Talk about a brutal Gameweek, and I’m not just saying that about my team either.
Mostly everyone was gutted by their captain choice last week. Robin van Persie was the most captained and vice-captained player of Gameweek 27. While he still tallied an assist, RVP picked up a fluke hip injury after running into the camera pit and only played 40 minutes. Talk about unlucky. He was seen walking around town the other day and he noted that he was doing fine. We’ll see what Sir Alex Ferguson thinks about that.
Lucky for you, Gareth Bale was above RVP in my captain rankings last week. Unlucky for myself and others that listened, I put Theo Walcott above Bale. Walcott put in a dud at home against Aston Villa while Bale once again beat a team by himself, securing Tottenham’s first and third goals of their match at West Ham.
However, there’s no need to worry as we all have bad weeks and this past weekend, most people had down weeks. Arouna Kone, the man from Wigan, was the top forward and he’s only on 0.8 percent of squads. Santi Cazorla, David Silva and Yaya Toure led the midfielders. While all of those guys are big names, not many were given the captain’s armband. Also of note was Moussa Sissoko whose price will continue to rise as he has found the score sheet in all four of his Premier League appearances.
Defensively, Maynor Figueroa secured a clean sheet, a goal and an assist. Keep in mind he plays for Wigan and did that on the road. Not many people took advantage of his output. In fact, prior to that match, Figueroa only had 35 Fantasy Points at premierleague.com. He got half of that at Reading this past weekend and he’s only missed one game this year.
Mark Scharzer and Joe Hart led the goalkeepers as each of them saved a Penalty Kick. My cover boy last week, David de Gea, also held a clean sheet. Don’t worry, I’m still backing the Spaniard to keep his success rolling.
Look ahead. That’s your main focus when heading to the transfer wire. If you didn’t look ahead for the past gameweek, you were likely stuck with a lot of Swansea/Liverpool players, which in turn led to a very poor week. While every club plays in Gameweek 28, it’s the next one that you should fear. GW29 is set to have just six matches due to FA Cup fixtures.
Chelsea and Everton won both their matches in midweek action, which is the reason for so few matches in Gameweek 29.
Basically, the FA Cup is putting a really big conundrum on your Fantasy team, but this isn’t something out of the ordinary. It happens every year and everyone has to deal with it, so there aren’t huge advantages given out to anyone.
That said, here are some clubs to focus on for the following weeks. Keep in mind, these teams don’t have overwhelmingly easy fixtures, but they will be playing, that’s for certain.
Newcastle: at Swansea, vs. Stoke City, at Wigan
I mentioned a couple Newcastle players last week and they pulled through for me. Luck or smarts? I’ll go with the latter. Defenders Davide Santon and Mathieu Debuchy each had assists in their 4-2 win over Southampton. Both like to get up and down the field on the sides and more assists from them wouldn’t be a surprise.
Midfielder Moussa Sissoko continues to impress. You can usually find him around the net, which is why he has three goals and two assists in only four league matches played. Every year it seems like a January newcomer lives up to the hype and becomes Fantasy gold. That’s what Papiss Cisse did last year and why he still costs a boatload. I’m not spending 8.8m on Cisse, no matter who’s on his schedule.
Sunderland: vs. Fulham, at QPR, vs. Norwich
This is probably the first time all year I’ve recommended the Black Cats as a team. First off, you probably don’t want to add Craig Gardner or Jack Colback because they are normally midfielders, but have played defensively of late. On the back line, Titus Bramble is the best addition at 4.3m.
Between Stephane Sessegnon, Adam Johnson and Steven Fletcher it’s really a tossup because of none of these guys have been consistent at all. Sessegnon got a goal last week, but it was only his fourth of the year. Johnson hasn’t done much in a while and is my pick to do something about that. I’d stay away from Fletcher up front since you don’t want to spend 7.2m on a forward that has scored in only one game out of his last nine.
Swansea: vs. Newcastle, at West Brom
The Swans don’t have great fixtures, but they will be at home in three of their next four. Coming off their Capital One Cup Championship, you have to think their spirits are high. Sure, they got killed in their last Premier League match, but I wouldn’t put too much thought into that game as they sat most of their studs.
Michu is starting to come around again as he has three goals and two assists in his last two matches in all competitions. While he is 8.3m, there is a better reason to buy him because unlike fellow Spaniards, Juan Mata and David Silva, Michu will not miss any upcoming gameweeks.
Pablo Hernandez is my other pick in the midfield. He’s a wizard with the ball and for 5.9m, his odds of getting a goal or assist are pretty solid over the next two matches. Defensively, Angel Rangel is the pick now that Ben Davies costs about the same amount.
