802
Scout Notes

Clues to Blank Gameweek 31 Chelsea line-up in Ukraine

Fantasy Premier League managers were given clues to Chelsea’s next starting line-up in their latest Europa League win.

The Blues are in action at Everton on Sunday as the final game of Blank Gameweek 31, just three days after comfortably winning 5-0 against Dynamo Kyiv.

That means we can be fairly confident which players will start at Goodison Park after a brief analysis of the Chelsea side that was utilised in Ukraine.

We are reticent to read too much into the result itself though, as assessing anything more than the line-ups would tell us very little given the result and the manner of it.

Meanwhile, Arsenal continue to show what they are capable of at the Emirates Stadium as they came through another high-pressure match there, and extended their winning run at home to six in all competitions.

Europa League quarter-final draw:

  • Arsenal v Napoli
  • Slavia Prague v Chelsea

Dynamo Kyiv 0-5 Chelsea

Goals: Olivier Giroud x3 (£7.7m), Marcos Alonso (£6.4m), Callum Hudson-Odoi (£4.2m)

Assists: Ruben Loftus-Cheek (£5.2m), Alonso, Hudson-Odoi, Willian (£7.1m)

Fantasy managers are now clear to sign Eden Hazard (£10.9m) after he was, as expected, given the night off on Thursday. The Belgian was an unused substitute as Chelsea convincingly swept Dynamo Kyiv aside, dominating the game from early on and scoring in the first five minutes. A popular target for Blank Gameweek 31, for those playing the Free Hit chip or not, confirmation that Hazard is still fresh for the weekend should now trigger more purchases for him.

Olivier Giroud (£7.7m) laid down another statement of intent in the Europa League as he scored a hat-trick and added an assist in a total demolition job against Kyiv. The forward has now scored nine goals in as many continental matches this season and continues to prove what an excellent link-up man he is for exciting wide players. Gonzalo Higuaín‘s (£9.6m) illness this week might have some thinking that Giroud could be involved against Everton but given he played 90 minutes in Ukraine and has not started a Premier League match since Gameweek 20, it seems unlikely that he will be in the first XI. More likely, he could be used as a substitute as it seems probable that Higuaín will be over his illness in time. At the very least, the Frenchman is proving he is capable of stepping in if need be.

“(Giroud was) Very, very good. But, in the last period, every time he has been on the pitch, he was able to play really very well. He’s scored nine goals in this competition. As you know very well, Olivier for us is a very important player. I’m really very happy for him, and am really very happy with him.” – Maurizio Sarri

74 minutes for Willian (£7.1m) against Kyiv, plus a benching in Gameweek 30 mean that the Brazilian is unlikely to start at Goodison Park. That makes him much less of an option for those planning to play the Free Hit and save some money on a Chelsea attacker this week, despite his recent underlying statistics looking quite favourable. Pedro (£6.3m) featured only as a 74th-minute substitute in Ukraine so it looks as if the Spaniard will join Higuaín if fit, and Hazard in the front three on Sunday and could be the alternative to go for.

It is now clear as it can get that Marcos Alonso (£6.4m) has lost his place in the first-team to Emerson Palmieri (£5.2m). The Spaniard played the full 90 minutes against Kyiv having missed the last two Premier League matches, while his Italian counterpart was given the night off. Despite slipping down the pecking order, it was actually a textbook attacking performance from Alonso. He was an exciting outlet down Chelsea’s left flank and his cross into the box for Giroud’s second goal was expertly weighted. Furthermore, he got on the scoresheet himself after showing us he can still take up centre-forward positions at various stages during matches. However, we must remember the quality of opposition as Kyiv were once again far too easy to open up at the back, conceding eight goals in total across both legs.

Elsewhere in defence, rests for David Luiz (£5.9m) and Cesar Azpilicueta (£6.3m) should see them come back into the side for Blank Gameweek 31 as Andreas Christensen (£5.0m) and Davide Zappacosta (£5.0m) took their places. The latter limped off and is now considered a doubt for the trip to Everton. Meanwhile, Antonio Rüdiger (£5.9m) played the whole match in Ukraine but should keep his place as his rest came in the first leg, where he was an unused substitute.

