Scout Notes

The Stock Check – Gameweek 29 – Saturday

Romelu Lukaku does his talking on the pitch after doing so much off it, Leicester City’s star performers continue their ascent, and Josh King keeps things ticking over on a busy Gameweek 29 Saturday.

But injury mars another Alexis Sanchez goal-scoring performance while Diego Costa blanks again and Eden Hazard doesn’t even make the Chelsea squad. Here’s Saturday’s Stock Check.

ON THE RISE

Romelu Lukaku
All that worrying was for nothing…

After a fraught few days following the striker’s criticism of Everton’s ambitions, both verbally and by rejecting their contract, more than a million Fantasy managers handed Lukaku the armband with some trepidation.

An assist for the Toffees’ second goal against Hull City settled the nerves and then a late double of his own sealed the deal.

The Belgian has always been explosive – his 16 points against Hull was his eighth double-digit haul of the campaign – but there’s a new-found consistency that’s making him Fantasy Premier League’s must-have asset.

He’s now scored in six successive home matches and has nine in the last six Gameweeks.

At a time when premium forwards are succumbing to injuries, suspensions and declines in form, Lukaku is the glorious exception – 27 points clear at the top of the strikers’ table and, at 46.0%, the most-owned player in the game.

The Everton side he has so publicly questioned are on a great run, with just one defeat since Gameweek 17, and when allied to his personal form makes the big forward virtually fixture-proof.

Away matches at Liverpool and Man United will test that theory to the limit, but it will take a brave FPL manager to show him the exit at this point.

Riyad Mahrez, Jamie Vardy
Last season’s heroes are back to last season’s output.

Jamie Vardy now has three goals and two assists from the last three Gameweeks and Riyad Mahrez has scored from successive starts.

Three league matches under Craig Shakespeare have produced three wins and three goals each time but, crucially, this was the Foxes’ first away victory of the season as they start to ease themselves away from the drop zone.

Up next are back-to-back home matches with Stoke and Sunderland as part of a run-in that will involve a double Gameweek and fixtures with four of the top seven.

In the short term at least, Leicester’s star duo are well worth a look, and both are in the top ten for purchases by managers buying early for Gameweek 30.

Manuel Lanzini, Andre Ayew
West Ham are currently a model of consistency – they’re winless in five and have lost three matches in a row.

But none of that can be pinned on Manuel Lanzini, who’s provided three goals and an assist during that spell and now has four goals and three assists from his last eight Gameweek starts.

Priced at 6.4 and owned by just 2.6%, the midfielder has real differential appeal in a team that has an excellent set of fixtures to try and reverse their decline.

Aside from a trip to Arsenal in Gameweek 31, the Hammers will face Hull, Swansea City and Sunderland over the next four matches.

Another blameless individual has been Andre Ayew.

The Ghanaian has been equally productive over recent fixtures, with three goals and an assist from his last four Gameweeks.

Finally given his first start since Gameweek 19 in the 3-2 loss to Leicester yesterday, the midfielder scored again and has now produced 25 points from just shy of 180 minutes of action over the last four weeks.

Mamadou Sakho
Three matches, three clean sheets – Sam Allaradyce’s loan signing from Liverpool has made all the difference to a Crystal Palace side finally finding ways to win.

Sakho has also produced maximum bonus point returns from his last two starts and his 4.7 price tag and 0.7% ownership base only add to his appeal.

But there is a major downside to owning any Palace asset – the Eagles will face six of the top seven over their ten remaining fixtures, and four of those will be away from home.

With Chelsea and Southampton, both away, up next, even Sakho’s prodigious influence might not be enough.

Josh King
The Bournemouth midfielder keeps on giving to his expanding ownership – currently at 10.9% – with an assist for Benik Afobe’s goal yesterday meaning he’s now provided returns in six of his last eight Gameweeks.

In fact, King has been directly involved in eight goals from his last six starts, scoring seven and providing one assist to produce 57 FPL points.

