FPLAntarctican’s GW7 Core Captain

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If you had Aguero, you are happy. If you had Zlatan, you aren’t. This is the summary for majority of the #FPL managers in Gameweek 6. As I mentioned in the article last week, going maverick and not giving the armband to Aguero against Swansea seemed too risky, so I made him the captain and not Firmino; and it did prove to be fruitful.

Although an unfortunate Firmino wasn’t a part of any of the five goals against Hull City, thereby putting an end to my successful Core captain streak. But that doesn’t demotivate me personally since he had 3 shots on goal from inside the box and also made 5 attempted assists; hefty FPL returns can be expected soon.

 

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Captain pick scores from the last gameweek:

 

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Now let’s get straight on to the obvious pick of the week. The Potters are leaking goals like anything this season and Man United will be looking forward to continue their revival from last week with a 4-1 win against Leicester City although Zlatan was not a part of any of the four goals and will be steaming to get at least a couple of goals against Stoke City this week. Still owned by 54.2% Zlatan Ibrahimovic is definitely the safe pick of the week.

 

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Both – the Core Captain pick and the Risky Captain pick for this week are from the same team — Arsenal FC; who play away to Burnley in gameweek 7. Following are a couple of dominant attacking stats showcased by the two Gunners in the initial six games of the Premier League.

Player          Price      Goals    Attempts   Attempts in area
Walcott        £7.6m       3             18                16
Sanchez       £11.2m     4             17                14

 

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Alexis Sanchez is the Core Captain of the week, who is glowing with supreme form at the moment. He assisted twice in the mid-week Champions league game and had more than three goal attempts during the game. In the Premier League, he’s creating a chance every 47 minutes justifying his recent FPL returns. He will definitely be the captain in my personal team.

Alexis Sanchez’s scored 47 goals in his 100 apps for Arsenal, one fewer than Thierry Henry (48) in his 1st 100 apps for the club.

 

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The above stats also portray the heavy potential Theo is offering for FPL managers; at a much lower price. Although he does not play upfront with Sanchez, his swift runs inside the box are definitely aiding him to get the goals and assists. With 16 attempts, Theo Walcott is the joint-top ranked midfielder for shots inside the box this season. Given that he retains his position in the starting XI for the entire season, Walcott is definitely worth a shout for your fantasy team too. Theo Walcott is the risky pick of the week with a low ownership of 5.2%

He has netted five times in seven appearances across all competitions and also chipped in with two Fantasy Premier League assists.

 

There’s an International break after this gameweek and many managers might be planning to use their wildcard chip if they haven’t already. Feel free to drop in your FPL queries on my twitter handle: @FPLantarctican

 

Remember to pick your FPL ELITE 50 lineup on Fanfeud.co.uk before 8pm tonight. Pick the 5 players you believe will have the best GW7, simple as that! Free to Play and you’ll be in the running to win an FPL T-shirt courtesy of sponsors www.FantasyFootballTshirts.co.uk!! 

 

Poster Idea 7

Buy or Sell? GW7

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As we ready our FPL squads for the Gameweek 7 of the Premier League season, some players are naturally drawing our attention, be that due to an attractive cheap pricetag or indeed perceived opportunity. Here @FPLJesus brings us some players he believes are under-owned when both those factors are weighed, and also a few players who he feels are over-owned. Who should you buy, and who should you bin?

 

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Underowned – Buy

 

 

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Charlie Austin – £6.3m, 3.4% Owned

 

In Charlie Austin’s QPR days he was one of the Fantasy Premier League’s top strikers. A huge points return from a DGW in the 14/15 season embedded the English forward in FPL folklore. Many Fantasy managers subsequently brought him into their sides when news of his move to Southampton was confirmed last year. Unfortunately for those managers, timing, injury and two other strikers to compete with reduced Austin’s minutes in the FPL and his debut match winning goal against Man United ended up being his only points return of his first (half) season back in the FPL.

However, now enjoying greater playing time in the Saints squad Austin is enjoying something of a renaissance. After scoring the winner against Swansea in GW6, Austin started the away tie at West Ham for GW7. It was a massive coup for his small number of owners, a man of the match performance in a 3-0 away victory reminded us all just how lethal the striker can be. Austin scored a great goal and created another proving he can still be an asset in the premier league.

Scoring 18 goals in his first Premier League season, it could be argued Austin has fixture-proof qualities within his capability which will be encouragement for managers hunting a cheap differential striker.

 

 

walcott

Theo Walcott – £7.6m, 4.6% Owned

 

Ever since Walcott went on a run playing as striker a number of years back (12/13) and scored 14 goals and 13 assists his potential in the FPL has been met with consistently underwhelming results. Despite playing games, creating chances and even scoring the odd goal, Walcott never seemed to score the points his owners felt they deserved.

Considering his perceived pedigree (no doubt overblown simply because hes English), it has been argued that in Fantasy game that Walcott isn’t worth the money. It certainly explains why his ownership remains low despite a great run of fixtures for Arsenal.

