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Pre-Season

“Sarri-ball” an exciting prospect for Chelsea fans and FPL managers alike

Amid all the big-money moves for players during this summer’s transfer window, the appointment of a chain-smoking former banker to a Premier League managerial role could be more significant to the English top tier and Fantasy managers than any of them.

As one venerated Italian coach in the form of Antonio Conte departed the Chelsea hot seat, another was swiftly appointed in his stead.

Maurizio Sarri has signed a three-year deal with the Blues after leaving Napoli, where he had enjoyed three seasons of relative success – albeit without winning any silverware – and established himself as one of the most sought-after coaches in the world.

The 59-year-old’s brand of high-pressing, possession-based attacking football – dubbed “Sarri-ball” – has won a legion of admirers, from former Milan manager Arrigo Sacchi to a gushing Pep Guardiola.

Nicknamed “Mister 33” during his time at Sansovino after apparently preparing 33 different set-piece routines for use in a match, Sarri has a reputation for being a workaholic and paying close attention to the finest details in his pre-game preparations.

Sarri’s appointment is hugely intriguing for both Chelsea supporters and Fantasy Premier League bosses alike, given Napoli’s form during his tenure at the Italian club.

The 94 goals scored in 2016/17 was the most the Naples club have ever registered in a single season, while the 29 goals Gli Azzurri conceded in the campaign just gone was the fewest Napoli have shipped in Serie A in almost 30 years.

Upon his unveiling as Chelsea boss, Sarri told the club’s official website:

I hope we can provide some entertaining football for our fans, and that we will be competing for trophies at the end of the season, which is what this club deserves.

Club director Marina Granovskaia said of Sarri’s appointment:

We are delighted to welcome Maurizio and are looking forward to him bringing his football philosophy to Chelsea. Maurizio’s Napoli side played some of the most exciting football in Europe, impressing with their attacking approach and dynamism, and his coaching methods significantly improved the players at his disposal.

The last sentence of that quote from Granovskaia might stick in the throats of Chelsea fans who are hoping for sizeable investment in the squad and suggests, perhaps, that Sarri is expected to chiefly work with the players already on the west London club’s books – a transfer policy that particularly irked Conte in his second season with the Blues.

The £50m+ signing of Jorginho, however, is a significant move. The Brazil-born Italy international was integral to Sarri’s tactical approach at Napoli and his capture would appear to be a concession by the Chelsea board to their new manager’s demands.

Jorginho’s move to Chelsea is noteworthy for another reason. Sarri is, for better or worse, known for his tactical rigidity and almost exclusively employed a 4-3-3 in his entire three-year spell with Napoli. Jorginho’s metronomic role at the base of the three-man midfield was essential to Sarri’s gameplan and that the 26-year-old defensive midfielder was snapped up by Chelsea almost simultaneously with the veteran coach suggests that Sarri intends to implement the same tactical approach with his new troops.

While this offensive 4-3-3 shape could be a boon for many of Chelsea’s Fantasy assets, there will be concern about how this set-up affects the likes of Victor Moses and – especially – Marcos Alonso, whose appeal was well-defined in Conte’s wing-back system.

Uncertainty over a number of Blues’ players’ futures (including Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois) and the fact that Sarri has under a month to prepare his new squad (13 of whom were involved in the World Cup this summer) for the coming season means that there is still sufficient doubt over whether any Chelsea player is “essential” for Gameweek 1, even accounting for their appealing early fixtures in the first six weeks.

Where Sarri could be the Fantasy manager’s friend this season is in his team selection. The former Empoli boss is averse to widespread rotation and a remarkable ten of his first-choice starting XI at Napoli played at least 30 Serie A matches last season. Were it not for a knee injury suffered by left-back Faouzi Ghoulam in early November, that figure could have been even higher.

That Chelsea won’t participate in next season’s UEFA Champions League would surely only further minimise the threat of rotation.