A further 221,000+ managers bought in to him for the 2-0 home win against Swansea in which he was unlucky not to score for the fourth consecutive match when he was denied by a superb Lukasz Fabianski save.

Back-to-back Bournemouth wins have been timely, moving them well clear of the trap door just before they embark on a punishing four-match run involving a derby at Southampton, further trips to Liverpool and Spurs and a home match with Chelsea.

That schedule might well stall interest in King, but his 5.7 price and a kindly set of fixtures from Gameweek 34 should persuade many of his 472,000+ owners to keep faith in him until the season’s end.

IN DECLINE

Alexis Sanchez
Crisis is an over-used word in football, but seems wholly pertinent when discussing Arsenal at the moment.

Four defeats in five league matches, the manager’s future in doubt and now their star performer picks up an injury.

Alexis Sanchez has carried the side during their recent slump, scoring three times and providing two assists, and he found the net in the 3-1 defeat at West Brom before an ankle problem forced him off in the second half.

The severity of the injury is still not known, but Arsene Wenger described the midfielder’s ankle as being in ‘an absolutely terrible state’. That could rule him out of a vital World Cup qualifier with Argentina, one of two Chile matches scheduled for the international break.

The Gunners’ performance at The Hawthorns aptly summed up their issues at the moment. From 77% possession, they managed just two shots on target – the Baggies had eight.

Their reliance on Sanchez is absolute. The Chilean has been involved in more league goals than any other player this season, with 18 scored and a further nine set up.

Two double Gameweeks and an 11-match run-in that will involve facing only three top seven sides should keep Sanchez in the majority of the one million-plus sides in which he figures.

But the extent of that injury and Arsenal’s current lack of confidence and direction have the potential to turn him into a very expensive (11.6) risk.

Diego Costa, Eden Hazard
Two other pricey players failed their managers yesterday.

Diego Costa (10.7) provided just one point, while Eden Hazard (10.2) picked up a calf problem and didn’t even make the squad.

The Spanish striker was the most purchased player of the Gameweek, with nearly 260,000 managers buying into him ahead of the trip to Stoke City.

But Costa again failed to spark away from Stamford Bridge – he’s scored just twice in his last seven on the road – and a booking reduced his meagre returns even further.

Only Romelu Lukaku has scored more FPL points among strikers than Costa this season, with the Chelsea man relying on consistent hauls over explosive performances – the only match in which he has scored more than once came way back in Gameweek 4.

The problem is, he’s only scored twice in his last six starts, and has just three goals from his last nine.

Chelsea’s march to the title feels inexorable, Costa’s part in it is currently negligible.

A double Gameweek and a relatively easy run-in should keep his 39.4% ownership base onside, although the Blues’ immediate schedule will involve facing both Manchester teams over the next four Gameweeks.

Hazard’s 29% ownership have enjoyed slightly richer pickings, the Belgian providing two goals and as many assists over the last six Gameweeks.

Antonio Conte described the midfielder’s injury as ‘a little problem’, which should ease concerns over Hazard further still.

But the lack of major returns from both Hazard and Costa is a rather more expensive problem for FPL managers at present.

Winston Reid, Michail Antonio,Robert Snodgrass
While Lanzini and Ayew have flourished as the Hammers have floundered, the plight of three other West Ham players is more in tune with the side’s current woes.

The 4.0%-owned Winston Reid managed just 17 minutes of the loss to Leicester before a leg injury forced him off – and potentially out of the international break with New Zealand.

West Ham’s short-term schedule is an excellent one, and Reid was a key target for those considering investment in their defence.

Michail Antonio played the full 90 despite a hamstring problem that looks certain to deny him a second shot at earning an England cap.

His recent form has been good – he provided an assist yesterday and scored in the 3-2 loss at Bournemouth – but his 9.6% ownership base will now have to assess his fitness over the course of the international hiatus.

Much to the frustration of his 9.7% owners, Robert Snodgrass remains a bit-part player for the Hammers.

He was benched for the second successive match against the Foxes, although he was given 73 minutes as he came on for Reid, with Cheikhou Kouyate dropping back into defence.