His numbers are unlikely to ever eclipse 12/13 but with similarly priced midfielders such as Ross Barkley irritating their owners, Walcott seems a perfect differential entry into a side in great form. With 3 goals and 2 assists in the seasons first 6 games, and the run of attractive fixtures set to continue (Burnley, Swansea, Boro the next 3) , Walcott has shown enough consistency to invite FPL selection once again.

 

 

arnie

Marko Arnautovic – £7.2m, 1.1% Owned

 

Arguably the most consistent Stoke player in Fantasy Premier league seasons gone by, Arnautovic ownership has continued to sink this season week after week as Stoke underperforming slowly became a guarantee in the seasons opening matches.
Since Stoke are still without a win it seems counter productive to enlist a player from that side in ones fantasy team. However, despite an intensely poor start to the campaign, Stoke fixtures begin to ease up after GW7.

Sunderland and Swansea at home sandwich a trip to Hull in GW9, and these will be fixtures Mark Hughes will hope for maximum points to drag his side out of the relegation zone. An away trip to Man United in GW7 will be seen as write off by anyone with Stoke players but in 1.1% owned Arnautovic, there is an option most managers will ignore this
GW.

Differential hunters risk Arnautovic being exposed if he hits points at Old Trafford, something he has done in the past. Its true that success for the Austrian in GW7 wont affect the vast majority because ownership is so low, I still think there is a worthy punt in Arnautovic to be had knowing United’s defence isn’t very strong as their great many owners will attest to.

 

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Overowned – Sell

 

 

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Ben Foster – £4.7m, 16.9% Owned

 

While ditching a goalkeeper is never the first thing on any managers to do list unless their options are injured or benched, I think Ben Foster has matured as an FPL option.
A £0.2m rise suggests a reliable goalkeeper and £4.7m is still attractive enough a price to invite new managers to want to sign him up.

However, fixtures for the former England goalkeeper don’t read well for the immediate future. First, an away trip to Sunderland who will be fighting hard. They are yet to win a league game under David Moyes but they have only failed to score in one out of 6 league games so far. The real test of faith for Foster owners truly begins in GW8 as a run of matches against Leicester, Man City and Liverpool begins with a visit from currently unbeaten Spurs. I’d ditch now, especially if I was one of the managers who successfully banked £0.1m, I wouldn’t want to lose it.

 

 

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Leroy Fer – £5.3m, 10.5% Owned

 

Tipped in the first of these articles as a better £5m option than Kante, Fer has gone on to receive many admirers in the FPL this season. After a great start of 3 goals in his first 4 games, Fer was becoming a serious contender for long term FPL gains.
Despite remarkable consistency in that initial period, Swansea have not exactly proved themselves as serious contenders for the league title this season. If anything, relegation appears more realistic. Now without a win in 4, the Swans face Liverpool and Arsenal in their next two games.

This should be a serious concern to Fer owners hoping to earn another £0.1m on their small investment as players such as Robert Snodgrass offering equal consistency, a similar price but better fixtures and overall attacking potential appear in the market more frequently, value in the Dutchman will expire as quickly as it appeared.

 

 

 

Ross Barkley – £7.5m, 11.5% Owned

 

Some managers may not realise but in previous seasons Ross Barkley has started and ended well, but absolutely bombed in the Fantasy game in between.

As a player like Barkley begins a new season, it is every managers hope they can find the consistency that matches their talent. However, no matter how many times we see Barkley ping one in from the edge of the area and it hits the back of the net, it will never be one of several over a period of time.

When Barkley hit a goal and assist in his first two games, many hoped this would be his year and even though Everton have stared the season well, the young Barkley is waiting to add more contributions to his points total. Its a frustration for owners who are currently double what they were at the start of the season.

What may not be clear, is that Barkley has already risen and dropped in price this season, in fact, his owners nearly tripled from GW1-3 but sank rapidly after GW5 as owners realised they would lose value.

While Everton do have good fixtures, it makes little sense to hold on to Barkley when Romalu Lukaku is the clearest attacking threat in the Everton side, If i couldn’t afford him but wanted an Everton player, the £6.1m Yannick Bolasie offers the same threat as Barkley at a discounted price.

 

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FPL Elite 50

GW7 PODCAST: Drop the Zlat or He’ll Drop you?

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Gameweek 6 saw the return to action of the king of FPL, as Kun Aguero swaggered back onto the field following suspension, and straight into most of our fantasy lineups. He didn’t fail to disappoint those who had made the necessary changes to accommodate his price-tag, whether that was through meticulous planning or massive points hits.

However, it was that other expensive and explosive FPL option, Zlatan Ibrahimovic who had the fantasy world talking as the dust settled on a tumultous Saturday in the Premier League. The other half of the Ibraguero super striker combination had suffered a dud gameweek, being held scoreless as the Red Devils trounced Leicester at Old Trafford.