With the transfer window closing earlier this year and indeed before the Premier League season has kicked off, we could, therefore, know from a very early stage how Chelsea will regularly line up this coming campaign. The late return of more than a dozen of Sarri’s squad from Russia will complicate matters, but the hope from a Fantasy perspective is that the Blues will hit the ground running and Sarri’s starting XI can become a reliable, point-scoring pool of talent to call on.

The History

A no-nonsense defender, Sarri’s playing career was, rather like Jose Mourinho’s, somewhat unspectacular. Unable to progress beyond non-league level, Sarri took up employment as a foreign currency trader to supplement his income and was still working in the financial sector when his managerial career began.

Indeed, Sarri combined coaching with his nine-to-five job for over a decade, taking charge of various Tuscan village teams before his first notable role with AC Sansovino in 2000.

Success at a regional level with Sansovino and then experience with Sangiovannese in Serie C led second-tier club Pescara to take a chance on the-then relatively unknown Sarri and it was in Serie B that the new Chelsea manager would remain for several years, subsequently taking charge of Arezzo (where Sarri, coincidentally, succeeded Conte), Perugia and Grosseto. Never staying at one club for more than a single season and unable to fully implement his footballing philosophy under a succession of short-termist owners, Sarri also had caretaker spells at Avellino and Verona as he roamed from club to club.

Dropping down to Serie C with Allessandria and Sorrento, Sarri’s attacking brand of football caught the eye of Empoli in 2012, and it was with the Serie B club that Sarri’s managerial career was to ignite.

Taking a team that narrowly avoided relegation the previous season to a fourth-placed finish and a promotion play-off final with Livorno (which Empoli lost) in 2012/13, Sarri was to guide his side to automatic promotion to Serie A the very next season.

Having settled on a 4-3-1-2 formation very early on in his tenure at Empoli, Sarri (much like he subsequently did at Napoli) stuck with that set-up for the remainder of his three years with the Tuscan club and indeed into his debut season in Serie A.

Empoli comfortably avoided relegation back to the second tier (never falling into the drop zone after Gameweek 4) and the attacking swagger that Sarri’s side exhibited in their 4-2 win over Napoli towards the end of the 2014/15 season made an impression on his future employers.

Sarri was appointed boss of the Neapolitan giants seven weeks later in place of Rafael Benitez, who was dismissed for what was perceived to be an overly negative tactical approach en route to finishing fifth in Serie A.

In his three seasons with Napoli, Sarri took the club to second, third and second-place finishes in the league, coming close to breaking Juventus’ seven-year dominance over the rest of Serie A in his final campaign.

While Napoli’s goal-scoring record (251 league goals in three seasons) during Sarri’s reign was the best in the club’s history, it should be noted that the Sacchi disciple also improved on Benitez’s defensive record: Sarri’s side conceded only 29 goals in 2017/18, almost half as many as Napoli shipped (54) in Benitez’s final season in Italy.

Napoli registered at least 12 clean sheets in each of Sarri’s three seasons with the club and indeed kept 19 shut-outs in the season just gone. Intriguingly, 12 of last season’s clean sheets were recorded on the road.

The Prospects

These are exciting times for both Chelsea fans and Fantasy managers. Not since, perhaps, Guardiola’s arrival at Manchester City two years has a Premier League managerial appointment been such feverishly anticipated.

The hopes and expectations are, first and foremost, for goals and lots of them. No Serie A side has scored more goals than Napoli since the summer of 2015 and that total of 251 league strikes is only six fewer than Manchester City have managed in the Premier League during that period.

Napoli had more attempts on goal (656) than any Serie A club in 2017/18, a total that would have ranked them just behind Manchester City (665) in the Premier League. Napoli’s division-high total of shots inside the box (375) also was only inferior to City (411) and Liverpool (391) among top-tier English clubs.

Lorenzo Insigne had an attempt on goal every 17.5 minutes last season, an average that only Harry Kane could better among first-choice Premier League strikers. Insigne’s total of 260 penalty box touches actually trumped Kane’s and that of all other strikers in the English top tier.

