It’s good to be back! Did you escape every injury over the international break? Find me someone who said yes and I’ll find you a liar. If I’m being honest it has been a slow break, even by qualifying standards. Aside from 2 teams (Chelsea, Liverpool) there were very few strong performers last week, thus transfer activity has been relatively low over the two week break. So where to next? Winter is coming…
On The Rise
Alonso – It always feels nice to transfer in a defender and get a clean sheet. But a clean sheet and a goal?! Boom! Chelsea are on fire and it’s no surprise that they are all the rage this week. This clean sheet streak can’t possibly last, but it makes sense to get on board while it lasts. Alonso remains the best option in my opinion.
Pedro – Maybe not such a good option. Yes Pedro has been on fire lately, but I’d suggest he’s just riding Chelsea’s form wave. You could keep swapping between Son to Walcott to Pedro, maybe Eriksen is next?! It’s just a roundabout that never seems to end. Hazard and Costa are your best bets from the Blues.
Coutinho – Not much else to add here that I didn’t touch on before the break. Coutinho is on fire and you can scratch every doubt I’ve had with him from the record. He’s been absolutely key to Liverpool’s success so far this season and is too hard to ignore while he’s priced under 9. Value.
Firmino – Like I said, last week was a story of 2 teams! Firmino isn’t always as involved as Coutinho but he plays his role perfectly as a false nine. 8.7 is a laugh for how much threat Firmino carries, and given Liverpool’s success under Klopp, I’d say owning multiple Liverpool midfielders isn’t a problem at all!
Mane – Does it ever end?! Saido Mane has probably been the purchase of the summer, I certainly didn’t think he had this level of football in him. As good as he has been, do I believe that he’s a better option than Firmino or Coutinho? With Firmino’s central role and Coutinho’s set pieces, I’d be sticking with those two.
Sanchez – Alexis is not in the winners for the fact that he had a huge impact before leaving for international duty, however he has had a successful week. Having been out for a ‘month’ last week, he’s suddenly recovered and scored two goals against Uruguay in a crucial qualifier on Tuesday! He’ll play against United, don’t worry about that.
Sterling – As if 4 games without a goal or assist wasn’t bad enough, Sterling didn’t even play against Middlesborough. He has had a successful international break but even then, is he going to compete with the Liverpool midfielders in that 8-9 price bracket? I severely doubt it. I traded him this week.
Capoue – The train has run well off the rails now, if you’re hanging on to Capoue in hope I’d let it go. Only if he’s on your field! He’s still a great back up alternative. Allen, Redmond or Gundogan are your best value bracket options.
Walcott – It’s not as though Walcott has done anything wrong, yet he has been transferred out by over 60,000 managers. I’m one of them. The main reason? Hazard. I can’t go past Sanchez as a striker and this was my only alternative route to get the Belgian into my squad! Sorry Theo. He remains great value.
Son – Son is in a similar bracket, although you have to feel he was playing out of his league in the first few gameweeks. He still looks one of Spurs biggest threats and should continue to have a good season, but there’s better midfielders out there. I traded a few weeks ago and that’s probably your wisest bet here.
Payet – There’s no denying Payet is a great option and his creative statistics are off the chart this season. However. West Ham have 4 ugly fixtures over the next month, not to mention they are playing appallingly right now. Add on top of this that I could name a plethora of other midfielders producing better returns, it’s hard to fit Dimi in. He could become a great alternative once West Ham turn it around… IF they turn it around. 9.2 is just too expensive in the current Fantasy market!
Lukaku – I have only one question to ask… Why? Costa’s form? What about Lukaku’s? Moving to 5 midfielders to squeeze Hazard in? This just baffles me, but Lukaku has been transferred out by over 100,000 managers. Fickle. I hope it’s none of us!!!
Player of the Week
Hazard – Who else? Hazard is back make no mistake about it, and you need him in your teams. The bloke has contributed to 20+ goals in every season before last and 10.1 is daylight robbery considering his form. 5 goals, 2 assists and 49 points in his last 4 matches really says it all. Gun! The biggest problem for many will be squeezing him in, but if it helps I shifted heaven and earth to make the transfer. Your team just looks so much better with Hazard in it! I just regret ever trading him… Lesson: Stick by your guns.
A Final Word
With a lack of action over the past couple of weeks there hasn’t been much transfer activity in FPL, and I highly agree with that. I was going to mention a couple of weeks ago that patience is required while our premiums struggle, I think they’ve backed up that statement with action. There are quite a few suspensions (5 yellow cards) and this trend will continue through until January. Make sure you know if your player is on the 4 yellow card tightrope! Remember that domestic cup competitions count. Ibrahimovic, Smith and Holebas are noteable names this week and all have been traded out by 50,000+. Ibra may have reached his used by date but the other two… I’d hold. We’ll be heading into the hectic Christmas period sooner than you know it, I’m just glad there’s no more internationals for 3 months!
Good luck this weekend, let’s make it high scoring as always!!!