With the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Salomon Rondon, United teammate Marcus Rashford and the ageless Jermain Defoe vying for fantasy owners hearts, the big Swede has been sold in massive numbers over the course of the weekend, and will likely have dropped the maximum £0.3m in price by the time GW7 rolls around. In particular Defoe offers a real discount for owners, having scored the same number of FPL points to date, while costing a full £4.5m less.

However, should you really cut bait with the pony tailed god, right before his team face hapless Stoke City? While the former Barcelona, PSG, Milan and Ajax hitman was all smiles as he joined his teammates in celebrating each of their goals on Saturday lunchtime, he is sure to want to get his own name on the scoresheet this coming Sunday.

Only West Ham (16) have conceded more than the Potters fifteen goals this season, and Mark Hughes men have conceded 4 goals on two occasions to Manchester City and Tottenham. Expect Ibrahimovic and friends to want to at least equal that tally this weekend.

It would be just like him to score multiple goals and pour the appropriate level of disdain on those who attempted to replace the mighty Zlatan with the likes of Jermain Defoe and Salomon Rondon.

What to do about Zlatan was only one of the major themes discussed by host Dave O’Grady, producer Chorley Rocks, Peter Blake and Jasper Dunning on the Fanfeud FPL Show for Gameweek 7. Please listen below or on iTunes and share with as many of your friends as you can. It is much appreciated!!

Also, while you listen… check out our 5 a side fantasy football games on Fanfeud.co.uk, including FPL ELITE 50 which you can win an FPL T-shirt courtesy of FantasyFootballTshirts.co.uk. You can play all our games completely for free, so why not give them a go today?!

 

 

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FPL Antarctican’s Core Captain: GW6

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Gameweek 5 was a great Gameweek, in fact a marvelous one in terms of FPL since there were 10+ players scoring double digit points. The question is whether the upcoming Gameweek 6 possesses the potential to break the 33 goals barrier from the previous gameweek or not.

Now let’s see how did the captain picks by FPL Antarctican performed in GW5:

 

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It indeed has been a good start for the Core captain picks with Lukaku in GW4 and Sanchez in GW5 but whether this streak will end or continue in GW6 is to be seen. One important thing I would like to mention is that the Core captain choices will usually be players that will not be just a one week punt but will have also a good streak of fixtures coming up ahead.

 

Saying that, let me reveal the Core Captain of the week; it’s none other than the returning man-in-form Roberto Firmino.

 

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After missing the previous game against Chelsea in the Premier league, he will be looking for maximum involvement against the defensively poor Hull City. He also looked sharp in the mid-week game where he scored an assist. Firmino’s attacking stats have definitely been noteworthy with 10 shots (4 on target) in 4 games from which 2 shots found the net. He has attempted 14 assists and created 2 big chances in this run which also signifies his assisting potential. He is still owned by just 9% and a 10+ point performance can revamp your rank considerably.

[Liverpool’s upcoming 6 fixtures: HUL, swa, MUN, WBA, cry, WAT]

 

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The obvious pick of the week is too obvious frankly. It is none other than Sergio Aguero, who has scored 9 goals in 5 games this season, including a hattrick in his recent Champions League game. After serving up a three games suspension, Aguero will surely be well-rested but at the same time not too rusty due to the midweek game. The main stat that should confirm your captain choice of the week is ‘Swansea have conceded the maximum Shots inside the box this season: 54’

City haven’t scored less than 2 goals since the start of this season and Pep’s team will be looking forward to continue this streak.

 

captain-benteke

 

The final captain pick as we call it the Risky pick of the week is Christian Benteke from Crystal Palace who face Sunderland this Saturday. He might be disappointed for not being involved in any of the goals in their 4-1 win against Stoke City, but this will only galvanize him into action that should lead to a goal or two. Owned by just 6% at the moment, he is a player who can boost your rank if he scores and the predicted scorers fail to deliver.

 

That is it for the Gameweek 6 article. I have not yet decided on my personal team’s captain but it is between Roberto and Kun. Check out my twitter feed @FPLantarctican on Saturday to know who gets the final nod.

 

This is the optimum suggested lineup from the Rate My Team algorithm at FantasyFootballFirst.co.uk. It has done well so far, but there are some odd tips this week! Can you beat it and win the monthly prize of an FPL T-shirt courtesy of FantasyFootballTshirts.co.uk?!

Go to Fanfeud.co.uk NOW!!

fplelite50-gw6-lineup

 

Everton and Romelu Lukaku: Ready to Step Up?

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Everton’s win over Middlesborough at the weekend gave them their best start since 1978 and also the perfect start for new coach Ronald Koeman. The former Southampton manager has led his side to 4 wins and 1 draw in the first 5 games and they now sit second just 2 points behind leaders Man City. The smiles are back on the blue half of Merseyside after a terrible campaign last season where they finished eleventh.

by Aaron Doherty

 

 

The Dutchman led Southampton to the Europa League places last season with an impressive sixth place finish and just 3 points off the Champions League spots. The ex-Barcelona midfielder also knows the transfer market where he spent big on Yannick Bolasie from Crystal Palace and one of the signings of the summer so far in Idrissa Gueye from Aston Villa.