Dries Mertens (who Sarri converted into a goal-getting forward during his spell at Napoli), meanwhile, was presented with a chance every 23.5 minutes, while Marek Hamsik’s rate of a shot every 27.9 minutes in Serie A was a figure only Mohamed Salah could better among midfielders with 20+ appearances in the Premier League.

The Neapolitan club also enjoyed more possession (60.3%) than the 19 other Serie A sides last season and their passing accuracy of 87.7% was unsurpassed among the teams in their division – something which bodes well for Chelsea players and their pass completion rewards on the Bonus Points System next season. Manchester City were the only Premier League club to pass with more accuracy in 2017/18.

Turning Chelsea from a counter-attacking side into one that dominates possession will be a focus of Sarri’s this coming season. Only Sassuolo (459) had fewer unsuccessful touches than Napoli in 2017/18, while just four teams were dispossessed on fewer occasions than Sarri’s troops (370).

Napoli also made over 5,000 more short passes than any Serie A club last season.

Creatively, Napoli excelled. Totals of 526 key passes and 456 short key passes were superior to all other top-tier Italian sides and no Premier League club created as many chances, either (City completed 498 key passes, by way of comparison).

Though 13 of their goals came from crosses, Napoli generally shirked the more direct approach. A total of 124 accurate crosses last season was only the 18th-best in Serie A and some 38 fewer than Chelsea in the Premier League.

That Napoli won fewer aerial duels per match (10.8) than all other clubs in their division would underscore that Sarri is keen to keep the ball on the ground – something that Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata (should they remain at the club) would have to adapt to. Morata, indeed, scored more headed goals than any other Premier League striker last season.

Napoli’s defensive statistics make for just as impressive reading.

Their goalkeepers were forced into making just 69 saves last season, only 37 of which were from shots inside the box (the lowest amount in Serie A). Thibaut Courtois and Willy Caballero were called into action on 86 occasions, meanwhile.

Napoli’s low clearance (the worst in Serie A) and interception (second-worst) statistics do not bode well for Chelsea defenders on the Bonus Points System next season, but it would, perhaps, indicate that their chances of recording more clean sheets are enhanced. That Napoli blocked the lowest number of shots and crosses in Serie A in 2017/18 whilst still registering 19 clean sheets would suggest that Sarri’s sides aim to win the ball back before the opposition can do any damage in the final third.

This assertion is backed up by the fact that Napoli ranked fourth-best in the division for passes blocked, highlighting how Sarri’s high press can help his sides retrieve the ball before their opponents can do any significant damage.

What we don’t know yet is which players in Chelsea’s current squad Sarri wants to retain. Jorginho is, of course, a nailed pick in the midfield three, but uncertainty dogs the rest of the side. N’Golo Kante looks assured of a starting berth alongside Chelsea’s new defensive midfielder, while Cesc Fabregas’ ability on the ball would seem a good fit for a Sarri side – though the Catalan playmaker’s ageing limbs are an obvious weakness to a manager who demands a high press.

Cesar Azpilicueta may make the move to right-back if Sarri, as he surely will, turns to his favoured 4-3-3 system, though the Spanish defender is arguably the most talented centre-half on Chelsea’s books.

Should Chelsea be able to resist the advances of Real Madrid et al for Eden Hazard’s services, then the Belgian would be an enticing prospect as part of Sarri’s front three.

As we have touched on, the main concern (aside from the possible departure of Hazard) is Marcos Alonso. Always a little suspect defensively, it remains to be seen whether the gallivanting wing-back features in Sarri’s plans for a more withdrawn role as a conventional full-back. Even if Alonso was to get the nod, the Spaniard’s underlying attacking numbers would surely take a tumble. Mario Rui, who featured in the Napoli side at left-back for much of last season, averaged a shot just once every 298.3 minutes and had only 13 penalty box touches in 25 appearances. Elseid Hysaj, on the opposite flank, was presented with a chance once every 284.1 minutes and had just 22 penalty box touches in his 35 starts. By way of contrast, Alonso averaged a chance once every 44 minutes and had 101 touches in the opposition area in 33 appearances for Chelsea.

