Scout Reports

Is Steve Bruce damned at Newcastle United?

Newcastle United’s recent change of manager has, for many, done little to boost the potential of their Fantasy Premier League assets.

The departure of Rafa Benitez was seen as the worst-case scenario for fans of the club and Fantasy managers alike, especially considering their challenging early fixtures.

Now that Steve Bruce has been handed the job, the stock of Newcastle assets is at an all-time low.

In this article, we discuss what impact he will have at St James’ Park and what this means for FPL.


When it was officially announced that Benitez was on the way out, there were wild rumours of Jose Mourinho being touted as a replacement as well as more grounded talk that it would be Manchester City assistant coach, Mikel Arteta.

All of that optimism around the club proved unsubstantial for the Toon Army faithful after it transpired that Sam Allardyce had turned down the chance to have another go and instead Bruce was the man that was ultimately chosen.

Bruce’s appointment as Newcastle manager was underwhelming, to say the least. In many quarters, the former Manchester United captain wasn’t even considered among the top 10 likely candidates, he was an unexpected left-field option.

Choosing him over a plethora of other highly rated names probably hints at the true ambition of owner Mike Ashley. 17th will do by the looks of it, nothing more, nothing less.



The Background

Steve Bruce’s stock is not particularly high as he arrives at Newcastle

To put things into context, Steve Bruce has finished in the top half of the Premier League only once since the 2003/04 season. Except for guiding teams to Premier League promotion on four occasions, he has won no meaningful silverware as a manager. His last stint in the top-flight was during the 2014/15 season with Hull which ended in relegation. The previous year had seen them just about survive with a 16th-place finish.

Crucially, in both of those campaigns, the Tigers failed to score more than one goal per game on average and conceded a combined total of 104 goals, at 1.4 per game.

Perhaps this is the yardstick to which we should judge Bruce by now? If we go further back to his time at Sunderland, he did guide them to a respectable 10th place finish in the 2010/11 season, but as that was eight years ago, it’s hard to glean too much from it.

Overall, Bruce boasts a win rate of less than 30% in the Premier League. Of course, we have to remember that, over the past two decades, when he has managed in the top-tier, his teams were more often than not expected to battle it out at the bottom anyway and therefore did not win many games.

However, it does still highlight his standard and should probably guide our expectation levels for the 2019/2020 season.

What style of football does Bruce use?

There is greater offensive thinking in Bruce’s game than some realise

It would be fair to say that Steve Bruce is not typically known for free-flowing ‘Champagne Football’.

Then again, he is more attack-minded than many of us would dare to imagine. According to Steve Harper, who played under him during his time at Hull, he remembers how they would often deploy an offensive 3-5-2 formation.

The former Newcastle goalkeeper also insisted in a recent interview that Bruce “is certainly not the dinosaur he has been labelled, that is incredibly unfair”.

Perhaps it’s not all doom or gloom then? Let’s not forget that it was during this time at Hull that he also helped develop some quality youth players too.

Bruce (left) celebrates promotion to the Premier League with Hull player Robertson (right) in 2016

After all, it was Bruce that handed out debuts to Andrew Robertson (£7.0m) and Harry Maguire (£5.5m). In a matter of just a few years, these to have become established internationals and have reached the latter stages of the Champions League final and World Cup respectively.

More importantly, they have also enjoyed their fair share of Fantasy appeal in recent seasons too.

The implications of this on the 2019/20 season should be considered. As Bruce is prepared to hand out chances to youth players, this could result in some budget £4.0m or £4.5m emerging at Newcastle, who might get more game time than otherwise expected.

Also, contemporary clues of his style can be found by examining his most recent managerial posting.

Sheffield Wednesday wing-back Adam Reach noticed during the early days of Bruce’s reign that they were playing with an increased injection of pace, which in his own words, gave them “more confidence and we are allowed to express ourselves in the final third, which is always good”.

From an FPL perspective, this bodes well for the attacking prowess of wing-backs under Bruce if he adopts a similar playing style to that of his time at Sheffield Wednesday and backing it up with the forward-thinking formation he used at Hull.

