside from De Gea, he seems to be the only nailed on starter in the United backline these days. That’s important because United are allegedly supposed to play Wolves on Monday evening, and Wolves have scored one goal in their last six games. 

Really! One goal in 540 minutes of football, and that was against Brentford. They’ve blanked against City, Liverpool and Chelsea (understandably, I suppose) but also against Norwich and Burnley, which is not good. 

So, a United clean sheet looks probably in a game that looks possible. 

GW21 Midfielder: Dunno, don’t know who’s playing – Let’s guess at Heung Min Son, Spurs

He’s on a streak of five returns in a row, including four goals and two assists, and faces a Watford side that are conceding goals at a rate of three per game over the same five game period. 

Son is a decent captaincy pick, so if my captaincy pick picks up Covid, pick Son as your pick for captain pick and hope he can’t pick up covid too. 

GW21 Forward: Dunno, don’t know who’s playing – Let’s guess at Ollie Watkins, Aston Villa

Brentford host Villa, apparently, this weekend. 

Alvaro Fernandez took over in the Brentford goal in GW10, and in the nine games since he has one clean sheet and has conceded 16 goals – that’s not great. 

Since GW10, Ollie Watkins has played all nine games, scored four goals, provided one assist and has picked up nine bonus points. 

Make of those stats what you will. 

GW21 Captain: Dunno, don’t know who’s playing – Let’s guess at Mo Salah, Liverpool

If this game goes ahead, there’s a reason why you should get away from the ‘Chelsea are great in defence’ narrative, because they haven’t been…

In their last 10 league games, they have two clean sheets. 

In away league games this season, Salah has scores of 17 (Norwich), 13 (Watford), 24 (United, LOLZ) and 15 (Everton, LOLZ x 100). 

This is his last game in the Premier League for a month, if it goes ahead, so ignore him at your peril. 

Oh, and Ronaldo at home to Wolves? Have you seen the form of the Wolves defence? If not, you should….

GW21 Outsider: Dunno, don’t know who’s playing – Let’s guess at Kevin De Bruyne, Manchester City

1.This is the first game of the weekend, so less chance statistically that it gets pulled (possibly)

2. KDB has picked up 34 of his 65 points this season in his last four games

3. He’s owned by under 5% of all players

4. He’s playing Arsenal, without lego-head on the touchline for Pep to patronisingly pat

KDB

Your move…

Fantasy Football Preview: Gameweek 20

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.

https://soundcloud.app.goo.gl/5h53HVnwdtPJsHzY9

Next year, my friends. Next year. 

Onto GW20! 

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

He’s back. 

He’s rested. 

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…

Your move…

Fantasy Football Preview: Gameweek 20

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.

https://soundcloud.app.goo.gl/5h53HVnwdtPJsHzY9

Next year, my friends. Next year. 

Onto GW20! 

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

He’s back. 

He’s rested. 

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…

Your move…

Fantasy Football Preview: Gameweek 20

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.

https://soundcloud.app.goo.gl/5h53HVnwdtPJsHzY9

Next year, my friends. Next year. 

Onto GW20! 

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

He’s back. 

He’s rested. 

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…

Your move…

Fantasy Football Gameweek 18: Will it? Wont it? Who Knows?

Written by Niall Hawthorne

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’. 

Onto GW18! 

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? 

I do. 

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. 

LAAAARRRFFFFF. 

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? 

Your move…

Written by Mr. @NiallHawthorn

It’s finally happened.

After three years of a frankly bewildering myopia from Manchester United fans, Manchester United ex-players and Manchester United Executives, the substitute teacher has been shown the door. 

His exit interview was a cringe-fest for most of us, but a heart-wrenching trauma if you’re of a Red Devil disposition. His whole tenure reminded me of The Simpsons episode where Mr. Bergstrom became Lisa’s favourite ever teacher while substituting for Miss Hoover. I’m almost surprised Ole didn’t look right down the lens of the camera to address every Manchester United fan and say…

‘You are Manchester United’

Onto GW13! 

Look, we all know that this season you must have 3 or 4 of TAA, James, Chilwell and Cancelo, so if you don’t have at least three of those, you’re doing it wrong. 

Defender: Tyrone Mings, Aston Villa

However, my job is to look for other options, and Aston Villa are now interesting to me after the appointment of Steven Gerrard. 

Gerrard’s management style at Rangers was one of solidity, keeping it tight at the back. It’s no surprise considering the manager he got most joy under was one Rafa Benitez, who led two Liverpool teams to a Champions League final by keeping things tight. 

Villa began the Gerrard-era with a clean sheet and a victory against Potter-ball, so that’s a good sign. This week they face Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park, as two of the greatest midfielders of their era go head-to-head. I’m talking Gerrard v Vieira, not Milivojevic v Nakamba, to be clear. 

Mings was benched for Smith’s last game in charge, but has come back into the team, kept a clean sheet and scored, making it a goal and two assists so far this season. At less than 7% ownership and under £5m, he’s worth keeping an eye on.  

Midfielder: Emile Smith Rowe, Arsenal

Even while being battered by four at Anfield, Smith Rowe showed glimpses of what he’s about on Saturday evening, so he’s worth trusting once more this weekend as he faces Newcastle United at The Emirates. 

Prior to GW12 he had three goals and an assist from GW9 – GW11, and Newcastle United under Eddie Howe may score their way out of trouble, but they sure as hell aren’t going to keep many clean sheets. 

Forward: Raul Jimenez, Wolverhampton Wanderers

Jimenez began the season understandably slowly as he worked his way back to match fitness following his broken head last season. 

However, form is temporary and class is permanent, and since GW5 Jimenez has three goals and three assists in seven GW’s. In short, the Jimenez of old looks to be back and he’s only getting warmed up. 

With that in mind, a trip to Norwich City looks promising. While the Canaries started the Smith era in style last weekend, their defence is still ropey (27 conceded in 12 games). 

This wolf is on the prowl and canaries are but an hors d’ouevre. 

Captain: Mo Salah, Liverpool

Last week I told you that Mane might be a nice differential, and he duly outscored Salah by four points, giving those of you that listened an 8-point swing on your rivals. 

Having said all that, Salah scored again, so that’s just the 11 goals, 8 assists and 16 bonus points in 12 GW’s so far. Heh. It’s almost farcical typing that y’know.

This weekend Liverpool face Southampton at Anfield, and I’ve got a feeling….

Y’know the way Southampton under Hassenhuttl have, well, shipped 9 goals TWICE? 

Y’know the way Liverpool have a meaningless CL game against Porto where they can rest players? 

Y’know that Triple Captain chip most of us have burning a hole in our pockets? 

Mmmmm…..

Outsider: Marc Guehi, Crystal Palace

Admittedly my Palace defensive tip didn’t work out last week, but they do appear to be getting more solid in general, and as pointed out above about Aston Villa, are facing a side more concentrated on stopping them than scoring against them. 

£4.5m and 0.5% ownership and an ever-present in the side? 

Your move…

Fantasy Football – Gameweek Preview – Palace, West Ham and Liverpool

Fantasy Football Gameweek 10: Just one Cornet goal!. Give it to me!

Fantasy Football Preview: Gameweek 9 – Chelsea, Palace, Wolves and Mo Salah

Fantasy Football Preview – Gameweek 8: Arsenal, Spurs and West Ham

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