Having kicked off our series of rotation articles with a look at the basic principles involved, we now turn our attentions to the most favourable pairings in accordance with the 2014/15 schedule. To get thing underway, we take a look at Stoke and Swansea:

The Fixtures

The Potters and Swans offer Fantasy managers a perfect home/away rotation over the entire 2014/15 campaign. Crucially, both sides have also been handed some very kind opening home fixtures for the first few months – by alternating for every home fixture, you’d face just one of last season’s top seven in the first 14 matches (Swansea’s Liberty clash with Arsenal in Gameweek 11, when Stoke travel to Spurs) in a run that reads (AVL, BUR, WBA, LEI, SOT, NEW, NEW, SWA, LEI, WHM, ARS, BUR, CPL, QPR).

Further analysis of the season ticker shows that over the course of the upcoming campaign, there are only three occasions where both sides face two of last year’s top eight in the same Gameweek (11, 28 and 36). Essentially, then, even where your home keeper has a tough task, the away stopper will offer a decent alternative, which makes this pairing a very enticing option from start to finish.

The Defence

Stoke
In their first season under Mark Hughes, Stoke conceded just a mere 17 goals at the Britannia – the fourth best home defence in the Premier League. The Potters produced seven of nine clean sheets in front of their own fans, keeping out the likes of Arsenal and City, whilst conceding more than one goal against only two opponents – Chelsea and Liverpool.

On their travels, though, it was another matter. Stoke’s backline shipped 35 goals – a tally superior to only the three relegated teams – and conceded at least three times on no less than seven occasions. With just two shut-outs away from home (at West Ham and Hull), it’s easy to see why a rotation partner is vital here.

Between the posts, Asmir Begovic was Stoke’s top scoring player in the Fantasy Premier League (FPL) game last term. The keeper racked up 136 points – 28 more than any defender – thanks to an extra 25 save points but bearing in mind that Stoke ultimately suffered a drop in clean sheets in the first season of the post-Tony Pulis era, you’d expect him to come in around 5.0, with a maximum 5.5.

Elsewhere at the back, Ryan Shawcross earned bonus points for six of those clean sheets – indeed, a total of 16 bonus points was more than any Potters player. Nailed-on under Hughes, he missed just one of last term’s matches but managed just a single goal, though if Robert Huth proves his fitness, the big German’s aerial menace in the opposition box could be another option. The arrival of Phil Bardsley places question marks over the full-back positions in the meantime, though the upcoming summer friendlies should shed some light on Hughes’ intentions.

Swansea
While Stoke’s home stats afford us plenty of optimism, it remains to be seen whether Swansea will be worthy of our defensive investment under Garry Monk. Last term, the Welsh outfit served up six clean sheets in 24 matches (four at home, two on the road) under Michael Laudrup before the Dane was dismissed in early February – Monk managed just two shut-outs, both at the Liberty against relegated pair Cardiff and Norwich, in the remaining 14 league fixtures.

With 54 goals against last term, you’d expect Swansea’s main assets to remain around the 5.0-mark and Michel Vorm, with save points accrued in 14 of his 26 appearances, looks the ideal partner for Begovic. The arrival of Lukasz Fabianski from Arsenal, however, perhaps places enough question marks over the Dutchman’s security of starts – indeed, the former Gunner may well be the cheaper option and prove a better value option if he can secure the number one spot.

Chico Flores earned more bonus points than fellow-centre Ashley Williams, despite playing four less matches, and also chipped in with a couple of goals last term – the Spaniard averaged 3.2 ppg in FPL, more than any Swansea backline option. Monk’s more attack-minded approach may suit the raiding runs of Angel Rangel, who’ll be looking to improve upon his two assists last term, having notched three times in the season before. On the other side of the back-four, Ben Davies has now scored twice in each of the last two campaigns but with rumoured interest from the likes of Tottenham and Liverpool, Neil Taylor could be one to watch if Davies leaves the Liberty.

The Attack

Stoke
Last season’s top two scorers, Peter Crouch and Charlie Adam, look far from certain starters this time around. Crouch notched eight times for the Potters but his style of play seems more suited to the club’s previous tactics under Tony Pulis – the arrival of Mame Biram Diouf affords Stoke more speed and power through the centre and, bearing in mind Hughes has been on his trail since arriving at the Britannia, the former United man seems the likeliest to lead the line.