Bruce could be the manager to get the best out of Matt Ritchie

In my estimation, Matt Ritchie (£5.5m) could benefit the most if things clicked seamlessly into place.

What’s more telling is that voices of support have also emerged from Newcastle’s first-team squad.

Their friendly win over West Ham in the Premier League Asia Trophy, saw Bruce implement a change of formation to that Hull-style 3-5-2, resulting in a much-improved performance compared to the opening defeat to Wolves.

“The fans need to give him a chance because I think, if they do that, if we play like we did on Saturday, we will do well week-in, week-out and they won’t have any reason for complaint.” – Jonjo Shelvey

Jonjo Shelvey‘s (£5.0m) positive sentiment bodes well from a cohesion perspective. Then again, I would not have expected the player to say any different to impress the new manager, especially after featuring in just 16 league games last season.

While such an approach could benefit Fantasy managers somewhere down the line after Newcastle’s tricky fixtures ease up, it does seem as if Bruce could surprise a few with his team selections.

He was quite prone to rotation during his Premier League time at Hull. Across the 2013/14 and 2014/15 seasons, 22 of his squad players appeared in at least 12 competitive games (FA Cup and Europe included).

Crucially, only five players featured in a minimum of 30 league games in the first of those two campaigns, dropping to just three in the latter.

Hull’s line-ups became increasingly unsettled as they hurtled towards relegation from the top flight.

By comparison, Wolves’ impressive seventh-placed finished in 2018/19 campaign was achieved with at least nine players starting in a minimum of 30 league games,

Given the disparity between the two clubs at present, it is perhaps an unfair comparison to make, but it certainly highlights the strengths of a settled side and the drawbacks of an unsettled one.

So could a poor start and a basement battle for Newcastle in 2019/20 cause Bruce to shuffle his pack more often in an attempt to find a new combination? We will have to see, but if this situation realises itself, it could certainly frustrate Fantasy managers looking to invest.

How busy will Bruce be in the transfer window?

Joelinton was unveiled by Newcastle on Tuesday

Speaking of investment, there is no doubt that Bruce’s success, or lack of it, will be dependent on whether he is allowed to bolster the squad with quality signings.

As a reference point, if Benitez’s tenure is defined by anything it is the paucity of activity in the transfer market and despite that, he was able to defy meagre expectations.

As a side note, Miguel Almiron’s (£6.0m) transfer last season may have broken the club’s transfer record but in the short-term but he still needs some more time to adapt to the Premier League.

One of the areas Bruce will need to get the board’s backing on will be to address their notable vacancies in the attack. The loss of the 2018/19’s top-scorers Ayoze Perez (£6.5m) and Salomón Rondón to Leicester and Dalian Yifang respectively was followed with Joselu’s move to Alaves.

Still at the club is last season’s forgotten man Yoshinori Muto (£5.5m) and it remains to be seen if Dwight Gayle will maintain his place as a player for Newcastle.

However, there is some encouragement from the signing of Hoffenheim forward Joelinton. There’s no doubt that he is an interesting prospect and played a significant part in Hoffenheim achieving a top-half finish in the Bundesliga last season.

However, Newcastle United need a proven out-and-out goal scorer to fill the void and, unfortunately, Joelinton’s goal-scoring abilities are still at a nascent stage.

Even though he is still 22 and offers lots of promise, the fact he hasn’t scored more than eight league goals in a season should be somewhat of a concern.

The Brazilian shouldn’t be seen as the sole solution to Newcastle’s problems and the club’s fans, as well as FPL managers, should not be overly excited by his arrival.

It’s safe to say that Joelinton is too much of an unknown quantity to even be considered as a Gameweek 1 prospect for seasoned FPL managers and they would be better off considering players from the current squad that have proven Premier League experience, who might potentially be improved by his presence.

Conclusion

The 2019/20 season is make or break for Bruce as a top-flight manager

To sum up, as a Newcastle United fan myself, I want to be pessimistic and say that it would be no surprise if Mike Ashley, as opposed to head coach, was on the cusp on condemning the club to a third relegation under his ownership.

