When playing FPL, the fixtures play a massive part in team selection. Why else have so many of us avoided QPR and Southampton players? Easy. They had dreadful fixtures which saw them pitted against the likes of Man City, Chelsea, Tottenham and Man United in the first few game weeks. So who has the easy runs for the next month? Who will get the chance to play Norwich, Reading, QPR and Southampton?
Let’s take a look at the WINNERS of the next month of fixtures.
The first team that comes to mind is Tottenham. Over the next four weeks, they play Norwich (H), Reading (A), QPR (H) and Man Utd (A). With the exception of the last game, this is a dream run. It’ll finally give Bale and Van der Vaart the easy draws we’ve been wanting, as well as helping Adebayor slip seamlessly back into the Spurs’ lineup. Considering Norwich are perenially terrible defenders, this week alone provides huge potential at White Hart Lane. Let’s wait and see if Adz convinces us to pick Bale again…
Everton, in the form they’re in, also look very tasty over their next weeks.West Brom (A), Newcastle (H) and Swansea(A) in the next two weeks don’t look particularly promising (although they could be much worse), but it’s the Southampton (H) and Wigan (A) following that get me licking my lips. Jelavic/Pienaar/Fellaini will surely get amongst it, and probably even snag a few between them in the first three games. Don’t hesitate if you’re bringing in a Toffee this week!
Swansea have started the season in scintillating form, taking their passing game to a new dimension. The main difference I see between their play under Laudrup and that under Rogers, is that under Laudrup they don’t hassle the opposition as much. Rogers had them playing a style where they would bust their gut 100% to try and get the ball back, which sometimes got them caught out of position. Under Laudrup however, they have maintained their passing style whilst recognising when to sit back and defend. Their fixtures are nothing special, but they don’t play any top 6 sides in this time. They play Sunderland (H), Villa (A), Everton (H) and Stoke (A), and I think they will go into all of those games, bar Everton perhaps, as favourites. Personally I’m bringing in Graham this week, and if you haven’t already got Michu you’re either foolish or deceptively intelligent. The Swans have been keeping clean sheets too, so get around the defensive unit in Rangel, Vorm, Chico and Williams.
Fulham are getting me excited too. They start off with West Ham (A), West Brom (H), before facing Wigan (A) and Man City (H). Ignoring the last fixture, the first three look particularly tasty. Feel free to jump aboard the Cottager’s defensive unit in Schwarzer, Riether, Hangeland and Riise. The midfield looks a bit bare given the transfer of Dembele to Tottenham, but maybe Duff can continue his solid start and be a potential smokey? At 6.1 he is good value. I’m hoping the departure of Dembele doesn’t affect Petric, as most of his chances came from him. It’ll probably mean more to do for Ruiz though, but keep an eye out.
QPR have been rubbish the first two weeks against mid tabled opposition, so I hate to think what Man City (A), Chelsea (H) and Tottenham (A) will do to them in a 3 week terror run. Avoid. Avoid. Avoid.
Norwich are woeful, and their fixtures don’t afford them a break. Tottenham (A), West Ham (H), Newcastle (A) and Liverpool (H) offer them not much of a break (apart from the hammers) so if you have Ruddy between the sticks, I’d suggest getting him out pronto!
Stoke also have a torrid run, where they play Wigan (A), Man City (H), Chelsea (A) and Swansea (H). They will snatch a point or three against Wigan, but I’m not hopeful on the rest. Most teams have Shawcross or Begovic… if you do, make sure you bench them or trade them if you are planning on relying on a clean sheet! Walters might also have to go.
Arsenal rounds out our list of losers. Liverpool (A), Southampton (H), Man City (A) and Chelsea (H) looks tough on paper (except Southampton), so if you were considering bringing in Jenkinson even though his price has risen… I’d consider not. After these four weeks of tricker fixtures Sagna will be ready and ol’ mate Jenko will be bench material again…Don’t say you haven’t been warned! Cazorla is also surprisingly popular, but if you were tossing up between say him and Nasri, I’d be locking in Samir.
So there you have it. In conclusion, don’t hesitate in trading people from the Winners category, and don’t hesitate in trading out people from the Losers. The hard work has been done for you… so pick your team wisely!