Adam, meanwhile, delivered eight goals and four assists in the season gone by but failed to start any of Stoke’s last 10 league games. Instead, Marko Arnautovic and Peter Odemwingie were key figures in a run that saw the Staffordshire outfit lose just three times in the last 15 Gameweeks. After a slow start to his debut season, the Austrian found his feet and produced three goals, five assists and eight bonus points in the final nine league games – with a share of set-pieces and, potentially, spot-kicks, he looks a real under-the-radar option this term. Odemwingie’s classification looks key to his appeal. Listed as a forward last time around, he was utilised as a right winger by Hughes but still produced five goals, two assists and nine bonus points in the last nine fixtures – if he comes in as a midfielder, that sort of form is surely worth monitoring.

Snapping up a Stoke midfielder or attacker doesn’t come without its frustrations, though, particularly on the road. Hughes’ side managed 27 goals in front of their own fans but netted only 18 times on their travels – whilst the upside is that none of their main assets will be afforded a premium price tag, Fantasy owners can anticipate a few blanks away from the Britannia. With three of their first four road trips away to Hull, QPR and Sunderland, though, Hughes’ side have the chance to rectify the form that blighted their displays on the road during his first season in charge.

Swansea
With 13 goals to his name from January 1 onwards, Wilfried Bony’s form in the final few months of his debut season was exceptional. The Ivorian bagged braces against the likes of City and Liverpool last term and with goals also plundered against Everton, Spurs, Arsenal and United, he showed he’s more than capable of delivering in the bigger fixtures – crucial, given that Swansea are away to United and Chelsea in the first four Gameweeks. Having started at 8.0 in FPL last time around, a price hike seems inevitable – a cost of 9.0 seems likely for this season but, with the suitors circling for his signature, whether Monk can persuade him to remain at the Liberty is another matter entirely.

Bony’s potential departure could bring new boy Bafetimbi Gomis onto our radars, though – the former Lyon man notched double figures in each of his last five seasons and would surely be installed as the lone striker if the Ivorian seeks pastures new. Encouragingly for Swansea, Monk’s installation improved their attacking potential over those final few months – they notched 25 goals in the final 14 league games, compared to just 29 strikes in 24 games under Laudrup. Indeed, Swansea scored two or more goals in eight of Monk’s 14 matches – a feat they managed in only nine of Laudrup’s 24 games in charge.

As rumours gather over the potential departures of Michu and Pablo Hernandez, Jonjo Shelvey could be poised to push on from a campaign that delivered six goals and seven assists for the Welsh outfit last term. An explosive Fantasy option in the centre of the park, the former Liverpool man produced double figures on four occasions in 2013/14 but will be looking to improve his consistency – Shelvey managed attacking returns in only nine of his 32 appearances and with 122 points to his name, can be expected to remain in the mid-price bracket.

About The Author

paul

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  1. When will fpl reopen for next season?

    There will be WC withdrawal, fpl website will help!

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. Hopefully as soon as the final whistle goes on Sunday

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    2. Next week.

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. How do you know?

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
        1. Because he is best friends with the owner of the site.

          Wednesday 16th 4am confirmed

          • 3 months, 21 days ago
  2. First go at a team for the last round. Currently have a 67 point lead in my McD's mini league. There's cash at stake, so I really want to play it as safe as possible. Thoughts on this lineup?

    Neuer
    Luiz / Boateng / Hummels / Garay / De Vrij / Rojo
    Di Maria / Kroos / Lahm / Mascherano
    Muller / Messi

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. It's certainly safe

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. That's what I like to hear

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
    2. Not sure if Di Maria is starting though...

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Really? I've got 1.5 in the bank, so I can change him to anyone really. Ozil? Oscar?

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
  3. I'm getting a "Football Manager style" vibe about this transfer window. Way too much business being done

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Ah, that'll be it

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
  4. Also (apologies for clogging up the page)...

    I know McD's on iPhone is notoriously lethal for making accidental subs, but what's it like for transfers? I won't be able to access my laptop when the lineups are announced for tomorrow's game, but would be able to make them on my phone. Is it relatively simple? There's no points at stake so I'm guessing nothing can go wrong.

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. Think that is all fixed now

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    2. Why don't you go on your phone now and make some transfers and find out?

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. ...I am not a smart man, please somebody delete my first comment from the internet

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
  5. Setanta Ireland now :cool:

    C'mon you Saints!!

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
  6. suarez leaving is pretty devestating for penalty gerrard

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. At least the penalties suarez won last year were genuine. Sturridge on the other hand....