Even Faouzi Ghoulam, Napoli’s first-choice, more attack-minded left-back, only averaged a shot once every 98.7 minutes before injury brought his season to a premature end.

All eyes then will be on pre-season and Chelsea’s dealings over the summer to see if we can glean any further clues as to Sarri’s preferred choice of personnel and whether they can be viable Fantasy options in 2018/19. One thing is for sure: the Premier League, and hopefully FPL, will be a more exciting place with Sarri in it.

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667 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Peace-o
    • 1 Year
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Whom got the assists in the Palace game, cheers

    1. Konig Luther
      • 5 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Sorloth 2, and Townsend 2

      1. Peace-o
        • 1 Year
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Cheers man

  2. AzzaroMax99
    • 2 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    What premium mid to get up to 10m ? Eriksen, DeBruyne..

    1. feed feo
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Mane, Mahrez.

      1. zotter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Sane too

  3. Silva Bilva Tilva Pilva
    4 months, 4 days ago

    I feel like Willian with Sarri will explode this year (if he stays).
    Also want to wait on Bailly to see if he's nailed.

    What do you think of my team? Decent?

    Ederson
    Robertson Cedric Coleman Douglas
    Willian Mahrez Salah
    Firmino Aguero Raul

    Speroni Tomkins Cairney Stephens

    1. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Who is Raúl.

      1. 420king
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Probably Wolves.

      2. Silva Bilva Tilva Pilva
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Jimenez

  4. Auboomerang
    • 1 Year
    4 months, 4 days ago

    How many points would you expect from a 5.0 midfielder?

    1. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Average about 2.5. You need to average more than 2 to justify the extra 0.5

      1. Auboomerang
        • 1 Year
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Sorry meant over a whole season.

        1. zotter
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          At least 85

    2. Auboomerang
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Might just stick with good old McArthur. 100 points last season and great fixtures. Doubt it gets much better than that for a 5.0 midfielder.

      1. Ymyol
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Wilshere!

  5. Deulofail
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    As we get closer to GW1, and the Chelsea situation becomes a bit clearer, we could begin to see a few mor Salahless teams. Here's one, for example:

    Ryan (Steele)
    Mendy Coleman PVA (Cedric Wan-Bissaka)
    Mahrez Pedro Fabregas Deulofeu (Mkhitaryan)
    Aubameyang Aguero Firmino

    1. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      This assumes that Chelsea favour those two “cheAp” Spaniards. Bakayoko. Barkley. Hazard (or replacement). Loftus cheek could easily oust them

      Assuming Jorginho. Kante and giroud / morata start

      1. zotter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        And Willian

        1. Deulofail
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 2 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          RLC + Willian = Pedro + Fabregas

          1. zotter
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            4 months, 4 days ago

            Fair point

    2. Silecro
      4 months, 4 days ago

      deulofeu could be great but with such an active bench and him serving as rotation player, could easily downgrade him to cairney/costa to upgrade keepers

      1. Deulofail
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        I'd play him evey week, and only bench him for GW 4, 5 and 7 (assuming fitness and form)

    3. Ghost Gooner
      • 5 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      I'll only consider going Salahless on my WC. I plan to use it during the international break. We'll have everyone back by then and we'll see if teams have worked out how to nullify Salah

      1. Deulofail
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Why the international break? I don't think price rises are (much?) greater in international breaks anymore (unless they've sped up the algorhythm again)

        1. zotter
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          And especially given the transfer window is early now

        2. Ghost Gooner
          • 5 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          Everyone should be back and fit by then. I've no Chelsea Arsenal Spurs assets and my team has a lot of fixture punts and that gives me a chance to refresh my team with the more info at hand.

          1. Deulofail
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 2 Years
            4 months, 4 days ago

            My post was about Chelsea players. Are you certain to avoid them in GW1?

            1. Ghost Gooner
              • 5 Years
              4 months, 4 days ago

              I won't get any Chelsea, Arsenal and Spurs players going into gw1.