Like many others, I am still unconvinced by Bruce’s managerial record but when I hear the opinions of his former players, as well as gauging the morale of his current squad members, it is clear that both Newcastle fans and FPL managers need to give him a chance.

Right now, Bruce is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t. The bar couldn’t be set any lower for him. But to avoid being the literal ‘Damned United’ in the first instance, he will need to somehow unite the fans behind him and that can only be done with success on the pitch.

I will be shocked if he surpasses what Benitez did for the Toon Army, as many accept his achievements were nothing short of miraculous.

I think Bruce’s early run of games will prove to be more than challenging and could even play a part in his inevitable downfall.

A bad start could see him almost certainly lose the hot seat well before the Christmas fixture rush.

Deep down, I hope that his use of the 3-5-2 formation works a treat and as an FPL manager, I hope to be among the first to jump onto the much-discussed ‘out-of-position’ Matt Ritchie bandwagon.

Become a Member and get unrestricted access to our data and articles

Full-year memberships and monthly subscriptions are now available.

Join now to get the following:

  • Plot your transfer strategies using the fully interactive Season Ticker.
  • Get projections for every Premier League player provided by the Rate My Team statistical model.
  • Use Rate My Team throughout the season to guide your selections and transfers.
  • Get access to over 150+ exclusive members articles over the season.
  • Analyse our OPTA-powered statistic tables specifically tailored for Fantasy Football Managers.
  • Use our exclusive tool to build custom stats tables from over 100 OPTA player and team stats.
  • Enjoy our brand NEW Flat-Track Bully feature which introduces an opposition filter to your tables.
  • View heatmaps and expected goals data for every player.
  • Use our powerful comparison tool to analyse players head-to-head.

ALREADY A USER? CLICK HERE TO UPGRADE YOUR FREE ACCOUNT

NEW TO SCOUT? CLICK HERE TO START A MEMBERSHIP ACCOUNT

The original Fantasy League game is back for the 2019/20 season – PLAY HERE!

1,293 Comments Post a Comment
  1. RAFA THE GAFFA
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Hopefully all set with Antlers now! Cheers Brosstan!

    1. pumpkinhead
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      k

    2. The Wise Owl
      • 5 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      I see no antlers. What a first post 😀

      1. The Wise Owl
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Antlers are there now!

        1. RAFA THE GAFFA
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          😀

    3. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      😆 😆 😆

    4. Brosstan
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      😆

  2. RAFA THE GAFFA
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    So, how’s this look? Still monitoring my two 4.5 defenders but I like the overall balance.

    Pope
    TAA. Digne. Cathcart
    Salah. Sterling. Siggy. Moura. Perez
    Wilson. Jota
    (Button, Dunk, Kelly, Greenwood)

    1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Brilliant!!!

      The team's a bit crap though ... NO! Only joking!

      Nice midfield - very good.

      1. RAFA THE GAFFA
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Thanks Doosra. Might be a few changes in the next few weeks but starting to settle on a rough team! 🙂 How you looking?

        1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 11 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Yeah - I am nearly there:

          GW1(3-5-2):

          Ederson
          Alexander-Arnold, van Dijk, Digne
          Sterling(vc), Eriksen, Sigurdsson, Pérez, Gundogan
          Kane(c), Origi

          Button; Lundstram, Greenwood, El Mohamady … 19/20, 0.0 ITB, TV: 100.0

          1. RAFA THE GAFFA
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Very nice. No Salah would scare me. I have had Origi in a few of my drafts too

            1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 11 Years
              2 years, 1 month ago

              Scares me too. But my midfield comforts me. 😀

          2. HamezMace
            • 7 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Do you have an exit plan for Origi? Awkward price point, and not sure how long he'll be in the team.

            1. inactive
              • 11 Years
              2 years, 1 month ago

              Klopp confirmed Mane is back on Monday 5th August. I think a cameo vs Norwich, start vs Chelsea (Super Cup) is the most likely scenario.