Any hopes of Chelsea’s young midfielders Ruben Loftus-Cheek (£5.2m) and Callum Hudson-Odoi (£4.2m) starting in Blank Gameweek 31 were dashed by their 90-minute outings on Thursday night. However, at least they have made some progress up the Blues’ pecking order in the mind of Maurizio Sarri. Loftus-Cheek’s three appearances outside the Premier League prior to the trip to Kyiv were from the substitutes bench. This was his first start since January and the first time he completed a match since before Christmas. As expected, Loftus-Cheek showed the drive in possession that Chelsea have sorely missed from their midfield this season. Meanwhile, Hudson-Odoi was making his second start from a possible three in the Europa League. Between the two players, they registered a goal and two assists as they look to push on and threaten to break into the first team.

The central midfield trio to start at Everton looks likely to feature usual suspects Jorginho (£4.6m), who played just 25 minutes in Ukraine, N’Golo Kanté (£5.0m), who registered 65 minutes and former Toffees man Ross Barkley (£5.1m), who was an unused substitute. Matteo Kovačić (£5.7m) played the full 90 so will likely feature only from the bench at Goodison Park.

Chelsea XI (4-3-3): Kepa; Alonso, Christensen, Rüdiger, Zappacosta (Azpilicueta 69′); Loftus-Cheek, Kovačić, Kanté (Jorginho 65′); Willian (Pedro 74′), Giroud, Hudson-Odoi.

Arsenal 3-0 Rennes

Goals: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang x2 (£10.8m), Ainsley Maitland-Niles (£4.4m)

Assists: Aaron Ramsey (£7.1m), Aubameyang, Sead Kolasinac (£5.0m)

Fantasy managers should continue to take note of Arsenal’s increasing confidence in big fixtures at home. For the second time in the space of a week, the Gunners came through a pressure match in front of their own fans largely unscathed and with an impressive result. A 3-0 win over Rennes, after losing the first leg 3-1, put them into the quarter-finals of the Europa League just days after seeing off in-form Manchester United and condemning them to a first league defeat since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer arrived as caretaker manager.

With Alexandre Lacazette‘s (£9.4m) three-match Europa League ban reduced to two shortly before Thursday’s second-leg, that meant that he was able to start alongside Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£10.8m) for the second match in a row. Now that Unai Emery has been able to pair the two up once again, it has helped transform Arsenal’s fortunes in these big games. Scoring relatively early in each one has been a huge factor to help them emerge from both matches with an aggregate score of 5-0.

“It’s given us big confidence, Sunday against Manchester United and today the same after this comeback. Our reaction is very good and playing under pressure is good. Growing up under pressure, like a team, feeling difficult moments and giving us our best performance in this moment. For us, today and Sunday we were competitive. I think it’s good confidence for us to feel that. After(wards), I am very demanding myself and I want to take better control with the ball and with possession. Against United and today, we lost the ball a bit and control of the match with the ball.” – Unai Emery

Aubameyang is now a suspension tightrope in the Europa League after he was booked for donning a Black Panther mask in celebrating his second goal. One more yellow card in this tournament would see the forward suspended for one match, which would be a huge blow to the Gunners’ chances of going all the way in the Europa League. However, it could be good news for Fantasy managers looking at Arsenal’s fixtures between Gameweek 34 and the end of the season, as having him as more of a confirmed starter for Watford (away), Crystal Palace (home), Leicester (away), Brighton (home) and Burnley (away).

After coming back from suspension earlier than expected, Lacazette received a booking in the 31st minute which could have been red in the eyes of some. Asked if he substituted him in the 70th minute for fear of losing him again, Emery explained he simply wanted to rotate his players.

“We decided one plan for 90 minutes because we knew we needed 90 minutes and maybe more because at 3-0 if they scored we were going to play extra-time. Iwobi and Mkhi deserved to play. When they supported us for the 30 minutes they helped us a lot. The 10 minutes after the changes, their impact was good with the goal and creating two chances. I think we need every player. Today the first XI was important, but also the players who came on during the match.” – Unai Emery

After performing very well against Manchester United, it was another excellent performance for Sead Kolašinac (£5.0m) on Thursday night. His advanced runs helped him register an assist for Aubameyang’s second goal and furthered his case to make the left-back spot his own, amid rumours that Arsenal are looking for a new signing in that position over the summer.