    4. 420king
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Pedro? A Napoli fan analysed Sarri and said he's more likely to play Moses instead of Pedro.

      1. Silecro
        4 months, 4 days ago

        that would be brutal

        1. 420king
          • 4 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          It would make him a better version of Alonso. Somehow doubt that will happen though, they'd have to sell Willian and not buy any replacements first.

      2. Deulofail
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Haven't read that Gospel yet, sorry. Switch Pedro for another Chelsea midfield or Walcott or anyone else. The point is simply that there would be even more popular options in midfield, up front and in defence, which people may want to take advantage of.

        People were mad for the non-premium midfield options before the start of last seaon, despite the fact that they barely existed. This season, we've been gifted with a ton of options in every position, yet people are happy to ignore it and search for budget options because they deem Salah essential.

        Not criticising; just an observation, and my post was a prediction that the number of Salahless teams may increase for this reason 🙂

        1. 420king
          • 4 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          I know that was the point, sorry to hijack it about Pedro 😛
          I've found the Gospel for you if you ever want to read it though: https://www.reddit.com/r/chelseafc/comments/8yssva/a_detailed_guide_by_a_napoli_fan_on_how_maurizio/

          I think most people go with Salah because of captaincy, at least that's why I'd go with him.

          1. Deulofail
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 2 Years
            4 months, 4 days ago

            Thanks

        2. Kopkloppers
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          Could do but his ownership will be a risk of being 30 points behind in 2 GWS

          1. Deulofail
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 2 Years
            4 months, 4 days ago

            Ownership shmoanership

    5. I Member
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Don't good cheap options like Pedro and Fabregas make it easier to afford Salah?

      1. Deulofail
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        The cheap options already exist. Deulofeu ➡ Walcott ➡ Mkhi. But when we have even more of them, people might see even more of an improvement to the rest of their teams when they try Salahlessness compared to when they try Salahlessness at the moment.

  6. zotter
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    How does this now look??

    Foster
    TAA. Daniels. Pva.
    Mkhi. Sane. Walcott. Salah c
    Aguero. Firmino. Wilson

    Fab. Cedric. Bamba. Masuaku

    1. ANISH_T28
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      TAA a potential doubt for the start if the season, also can you stretch to Wood over Wilson. Otherwise team looks solid, im assuming you have daniels for attacking threat and not CS potential

      1. zotter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Yes !

    2. Kopkloppers
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Very Good. Rather Ramsey than Mikhi but personal preference.

    3. Zladan
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 4 days ago

      TAA a doubt.
      Mkhi unfavourable fixtures and uncertain starting place.

    4. The Laowai
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 3 days ago

      Why AA over robertson for so many managers ? Also he's a potential doubt. Just quick glancing and it's an OK team for me. There seems to be a below average with the greats and that just doesn't do it for me.

  7. Yeezy FC
    4 months, 4 days ago

    My "No Salah" team..

    Any suggestions?

    Ederson (4.0)
    PVA, Coleman, Ward (Daniels, Peltier)
    Eriksen, Sanchez, Mane, Walcott (Wilshere)
    Zaha, Arnau, Aguero

    1. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Downgrade Wilshere and tbh also Sanchez. Can then get firmino in for a striker

      So perhaps Wilshere. Sanchez. Arnie to Dilva. 4.5. Firmino

      Arnie position could be pushed out now Andersen is in (who is himself a good shout)

      1. Yeezy FC
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Would love Firmino in my team and might just make those moves to get him in there...

    2. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Also surely you start Daniels in that first fixture. Best fixture going !

    3. sfsfsfe
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 4 days ago

      could you share your thoughts on why you pass on Salah. Team looks good but i would not like to be without him in the start of the season if he starts banging them in for fun again. I think its easier to get him in from the start instead of having to get him in when his price is starting to rise. I'm not criticizing your team in any way i'm just interested in hearing the thoughts of a non-Salah owner because there are not many of you out there.