              1. HamezMace
                • 7 Years
                2 years, 1 month ago

                Exactly...I didn't expect Origi to start GW2...but even the more optimise Origi owners are surely only hoping he plays GW1 and GW2?
                What's the plan after that...unlikely any of the 5.5m and below options are going to be firing.

                1. inactive
                  • 11 Years
                  2 years, 1 month ago

                  Yep, looks like Origi is a one week pick. And as you say, there isn't an array of 5.5m choices you could switch to. I suppose Origi with 2m ITB could work, with a view to getting Haller for West Ham's brilliant fixtures.

                  Plans like that don't usually come off though.

            2. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 11 Years
              2 years, 1 month ago

              Several. Thank you. 🙂

              1. HamezMace
                • 7 Years
                2 years, 1 month ago

                Can you elaborate at all?

                1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 11 Years
                  2 years, 1 month ago

                  Not at this stage. Sorry. 😀

                  1. HamezMace
                    • 7 Years
                    2 years, 1 month ago

                    That's fair.
                    I just don't see a single transfer being enough to deal with him, and if Mane is back for GW2, you'll need to take a hit, unless you're happy to bench him for El Mohammedy, which you might be.

                    ...but I'm sure you have some wise maverick way of dealing with things, you usually do.

                    1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 11 Years
                      2 years, 1 month ago

                      Mané will not be back for GW2. You can count on it. 😀

                      1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 11 Years
                        2 years, 1 month ago

                        - Firmino may be. Then we will see. 🙂

                      2. HamezMace
                        • 7 Years
                        2 years, 1 month ago

                        You don't think, okay, I guess time will tell.

                  2. Ask Yourself
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 5 Years
                    2 years, 1 month ago

                    WCGW3 :O you just don’t want to admit it yet

                    1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 11 Years
                      2 years, 1 month ago

                      I may, I may not. It depends how it goes. 🙂

          3. pumpkinhead
            • 6 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Ederson
            TTA, VVD, 5.0 (RB Spurs), Coleman
            Salah, Siggy, Fraser, Moura, Perez
            Kane

            1. pumpkinhead
              • 6 Years
              2 years, 1 month ago

              Moura and 5.0 could also be Anderson and 5.5

    2. gaurava1216
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      8/10

  3. FOMFF
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Best West Ham option?
    FAnderson for me. Eye test last season.

    1. Respect My Authoritah
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Agreed. Very eager to get him in GW2 unless another option becomes obvious

      1. FOMFF
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Fixtures too good to ignore

    2. internal error
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Yarmalenko seems to be hyped around here even though he only played a handful of games last season and has never been prolific

      1. Respect My Authoritah
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Wouldn't say he's been hyped - I think it's more of people needing a 6.0 midfielder

  4. Fantasy Premington
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Thoughts on this team? any feedback welcome, would rotate Smith + Mings

    Lloris
    Robbo TAA Coleman (Adam) Smith Mings
    Salah Sterling KDB Brooks 4.5
    Jota DCL Greenwood

    1. gaurava1216
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      5/10

      1. Fantasy Premington
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        why

    2. Siggy Azalea
      • 8 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Quite like that midfield

  5. Siggy Azalea
    • 8 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Afternoon all, am I G2G with this draft?

    Heaton
    Digne - TAA - Laporte - Cathcart
    Salah (c) - Sterling - Perez - Pereya
    Kane - King

    Button - Greenwood - Hayden - Simpson

    1. gaurava1216
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      8/10

      1. Siggy Azalea
        • 8 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Cheers - i want to improve the midflield? Any suggestions?

        1. Too_Many_Hits
          • 3 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Pope over Heaton I think no? He just got a new contract and Heaton linked with a move...

          Pereya not played any pre-season apparently but he's still probably the best option at 6.0. Maybe him to Hughes and upgrade Cathcart?

  6. FPL Kaka
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Has anyone got any faith in Pereyra?

    6m for a nailed player who often starts the season well...