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. dont forget sterling, also has a gravity allergy

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
    2. very much so. waiting to see how many casuals jump on board with him this season

      13 goals - 10 pens, at least 1 free kick

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    3. Ashley Young is available

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    4. Good question actually, supposing Gerrard misses a few games next year, who will be on penalties?

      Agger could leave... Coutinho maybe?

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Ah wait, Lambert

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
      2. Sturridge I reckon. Lambert wont be on the park

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
  7. I've just heard from a pretty reliable source that FPL will re-open on Wednesday 16th August.

    Exact time unconfirmed though.

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. This should stop people asking now.

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    2. convenient

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    3. I heard 4am BST

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. You could be right

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
    4. You mean July right?

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Yeah sorry. Long day at the office. Wednesday 16th July confirmed

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
        1. Confirmed by who? You chat shit.

          • 3 months, 21 days ago
          1. How can you say that ? Unfair. And for that reason I am not disclosing my source

            • 3 months, 21 days ago
            1. :lol: point proven.

              • 3 months, 21 days ago
              1. Ok.....

                Whatever. You'll see....

                • 3 months, 21 days ago
    5. did you kill your sense of humour?

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    6. Mcdonalds taking over FPL as well?

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Quick, load up on those DMF's...

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
    7. It's funny cuz the season starts on Saturday 16th August.

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Sorry :(

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
  8. Fox game...

    David Luiz - stick or twist?

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. Not a bad stick, you may have to swap others that don't start

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
  9. Fox captains?

    Thinking Huntelaar

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. Robben if he starts

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
  10. Do FPL or FFS plan on bringing an App out?

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. Isn't there already an app for FPL?

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. There's also a decent mobile site m.fantasy.premierleague.com

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
  11. Fox keeper

    Neuer or Krul ?

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. Neuer all day long.

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      • 3 months, 21 days ago
  12. lol my theory was only thiago silva was nailed:

    "Brazil XI in training: Júlio César; Maicon, Henrique, David Luiz, Marcelo; Luiz Gustavo, Paulinho, Ramires; Oscar, Willian & Jô"

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. He had a knock

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    2. @BrazilStats 1m
      Thiago Silva was spared from training and did work at the gym, but he will be a starter on Saturday, in the place of Henrique, in principal.

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Demi, last page

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
        1. Nate, this page

          • 3 months, 21 days ago
  13. Nice that FPL seems to have finished maintenance, I can now drool once again over my final defs and fwds

    Vidic 1 Bardsley 1 Dann 1
    RVP 2 Suarez 2 Aguero(c) 2

    Do I really want to put myself through this again? :lol:

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. Well it's a given Aguero C GW1 :)

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. I can't help myself, I keep telling myself not to get him this year..

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
  14. I dont know why people want i low ID number in FPL.

    I dont want a low ID number for 2 reasons:

    1 - it shows I have no social life whatsoever

    2 - it shows that I take the game far too seriously

    I want an ID number around the 2 million region, to give the impression that I wasnt even bothered about playing the game 8-)

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. 1 - We don't

      2 - We do

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. I know that, hence the reason why i want the low ID number, so that other people wont know.

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
    2. My ID was 1554599 last year. Back when I had a life.

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    3. I don't care that you don't care.

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    4. My ID last year: 215137 :cool:

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    5. I want exactly 1 million

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. How do you get that?...I will change my name in tribute to you if you manage to pull that off! :D

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
    6. *cue RonH getting number 1

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. I really dont want it.

        2 years ago, I was 186 or around that, it meant nothing.

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
        1. RonH, why did your post about bullying and my reply get deleted?

          • 3 months, 21 days ago
    7. In all seriousness though, it's shit that Axford takes number 1 when he must know many cherish it. Tosser

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Who is this Axford?

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
        1. Head of digital operations at the Premier league

          • 3 months, 21 days ago
        2. head of ID hogging

          • 3 months, 21 days ago
    8. I'm under the impression that you gonna have the same ID because of the re-registration?

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
  15. I've just told a 'pretty reliable source' not to open FPL on Wednesday 16th July to prove Grim Reaper wrong.

    Exact time confirmed though, 4am.

