The Watchlist – Antonio Valencia

Filed under: The Watchlist - Posted by: stilicho

Few men would envy the task of filling Cristiano Ronaldo’s golden slippers. When the Portuguese prima donna eloped from Manchester to Madrid in the summer of 2009, a club accustomed to stepping out with the Premier League’s prom queen could be forgiven for not immediately embracing the wholesome qualities of his replacement..

Doggedly supplying that deficit of glamour with industry and unselfishness since his arrival, Antonio Valencia has forged virtue of necessity and wrought himself a hard-won place in the hearts of the fans. If the Stretford End still secretly dreams of step-overs past, it wakes gladly divorced from the illusion that the value of a final ball depends on any preceding pirouettes.

Investment in the United midfield has been pregnant with rotational pitfalls since Ronaldo’s departure, but with Nani out of favour and new acquisition Shinji Kagawa deployed centrally or wide left, Valencia is currently relieved of credible understudies for his blooming duet with Rafael on the right. With four assists to his credit already in an injury-interrupted start and only a baffling, if hilarious, miskick robbing him of a tap-in against Arsenal two weeks ago, a big haul may be just around the corner for the former Wigan man as the goals flow and fixtures ease for the Reds.

Averaging a gnat’s whisker under three strikes a game since their opening day defeat at Everton, a run comprising (nor, QPR, WHM, rdg) in the next four Gameweeks seems likely to further augment that impressive average. Still smarting from last season’s goal-difference title defeat at the hands of their noisy neighbours, Ferguson has publicly set the pass mark at 100 notches on the goal post this time out and, with four goals and 14 assists last year, Valencia certainly has the Fantasy Premier League (FPL) pedigree to profit from a more ruthless offensive philosophy.

With the likes of Gareth Bale, Eden Hazard and Santi Cazorla somewhat treading water at the pricy end of the midfield spectrum, Fantasy managers may feel more at liberty to chance their arm on less celebrated candidates. Whilst out-and-out wingers have taken something of a back seat to “in the hole” midfield picks thus far, few wide men have access to the quality of the targets Valencia enjoys. Currently priced at 8.6 in FPL (7.9 in the Sky Sports game), the Ecuadorian dynamo looks primed to buck the trend and deliver strong value from out wide as United look to go forth and conquer over the coming weeks.

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“I never make predictions and I never will”


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  1. Have i missed something with this Hernanadez chap ?...has he suddenly been given a regular starting slot at United or has the world just got a bit transfer mad...

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
    1. no its knee jerking at its worst

      • 3 years, 14 days ago
    2. Fuelled by a double figure haul plus the promise of a start against Norwich. But ultimately people buying him will be the same people who are asking who they should buy to replace Hernandez a few weeks down the line.

      To which the reply will of course be Berbatov :)

      • 3 years, 14 days ago
    3. I think Its the kind of transfer yu can make if you're happy with the rest of your team.

      Ferguson has said he'll start this wknd. If he does then (on his current form) he's worth having for a few weeks. Hard to see anyone else as likely to score for the same money

      • 3 years, 14 days ago
      1. Yeah, happy with my team so I did a luxury transfer Aguero > Hernandez, then after City fall out of CL next week I'm getting Aguero back in. 1-2 week punt at most.

        • 3 years, 14 days ago
      2. i didn't know he'd said that...then why not...if he even sniffs another goal he'll rise by 0.6 over two weeks giving 0.3 extra spends...

        • 3 years, 14 days ago
  2. A .Ruiz and Rafael
    B Ba and Davies

    long term

    my main 11 would be with option A


    Baines Rafael Cuellar

    Nolan Mata Bale Hazard Fellaini

    Berbatov Suarez

    subs - Ruiz Cameron Gorkss

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
  3. Whats the opinion on this team?

    Begs (foster)
    demel hughes baines (gallas, gibbs)
    caz michu hazard sterling (maloney)
    ba berba RVP

    Have 1 FT.Not too worried about the numerous minor injuries as many will be on the bench. Is it a straight forward hazard/caz to fellaini. Or Nolan?

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
  4. Michu and Tevez transfer out for Fellaini and Jelavic? 4 pts hits

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
    1. Not when tevez has that fixture next with a guaranteed start! Crazy!

      • 3 years, 14 days ago
  5. Is there a second wildcard available around the Christmas period?

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
  6. Have 2x FTs & want do do aguero>berb for one, which pretty much allows me to do anyone>anyone after that. Morrison>silva perhaps?