    1. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      I didn't until I read the Quick of the Blocks article yesterday. Interested now.

    2. FOMFF
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      I've had him in for a while but am looking at changing. Only because I freed up some funds elsewhere. As good of a punt as any......

    3. Respect My Authoritah
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Got him in at the moment. Not planning to keep him long

    4. jayzico
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Me. He's awesome

  7. Dacra
    • 7 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Best 4.5 defender rotation?

    Currently looking at Smith/Diop

    1. HamezMace
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Too bad you can't change it now anyway.

      1. Dacra
        • 7 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        I know, im stuck with 2 Edersons.

        1. HamezMace
          • 7 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Tough break, but could pay off, he's pretty decent with his feet to be fair.

          I assumed you meant Emerson?

          1. Dacra
            • 7 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Nope, it was really Azpi.

  8. Andrew
    • 9 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    A. Wilson and Perez
    B. Vardy and Brooks

    1. FOMFF
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      A

    2. jayzico
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      A. Then Vardy to replace wilson (possibly) GW3

  9. Karan14
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Anyone else all over the place with their defenders?

    I just can't decide between
    VVD or Robbo
    Coleman or Digne or none
    Laporte or Walker or Zinchenko

    Only certainty is TAA & 4.0m def.

    1. jayzico
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Depends on your dosh. Easy otherwise

      Robbo
      Digne
      Laporte

      1. Karan14
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        That's impossible for me honestly.

        Currently on VVD, Digne & Zinchenko + 0.5m itb.

        1. jayzico
          • 10 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Thought it might be.

          1. Karan14
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Really like Robbo.

            Coleman over Digne if Gueye leaves is tempting.

    2. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      That's not "all over the place", it's just minor tweaking.
      All over the place is me flipping between Digne and Azpili, or Alonso or Laporte.
      I have settled on TAA, Stones and Zinky though.

      1. jayzico
        • 10 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        why Stones? Whose his competition. Laporte no?

        1. Andy_Social
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          No, Laporte's nailed. His deputy CB - Stones or Ota. Seems Ota's out of favour.

          1. jayzico
            • 10 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Thanks ANdy

      2. Karan14
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Stones could be an under the radar option specially if Pep decides to use Otamendi for the midweek games.

        TAA is definitely in for me it's 3 other spots I'm not sure about.

        Currently on VVD, Digne & Zin. But there is a case for Robbo & Coleman too.

      3. pingissimus
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Alonso?

        Had him early but he’s slipped off my radar. Is he looking good for a start you think?

        1. Andy_Social
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Well if I'm not certain he won't be in. My thinking is that if he does nail the spot, under Frank he'll play ridiculously high again and spend half his time in the oppo penalty box.

          1. pingissimus
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 2 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Yep

            Agreed. He and Holebas could be my 11.5 if both are good to go.

            Not a long term hold

  10. I Member
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Welcome to the team David.

    Ryan
    Alexander-Arnold, van Dijk, Walker, Digne
    Salah, Sterling, Sigurdsson, David Silva
    King, Deulofeu

    Button; Kelly, Dendoncker, Greenwood.

    1. gaurava1216
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      8/10

    2. THE SHEEP HUNTER
      • 4 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      🙂

    3. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      He won't get enough minutes. You may see a lot of Donkers.

  11. GoodFella93
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Thoughts appreciated:

    Heaton
    Walker van Dijk Alderweireld TAA Coleman
    Salah Siggy De Bruyne Pèrez
    Kane

    (Button Dendoncker Greenwood Wickham)

    1. gaurava1216
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      7/10

    2. FOMFF
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Wouldn't go with Alderweireld. There's better goal threats at 5.5 in def. PVA or AWB namely.

      1. GoodFella93
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Yeah, ideally I want a Spurs full back there just so unclear right now.

        AWB, really? He's one of the most defensive full backs in the league

        1. FOMFF
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          More assists than PVA and plenty of bonus. Could gamble on higher clean sheet chance this year with Utd.
          What about Chilwell or Jonny? Jonny in fantastic form in preseason.