 

The Senegalese midfielder has been hugely impressive in midfield with his quick and tenacious style and an excellent reading of the game. This week Koeman suffered his first defeat as manager in a shock defeat to championship side Norwich in the league cup so how they react this weekend against Bournemouth will be an interesting watch.

 

This is the Dutchman’s ninth managerial job in 16 years as a manager and the longest he spent at one club was 4 years with Ajax from 2001 to 2005, so whether he will stick around for long at Goodison Park is anyone’s guess. If he keeps up the current league form his paymasters could look to tie him down with an early contract extension.

 

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At the moment Everton are in good hands with Koeman with a style that’s pretty easy on the eye and with goals. On current form Romelu Lukaku (9.3m) is a player you seriously need to consider in your FPL lineup with his work around the box outstanding and his finishing inside of it exceptional with 4 goals so far. The one thing missing from the Belgian’s game is consistency and he is hoping to find it this season and really kick on to his full potential. With 3 of his goals coming in one game against Sunderland, he hasn’t scored in 3 of the other league games. This is the consistency he needs to find if Everton are to make a shock run at the top 4… and if those who are picking the Belgian over Ibrahimovic for their FPL lineup are going to be successful

 

Will you pick Lukaku in your 5 man FPLELITE50 lineup? FREE TO PLAY

 

Also worth a mention for your FPL side is Seamus Coleman, one of the best right backs in the Premier League. The Irishman just scored his first goal at the weekend and although Everton are not the strongest defensively, Coleman will certainly get you points down the other end. At 0.2m cheaper than his full back partner Leighton Baines, and with a better points per game average (8pts v the Englishman’s 4.2) he could be a valuable aquisition as Everton look to have a very promising lineup of fixtures ahead of them.

 

Kevin Mirallas is another one who has started the season off well with 1 goal and 2 assist in his 5 starts and is keeping Gerard Deulofeu out of the side. Whilst the Belgian is streaky, his pricetag of 6.6 million makes him a great mid priced alternative to the 7.5m priced Ross Barkley or indeed other players in his price-range such as Jordan Henderson or James Milner.

 

Everton will cause a few upsets this season but can they maintain this level for most of the season? Have they got the squad if key players get injured? At the moment everything is good on Merseyside and depending on results, Everton could be top of the table come 5pm on Saturday.

 

 

This is the optimum suggested lineup from the Rate My Team algorithm at FantasyFootballFirst.co.uk. It has done well so far, but there are some odd tips this week! Can you beat it and win the monthly prize of an FPL T-shirt courtesy of FantasyFootballTshirts.co.uk?!

 

fplelite50-gw6-lineup

Buy or Sell: FPL Gameweek 6

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As we ready our FPL squads for the Gameweek 6 of the Premier League season, some players are naturally drawing our attention, be that due to an attractive cheap pricetag or indeed perceived opportunity. Here @FPLJesus brings us some players he believes are under-owned when both those factors are weighed, and also a few players who he feels are over-owned. Who should you buy, and who should you bin?

 

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Underowned – Buy

 

 

iwobi

Alex Iwobi £5.8m, 0.7% ownership

 

If I asked 10 football fans at random “who had the most assists for Arsenal in 2016?” I’m pretty sure all 10 answers would be Mesut Ozil. That answer would be incorrect however as Ozil has hit just 3 assists this calender year, but after GW5, the right answer is now Alex Iwobi with 5.

 

The Nigerian Iwobi is only 20 years old, a possible reason for still being yet to complete 90 minutes in the league this season, but after 2 assists in GW5, one of which could have easily been a goal, the Arsenal player can be considered as a potentially great addition to fantasy football squads.

 

Iwobi’s three assists are the current joint highest in the league and at 0.7% owned offers an incredible differential entry into Arsenals midfield. Priced at £5.8m, he is the cheapest with an attacking threat but it is the attitude and self-confidence that is most exciting Gunners supporters, who have seen players like Oxlade-Chamberlain struggling to keep themselves in the team in recent seasons.

 

After Chelsea at the Emirates this weekend, Arsenal have a four week run of percieved easy fixtures; Burnley (a) Swansea (h) Middlesbrough (h) and then Sunderland (a). And with the Gunners fighting a battle on two fronts with the Champions league, it can be expected that Iwobi’s minutes will improve going forward as higher earners are rested for the midweek games. Either way, Iwobi has the form, low ownership and bargain price which could make him a superb option in the FPL this season.

 

 

sane

Leroy Sane £7.8m, 0.2% Owned

 

Signed from Shalke in the summer, Leroy Sane is yet to start a game for Man City making his selection in the FPL unadvisable for the weeks gone by. However, recent substitutions for Raheem Sterling have given the youngster a taste of Premier League football.

 

The 3 game suspension to the preferred left winger Nolito has opened the door for Leroy Sane, who can fit in as a like for like replacement.