With Andre Ayew starting and scoring, the competition for midfield places has not served Snodgrass well.

He might have to rely on the misfortune of others – and specifically Antonio’s hamstring injury – to earn a return to the starting XI for Gameweek 30.

Jose Holebas
The Hornets defender was dropped to the bench for the trip to Crystal Palace, a further blow for the 3.5% of FPL managers who have stuck by a man whose meagre clean sheet returns – just four all season – have been exacerbated by the 12 bookings he’s picked up.

Having been unbeaten from Gameweeks 21-24, Watford have now lost three of their last four matches, but Holebas owners would have been hoping for better returns from the next five fixtures, with only a trip to Spurs providing a major test.

His relegation to the bench puts that strategy in serious danger.

Kamil Grosicki
Marco Silva’s decision to switch to a 5-4-1 involving three centre-halves meant the bench for the Hull midfielder.

Grosicki had started every match since his Gameweek 24 debut, providing a couple of assists along the way.

That had put the Pole on our radars – at 5.5 and with just 0.3% ownership he looked a promising differential for a Tigers side with an excellent run-in to come.

With only Man City and Spurs of the top teams to face in their last nine matches, Hull still harbour hopes of escaping the drop.

Where Grosicki fits into that run suddenly has a measure of doubt surrounding it, although it would be a surprise if he doesn’t return to the starting line-up when the Tigers entertain West Ham and Middlesbrough after the international break.

378 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Uncle Pat
      2 months, 8 days ago

      #MoreLife

      1. KREAM OF THE KLOPP
          2 months, 8 days ago

          YAAASSSS!!

      2. AntonioKante
          2 months, 8 days ago

          I selected an image on gravatar how to get it on this site plz help? 😀

          1. TheBusDriver
              2 months, 8 days ago

              How do I get a picture next to my name when I post a comment?
              Head on over to http://www.gravatar.com and register for an account (make sure you register with the same email as the one you are registered with here). Choose an image, and this will be associated with all of your comments on site. Your gravatar image should appear next to your comments within roughly 24 hours.

              1. TheBusDriver
                  2 months, 8 days ago

                  It doesn't take 24 hours though, just a few minutes.

                • AntonioKante
                    2 months, 8 days ago

                    Thanks a lot man 😀

                • BearHug
                    2 months, 8 days ago

                    If the two ids are the same, grav will show automatically. Maybe take some minutes.

                  • Arn De Gothia
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    2 months, 8 days ago

                    just follow instructions

                • lordkippe
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  2 months, 8 days ago

                  who wins ?

                  Walker(Gabbiadini), Valencia, Mane, Coutinho + 1P

                  or

                  Alli, Eriksen, Rashford, Lallana

                • TheBusDriver
                    2 months, 8 days ago

                    70 points with Mane, Sane and Alli left. Another dreadful week.

                    1. Maximus Bonimus
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      2 months, 8 days ago

                      I got 71. FML.

                    2. lordkippe
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      2 months, 8 days ago

                      im on 62 with walker, valencia, mane and coutinho left. im happy

                      1. ginola14
                          2 months, 8 days ago

                          yeah im up sh£t creek with 72 and aguero, alli, erik, and mane left, another red arrow.....

                      2. Ag imirt 'pelle' …
                          2 months, 8 days ago

                          The fpl points go round and round, round and round.....

                        • Syd.
                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          2 months, 8 days ago

                          I got 55

                          Non King / Heaton / Pickford owner

                        • Fergies fledgling
                            2 months, 8 days ago

                            71 (-4) with Mane and Alli to play

                            Red arrow still conceivable

                        • The Head-Ake
                            2 months, 8 days ago

                            Current strike force of Kaku - Costa - Gabbi, I've had Costa since gameweek 1 and so should I lose him for Ibra when he returns or should I bee lookinng at Vardy?

                            1. lordkippe
                              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                              2 months, 8 days ago

                              got the same. Think we got to avoid vardy. could bring in some points but I would like loosing lukaku for Ibra for 34 if thats the case with doubles

                          • Somalion
                              2 months, 8 days ago

                              In what is a must win for United, if LVG or Moyes put out that team people would be demanding they'd be sacked...

