The Digest – Gameweek 16

Filed under: The Digest - Posted by: Paul

Our last look at the Gameweek just gone includes Arsenal’s resurgent winger, the step up in performances from the Red half of Merseyside and the potential upturn in Fantasy prospects over at the Lane in light of Andre Villas-Boas’ dismissal.

The Player

It’s been a long time coming but finally, after 16 Gameweeks of the season, Theo Walcott is back in the Fantasy frame. While the main source of Fantasy discussion from Saturday’s nine-goal Etihad thriller centres around Sergio Aguero’s calf injury, the Gunners wide-man served notice that he’s set to offer us a timely differential prospect for our five-man midfields. Since recovering from abdominal surgery, Walcott had previously chipped in with a couple of assists over four brief sub appearances but his manager’s reluctance to hand him a first start since Gameweek 4 ensured most were happy to steer clear. Until now.

Walcott’s brace at the Emirates wasn’t enough to prevent his side slipping to a stunning 6-3 defeat but you have to put it in context – City had conceded just twice in the previous seven home games under Manuel Pellegrini. As Olivier Giroud continues to toil up top for the league leaders, with two strikes from open play in his last 10 league starts, Walcott’s eye for goal looks vital as Wenger looks to steady the ship – all the more so given that he’s set to welcome Chelsea to the Emirates next weekend.

With Aaron Ramsey finding a place in over 62% of Fantasy Premier League (FPL) sides and fellow Gunner Mesut Ozil also fourth most popular midfielder with an ownership over 27%, Walcott – currently sitting in just 4% of sides – looks an ideal alternative to a template that has barely changed over the season.

Given that both Ramsey and Ozil chipped in with an assist apiece on Saturday, their owners will be happy to hold, allowing those Fantasy managers on the lookout for new blood to benefit from Walcott’s acquisition. After the Chelsea game, it’s West Ham, Newcastle, Cardiff, Villa and Fulham for Wenger’s side – a schedule that could well see the bandwagon pick up speed as Walcott looks to belatedly make a difference to our Fantasy campaigns and keep the Gunners on course for the title.

The Team

On Sunday afternoon, Liverpool rolled up to the Lane without their skipper on board for the first time this term. Sidelined for a number of weeks with a hamstring injury, many felt Steven Gerrard’s absence would see the Merseysiders struggle – he has, after all, created more goalscoring chances than any other midfielder in the Premier League so far. The collective lack of faith was summed up by our Captain’s Poll, where Luis Suarez was no more than fifth and, with a single clean sheet in their previous 12 league fixtures, Brendan Rodgers’ side were far from favourites in the eyes of many.

What transpired was a performance so ruthless it left Tottenham without a manager by this time yesterday after Daniel Levy handed Andre Villas-Boas his marching orders. A shift to 4-3-3 saw Joe Allen and Lucas provide a defensive shield in front of the back-four and not only delivered a rare clean sheet, but also allowed Jordan Henderson to forage forward through the middle in support of Suarez and help himself to a goal and assist in the 5-0 rout. At 5.9, Henderson’s new central role has attracted plenty new suitors already this week after his season-high haul of 13 points, while Raheem Sterling (4.9) has now started each of the last four and found the net twice.

With Philippe Coutinho and Sterling supplying pace and trickery out wide, neither Gerrard or Daniel Sturridge were missed as Suarez found the time and space to dismantle yet another top-flight backline and serve up his seventh set of double figures in just 11 appearances. Averaging 12.3 points per game, the Uruguayan has taken our Fantasy expectations to a new level this season –for all his consistency, Robin van Persie managed “only” 6.9 ppg for United last time around – a tally that looks positively paltry by comparison.

It’s fair to say that providing Gerrard was fit, he’d have played on Sunday but a stroke of fate has afforded Rodgers the opportunity to tinker. Perhaps by default, he seems to have struck upon a set-up that affords his side the balance at both ends of the pitch that he’s been striving all season to achieve. Upcoming trips to City and Chelsea will certainly test that theory but it’s becoming more than apparent that Liverpool, like Suarez, are a different prospect altogether this season.

The Talking Point

The dismissal of Villas-Boas, just one day after Steve Clarke’s departure from West Brom, takes the number of clubs to have changed manager already this season to five. Palace, Fulham and Sunderland have, to differing degrees, all benefitted from their decisions to pull the plug on previous managers. Tony Pulis has made a real difference to the Eagles’ defence and has brought the likes of Julian Speroni, Joel Ward , Barry Bannan and even Marouane Chamakh onto our radars. Rene Meulensteen has reignited Dimitar Berbatov as a Fantasy force, whilst Sunderland have defeated Newcastle and City at the Stadium of Light and registered three clean sheets in the last six under Gus Poyet.