    3. Siggy Azalea
      • 8 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Really like this team.

  12. jayzico
    • 10 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Been asked a million times. Sorry I'll bookmark this time. What 3 teams rotate best preferably including a hammer

    1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Wolves

      Rotation Pairs:
      /38
      ARS TOT
      AVL BUR
      BOU SOU
      BHA LEI
      BUR AVL
      CHE WAT
      CRY NOR
      EVE LIV
      LEI BHA
      LIV EVE
      MCI MUN
      MUN MCI
      NEW SHU
      NOR CRY
      SHU NEW
      SOU BOU
      TOT ARS
      WAT CHE
      WHM WLV
      WLV WHM

      1. AuFeld
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Pshhhh. No one is planning that long. How about the first 10 game weeks?

        1. pumpkinhead
          • 6 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          How about just looking your self?

          1. AuFeld
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Thank you. I wasn't sure what to do next.

      2. jayzico
        • 10 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Thanks Doos. You always come up with the goods. Such a thing as a decent 3 way rotation?

        1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 11 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Not sure. With a quick glance, Wolves, Hammers, Villa?

          WHU : MCI -370 bha 105 wat -36 NOR 54 avl 14 MUN -48 bou -44 CRY 59 eve -180 SHU 114 NEW 130 bur 71
          WLV : lei -54 MUN 21 BUR 302 eve -118 CHE 28 cry 60 WAT 169 mci -601 SOU 330 new 51 ars -330 AVL 235
          AVL : tot -388 BOU 127 EVE -101 cry -58 WHU -14 ars -447 BUR 109 nor -145 BHA 144 mci -718 LIV -429 wol -235

          1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 11 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Pretty critical to have an Everton defender:

            EVE : cry 85 WAT 168 avl 235 WOL 118 bou 43 SHU 183 MCI -301 bur 158 WHU 180 bha 192 TOT -75 sou 135 NOR 122

          2. jayzico
            • 10 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Perfect mate

    2. Bocaginge
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      West Ham, Brighton, Burnley

  13. GoodFella93
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    What do we think the Spurs defence? Looks to be value there for sure, but who??

    They seem very short of full backs with Tripper out of the door and Rose potentially on the way?

    If it wasn't for Rose's transfer talk, and I'm inclined to ignore it anyway, I'd have thought Foyth and KWP would be competing for RB and Danny Rose and Davies rotating at LB?

    Either way I'm thinking of going 5 at the back: Coleman, Van D, TAA, Walker (swap to Mendy when fit) and a Spurs defender.

    1. THE SHEEP HUNTER
      • 4 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      I'm staggering my way towards Davies g/w1

      1. Andy_Social
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Good chance Sessegnon arrives this week.

        1. THE SHEEP HUNTER
          • 4 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          I'm not too perturbed by that.
          Cheers though!

  14. FPL Kaka
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Who do you think are going to be the top three worst defensive sides this year in the PL?

    My three go with Brighton, Norwich and Sheffield

    1. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Brighton for sure. I don't really know the other two but probably. I'd worry about Palace this year.

      1. pingissimus
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Palace are a worry overall - defo relegation contenders as at now - but think they’ll be okay in defence once they have more than 4 defenders to choose from.

    2. HamezMace
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Norwich by a distance.
      Brighton
      Villa/Newcastle

    3. Respect My Authoritah
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Brighton, Newcastle, Norwich
      Villa, Bournemouth, Sheffield not far behind

    4. avfc82
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Norwich, Brighton and Watford.

    5. pingissimus
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Brighton Newcastle Norwich

    6. THE SHEEP HUNTER
      • 4 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Blades! No way Jose!

      1. THE SHEEP HUNTER
        • 4 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Norwich, Villa & Palace.

    7. yakirh
      • 5 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Norwich
      Brighton
      Arsenal 🙂

    8. Jimmy Boy
      • 5 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Brighton, Norwich, Newcastle. Burnley were pretty terrible at the start of last season so potentially an outside bet.