                              1. TheBusDriver
                                  2 months, 8 days ago

                                  He doesn't have many options though? Martial has been injured for a while, he can't start. So it's just Mkhi.

                                  1. Somalion
                                      2 months, 8 days ago

                                      If he's fit enough to be back and expected to contribute, he can start. 45 minutes for Martial even, to try bed the game early one.

                                      Mkhitaryan absolutely should be playing. There is no reason for his exclusion.

                                  2. Syd.
                                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                    2 months, 8 days ago

                                    Mourhino is still above criticism in the eyes of quite a few

                                    1. Somalion
                                        2 months, 8 days ago

                                        Which is silly of course, some of his team selection this season has been bonkers.

                                    2. Uncle Pat
                                        2 months, 8 days ago

                                        Silly post. Look how many injuries there are.

                                        1. Syd.
                                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                          Pogba & Rooney apart from those 2 who else is injured

                                          1. Uncle Pat
                                              2 months, 8 days ago

                                              Martial

                                              1. Uncle Pat
                                                  2 months, 8 days ago

                                                  We also played on Thursday. You've got to expect some rotation.

                                                • Somalion
                                                    2 months, 8 days ago

                                                    The same Martial who is deemed fit enough to be on the bench and therefore, theoretically if an injury occurred in the first 5 minutes, deemed capable of playing the majority of a match.

                                                  • Syd.
                                                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                    2 months, 8 days ago

                                                    Not exactly a first team regular and he is on the bench so he must be fit

                                                  • Uncle Pat
                                                      2 months, 8 days ago

                                                      Who's only just returned!

                                                      1. Somalion
                                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                                          As I say if deemed fit enough to be on the bench, he can start. Doesn't need the full 90.

                                                          No excuse for Mkhitaryan's benching either. It is simply a dreadful decision.

                                                          They played on Thursday, at home. Not like there's jet lag involved. But Mourinho made it very clear he thought they would probably lose on Sunday given fixture congestion and blah blah blah. What I'm very concerned about here is he is trying to be proven right.

                                                          1. Somalion
                                                              2 months, 8 days ago

                                                              And my point is more that there was no tolerance for LVG or Moyes, but Mourinho will be defended to the death for similar decisions.

                                                              Imagine LVG being in charge and benching Mkhitaryan here. There'd be a lot of angry fans.

                                                      2. Deeney-is-a-god
                                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                                          Zlaan and herrera is suspended. Martial just back form injury and mkhy have played a lot lately

                                                    • XabiAlonso
                                                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                      2 months, 8 days ago

                                                      I'm surprised mkhi not playing. Will take him at Liverpool if they don't want him thanks

                                                      1. Somalion
                                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                                          Quite alright, I'm happy to hang onto him instead of sending him to your lot 😉

                                                          1. XabiAlonso
                                                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                            2 months, 8 days ago

                                                            Ha

                                                      2. BearHug
                                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                                          If we in trouble by the 60th minutes, the likes of Martial/Mkhi surely will be call upon. If we winning and controlling the game, Mourinho gets away with it.

                                                          Personally I like the team starting with the strongest line up, then withdraw them accordingly. Not the other way round.

                                                          1. Somalion
                                                              2 months, 8 days ago

                                                              I'm with you, I want the strongest starting lineup to try and put the game away early. What has killed United this season is finishing off teams.

                                                              1. BearHug
                                                                  2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                  So true, I do think sometimes it gets over complicated. It also sets the tone to the Boro players from the start that they dont have to be scared of facing Martial/Mkhi for example.

                                                                  1. Somalion
                                                                      2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                      Exactly. I'd much rather wear them down early than leave them with enough in the tank to see out the final 30 minutes.

                                                            • Vibudh★★★★★
                                                                2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                Hey everyone i was previously using the account antoniokante will be using this one from now on 🙂

                                                              • Moses _H
                                                                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                Alli or mahrez ?