      1. Yeezy FC
        4 months, 4 days ago

        I have tried to put together a team with Salah and I just feel it is very unbalanced and relying on one player. I know what he is capable of and I guess it is just me "hoping" he doesn't do what he did last year. Teams adapt and will approach Liverpool differently...I can dream, can't I?

  8. Pilgrim62
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Who do you prefer?

    King and Ramsey/Mikhi
    or
    Firmino and Kenedy/5.0

    Any advice?

    1. DJDave1979
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Not a fan of the King pick.

    2. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Latter deffo

    3. sfsfsfe
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Kinda depends on how your liverpool coverage looks in your other team parts imo. If you have salah, and 1 more (robertson/mane) you really don't need Firmino aswell. According to me it should be wiser in that case to spread your assets across more of the premium teams.

  9. zotter
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    With regards to city. I assume they will start with sane aguero mahrez front three. I also assume sterling would threaten mahrez spot and Jesus threatens aguero. Or am I simplifying it too much

    They could of course flip to 352 now Mendy back

    1. IrishRed
      • 2 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Just watch the Community Shield, no point worrying now

      1. zotter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Yeah very true

  10. ANISH_T28
    • 3 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Thoughts, No Salah and staying that way

    Foster
    Coleman Mee Robertson
    Sigurdsson Sane Mane Hughes
    Aguero Firmino Zaha

    Pickford Douglas Cedric Westwood

    1.0m ITB

    1. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      I would go Tosun over zaha. And then Ramsey or Mkhi midfield over siggy. But not much in it. Fantastic team

      1. zotter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Care to comment on mine a little bit scroll up ?? Ta

        1. ANISH_T28
          • 3 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          Cheers i will do

    2. Kopkloppers
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      As you said no Salah a bit of a risk.
      Very good side if you can ignore that point.

  11. Forlorn Hope
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    After a rough season last year, need all the help I can get!

    McCarthy
    Robertson, Coleman, Bailey, Cedric, Daniels
    Salah, D Silva, Ramsey,
    Aguero, Aubameyang

    Fabianski, Crainey, Stephens, Kamara

    Any comments gratefully accepted

    1. Kopkloppers
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Very good side.
      Both Ramsey and Auba maybe too much in first two fixtures?

      1. Forlorn Hope
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Always wildcard too early. Set team in order to avoid doing so this year. Now just need to be disciplined!

        1. Kopkloppers
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          I do too but usually out of necessity. With World Cup returns I see it even more common this year.

    2. Reuser
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      McCarthy isn't necessarily nailed anymore after they signed Gunn for something like 13.5m.

      I'm not a fan of Daniels and Bournemouth defence in general - but many others would disagree. Would rather have Tomkins.

      Otherwise - looks strong.

      1. Forlorn Hope
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Good shout on McCarthy. Would love Ward to be nailed and double up on Liverpool defenders.
        Have flip-flopped Tomkins and Daniels for a week now, so could end up either way

        1. Kopkloppers
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          I had Daniels but a let down last year. Concerned about Bournemouth this year. Hope I am wrong but a relegation candidate. Good fixture though.

    3. tbeans22
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Solid looking team

    4. The Laowai
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 3 days ago

      Nice! Also not a fan of Daniels. Would rather have pielters and use tgat to upgrade Stephens if possible

  12. Kopkloppers
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Any real risks:
    Foster Fab
    Cedric Bailly Robertson Douglas (Peltier)
    Salah Mahrez Jota MvArther Cairney
    Kun Firmino Tosun

    1. Pilgrim62
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Looks good

      1. Kopkloppers
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Cheers.
        Tosun a worry when Silvas strikers tend to do poorly.

    2. ANISH_T28
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Liking it alot, McArthur punt is interesting

      1. Kopkloppers
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Go to 100 points a season man. Cairny and him can rotate sometimes.

    3. Athletico Timbo
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Firmino perhaps?

      1. Kopkloppers
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        No real minutes in WC. Tried and tested.

        1. Athletico Timbo
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          Fair enough.

    4. Reuser
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Very nice.

      1. Kopkloppers
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Cheers

    5. Super Saints
      • 2 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      MacArthur is a great shout, seems to be nailed now too

    6. The Laowai
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 3 days ago

      Like it!
      So a 4 - 3 - 3 ?