If you like living in the moment, these player ranks are done on a week-to-week basis and have nothing to do with Gameweek 29.
- David de Gea, Man United, 5.5m, vs. Norwich
- Joe Hart, Man City, 6.8m, at Aston Villa
- Asmir Begovic, Stoke City, 5.8m, vs. West Ham
- Tim Howard, Everton, 5.4m, vs. Reading
- Artur Boruc, Southampton, 4.4m, vs. QPR
- Patrice Evra, Man United, 7.3m, vs. Norwich
- Leighton Baines, Everton, 7.6m, vs. Reading
- Rafael, Man United, 6.1m, vs. Norwich
- Gael Clichy, Man City, 5.6m, at Aston Villa
- Pablo Zabaleta, Man City, 6.2m, at Aston Villa
- Ryan Shawcross, Stoke City, 6.0m, vs. West Ham
- Nathaniel Clyne, Southampton, 4.1m, vs. QPR
- John O’Shea, Sunderland, 5.0m, vs. Fulham
- Nacho Monreal, Arsenal, 5.5m, at Tottenham
- Brede Hangeland, Fulham, 4.8m, at Sunderland
- Gareth Bale, Tottenham, 10.2m, vs. Arsenal
- Juan Mata, Chelsea, 10.1m, vs. West Brom
- Marouane Fellaini, Everton, 7.8m, vs. Reading
- Steven Gerrard, Liverpool, 9.4m, at Wigan
- David Silva, Man City, 9.3m, at Aston Villa
- Theo Walcott, Arsenal, 9.6m, at Tottenham
- Moussa Sissoko, Newcastle, 6.4m, at Swansea
- Frank Lampard, Chelsea, 8.6m, vs. West Brom
- Santi Cazorla, Arsenal, 9.3m, at Tottenham
- Michu, Swansea, 8.3m, vs. Newcastle
- Yaya Toure, Man City, 7.7m, at Aston Villa
- Luis Suarez, Liverpool, 10.6m, at Wigan
- Sergio Aguero, Man City, 10.9m, at Aston Villa
- Robin van Persie, Man United, 14.0m, vs. Norwich
- Wayne Rooney, Man United, 11.9m, vs. Norwich
- Demba Ba, Chelsea, 8.0m, vs. West Brom
- Rickie Lambert, Southampton, 6.9m, vs. QPR
- Daniel Sturridge, Liverpool, 7.6m, at Wigan
- Olivier Giroud, Arsenal, 8.1m, at Tottenham
- Christian Benteke, Aston Villa, 7.0m, vs. Man City
- Steven Fletcher, Sunderland, 7.2m, vs. Fulham
- Peter Crouch, Stoke City, 6.0m, vs. West Ham
- Kevin Mirallas, Everton, 6.8m, vs. Reading
YOU’RE THE CAPTAIN
- Gareth Bale, Tottenham
- Luis Suarez, Liverpool
- Sergio Aguero, Man City
- Juan Mata, Chelsea
- Marouane Fellaini, Everton
- Theo Walcott, Arsenal
You’ll notice I didn’t place any Manchester United forwards on this list even though they have a very friendly match. It’s too hard to trust one of these players right now, especially with a date with Real Madrid on the horizon. Van Persie picked up an injury last weekend and Rooney was dealing with an illness. All four forwards played at least 30 minutes, but none played more than 60 at QPR.
Gareth Bale is a little easier to trust and he’ll be at home against a susceptible Arsenal defense. Bale now has the second most Fantasy Points of all players, thanks to six goals in his last four league matches.
Wigan is just coming off a road win, but you can’t really trust this back line against the likes of Suarez and Daniel Sturridge up front. Liverpool should be able to get a couple goals on the road.
Aguero is slowly moving up my lists just because you know he’s going to start and play a lot. You can’t say the same about City’s other forwards. While they are on the road, it’s unlikely Villa will be able to stop Man City from finding the back of the net.
Juan Mata has been the forgotten midfielder as of late, but he’ll likely change that at Stamford Bridge against West Brom. I like him more than other options because you know Chelsea will score this week and Mata is always a threat to get a goal or assist.
You can’t forget about Walcott completely. Sure, he didn’t do much in a nice matchup last week, but he had scored or assisted in the five previous games. Tottenham’s defense isn’t rock solid by any means and we could maybe see some fireworks with Bale and Walcott on both sides of the field.
Everton has a very friendly fixture, but I’m not so sure how much you can trust Fellaini right now. He had a brace a few weeks ago, but other than that hasn’t score since Dec. 1. Hopefully, he’ll be able to break out of that slump and help out owners that risk captaining him.
*Stats up-to-date as of Feb. 26