 

With Man City on fire right now, it can be assumed that manager Guardiola has drilled Sane for an immediate impact. 9 goals and 5 assists in the Bundesliga last season proves that Sane can do it on a big stage, while his young age of just 20 suggest an intelligent, quick player with huge potential.

 

While Man City fixtures include tough games against Spurs and Everton in the next three, differential hunters who were looking at Nolito (5% owned and £9m) will be encouraged by Sane’s 0.2% ownership. At £0.4m cheaper than his team mate Raheem Sterling as well, there could be value in backing the new boy.

 

 

chadli

Nacer Chadli £6.4m, 1.7% Owned

 

West Brom’s club record signing has certainly hit the ground running by having one of the best home debuts in recent memory during GW5’s 4-2 win over West Ham. Chadli scored 2 and assisted 2 racking up an impressive 21 points in the FPL.

 

Priced at £6.4m, Chadli is not an expensive option to bring into fantasy sides, and the 1.7% who have already picked him enjoyed an incredible points return in GW5 with immediate fixtures looking good too.

 

Chadli faces the current bottom two sides, Sunderland and Stoke in gameweeks 6 and 7 which makes for good timing for those managers hunting for an explosive low owned midfielder.

 

 

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Overowned – Sell

 

 

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Harry Kane £10.9m, 10% Owned

 

Despite scoring goals in his last two weeks, Harry Kane’s progress has come to an abrupt halt. Injured in the GW5 fixture vs Sunderland, it was confirmed in midweek that Kane would not be fit for at least a month as his ankle recovers.

 

£10.9m is too much for an unusable substitute in the FPL and owners should get rid immediately. With dearer players such as Aguero returning to action this weekend and Zlatan Ibrahimovic playing two consecutive home games this round and next, even taking a hit to bring in one of these alternative options would be advisable.

 

Kane’s ownership will fall sharply from its current 10.9%. Managers who hold on for even just one gameweek could see a significant price fall which could damage future transfers.

 

Listened to our GW6 Podcast yet? Jam packed with Fantasy Advice

 

 

bailly

Eric Bailly £5.5m, 14% Owned

 

Despite 3 man of the match performances in his first 5 Man United games, Eric Bailly has not been the force in the FPL his initial success suggested. A towering force at centre back, his strength and quality have impressed United fans, but it is his constant selection for league games by Jose Mourinho that has seen his fantasy stock rise.

 

United were tipped preseason for defensive success hence the high ownership in their back line, but clean sheet numbers are lower than initially hoped. Upcoming fixtures include the Champions Leicester City, Liverpool and Chelsea among the next 4, making future clean sheet points a distinct uncertainty. Considering the fact United lost their last 2 games and conceded 5 goals, trust in their defence has to be questioned.

 

Luke Shaw owners have been hit by injury to the left back this week but Eric Bailly owners might be wise to ditch their man too. With Chris Smalling fully fit and ready to return to the starting eleven, Bailly could find his minutes reduced. If Daily Blind is used out left to replace Shaw, Eric Bailly is likely to continue at centre back, however, defensive reshuffling is unlikely to benefit United with tough fixtures ahead and considering they don’t come cheap, I’d want to use that investment on other options.

 

 

redmond

Nathan Redmond £6m, 8.7% Owned

 

Pre-season lineups hinted that when the season started Nathan Redmond would be used by Southampton as an attacker. In Gameweek one Redmond was played high up the field and scored for his new side suggesting a serious option for FPL managers to think about.

 

Still at 8.7% owned, Redmond hasn’t contributed to any of Southampton’s goals since GW1.
The fact there are only three of them is damaging on behalf of all Southampton attackers who don’t look good in a Fantasy football context after five fixtures.

 

There is always interest when a midfield player is used upfront but unfortunately the potential has failed to live up to the promise. Since Charlie Austin has shown great form and Shane Long is capable of scoring runs himself, I think Redmond can only be considered a half decent midfield option at best.

 

This is the optimum suggested lineup from the Rate My Team algorithm at FantasyFootballFirst.co.uk. It has done well so far, but there are some odd tips this week! Can you beat it and win the monthly prize of an FPL T-shirt courtesy of FantasyFootballTshirts.co.uk?!

 

fplelite50-gw6-lineup

 

 

 

Kun you afford NOT to buy Aguero?

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While legendary presenter Dave O’Grady was away for the week, the equally legendary Chorley Rocks of @Fanfootfirst stepped into his shoes as presenter and I’m sure you’re agree he did a terrific job! Joining Paul on the show was debutant Adrian Riley and, making his long awaited return to the show… the FantasyPest

 

The big topic this week is of course the return of Kun Aguero to the Manchester City lineup following suspension, and what exactly fantasy owners should do to get him back into their lineup. Our experts were in no doubt about whether he should be owned or not (hint: he should) but how exactly should you do that?