Whilst a trip to Southampton this weekend is by no means easy, the following four Gameweeks hand Tottenham the chance to bounce back from Sunday’s mauling. West Brom, Stoke and Palace all roll up to the Lane over that period and hint at a reason for optimism, allowing some of their main protagonists the chance to stake a claim for our consideration once again.

There’s no denying Tottenham toiled in attack but, despite their failings, still managed more shots than any other side in the Premier League in the first 16 Gameweeks. One look at the stats of a trio of their summer signings shows that the club aren’t lacking in firepower– Roberto Soldado scored 59 league goals in three seasons at Valencia, Erik Lamela managed 15 goals and five assists for Roma last year, whilst Christian Eriksen produced 17 goals and 36 assists in his final two seasons at Ajax. A bloated first-team squad led to continual tinkering from Villas-Boas and ultimately ensured that his numerous new acquisitions never had the opportunity to settle as first-team regulars – consistency of selection looks vital of Spurs are to improve.

At the back, it’s easy to forget that Spurs started the season with seven clean sheets in the first 11 matches, conceding just six goals over that period. The floodgates opened at City back in Gameweek 12 in a 6-0 defeat that Villas-Boas failed to properly recover from. With the Portuguese boss now banished, the slate can be wiped clean and potentially reignite our Fantasy interest in Tottenham’s potential as they look to regroup after Sunday’s humiliation at home.

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  1. so , i am not the only person wich is temped to C Rooney insated of Suarez?

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Hows the selling of the christmas trees going ????

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. great ,as always

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. Yep

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    3. You're brave Forca, was seriously burnt last week for doing the same.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    4. Do it Forca.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    5. I was brave enough last week, not going to be burnt the same way two weeks in a row.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    6. Difficult, just brought him (Rooney) in for Aguero and while he didn't get much this weekend he was heavily involved - another day could be a different story. But then Suarez is on fire and I can't see anyone stopping him in this form, depends if you need a differential to gain - I'm doing ok so will probably stick with Suarez, if you're trying to catch someone with a similar team then Rooney would be worth a punt.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    7. Tempted but it's still not going to happen not after the lukaku episode last week.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    8. Don't be silly now.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  2. RP: bottom of page

    Pick 2 to play...

    A) Terry vs Arsenal

    B) Chester vs WBA

    C) Luna vs Stoke

    D) Ward vs Newcastle

    *other defender is Coleman

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Chester and Ward

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. HVT

      Terry ward

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Expected.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. Predictable.

      What he didn't mention is that Hazard will feature the most 😉

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
        • 2 years, 1 month ago
    3. Time to pick up Essien!

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. Poor Essien, 4 YC in 4 games


        • 2 years, 1 month ago
        1. And now it's 5 in 5!

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
    4. No matter...whatever happens with Hazard happens for most FPL teams...which must be high proportion of decent teams.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  3. Any news on Koscielny?

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. French newspaper claims he will be back within 10 or 15 days max.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. Cheers

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
        1. I am benching him, arsenal fixtures are looking solid after Chelski game.

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
  4. Is Sterling Nailed on?

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Yes for the time being.good option too

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. Yes, he has dazzled to say the least, pretty sure he has staved off Moses breaking into the team

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    3. Should be after that delightful display over the weekend. Was a real live wire.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  5. Afternoon. Team for this GW:


    Coleman Ward Chester Flanagan

    Ozil Ramsey Hazard

    Rooney Suarez Negredo

    // Brady / RMorrison / Collins

    2.6m in the bank.

    Already done a transfer. Not happy with midfield for this week but can't see any worthwhile transfers (for -4). Leave it?

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. You're set, don't need anymore transfers. That defence has some CS pts in it and nice attack.

      I would personally play RMorrison over Ward or Chester (probably Ward), he has a point to prove vs his old club and he could be explosive. I don't fancy a Palace CS, Newcastle are gelling at the moment

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. Interesting. Didn't really think of RM being an option this week. Thanks.

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
        1. Most likely is that both Ward and Morrison will get 2 pts, but RMorrison has the potential to get some attacking points.

          1. Only spark in Wham's attack
          2. United have been shaky at the back on more than one occasion this season (admittedly they looked much better last game, but vs a poor Villa side).
          3. He's back at Old Trafford after essentially being kicked out for bad behaviour despite being hailed a talent; he'll have a few eyes on him for sure.