  13. Gringo Kid
    4 months, 4 days ago

    What about Douglas, brutal stats but this will be completely new level

    Is he a worth shot?

    1. Reuser
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      In my eyes - absolutely. First class delivery and on some set-pieces.

    2. Athletico Timbo
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Not at the start. Promoted side, too pricey. See what happens before jumping on.

    3. MattB
      • 5 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      All corners and free kicks, wont get the stats he had last season as wolves wont score as many goals, will still be a worthwhile investment imo

      1. Kopkloppers
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        I think wolves will be a mid table team at worst. Worth the punt IMO with Jota.

  14. ANISH_T28
    • 3 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Kolasinac over Cedric from GW1 or wait till GW3 to bring him in

    1. Kopkloppers
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      I am waiting on all Arsenal until GW3

      1. ANISH_T28
        • 3 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        But if im not going to play cedric in the first 2 GW's it wont make a difference ?

        1. Kopkloppers
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          4 months, 4 days ago

          Another point I would have not known about. But will he be in 1st 11?

          1. ANISH_T28
            • 3 Years
            4 months, 4 days ago

            This is true I will monitor pre-season

    2. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      No point risking from the start. Jump on that gw 3 if needs be

    3. Silecro
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Plays on same side as Monreal who was attacking beast last season, that doesnt worry you?

    4. The Laowai
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 3 days ago

      Waiting on all but 1 until gameweek 3 especially the defenders.

  15. Reuser
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    With rotation becoming more and more of an issue each season, are people approaching their outfield bench differently?

    I'm trying to go for absolutely nailed players who are cheap but capable of delivering - rather than 4.0 defensive punts or 4.5 midfielders who will get you 2 points max.

    So currently - Tomkins, Kenedy and Cairney.

    1. DJDave1979
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      I've never liked a non-playing bench.

  16. Parm
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Love how many people are starting off with £6m defenders this season. Very sound strategy if you go for the whole season, potential L if you get drawn into moving funds forward.

  17. youneedmorecavaleiro
    • 4 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Draft #18347184913. RMT, any feedback appreciated 🙂

    Guaita - Patricio
    Robertson - Tomkins - Doherty - Cedric - Daniels
    Salah - Mahrez - Willian - Neves - Hughes
    Aubameyang - Firmino - Tosun

    1. zotter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Why not go Clyne over Robertson. Then switch to TAA or Kola later

      1. youneedmorecavaleiro
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Is Clyne nailed?

    2. Lh909
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Cavaleiro!!!!!!!!

    3. Auboomerang
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Not sure, but CAVALEIRO

      1. youneedmorecavaleiro
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        haha i feel like two 5.0s is better than a 5.5 and a 4.5

    4. The Laowai
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 3 days ago

      From what i hear jota cairney are better picks than Neves for numerous reasons.

  18. HEADSY
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Foster/Fab

    Robbo/Keane/Cedric/Tomkins/Peltier

    Salah/Mahrez/Rambo/Kennedy/Hughes

    Aguero/Bobby/Tosun

  19. zotter
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    What role do we see Lichtsteiner playing at arsenal ? Peripheral. Or starter given I assume fairly big wage. If so where

      1. zotter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Interesting. But could easily change. Surely chambers won’t be guaranteed. And no Lucas Torreira?

    1. The Laowai
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 3 days ago

      Starter imo. I drafted him in but swapped him out for Coleman. Hell be making an entry sometime after gameweek 3 or 4

  20. zotter
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Mahrez or Sane ?

    1. EmreCan Hustle
      • 6 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      I have Mahrez

    2. The Laowai
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 3 days ago

      Sane! But i hace mahrez hahaha.
      That 0.5 make a such a difference and he'll be out there to impress.

  21. EmreCan Hustle
    • 6 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    How serious is Murray's injury? Locadia/Baldock an option?