  15. internal error
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 8 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Tim Vickery thinks Joelinton could "follow the same trajectory" as Firmino

    1. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Tim's a smart guy but ..... I'll pass.

    2. HamezMace
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      One for the 20/21 season then...I mean much easier to score goals in the Championship anyway.

  16. Dacra
    • 7 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    A) Walker + Siggy/Richarlison
    B) Digne + B.Silva

    1. Concrete
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      A

    2. jayzico
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      A

  17. Hesoyam
    • 4 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Perez or Tielemans?

    1. Gringo Kid
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      P

      1. AuFeld
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        E

        1. Brosstan
          • 7 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          This isnt reddit

    2. Concrete
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Perez

    3. jayzico
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      P

  18. Concrete
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Pros and cons of Mason Mount after Lampard’s comments ?

    1. jayzico
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Def wait and see with his motley crew

    2. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Has he said something today?

      I got him in yesterday but I'm dithering. I think he's absolute class, but how much will he be rotated? If he's understudy to Barkley he won't get the minute to justify 6m.I need him to nail a place.

  19. jayzico
    • 10 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    WHo's your 4.5 defender. Crap defence but liking Targett

    1. avfc82
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Long term he's our starting LB, but he's been sharing minutes with Neil Taylor in pre season, and I'm not sure its guaranteed he's thrown straight in. That Leipzig friendly should tell us more.

    2. Hesoyam
      • 4 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      I had Diop in my first draft, but by selecting Fabianski for Gk, I changed him to A smith

    3. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      El Mohamady. Has been since day 1.

      1. dunas_dog
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Is Guilbert not more likely to start ahead of El Mo?

        1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 11 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          No.

    4. Toblerone52 - Hung like a H…
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Don't like any of them, Dunk If I was forced to have 1

  20. CloudSky
    • 5 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    That's peanuts for Idrissa. Can't believe Everton sold for so little in this market.

    1. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      What? Has he gone?

      If so Diggers and Colman are off my watchlist.

      1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Unwise. 😀

      2. ritzyd
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        £28m is a good price. Bye bye everton defenders!

      3. CloudSky
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        To PSG for 28 mil.

    2. avfc82
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      He is 30 in a couple of months. What a blow for Everton tho - clean sheets will surely take a hit, Digne and Coleman with 6 attacking returns between them in 2019... something to think about.

      1. CloudSky
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        3 more years on the contract though and PSG paying.

  21. Bullet Eder
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Chelsea fans, who is likely to line up alongside David Luiz until Rudiger is fit? Christensen or Zouma?

    1. sumatera
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Not sure yet bud

  22. NMTD
    • 8 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    A) Lloris, Wan-B & Son (when playing)
    or
    B) Ederson, Siggy & VVD

  23. Dacra
    • 7 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Why do I want to take a gamble on Haller?

    It's a bad idea, isn't it?

    1. Netley Lucas
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      The fixture is tricky but if you could bench him?

    2. Toblerone52 - Hung like a H…
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      No point for GW1 City. Just wait and get him if he looks decent.

    3. Jekori
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Wait and see for sure. 25% of his goals came from penalties, if Noble keeps playing and taking them he ain't worth it imo. Also, there are enough 6.5 options that have proven themselves in the PL already.

    4. jomikijiq
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      he's great, the only thing putting me off is his GW1 fixture

    5. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Certainly wouldn't start with an unknown PL quantity when int he same price bracket there's Wilson, Rashford, Jimenez.

  24. SB8
    • 3 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Have Pep made any comments about Agu/Jesus? If they both skip the 1st GW, then Sane might be a good differential. Anyway, you can easily get KDB instead.

    1. Netley Lucas
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      I'm assuming both got 3 weeks off after Copa so maybe back on Monday?

      1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Yeah, I believe so.

    2. avfc82
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      They'll be back in training either on 29th or 30th July, or 3rd / 4th August. Pep said its basically up to them, they know their bodies and if they need 3 or 4 weeks rest etc.