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
  6. Tempted like I'm tempted to order a vindaloo every time I go in a curry house, and then common sense takes over.

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Reply fail to Forca above

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  7. who is anti-Suarez C this gw?

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. No such thing anymore.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. people who are morons

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    3. Only those with balls of steel!

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    4. People who hate points.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    5. I wish I was but being anti-Suarez C last week cost me!

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    6. People who wants to fail intentionally.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    7. That's what you call just overthinking it. Often leads to fantasy woes whenever you don't go with the obvious.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  8. What do you guys think of Mirallas as a differential?

    Would mean no City cover though 😕

    Hazard - Walcott - Ramsey - Silva/ Mirallas

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Great differential imo, will look into get him in next week.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. Silva's still a differential. Lukaku is enough Everton cover imo.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    3. I have him in hoping it'll work out. I have no city coverage either.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    4. did you sold that lil frustrated cout already?

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. Not yet. Really considering getting Walcott for a hit. But might just wait until after CAR :(

        How's your team looking?

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
    5. Good differential. Only worry is it seems like he's always the first to get subbed off.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  9. Not expecting much this gw to be honest. 4 of mine facing each other - Hazard, Özil, Ramsey, Szczesny. Suarez (c) though.

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
  10. Is Valencia nailed on for Utd?
    Percentage likely to start ?

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
  11. So you're tellin me that Gary Hooper faces the bottom (or top) 3 teams in goals against in next 4?

    Papa Likey!

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Aguero > Hooper

      Can buy myself a new yacht and get points (in fantasy premier league of course)

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. I'd buy myself a nice Catalina 385 sailing yacht.

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
  12. Rooney C it is - no guts no glory

    when (if) Suarez goes crazy my season could be over but this is week i have to take a gamble and see what happens

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. I wouldnt take that gamble.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. why not

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
        1. Because minimum 70% of FPL will make him captain. He smashes again and you are out of race completely.

          This is week is a no no for captain gamble in my view.

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
          1. prerfect week for me i think

            -everyone taking points hit

            -like you said 80% will C Suarez if he blank i could go up

            that dosnt seem likely but still....there is a chanse

            • 2 years, 1 month ago
            1. I recommend to take that risk on next gw, not this one.

              • 2 years, 1 month ago
            2. You're havin' a laugh, aren't ya?

              • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. I don't think you do it, will change last minute to suarez

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. we'll see about it

        i enjoy too doing opposit thing to everyone else , even if that means my downfail

        i am men of honuor

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
        1. you are men of honour but also men who goes down ranking

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
    3. Thats what i'm doing... So many sheep on here

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. Seems like some of you need to take another look at Suarez's history for this season. Points everywhere. His stocking overfloweth. But, whatever. You go right ahead with your other captain while us "sheep" roam into another bountiful pasture.

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
        1. Sheeping for the win - from 1.6millionth to top 500 in 16 easy weeks... 😀

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
        2. If I seem a little edgy and pushy on this topic, I'm just sick of people saying things like people who captained Suarez this past gameweek are lucky and that we're "sheep" if we do it again this gameweek. Don't be sore because you missed the boat. It's not our fault.

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
          1. Exactly, it's like all the "iSheep" bollocks, people make good choices for quality product and they're sheep, people make wise captain choices and they're sheep. Smacks of bitterness and resentment to me.

            Suarez is a sensible choice, Rooney is a good potential differential IF you need it.

            • 2 years, 1 month ago
            1. Now, this is a sensible person talking here. Refreshment for the brainage.

              • 2 years, 1 month ago
    4. The week to do it is when suarez is away to city or chel

      this week is plain stupid not captaining suarez

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    5. Do it for one of the games 26th or 29th dec

      Alot will forget to change their captain for these games

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  13. Oscar likely to start tonight?
    Etoo or Ba?
    Want to pick an anytime goalscorer

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Cheeky punt on De Bruyne to score 😉

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  14. Got to decide which player out of Vertongan or Koscielny to change for Coleman. Any thoughts?

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Vert, kos is back soon.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
      1. Kos isn't back soon. With the fixture congestion he will likely miss 3 gameweeks

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
        1. Some sources claims he will be out 10 to 15 days, 3 games is not that bad imo. If bench coverage is good, why to spend transfer on a defender?

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
      2. Can't find anything on how long Kos is likely to be out for

        • 2 years, 1 month ago
        1. So eone posted l'equipe news 3 or4 pages back.

          • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. Vertonghen..he is ridiculously expensive for the state of his team at the moment. I wouldn't value him as anymore than a 5.5 player.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    3. Vert out.. Kos won't be out for long and Arsenal's fixtures until Feburary are niceee.

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    4. Sounds like a bit of a gamble re who is back first, so will prob go for Kos.....better team and nice fixtures. Thanks ladsj

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  15. What would you prefer: (with Rooney Suarez Lukaku up front)

    A) Hazard Walcott Yaya/Silva Ramsey Morrison


    B) Hazard Ozil Nasri Ramsey Morrison

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. A with Yaya no brainer

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
    2. Tough call..but you can be sure of one thing..there's a much higher chance of injuries with Wally and Silva( rather than yaya) than the second option

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  16. New Article Posted
  17. How many Ramsey owners are considering selling soon (possibly to upgrade directly to Wally/Ozil)?

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. I'm keeping Ozil and upgrading Ramsey to Wally in 2/3 GWs

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  18. Rooney for captaincy ..

    • 2 years, 1 month ago
    1. Suarez perma cap. It's his new name now

      • 2 years, 1 month ago
  19. Howard - Lewis
    TERRY - Mert - Coleman - Burner - Clyne
    JANUZAJ - Hazard - Silva - Ramsey - Ravel
    Suarez - Negredo - Lukaku

    A) Terry + Januzaj -> Evans + Walcott (-8)
    B) do A next week for a -4
    C) Terry -> Evans (-4) this week and Januzaj -> Walcott next week (hopefully for free, pending injuries)
    D) just stick and forget CS points for this week..

    • 2 years, 1 month ago

Scout Picks

Gameweek 25

  • Forster
  • Janmaat
  • Williams
  • Alderweireld
  • Wijnaldum
  • André Ayew
  • Dele Alli
  • Roberto Firmino
  • Sánchez
  • Aguero
  • Kane
  • Moreno
  • Arnautovic
  • Giroud

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The Watchlist


Last updated: 26 Jan, 2016 10:34pm
Player Club Factors
Up Hennessey CPL C, Vs, £
Down Butland STO C, Vs
Up Schmeichel LEI A
Up Forster SOT A
Up Courtois CHE B, Vs
Up Fabianski SWA A
No Change Boruc BOU B
No Change De Gea MUN B
No Change Cech ARS B, VsX
Up Foster WBA C, VsX


Last updated: 3 Feb, 2016 9:04am
Player Club Factors
Up Ivanovic CHE A, Vs
Up van Dijk SOT A
Down Baines EVE B, Vs
Up Dann CPL C, Vs
Up Cresswell WHM B, Vs
Up Williams SWA A
No Change Dawson WBA C
Down Alderweireld TOT B
No Change Daniels BOU A, £
No Change Fuchs LEI A
No Change Van Aanholt SUN A, VsX
Down Bellerín ARS C, VsX
Down Smalling MUN C
Down Moreno LIV C, Vs
Down Johnson STO B
Down Kolarov MCI B, Rest, Inj


Last updated: 3 Feb, 2016 11:14pm
Player Club Factors
No Change Payet WHM B, Vs
Up Roberto Firmino LIV A, Vs, OoP
Up Dele Alli TOT A, Inj
Up Barkley EVE C, Vs
Up André Ayew SWA A, OoP
Up Eriksen TOT A
Down Ozil ARS C, VsX
No Change Mahrez LEI C, VsX
Up Sánchez ARS C, VsX, Inj
Up Antonio WHM A, Vs, Rest, £
No Change Willian CHE B, Vs, Inj
No Change Wijnaldum NEW B
Down Arnautovic STO C, Vs, Inj
Up Silva MCI C
No Change Johnson SUN B, VsX


Last updated: 3 Feb, 2016 11:14pm
Player Club Factors
No Change Aguero MCI A
No Change Kane TOT B
Up Vardy LEI C
Up Diego Costa CHE A, Vs, Inj
No Change Ighalo WAT C, VsX
Up Rooney MUN A
Down Lukaku EVE C, Vs
No Change Giroud ARS B, VsX, Rest
Up Afobe BOU A, £
Down Austin SOT B, Inj

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
Colback NEW 9
Byram WHM 9
Lucas LIV 8
Jones SUN 8
Yacob WBA 8
Westwood AVL 7
Diego Costa CHE 7
Huth LEI 7
Can LIV 7
Mangala MCI 7
Shelvey NEW 7
Pieters STO 7
Dele Alli TOT 7
Dier TOT 7
Noble WHM 7

“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