In a few days time we’ll all be wallowing in the empty void of a fortnight’s international break but, thankfully, it’s Gameweek 7 on our agenda right now. With just a few hours before another deadline, here’s our Catch-Up, helping you to digest the key news and scan the key Scout articles published in the last seven days…
Teamsheet Talking Points
Roberto Mancini’s revelation that he’s set to freshen up his City side for the visit of Sunderland could potentially wreak havoc with Fantasy plans. While the Italian’s intentions seem like good news for owners of Carlos Tevez – we’ve handed him a Scout Picks place on the back of his manager’s comments – there’s a definite worry that the likes of Sergio Aguero and David Silva could be benched for the Black Cats showdown:
“We played on Wednesday night and on Saturday we start at lunchtime – it doesn’t give the players much time to recover which is why I had to rest some players against Dortmund. We need at least five or six of the team to be fresh against Sunderland.”
Turning to the other side of Manchester, Robin Van Persie’s armband potential was given a boost ahead of United’s trip to Newcastle. Alan Pardew has ruled out Tim Krul, Steven Taylor and Fabricio Coloccini from Sunday’s match and with Wayne Rooney back to slot alongside the Dutchman, the visitors’ chances of bouncing back from last week’s loss to Tottenham seem to have taken a turn for the better.
Intriguingly, this week’s “From the Physio” article examined Dimitar Berbatov’s chances of making the Southampton game at St Mary’s. Facer gave the Bulgarian every chance of making the game and, while Martin Jol gave Berbatov just 10% chance of being in contention, it’s interesting that the Fulham boss avoided ruling out a comeback.
This week’s ScoutCast offers its very own brand of weekend preview, listen in to Mark, Granville and “their kids” right here.
This week’s coverage for Gameweek 7 began with Frisking the Fixtures, assessing how the teams are shaping up over the coming weeks and our Watchlist Updated piece zones in on players with more specifics.
We would let the week pass without taking an in depth look at some of those who enjoyed a surge up the Watchlist rankings and this time around we threw you no less than three likely suspects. We’ve taken a look at the burgeoning talents of Southampton’s Uruguayan import Gaston Ramirez, another Belgian defender with a penchant for panache in Jan Vertonghen and Spanish midfielder David Silva, who has been building up a head of steam these last few weeks. Here’s a snippet from the latter…
“The champions currently present a perplexing prospect to Fantasy managers. Whilst the absences of Sergio Aguero and Mario Balotelli allowed Carlos Tevez to make the early season hay, a fully fit front line will surely spell rotation, and with City’s fixtures very much on the up (SUN, wba, SWA, whm, TOT, AVL) potential investors might lament the untimely absence of places to securely hang a hat.”
Our fellowship of Fantasy Football Scout members helped themselves to another couple of exclusive articles as Mark first shone the spotlight on Eden Hazard ahead of Chelsea’s home game with Norwich. With Juan Mata vying for our Fantasy affections within Roberto Di Matteo’s midfield, we delved deep into the statistics to ascertain just why the Belgian’s Fantasy returns have suddenly dried up over the last three Gameweeks.
Guest contributor Chris Glover is always welcome around these parts and he continued his Moneyball series by taking a look at Liverpool’s young prospect and Fantasy steal, Raheem Sterling.
Paul strode out into his Technical Area this week to analyse Roberto Mancini’s recent tactical tweaks. After the experiment of the much talked about three-man defence, our man with the know-how looked at the return to a more ‘standard’ backline…
“After a tricky first five fixtures, it seems that City are finally starting to click. The return to 4-2-3-1, Silva’s improving fitness, Barry and Aguero coming back from injury and Toure in a more advanced role once again – it all bodes well for the champions and for Fantasy managers looking to invest in their attacking assets. With four home games in the next six (SUN, SWA, TOT, AVL) in addition to trips to West Brom and West Ham, it’s lining up to be a potentially prosperous time ahead.”
Over on the Fantasy Premier League website our traditional Thursday Preview under the guise of ‘The Scout’ has been published and awaits your consumption. We’ve got all the usual bells and whistles, with a regular scan of tactics and interesting numbers from the game, on top of another new set of players we have our eye on.
The Scout Selection Committee had a real quandary on their hands this week as we found ourselves spoiled for choice ahead of a Gameweek that looks positive for a whole gamut of players. After much deliberation, Paul finally issued another helping of Scout Picks just a mere few hours ago.
Even more recently, we offered our usual trio of options from a less fashionable pool of talent with our Spot The Differential article.
After a bristling start to his Fantasy career, Eden Hazard has suffered three consecutive blanks, causing his owners to get fidgety. Nevertheless, a home game against a Norwich side who have just conceded five against Liverpool, seems to have restored the faith. Hazard is heading the race for the armband in our Captain poll so far this week with 20% of the vote.
The in-form pair of Gareth Bale and Luis Suarez present strong alternatives, with strikers Fernando Torres and Sergio Aguero also jockeying for position having also notched last time out. It’s a fascinating tussle in a Gameweek that looks set to cause a decent swing across the mini-leagues.
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For Gameweek 38
- van Persie
Next Six Ticker
|No Change||Hart||MCI||B, Vs|
|Up||Robles||WIG||C, Vs, £|
|No Change||Lloris||TOT||C, Vs|
|No Change||Foster||WBA||C, Vs|
|No Change||Vorm||SWA||C, Vs|
|No Change||Mignolet||SUN||B, Vs|
|No Change||De Gea||MUN||A|
|Up||Boruc||SOT||B, Vs, £|
|No Change||Kompany||MCI||B, Vs, Rest|
|No Change||Vertonghen||TOT||A, Vs, Rest|
|Up||Luiz||CHE||A, Vs, Rest|
|Up||Boyce||WIG||C, Vs, OoP|
|No Change||Cuéllar||SUN||B, Vs, £|
|No Change||Rangel||SWA||C, Vs|
|Up||Clyne||SOT||B, Vs, £|
|No Change||Mata||CHE||C, Vs, Rest|
|Up||Hazard||CHE||B, Vs, Rest, Inj|
|Up||Maloney||WIG||B, Vs, £|
|No Change||Y Touré||MCI||B, Vs|
|No Change||Silva||MCI||B, Vs, Inj|
|Up||Tevez||MCI||A, Vs, Rest|
|Up||Koné||WIG||B, Vs, £|
|Down||van Persie||MUN||A, Vs|
|Up||Lukaku||WBA||B, Vs, Rest|
|Down||Aguero||MCI||B, Vs, Inj|
|Up||Rodriguez||SOT||A, Vs, £|
|Up||Defoe||TOT||B, Vs, Rest|
|Up||Ba||CHE||C, Vs, Rest|
|A, B, C||Current Form|
|Inj||Injured/Returning from Injury|
|OoP||Out of Position|
“We have dynamic players with good movement, so if he can link with them fine. He can play a bit higher because his timing getting into the box is very good.”Rafa Benitez talks up the role that Frank Lampard can play in his Chelsea revolution