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. :)

      4am has just been confirmed too

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
  16. Hello

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
      • 3 months, 21 days ago
      1. Echo

        • 3 months, 21 days ago
          • 3 months, 21 days ago
          1. the dolphin

            • 3 months, 21 days ago
            1. megadrive.....now ypure goin back

              • 3 months, 21 days ago
            2. Great game

              • 3 months, 21 days ago
              1. It was shit, like being E Honda in Streetfighter

                • 3 months, 21 days ago
                1. I liked swimmin about

                  • 3 months, 21 days ago
                  1. Well you couldn't do much else tbf :)

                    • 3 months, 21 days ago
                    1. You could also make noises. Think that was about it.

                      • 3 months, 21 days ago
            3. The start of that game was horrific...

              • 3 months, 21 days ago
  17. Who is more essential next season?

    K.Richardson or Jack Colback?

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
  18. was just having a poo and the toilet wall said 10pm on 15th July

    • 3 months, 21 days ago
    1. Sounds legit

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    2. Great source.

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
    3. I had a poo in the shape of 4am the other day

      • 3 months, 21 days ago
        • 3 months, 21 days ago
  19. New Post

Scout Picks

For Gameweek 9

  • Fabianski
  • Baines
  • Dawson
  • Bertrand
  • Sánchez
  • Sterling
  • Eriksen
  • Tadic
  • Pellè
  • Aguero
  • Berahino
  • Vlaar
  • Chadli
  • Lukaku

From the Community…

Comments

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Hot Topics

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Articles

Fixture Ticker

The Watchlist

Goalkeepers

Last updated: 28 Oct, 2014 7:32am
Player Club Factors
No Change Forster SOT A
Up Adrián WHM B, Vs
Up Courtois CHE B, Vs
No Change Howard EVE B, Vs
Up Schmeichel LEI C, Vs
No Change Szczesny ARS C
No Change Lloris TOT B
No Change Foster WBA C
No Change Guzan AVL C
No Change Krul NEW C

Defenders

Last updated: 28 Oct, 2014 8:43am
Player Club Factors
No Change Baines EVE A, Vs
Up Ivanovic CHE B, Vs
No Change Bertrand SOT A
No Change Chambers ARS C, £
Up Cresswell WHM B, Vs
No Change Kaboul TOT B
No Change Vlaar AVL C
Up Alcaraz EVE C, Vs, Rest, £
No Change Dawson WBA B
Up Trippier BRN B, Vs
Up Moore LEI C, Vs
Up Shaw MUN C
Down Lovren LIV C, Vs
No Change Taylor SWA B, VsX

Midfielders

Last updated: 31 Oct, 2014 12:51pm
Player Club Factors
Up Sánchez ARS A, Vs
No Change Tadic SOT A
Down Sterling LIV A
No Change Di María MUN A
No Change Sigurdsson SWA B, VsX
Up Hazard CHE B, Vs
Up Mane SOT B, Inj
Up Downing WHM B, Vs, £
No Change Chadli TOT B
Down Fábregas CHE B, Vs
No Change Eriksen TOT A
Up Moses STO B, £
No Change Bolasie CPL B, £
Down Henderson LIV B, £

Forwards

Last updated: 31 Oct, 2014 7:33am
Player Club Factors
No Change Aguero MCI A
No Change Pellè SOT A
Down Diego Costa CHE A, Vs, Inj
No Change Welbeck ARS B
Up Berahino WBA A, £
Up Lukaku EVE B, Vs
Up Bony SWA A, VsX
Down Sakho WHM A, Vs, Inj, £
Up van Persie MUN B
Down Ulloa LEI C, Vs
Down Cissé NEW A, Vs, 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

The Suspension Tightrope

Player Team YC
Fábregas CHE 4
Naismith EVE 4
Pellè SOT 4
Cattermole SUN 4
Gardner WBA 4
Reid WHM 4
Diego Costa CHE 3
Jedinak CPL 3
Barry EVE 3
Huddlestone HUL 3
Robertson HUL 3
Moore LEI 3
Moreno LIV 3
Fernandinho MCI 3
Mangala MCI 3
Y Touré MCI 3
van Persie MUN 3
Colback NEW 3
Janmaat NEW 3
Dunne QPR 3
Henry QPR 3
Schneiderlin SOT 3
Mame Biram Diouf STO 3
Shawcross STO 3
Wickham SUN 3
Taylor SWA 3
Rose TOT 3
Dawson WBA 3
Dorrans WBA 3

“Last year was quite open for me, I was in good positions, but I was quite lucky because I was getting free kicks and some penalties as well.”

Yaya Toure Manchester City midfielder