They offered up multiple differential options to make the Ibraguero combination possible for your FPL team. Listen via the link below or alternatively by going to iTunes and searching for Fanfeud FPL Show and subscribing for the show!

 

Remember to create your free FPL ELITE 50 lineup for GW6 on Fanfeud.co.uk. You can win a brilliant FPL T-shirt courtesy of sponsors Fantasyfootballtshirts.co.uk

Watford 3-1 Man United: The FPL Review

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It has been a nightmare week for Jose Mourinho at Manchester United, 3 defeats in the space of a week has undone the good progress his side were making after a start of 4 wins out of 4. 

 

Mourinho hasn’t lost 3 games in a row since his Porto days 14 years ago, proving his task at United is not as easy as simply throwing money at it. Mourinho had arguably the best transfer window of the summer, smashing records and bringing in huge names, (an impressive achievement considering United have missed out on Europe’s best competition) but after 2 consecutive league defeats and one in Europe to boot, his methods and tactics will come under great scrutiny.

 

 

In the Fantasy Football world, two straight defeats for any team is a cause for concern. As United have failed to return significant points for their owners in the past two rounds, I would expect ownership in their players to fall again this week. As the most owned player in the game, Zlatan Ibrahimovic was also the most captained player in gameweek 5 at 37%, and to moderate success as his assist for Marcus Rashford was (controversially) awarded by the FPL to the great relief of the 62% who own him. However, despite returning points in 4 of his 5 games this season, his price tag is rising to £12m and his ownership reaching to two thirds of all teams.

 

This is a concern. Not only is £12m a huge fee for one FPL player, but 62% ownership means a hit for that player will see no great leaps in the overall rankings for owners. On the other hand, owning a player with smaller ownership and potential to match or outscore Ibrahimovic will see great rank jumps if Ibrahimovic blanks. As players such as Lukaku and Costa offer the same levels of consistency at a lower price, it is likely that ownership in Ibrahimovic will begin to fall. There is also the return of Aguero to consider, many will prefer the Argentinian and use the Ibrahimovic money to upgrade.

 

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It is true that Ibrahimovic has returned points in his two most recent fixtures as United continue to struggle, but other United players such as Anthony Martial have already seen their ownership evaporate. I don’t expect Ibrahimovic ownership to fall as sharply, mainly because United defenders are a greater risk. United have two clean sheets banked this season, but conceding 3 away at Watford before a fixture run of Leicester, Liverpool and Chelsea in 3 of the next four games suggests it will be difficult for the Red Devils to keep more any time soon.

A fair amount of managers have included two players from United’s defensive options, likely at £11m invested. While this paid off nicely for the first 3 gameweeks, the investment is no longer sustainable. Defenders are scoring in other teams for cheaper prices. One example this week was Seamus Coleman. Coleman was under 2% owned going into GW5 and £0.2m cheaper than Luke Shaw (24% owned), he scored 10 times more points, proving to be a competent differential pick.

 

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While United are exasperating fans with their static displays, Watford have 7 goals in their last two games. In a superb home display for Gameweek 5, Watford brushed aside Man United with relative ease as Walter Mazzarri’s men earned their second win of the season.

Etienne Capoue scored yet again, delighting his ever growing owners (30%). The subject of many FPL discussions this season, the Frenchman now has 4 goals and an assist to his name since Gameweek 1. Truly incredible form, he now has over 1 million owners and many are no longer benching him. While 30% of his owners (330,000) did bench him in GW5, upcoming fixtures all against percieved weaker opposition Burnley, Hull, Middlesbrough, Swansea and Bournemouth make that number expected to fall greatly. His form is impossible to ignore now and still priced under £5m, he is a no brainer for FPL managers looking to downgrade a midfielder. Capoue was the most transferred in player this GW and it would no surprise if he was again before the next.

 

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On 2 points before GW5, Juan Zuniga wasn’t considered an option by anyone. Less than 20 minutes of Football across the first 4 weeks led Zuniga ownership hovering at 0.5% before the Man United victory. Priced at £4.4m and facing a kind run of fixtures, Zuniga has suddenly beome a Fantasy Football option on the back of his gameweek 5 exploits. As Managers search for the best of the bargain defenders, Zuniga will be jumped on by many who will expect his game time to improve. A goal and an assist from his 9 minute cameo against United suggest a player with great explosive potential, there aren’t many defenders with that reputation, ones under £4.5m are certainly very rare.

 

Also delivering well for the Hornets is new signing Roberto Pereyra. A points return from each of his 3 games for Watford, a goal and 2 assists against tough opposition (Arsenal, West Ham and Man United) suggests a good season ahead for the £6m (in FPL) midfielder. Just 0.7% of managers have chosen to back Pereyra until now but with Capoue taking very much all of the limelight, differential hunters might be more interested by Pereyra as a long term differential asset.

 

Troy Deeney on penalties and the once prolific Odion Ighalo leading the line for Watford could also be on fantasy manager radars. Deeney is a low 3% owned and £0.7 cheaper than Christian Benteke, a player many backed by many in GW5 whose fixtures begin to toughen after GW6.