                                                                1. BearHug
                                                                    2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                    Alli please

                                                                  • Ag imirt 'pelle' …
                                                                      2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                      I want both

                                                                    • Ag imirt 'pelle' …
                                                                        2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                        Ali more consistent more shots and more forward position

                                                                    • Kun Tozser
                                                                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                      2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                      Rate this front 7 out of 10;

                                                                      Siggurdsson Tadic Alli Ayew Coutinho
                                                                      Lukaku Vardy

                                                                      Assuming Sanchez is busted for a bit

                                                                      1. Fred51
                                                                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                        2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                        7 out 10.

                                                                        1. Kun Tozser
                                                                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                          Weakest link? Who's missing for the short term?

                                                                        2. KREAM OF THE KLOPP
                                                                            2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                            See what you did there 😉

                                                                        3. VFORVANDETA
                                                                            2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                            7 out of 10.Like Ayew pick.

                                                                        4. Ag imirt 'pelle' …
                                                                            2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                            If there are doubts over Sanchez after the international break I think I will go all in Leicester. With Mahrez and Vardy they look like they have got thier mojo back.

                                                                            Unlike many others I have a strange set of three strikers at the moment Llorente, Carroll and Lukaku.
                                                                            So getting Vardy will not be much trouble for me and it will solve the headache of who to play between Carroll and Llorente every week.

                                                                            According to https://anewpla.net/fpl/report/ fpl statisico I have only left double figures on the bench twice all season eriksen and allen (each time I got slaughtered on here for it)

                                                                            I don't like the benching headaches or ffs slaughtering me.
                                                                            So I promise all the slaughterer's that I will work on my team shape after the international break 🙂

                                                                            1. Brap.
                                                                                2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                What about possibility of Vardy being rested with 4 games in 11 days coming up

                                                                                1. Kun Tozser
                                                                                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                                  2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                  Surely he'll just drink more port and redbull ?

                                                                                2. Ag imirt 'pelle' …
                                                                                    2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                    I considered that, but I think he is too crucial for Leicester not to play him.
                                                                                    Especially when he is a confidence player and so integral to thier tactics.
                                                                                    If Leicester were not in the relegation mire I might be worried.
                                                                                    But I think Shakespeare is clever enough to keep the main players happy and keep the momentum going.
                                                                                    That is my theory anyway.

                                                                                3. Tony Hibbert
                                                                                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                                  2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                  Name name's.

                                                                              • manu4life99
                                                                                  2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                  For those of you planning on bench boosting in DGW, are you looking to strengthen squad (ie upgrade the cheap 4.5m bench fodders)?

                                                                                  If so, thoughts on Redmond as a more expensive 5th mid? (2 x DGW on horizon)

                                                                                  1. CloudSky
                                                                                      2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                      WC in 37, BB in 37 is still the plan for most.

                                                                                      1. CloudSky
                                                                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                          WC in 36*

                                                                                      2. VFORVANDETA
                                                                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                          Yes.Maybe triple Sou.

                                                                                      3. CloudSky
                                                                                          2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                          If someone from Boro wants to score, thats perfectly fine with me.

                                                                                        • dark91
                                                                                            2 months, 8 days ago

                                                                                            Boro need to score before HT

                                                                                          • Morgs
                                                                                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                                            2 months, 7 days ago

                                                                                            To those who know more about southamptons back row than I do.... is Stephens a good shout for the next two or might he lose his starts?

                                                                                            1. potatoace
                                                                                              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                                              2 months, 7 days ago

                                                                                              Its his for the moment...until VVD is back from injury (no return date) . Caceres is match fit now though so could get a run out soon. But I would suggest Stephens is safe for the next two

                                                                                              1. Morgs
                                                                                                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                                                2 months, 7 days ago

                                                                                                Thanks

                                                                                          • Morgs
                                                                                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                                            2 months, 7 days ago

                                                                                            Cheers

                                                                                            1. Morgs
                                                                                              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                                                                              2 months, 7 days ago

                                                                                              Not the worst reply fail.. cheers everyone!