Aaron Ramsey (£7.1m) was a key individual once again, proving that he will be a big loss from next season onwards. In the last three matches in all competitions he now has two assists.

With no fixture in the FA Cup or Premier League this weekend, Arsenal are now not back in action until April 1, when they host Newcastle in Gameweek 32.

Arsenal XI (3-4-1-2): Cech; Monreal, Koscielny, Mustafi; Kolašinac, Xhaka, Ramsey (Torreira 87′), Maitland-Niles; Özil (Mkhitaryan 70′); Lacazette (Iwobi 70′), Aubameyang.

802 Comments Post a Comment
  1. donlobatto
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Lost on a previous page

    Given Fraser is likely to play and possibly haul (given his history of post-flag performances), would you say a -4 to drop Pogba for him is worth it (0.4m tied up in him)? I have Wilson already. Would allow me to bench Pereira as a safety net in case of no shows

    Thoughts?

    1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      I reckon it’s worth it yeah

    2. Bobby Digital
      • 2 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      -4 to get 12 players is a bit daft this week when managers are struggling to field 11.

      1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        I’d disagree. It’s like you’re saying you don’t need a playing bench in a regular Gameweek. If someone is rested which is likely at this stage of season, you’re better off having someone who you believe may haul in their place. It’s an immediate -2 and also a differentiator vs other teams. The fact that most will start 8/9, makes the hit even easier to swallow

        1. donlobatto
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 2 Years
          8 months, 1 day ago

          Precisely. See my reply below!

      2. donlobatto
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        That some are struggling to field 11 is irrelevant.

        It’s surely just about whether Fraser - Pereira’s points (as benched) - 0.4m TV is worth more than 4 points over 2 weeks...

  2. MGD
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Been harshly ignored... Repost

    A) Aguero + Masuaku -> Vardy + Fraser/Maddison (-4)
    B) Aguero + Masuaku -> Higuain + Fraser/Maddison (-4)
    C) Aguero + Jimenez -> Vardy + Higuain (-4)
    D) A + Shaw -> Pereira (-8)
    E) B + Shaw -> Pereira (-8)
    F) C + Shaw -> Pereria (-8)

    Cheers

    A-C i can do Shaw to Pereira next gw for free and play with 10 this GW.

    1. HamezMace
      • 5 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Why do you assume harshly?

      1. MGD
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        It was just clarified that it was rudely, not harshly. Thanks though 🙂

        1. HamezMace
          • 5 Years
          8 months, 1 day ago

          A - with Fraser for me.

          1. MGD
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            8 months, 1 day ago

            Cheerio!

    2. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      a with Fraser. Don’t get pereira in for an extra hit. Regret getting him big time

      1. MGD
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        Cheers it think that thats where i am atm 🙂 How many will you field?

        1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          8 months, 1 day ago

          Currently 10 with one FT but planning to take a hit and have a spare. See post below

          1. MGD
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            8 months, 1 day ago

            Nice. I think 10 is enough if you can use 1 ft before GW33 to field 11 then.

    3. SPorting
      • 8 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      We'd never harshly ignore you.

      Rudely perhaps, but never harshly.

      1. MGD
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        Pweew... Thanks 😉

  3. TaiwanHC
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Thoughts on what to do with this team?

    Guaita* - Button*
    Robertson - TAA - Luiz - Pereira - AWB*
    Salah - Sterling* - Son* - Pogba* - Maddison
    Jimenez* - Rondon - Ings*

    Thanks guys!

    1. TaiwanHC
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      FH GW32 and WC in GW34

  4. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Afternoon ladies and gents

    Fabianski, Hamer
    TAA, pereira, Digne (AWB, Doherty)
    Brooks, Fraser, Salah, Anderson (Sterling)
    Rondon, Vardy (Aguero)

    Aguero and Sterling to
    A) Mane and Wilson (Leaning towards this)
    B) Mane and Higuain
    C) Hazard and Wilson

    Appreciated

    1. Lumberjack
      • 4 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      A

      1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        Thanks

    2. donlobatto
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      A for sure mate

      1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        Thank you

  5. Bojaninho
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    I have 10 but one is Schniderlin (don't ask, has been bench fodder all season but somehow never got rid of him.

