Thanks to all who sent through questions this past week, we’ve got most of them in and the lads have got at them. Get comfy for a bumper edition!
How do you you say “we wos fookin robbed la” in Catalan?
1. Trading Vardy out seems wise now with his decline and abundance of other forward options, but is Mahrez still a hold?
Matt. I’ve given Mahrez a decent paragraph in the stock market, but the short answer is no. Mahrez has been stripped of penalty duties, of which he has scored 4 this season. He has also now blanked in 5 consecutive gameweeks, and Leciester are struggling going forward. The problem is the lack of viable replacements, which earns Mahrez a couple more weeks. Hell, he’s deserved a month off!
Baysie. Put it this way, he won’t finish the season in my team. But when I dump him is the question I have to get to grips with because that’ll be it then… He’s got 2 home games against Stoke and Liverpool to come, I’ll hold him through those before I trade him out for their trips to Man City and Arsenal.
Liam. That statistics say Mahrez has significantly declined. The penalties would have covered up this decline but it wasn’t to be, even worse it would reduce his flying confidence. With the fixtures to come its tough to hold onto him but with pressing issues such as finding room for Aguero he might have to stay in our squads for now.
Bio. I would hold him for a few more games. Of course he’s been blanking lately (and those penalties were quite frustrating), but he’s also proved he was no flash in the pan. I feel like he deserves a chance. Furthermore his ownership is still very high so if he goes big again you’ll be sorry.
Harrison. Rumour has it that Mahrez has been taken of penalty duties, which diminishes his appeal somewhat. For me it’s a real close call but most likely an upgrade to Payet. With the season he’s had, more than reasonable to hold.
2. Aguero in for Lukaku or Ighalo?
Matt. Not Lukaku. He is still a big threat, Everton are still scoring and they have 2 awesome home fixtures coming up. If you can get guys like Vardy or Ighalo to Kun, then I’m all for it. You need to fit him in somewhere!
Baysie. Yeah I’d trade Ighalo. I think we’ll be looking towards more conventional forward lines for the last third of the season with no cheapies. Maybe Aguero, Lukaku and Kane? That said, Naismith to Norwich is interesting.
Liam. I would try and find cash elsewhere and move on Ighalo if possible. Watford’s form has taken a little bit of a turn, they are a promoted team after all.
Bio. Igahlo if you can afford it. Lukaku is a more of a known quantity in the EPL and he has a few tasty fixtures to come.
Harrison. Ighalo. Ighalo’s run seems to have dried up. Lukaku hasn’t been great of recent either although has good fixtures to come.
3. Who do you see as being the top 3 point scoring midfielders between now and the end of the season?
Matt. My number 1 is Sanchez. That’s a risky option considering we haven’t seen him return from injury, but I think he’s going to fire. Alexis is straight in for me when he returns. At number 2 I’ve got De Bruyne. He has proven he’s capable of going big, and with Aguero now fully fit I think Man City will start putting teams to the sword like they did to Palace on the weekend. At number 3 I’ve got Payet. His set pieces are deadly, and West Ham are relying on him to carry them forward. Dimitri will be going to a top 4 club next season for certain, he’s a class above most! Ozil will be around the mark if he’s at full fitness, whilst Silva might be a smokey to fire in the 2nd half.
Baysie. Sanchez, then a country mile to Silva if he gets regular minutes… Firmino as a smokey. Both Silva and Sanchez will be mentally refreshed after injury and minute management in recent weeks and will be crucial to both their teams’ push to the top spot. Firmino has shown glimpses of huge point scoring potential but needs to put a run together.
Liam. Its been such a crazy season I don’t think I can do this question justice.16 games is quite a while and teams tend to switch off towards the end of the season when there is little to play for making it so unpredictable. 1. Sanchez; 2. KDB / Silva; 3. Payet. Roughie: Oscar if he stays on penalties after that Terry like slip up.
