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So how was it for you?
An opening Fantasy Premier League weekend which featured plenty of the familiar elements of last season – Robin van Persie scoring goals, Manchester City rotating their forwards, Arsenal’s defenders letting everyone down – will have got you in the mood for the rest of the season, so where do we go from here?
With Manchester United facing Chelsea on Monday night, and plenty of the big boys having tricky looking away games, we’re going to kick-off at Goodison Park this weekend.
Everton impressed in patches of their opening game of the season at Norwich City, an entertaining 2-2 draw which offered a glimpse of the progressive football that the Blues will look to play under new boss Roberto Martinez.
The goals for Ross Barkley (£4.6m) and Seamus Coleman (£5.1m) have seen their prices rise as players rush to add them to their teams, but instead it could pay to back the hosts’ Croatian forward Nikica Jelavic (£7.5m) this weekend.
The 27-year-old registered an assist for Coleman’s goal at Carrow Road, and after his impressive pre-season ensured that his 2012/13 struggles have become a thing of the past, Martinez will again be relying on him in his first home league match in charge of the Blues.
West Brom were poor in losing at home to Southampton last weekend, and with this tricky trip to Merseyside coming hot on the heels of that, Jelavic and company can punish Steve Clarke’s men.
Elsewhere, having notched against Martinez’s side on his Premier League debut last weekend, all eyes will be on Norwich’s Ricky van Wolfswinkel (£7.0m) as the Canaries go to newly-promoted Hull City.
It could be another of the Premier League’s new forwards who have an easier time of it though.
Tottenham’s new main man Roberto Soldado (£9.5m) was the beneficiary of his side’s first Premier League penalty in over a year in Spurs’ match at Crystal Palace last Sunday, when Andre Villas-Boas’ side got off to a solid if unspectacular start.
Transfer business is still very much the order of the day at White Hart Lane as we creep towards the closure of the window, but in Soldado they have already secured a prime goal-getter, and one who should be backed to prolong Swansea’s struggles following last weekend’s defeat to Manchester United.
Spurs’ Spanish forward is likely to be backed up by Aaron Lennon (£7.5m) and Paulinho (£7.0m) on Sunday afternoon, while the return to fitness of Jan Vertonghen (£7.0m) was a welcome boost for the north Londoners at Selhurst Park and he can impress again.
Speaking of impressing, Christian Benteke (£9.0m) opened his season with two goals against Arsenal at the Emirates and a strike against Chelsea, and he’ll now be eyeing up Liverpool this weekend.
The Belgian scored three goals in two appearances against the Reds last season, and although his compatriot Simon Mignolet (£5.5m) was the weekend’s top points scorer thanks to his penalty save against Stoke, the goalkeeper could come under pressure at Villa Park.
For Liverpool, while Daniel Sturridge (£9.0m) opened the season with a goal, his fellow forward Iago Aspas (£7.0m) outscored him in the points department, not to mention Jordan Henderson (£6.0m) also impressed and could be worth considering back at a ground where he scored last season.
Finally, the meeting of Manchester United and Chelsea on Monday could see the pair’s numerous Fantasy stars cancel each other out, so instead it might pay to focus on Manchester City’s trip to Cardiff a day earlier.
Sergio Aguero (£11.0m) found the net against Newcastle, but it was two other men who scored on Monday who could attract attention in the Welsh capital.
David Silva (£9.0m) and Yaya Toure (£8.5m) were trusted members of Roberto Mancini’s team, and they look to be a key part of Manuel Pellegrini’s plans given the way they’ve started.
Heading to Wales they’ll be important again, and can add even more points to their club’s impressive start – both in the Fantasy Premier League and the real one.
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