    -4 to add one more to play, would have to be a defender proabably bennett.

    total -8

    1. Bojaninho
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      as in get rid of Bennett

  6. Jacky boy
    • 3 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Captain Wilson or Arnie?

    1. HamezMace
      • 5 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Wilson

      1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        +1

    2. fr3d
      • 2 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      I know Pelli made some comments, but I still wouldn't trust Arnie to start. So Wilson.

      1. GARY AND JAMIE
        • 6 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        team might be available from sources at 1.45pm

    3. Weilong7
      • 3 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      no salah or mane? wilson out of the two

    4. Hakim Ziyech
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Huddersfield are on the beach

  7. Erez Avni
    • 3 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    which dual will score more in gw 31?

    a. haz & boruc
    b. wilson & fabianski

    cheers!

    1. Bobby Digital
      • 2 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Haz and Boruc! Go!

  8. FDMS All Starz
    • 4 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Which combo will score more GW31 & 33?

    A) Mane & Kepa & Fraser (8 players in GW31) (-4)

    Or

    B) Wilson & Allison & Fraser & Maddison (9 players in GW31) (-4)

    Or

    C) Mane & Boruc & Brooks & Rondon (9 players in GW31) (-8)

  9. Five Season Wonder
    • 5 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Is there any chance that GW33 will present a DGW for any team?

    1. fr3d
      • 2 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      My brain is not ready for it at least

  10. The Red Devil
    • 4 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Fab button
    TAA Danilo AWB Kolasinac Bennett
    Salah mane Pogba Hayden Antonio
    Aguero higuain Jimenez

    2 FT 0.1 ITB

    Aguero Danilo Bennett
    To
    Vardy Azpili Ake/Digne/Rice/any defender up to 5.7?
    (-4)

  11. Jekori
    • 5 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Anyone else without WC going for TC32, FH33, BB35? With expected FA-cup outcomes it seems like the best way for me, but haven't seen any comrades

    1. It’s gonna Ben Mee
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Nah, too much can happen between 32 and 35.

  12. Lumberjack
    • 4 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Is Billing to Brooks worth a hit? Would be a proper old-fashioned -4!

    A - yes
    B - No

  13. Weilong7
    • 3 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Sterling out for hazard or mane? have salah

    1. Lemongrab
      • 10 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      The man(e) in form

      1. Weilong7
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        Thanks! 🙂

    2. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Leaning towards mane. Only factor messing up with me decision is a rested hazard vs a very tired mane

      1. Weilong7
        • 3 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        indeed...

  14. TeddiPonza
    • 9 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Money no object. Best combo for Aguero and Pog (have filled the three L’pool slots)

    Hazard and Vardy? Any other ideas?

    Thanks in advance

    1. Lumberjack
      • 4 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Hazard and Vardy look good

    2. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      What’s the rest of team looking like? I’m contemplating mane over hazard

  15. It’s gonna Ben Mee
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    A bit lost. Any suggestions much appreciated.

    To field 11 GW31 (will FH32) should I do Schär >

    A) Azpi for -4 (eve, WHU)
    B) Aké for -4 (NEW, BUR)
    C) Don't take a hit and field 10

    Rest of my defence is: Fab, TAA, Pereira and Schindler.

    1. Would Ed Woodward
      8 months, 1 day ago

      I'm definitely taking a hit for one of Azpi/Luiz/Ake, deciding between them is the problem!

  16. Bubz
    • 6 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    If I have 2fts and play free hit chip this week, do those 2fts roll to next week?

    1. Lemongrab
      • 10 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      No back to 1

      1. boredjames
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        seems a bit unfair

        1. Dave Bauer
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          8 months, 1 day ago

          Life is cruel, amigo.

    2. fr3d
      • 2 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Sorry pal

  17. SPorting
    • 8 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Got harshly bottomed (steady on sniggering children)

    GTG with this lot or take a -4 to bring in Luiz?