    Baines, nelsen, shawx
    Morison, caz, hba, michu
    RVP, Aguero, ba

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
    1. I'd prefer to keep Morrison over hba

      • 3 years, 14 days ago
  7. One free transfer this week.
    Walters > Silva
    Michu > Silva
    Caz > Silva
    I really want Silva! But who to get rid of?
    Any advice please.

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
    1. 100% dump Walters.

      • 3 years, 14 days ago
  8. Yo stephenl15 who are you?! Are you a regular on here?

    Bebe United sounds familiar for some reason.

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
  9. Im feeling captioning Suarez this week rather than Rvp,is this madness? still in paddy power cup, person I'm playin has not got Suarez

    • 3 years, 14 days ago
  10. another stellar article Stilicho 😀

    • 3 years, 13 days ago
    1. No it's total dribble from someone with too many thesaurus's in the bookshelf.

      • 3 years, 13 days ago
  11. current midfield
    Bale - Hazard - Mata - Sterling - Fellaini

    Bale -> Silva ?
    Hazard -> Valencia ?
    What i am left with is not enough to do Sterling -> Nolan

    • 3 years, 13 days ago
  12. Who should i drop out of Pienaar, Cazorla and Sterling?

    • 3 years, 13 days ago

Scout Picks

Gameweek 14

  • Butland
  • Dann
  • Cresswell
  • Moreno
  • Walters
  • De Bruyne
  • Ozil
  • Roberto Firmino
  • Ighalo
  • Kane
  • Lukaku
  • Bellerín
  • King
  • Vardy

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The Watchlist


Last updated: 24 Nov, 2015 6:59pm
Player Club Factors
No Change De Gea MUN A
Up Mignolet LIV C, Vs
Up Butland STO A, VsX
No Change Hennessey CPL B, Vs, Rest, £
Up Gomes WAT B
Up Lloris TOT B, Vs
Up Pantilimon SUN C, VsX
Up Adrián WHM C, Vs
No Change Cech ARS B
Down Begovic CHE C, Rest
No Change Myhill WBA B
No Change Stekelenburg SOT B
No Change Howard EVE C
No Change Hart MCI B


Last updated: 24 Nov, 2015 6:55pm
Player Club Factors
Up Moreno LIV B, Vs
Up Dier TOT B, Vs, OoP
Down Bellerín ARS B, Vs
Up Coleman EVE B, Vs
No Change Smalling MUN A
Down Otamendi MCI B, Rest
Up Zouma CHE B, Vs
Down Dann CPL B
Down van Dijk SOT B, VsX
Up Cresswell WHM C, Vs
No Change Janmaat NEW C
Up Simpson LEI B, £
Up Wollscheid STO A, VsX
No Change Dawson WBA C, VsX


Last updated: 27 Nov, 2015 2:34pm
Player Club Factors
No Change Ozil ARS A, Vs
Up Coutinho LIV A, Vs
Down De Bruyne MCI B
Down Sánchez ARS C, Vs
No Change Mahrez LEI A, VsX
Up Eriksen TOT B, Vs
Up Barkley EVE A, Vs
Down Mane SOT B, VsX
No Change André Ayew SWA B
Up Deulofeu EVE A, Vs
Down Wijnaldum NEW A
No Change Lanzini WHM B, £
Up Bolasie CPL B
No Change Willian CHE B
No Change Tadic SOT B, VsX


Last updated: 24 Nov, 2015 6:53pm
Player Club Factors
Up Lukaku EVE A, Vs
Up Kane TOT A, Vs
Up Aguero MCI C, Inj
No Change Vardy LEI A, VsX
Up Ighalo WAT A
Up Diego Costa CHE C, Vs
Down Pellè SOT C, VsX, Sus
No Change Giroud ARS A, Rest
No Change Martial MUN C, Inj
Down Benteke LIV B, Rest

Selection Factors

A, B, C Current Form
Vs Favourable Fixtures
VsX Unfavourable Fixtures
Rest Rotation Risk
Inj Injured/Returning from Injury
OoP Out of Position
£ Potential Bargain
Sus Suspended/Near Suspension
Player Team YC
Clark AVL 4
Ritchie BOU 4
Cabaye CPL 4
Zaha CPL 4
McCarthy EVE 4
Huth LEI 4
Can LIV 4
Clyne LIV 4
Mangala MCI 4
Tioté NEW 4
Bassong NOR 4
Romeu SOT 4
Whelan STO 4
Williams SWA 4
Nyom WAT 4
Yacob WBA 4

“All players will blank a few times during the season. When almost all do it in the same Gameweek, it is tough to take, but that's just the dark side of probability.”

Abreu 42 Community regular