 

This GW5 fixture has thrown up many Fantasy football clues indeed. Watford have proved themselves a valid option in the FPL as far as I’m concerned where United have failed. It is too hard to see where United points are going to come from going forward and Ibrahimovic ownership is so high now it seems wiser to back someone lower owned. One thing we can say with absolute certainty however is never bench Capoue….

 

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Buy or Sell: Gameweek 5

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As we ready our FPL squads for the gameweek five of the Premier League season, some players are naturally drawing our attention, be that due to an attractive cheap pricetag or indeed perceived opportunity. Here @FPLJesus brings us some players he believes are under-owned when both those factors are weighed, and also a few players who he feels are over-owned. Who should you buy, and who should you bin?

 

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Underowned – Buy

 

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Christian Benteke -£7.5m, 5.4% Owned

Many will remember that Christian Benteke was a huge point scorer for Aston Villa. Benteke hit 19 goals in his first FPL year and 10 the following (but played 700 minutes less), outstanding returns for a young striker. He has been a fantasy favourite of sorts ever since but minutes on the pitch for Liverpool were too few and far between. Despite his stock decreasing significantly during his spell on Merseyside, now at Crystal Palace, many feel it is the Belgians time to shine once again.

With only 3 wins in 2016, Crystal Palace are a team generally out of form. That being said, exits at the club over the summer were met with positive reactions by the board. For example, Yannick Bolasie out for £30m, Andros Townsend in for less than half that. While Alan Pardew is currently favourite to be the 1st sacking of the Premier League season, his side’s first 3 points of the season have propelled them to 11th place in the league, giving future opponents reason for caution: Palace aren’t bad as they look.

Upcoming fixtures look good too. Palace play the bottom 2 in their next 2 games. Stoke visit Selhurst Park in Gameweek 5. Rock bottom of the league, Stoke are still without a win having scored just 2 goals but conceded 10. Gameweek 6 could be slightly easier for Palace however, they travel to Sunderland who have conceded 5 goals at home already this season and continue to wait for their first win under David Moyes.

Immediate points for Benteke will certainly delight his 166,000 owners. At 5.4% owned, his differential status will impress managers looking to ditch their current strikers. As the primary target man for his new club, an improvement on his 9 goals for Liverpool last season seems guaranteed already after his debut goal and with 2 great fixtures lined up, I’d give selecting the Belgian for GW5 serious consideration.

 

 

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Kevin De Bruyne – £10.5m, 7.5% Owned

 

There was a myth emerging by the end of last season suggesting Kevin De Bruyne was not effective in a fantasy context away from home. Of course, a player being useless away from home is not a new concern for managers picking options, but it is something that can hold as truth for a long time even if incorrect.

After his display at Old Trafford, there will be no concerns of the sort regarding the Belgian midfielder. A goal and assist for KDB goes to prove two things, he can do it away from the Etihad, and he can do it in the big games.

The secret is out regarding City, clinical under Guardiola so far they are current favourites to win the league. The question for FPL managers regarding City is who to go for while Aguero unavailable?

KDB is 2.5million cheaper than Aguero and available for selection this week, he has 3 assists in his last 3 games, a goal from 14 shots and a 25 points total after GW4. While Raheem Sterling offers value, he was weak in the Derby and made way for Leroy Sane on the hour mark. The same thing happened in the Champions league game and although Sterling recieved high praise for his assist, KDB is a more assured pick.

Many will be making downgrades this week to enable funds for the Aguero return, but in KDB there could be a way to circumvent the financial reshuffle. By having the cheaper midfield option managers will have this week to earn points and potential price rises too. Since Aguero ownership has currently sunk to 23%, his threat in a fantasy context will be reduced as non owners earn the free transfers needed to get him back without penalty. Since that could take a couple of weeks in time for GW6 and a Spurs away game, I suggest backing the Belgian instead.

 

 

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Santi Cazorla – £7.7m, 7.3% Owned

 

On the Fantasy Premier League website where detailing Arsenals upcoming fixtures, 5 of the next 6 games are rated the easiest possible score of 1. This is a great run for a top side to find themselves with, especially Arsenal, since their season has been slow to start so far.

Fan favourite and penalty taker, Cazorla has played back into the minds of fantasy managers despite Arsenals indifferent start. Already 0.2 dearer than his starting price, the Spaniard has 2 goals and 2 assists to his name.

Now Arsenal have two consecutive victories, there is value in Arsenal players as their fixtures begin to look good. Alexis Sanchez is over £3m dearer while Mesut Ozil is just under £2m. Considering Cazorla is just 5 points short of their combined total score, the argument could be made that he is the in form Arsenal pick.

While Sanchez and Ozil will always be the more explosive attacking options in Arsenal’s midfield, Cazorla has managed consistency this season so far which is just what managers want when purchasing a perceived bargain.