    Dubravka
    Robbo, Pereira
    Salah, Haz, Mane, Fraser
    Wilson

    1. HamezMace
      • 5 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      As Luiz is sure to play in 33.
      If you're following the popular chip strategy, I'd say it makes sense.

  18. SADIO SANÉ
    • 4 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    any strong opinions on the best Liverpool trio for this week?

    1. Hakim Ziyech
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Firmino, Salah, Mane

    2. boredjames
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Salah and Mane and one of VVD/Robertson

  19. kysersosa
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Ballers Good to go?
    Boruc
    TAA, VVD, Chilwell, Rice
    (M)ane, Maddison, Brooks
    Arnie, Higuain, Vardy

    Guaita, Pogba, Sterling, Shaw
    1 FT 0 ITB looking at taking shaw out for Clyne?

    Thoughts

  20. Iceball
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Since Fraser doubt then Maddison instead a better bet? Fraser had good last game but ...

    1. boredjames
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Howe said he should be ok. I have him on a FH

    2. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Stick with Fraser

    3. Maximus Bonimus Pointimus
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Fraser all day for me - his productivity when he's alongside Wilson is off the charts

      16 returns in 22 games alongside Wilson this season
      10 in last 12
      7 in last 7
      4 in last 3
      2 in last 1

      Doesn't guarantee that Maddison and/or Barnes won't outscore him in a very small sample size of one/two gameweeks though - and his yellow flag is a balls

  21. Weasel51
    • 3 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    All this planning to get 11 out.

    Higuain, Fraser and Lascelles.... FFS!

    1. Ajax Hamsterdam
      • 5 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      They all out????

    2. Dave Bauer
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Every chance two of them will play though...

  22. Ajax Hamsterdam
    • 5 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Is Wilson that much better than king than no one goes for the Norwegian ?

    1. Abusive_Sgt_Daelrhos
      • 5 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      I went for King and I’m proud of it!

      1. Ajax Hamsterdam
        • 5 Years
        8 months, 1 day ago

        Haha 🙂

  23. Abusive_Sgt_Daelrhos
    • 5 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    What do I do here lads, got 1FT, 1.9 ITB. Got 8 players, willing to take hit for 2 players, FH next GW.

    Fab, Rui*
    Robertson,Shaw*,WB*,Bennett*,Kola*
    Salah,Felipe,Billing,Pogba*,Sterling*
    Higuain,King,Rondon

  24. Tsparkes10
    • 1 Year
    8 months, 1 day ago

    RP Have Vardy, Wilson and Fraser... To join them in 31 and 33:

    A) King
    B) Maddison
    C) Arni
    D) Lanzini

  25. Weilong7
    • 3 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Robbo TAA Chilwell
    Salah F.Anderson
    Wilson

    Lloris Button AWB Lascelles** Pogba Son Masuaku Jimenez Aguero

    2FT 1.5 ITB
    1) Son for Maddison/Fraser?
    2) Lascelles for Rice?
    3) Button for Fabianski/Boruc?

  26. g40steve
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Fabs
    Trent, Pereira, Luiz, LASCELLES
    Mane, Salah, Maddison, Brooks
    Vardy, Wilson

    Boruc, Aguero, Doherty, Pogba

    GTG?

    FH32, WC34

    -4 already, -8 for AKE?

  27. Boss Hogg
    • 10 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Any Higuain news?

    I could swap him for Vardy for -4, but I want info first!

    1. Bobby Digital
      • 2 Years
      8 months, 1 day ago

      Im keeping and hoping he starts

  28. Bumbaclot
    • 8 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Looking for advice. I have 5 players available at the moment and 2FT’s. Should I take a -4 and have 8 or should I just FH? No wildcard left either.

    Thanks!

  29. gribude
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Am I only one here (or among all FPL players) with 11 players in gw31, 2 fts and fh gw32 plan so I can easily buy and sell Aboubakar Kamara?
    Oh wait...he's not in game anymore!?

  30. My neck my back my Saed Kol…
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    8 months, 1 day ago

    Shaw to Luiz worth a -4? Already taken one hit and am free hitting next week