    1. Reuser
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Just a minor knock, apparently.

  22. nonaynever
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    4 months, 4 days ago

    Thoughts?

    Pickford/Stek

    Bailly/Bertrand/Yoshida/Lowton/Ward

    Salah/Mane/Sanchez/Walcott/Stephens

    Firmino/zaha/Jiminez

    thanks

    1. Marmalade Forest
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 4 days ago

      Could be good. Could score 80+ in the right week easily, but to be a negative Nelly:

      -You’re forced to play the Everton keeper, even against City away etc.
      -Doubling down on Burnley and So’ton defenders. You’ll be fuming if you have two on your bench and they clean sheet. Plus Burnley in Europe.
      -Bailly too risky until Mourinho shows consistency with a centre back.
      -If Liverpool blank you could be looking at a under 20 point GW

      1. nonaynever
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        4 months, 4 days ago

        Thanks... Bailly is a gamble but it's a 2 week one. Planning to get Monreal Wk 3

        Also considering Pick/Stek/Lowton/Ward to Ryan/Steele/Baines/Keane, but again the double-down risk..

        Liverpool...blank? (gulp)

    2. The Laowai
      • 3 Years
      4 months, 3 days ago

      Salah mane and firmino ! Woe
      Totally agree with PACARTER88. well not totally I think Bailly will start and he'll probably be nailed depending on the first few weeks.

  23. boc610
    • 6 Years
    4 months, 3 days ago

    the sanchez visa issue is a great illustration of just how astonishingly blinkered football teams are when it comes to the real world.

    " do we think his criminal record for tax evasion will be an issue? naaah, he's a footballer. they wont mind"

  24. Rust Cohle
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    4 months, 3 days ago

    Anyone have any thoughts on Zappacosta? Everyone is talking about Emerson. For Sarri-ball, I think I’d prefer Rudiger and Christensen as CBs with Azpi and Zappa as FBs if I was playing a back four. Seems like a more solid back four with ball playing ability.

  25. Smog Cutter
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    4 months, 12 hours ago

    Hello boys and girls. Fancy the chance to call yourself the Football Prediction King (or Queen) for the 2018/19 season … and to win a bit of cash at the same time??

    A couple of mates are putting together a ‘Football Prediction King’ cash competition and are looking for people to take part. Nothing strenuous involved, just predict who you think will finish in the top 3 and bottom 3 positions of six major European leagues (Premier League, English Championship, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A, Ligue 1) and who you think will come out on top in the Champions League and FA Cup.

    There is a £10.00 entry fee and cash prizes will be awarded to the 3 top-scoring entrants at the end of the season.

    Find out more and submit your entry by requesting access to the following private competition Facebook page - https://m.facebook.com/groups/1755303811232391

    CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES: 5pm on 9th August

  26. Adsterguy
    • 1 Year
    4 months, 12 hours ago

    First time trying a 5-at-the-back, RMT?

    Sanchez + Martial -> KDB + Ramsey/Mkhi in GW3

    Foster
    Robbo / Mendy / Bailly / Coleman / PVA
    Salah / Sanchez / Martial
    Aguero / Tosun

    4.0 / Cairney / Kamara / Ward

    1. Adsterguy
      • 1 Year
      4 months, 12 hours ago

      Likely going to WC in the second intl break

  27. Thomas Jerome Newton
    • 2 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Already swapped Tosun out (for Arnautovic) when I decided to bring Siggy in.
    Had Richarlison while down as Watford. Feel like I shouldn't have 2 Everton until we see how they perform (maybe not even then!)
    People think 2 Everton too much?Thinking of keeping Siggy and swapping Richarlison (for Jota).

  28. Glory Glory Man Utd.
    3 months, 24 days ago

    What do you think about my formation below?

    Fabianski

    Azpilicueta-Otamendi-Davies-Alonso

    Sane-Eriksen-Salah-Gross

    Arnautovic-Zaha

  29. GOODBYE KAPTAIN KANE
    • 1 Year
    3 months, 7 days ago

    Sanchez over Mane just for a Friday night player was a silly move in hindsight