 

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Overowned – Sell

 

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Mason Holgate – £4.6m, 6.7% Owned

 

Brought in by Ronald Koeman to cover the void left by injured Seamus Coleman, Holgate impressed enough Fantasy Managers to back him after Everton stared the season with success. Now at 6.7% owned, Coleman has returned to the side. This not good news for the 6.7% who won’t have banked any cash on Holgate despite his price rising to £4.6m.

If anything i would expect to see that price fall as managers realised their cheap defensive sub option is no longer a legitimate option. It is a risk to hold Holgate, particularly when other cheap defenders are available.

 

 

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Danny Drinkwater – £5.5m, 9% Owned

 

At present, Danny Drinkwater is in 9% of teams and it is puzzling to understand why. Despite contributing 8 assists last season, this is not a Leicester City team about to win the league again, and while Drinkwater proved an astute pick in the closing stages of the last seasons
miracle campaign, he will always be more of a defensive midfielder than a number 10.

With cheaper options tearing up the league such as Etienne Capoue rising in price catching up to Drinkwater, time is running out before his value turns negative itself.

Robert Snodgrass has shown himself more worthy of selection despite having perceived tougher fixtures (Arsenal H, Liverpool A) than Drinkwater. The Scotland International scored a hat trick on duty for his country and has two goals from 4 games this season so far. Compared with Drinkwater’s single assist and the implication is damaging, I think owners should reinvest their £5.5m, with Snodgrass being one of several alternatives.

 

 

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Adam Smith, £4.6m, 5.8% Owned

 

Since scoring a goal against Man united in the opening game week, Adam Smith has been tipped as a decent cheap defender for the FPL this season.

Of course, managers are free to pick whoever they like and over 100,000 transferred Smith in between GW2 and GW4. Rewards of an assist and a goal in GW4 were welcomed most by those who bought him in for GW2 as up until then he had received two blanks.

The fact that Smith has two decent point scores so far this season is promising. His bargain price is attractive too as managers have been advised to find funds for the likes of Aguero and Hazard . It certainly explains why another 80,000 managers have transferred Smith in for GW5.

However, since Bournemouth face two unbeaten sides in their next two fixtures, Man City away in GW5, Everton at home in GW6 I don’t see any positives in making the move now. Smith is a bench option at best for the next two rounds in my opinion, I wouldn’t waste a Free transfer on him yet, even if it were to free up cash.

 

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Poster Idea 7

Core Captain Picks for FPL Gameweek 5

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First of all, I’m privileged to write this my first article for FanFeud and I thank them for the opportunity.

I will be providing three Captain picks each gameweek. In addition to my #CoreCaptain, I will give you my recommendation as the “Safe” choice, as well as the “cheeky” risky pick! In each case I will provide you with valid reasons and stats to support my choices.

 

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ICYMI, the #CoreCaptain pick of Gameweek 4 was Romelu Lukaku (I had him as my own FPL team’s captain) and he scored a hattrick and 17 points in the last gameweek. Sunderland will not want to see him return to the Stadium of Light anytime soon, as he could easily have tacked on another couple of scores in what was a very one-sided fixture on Monday night.

 

 

Now coming on to the Gameweek 5 fixtures, there looks to be a lot of very attractive fixtures for those teams from who we typically look to for our FPL captain. thereby giving ample choices for the armband for fantasy football managers.

 

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The Captain Obvious pick’ of the week is Zlatan Ibrahimovic, currently owned by 63.3% managers and the second highest points scorer in FPL till date. It’s clear that he will be the captain for most of his owners. Manchester United play away to Watford this weekend, who have conceded 16.5 shots per game.

But I recommend you only give Zlatan the armband if you are already above 220 points or within 500K overall rank and want to play safe, else you should try captaining a differential.

 

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The #CoreCaptain pick of the week is Alexis Sanchez. Arsenal play an away fixture against Hull City, who have conceded the highest shots per game (23.5) this season. The Chilean is looking extremely fit and in red hot form. He came on as a 62nd minute sub against Southampton and had 2 shots, more than Ozil(1) and Cazorla(1) and also made 2 key passes in just 28 minutes.

Midweek he scored an equaliser goal against PSG in their UCL fixture and also topped the player ratings in that match. He is still owned by just 13.6% and might not be given the armband by many due to his 1 point return last time around, so he can trigger a massive jump in your rank if he has the kind of game of which he is capable.

 

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The final ‘Cheeky-Risky’ pick of the week is none other than Kelechi Iheanacho. Owned by just 4.1% and playing a home game against the weak Bournemouth side, it is very tempting reason to make him your captain for GW5. Bournemouth have conceded 16 shots per game this season and an offensive Man City team under Pep Guardiola will be making most of these chances. It is fair to expect a high scoring match here, despite Aguero’s absence. Man City has won last two fixtures against Bournemouth with scores 5-1 and 4-0 respectively.

 

That’s it for this week’s captain picks. You can follow me on twitter @FPLantarctican for regular FPL tips & tweaks & casual football banter.

 

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Poster Idea 7

 

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