Bio. Let me ask my crystal ball 🙂 I’m going to say Payet and… Sanchez for a punt! Third, Silva.
Harrison. Very tough question. Depends on so many factors. If Chelsea pick up and Hazard is fit again, can he make a late season surge? We’ve seen Mahrez and Leicester drop off, is the same on the horizon for West Ham and Payet. Those three could definitely break into the top 3 depending on how things pan out, however if I’d have to have a punt I’d say the top 3 would be; 1. Silva. Assuming he stays fit, this guy is the creative of hub of the best attacking side in the league. Also when fit, much more consistent than De Bruyne. 2. Sanchez. Again fitness dependent. Arsenal are going to make a real run for the title this year, alike to Hazard at Chelsea last year, Sanchez could hold the key to glory out there on the lw. 3. This one is Ozil v De Bruyne. It could come down to which side can win the title and whether or not De Bruyne’s explosiveness can match Ozils consistency.
4. Is Baines worth a punt?
Matt. Honestly, I won’t be touching an Everton defender again if I can help it. They’re hopeless defensively. I’ve had my experience with Coleman, and it wasn’t pleasant. Is he worth the punt? Sure, on his day Baines can go huge. If he’s on penalties, then I might be persuaded… A defender on set pieces is always worth a punt.
Baysie. Nooo. Go cheap in defence and invest your money up the field. Our defence is just the worst and won’t improve this season, maybe not even whilst Gaffer Bobby is around. What I think will harm Bainesy’s attacking chances is the lack of continuation through that left wing position. He relies a lot on that position to feed him go balls which give him time to get it into the box. He might still have his freekicks in the drawer, but the penalties have gone to Lukaku. Or Mirallas has been getting some minutes lately so who the hell knows.
Liam. I was mulling over a move for the lad before the Chelsea game. Everton are leaking goals, they are very mid table and his not on penalties anymore. The reason I didn’t invest is because I have major issues elsewhere in dealing with Vardy / Mahrez and needing Aguero / Diego Costa there isn’t room for dealing with a premium defender in a very average defence taking up all the hard earned left over cash. Please read this article, it explains a lot about Everton: http://statsbomb.com/2016/01/everton-where-is-the-luck/
Bio. Interesting one! On the one hand Everton’s defense has been.. well.. shit, on the other hand Baines is a top scorer among defenders. I don’t think I would do it right now as I want to keep money for my midfield and attack but then again it depends on your risk profile. A good differential for sure.
Harrison. At that price for a defender you need some reason to believe clean sheets are on the horizon. Everton’s defence has been woeful so far this season, it’s a no for me.
5. Have we missed Rooney’s run of form, or has it still got some gas left in the tank?
Baysie. He might have a game or two left but that’s pushing it. Sir Alex said a couple of weeks ago that Rooney always goes on goal scoring sprees after a barren run. We should have listened to the old bugger.
Liam. Every season I wait until Rooney is fit and firing and trade him in with low ownership and watch the masses jump on as I ride out his form and massive price rises. This season feels different with him declining and United playing a low creation brand of football. A few of his goals have been penalties which are great for fantasy managers but unlikely to continue given how little United attack. His confidence is certainly on the up and I expect him to build on his low figure of 3 goals from the first half of the season. A fantasy option, the jury is currently out. As a big Rooney fan over the fantasy years it would be nice to have more confidence in United’s style of play but if anybody can pull them to the champions league it is Wayne Rooney.
Bio. I think Rooney is a great punt! He’s been in very good form lately and I could see United fighting hard to get that Champion’s league spot. Furthermore I don’t think he’s ever been that cheap in the history of FPL. If Lukaku and Kane didn’t have such good fixtures in the short term, Rooney would come straight in.
Harrison. As a United fan I have no confidence in anything that’s going on there right now. Unfortunately that includes Rooney too. Worth a punt perhaps, just not for me.
Thanks for turning up, keep an eye on twitter and keep sending those questions through!