    3. THE SHEEP HUNTER
      • 4 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Pep loves the Flankers, with Bendy Mendy crocked, I see enormous upside with the Z man not cutting the mustard in that role.

  25. Boris Bodega
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Current team, what to do with the extra 0.5m ITB?
    a) upgrade Fabianski to one of Pickford, Lloris, Kepa or De Gea
    b) upgrade Dendoncker to a 5m MF (Noble, Rice, Torriera, Hojbjerg) to rotate with/start over Greenwood.
    c) leave it ITB and reassess GW2/3

    Fabianski - (Button)
    Digne - Robertson - Zinchenko - (Gibson - Kelly)
    Sterling - Zaha - Fraser - Perez - (Dendoncker)
    Auba - Kane - Greenwood

    1. DirtySanchez
      • 7 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Upgrade Dendoncker IMO, but stay away from Rice/Torriera/Hoj. Look at pen takers (Noble may not even start) - Jorginiho?

      1. Boris Bodega
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Was looking at him initially but someone on here told me to avoid for some reason. Is he defo on pens or is it still a bit up in the air?

        1. DirtySanchez
          • 7 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          still slightly in the air, but most likely of the 5.0's IMO

        2. Ask Yourself
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          He won’t even defo start mate. If he does he’ll be on pens. Norwood is the 5m guy you want

    2. FOMFF
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      I like, different. What's your reasoning for No Salah?

  26. Lovren an elevator
    • 6 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    In a draft league (money no concern) do I rotate Ritchie and Enda Stevens as my 4th and 5th mids, or do I punt on Gomez and Walker-Peters, amazing if they are both starters!

  27. Bullet Eder
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Best 6.5 option of the three below?

    A. Josh King

    B. Pascal Gross

    C. David Brooks

    1. Lovren an elevator
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      King

      1. Sicaholic
        • 9 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Correct me if I'm wrong but king hasn't really featured in pre season?

        I have king in my team and beginning to worry

        1. Lovren an elevator
          • 6 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Hmm fair point on current form the pick is Groß and I'm very tempted with him, but I think a 6.5m striker is more likely to fit into a template draft

        2. Pasqualinho
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 12 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          He's been sick. Not ideal as it has impacted his training but its nothing too serious.

  28. DirtySanchez
    • 7 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Bit anti-template... where am i going wrong? Happier with the balance of my team with no Salah.

    Fab/Button,
    TAA/Robbo/VVD/Digne/Boly
    Sterling/Bernado/KDB/Zaha/Dendonker
    Haller/Jota/Greenwood

    Any ideas?

    1. Lovren an elevator
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      What if city keep alot more clean sheets than pool though....

      1. DirtySanchez
        • 7 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        There are lots of what ifs - i think Liv have the best defence and city the best attack!

        1. Lovren an elevator
          • 6 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          I think you're right. However, I'd be happier with 2 city attackers 1 def. And 2 pool defenders and 1 mid. Both teams offer too much at both ends to miss out on

    2. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      You need more bang for your buck, and more proven defenders.

      Haller, GW3. Earliest.

      1. DirtySanchez
        • 7 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Haha, potentially the most bang for buck i could find!

        And yeah, thinking of starting with Deulofeu and keeping 1m ITB.

        1. Doosra - ☭A Noble Grape…
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 11 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Both Bilva and KDB can, and probably will, be outscored at those price points. You have neither Fraser nor Sigurdsson.

          You have triple 'Pool defence.

          1. DirtySanchez
            • 7 Years
            2 years, 1 month ago

            Not regular that i find myself disagreeing with you on here - but a firing KDB is an absolute bargain at 9.5 IMO.

            Fraser 1 season wonder, but Sigurdsson on the watchlist, especially with those fixtures.

            Im happy with triple pool defence - the best value to be found anywhere!

            Thanks for the advice.

  29. resay
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    So I am thinking between these two, so any feedback welcome:

    Team 1
    Ederson
    Rico Kelly Dunk
    Brooks Sterling Salah Shelvey
    Aubameyang Kane King

    Bench: Button, Joringho, Gibson, Navarro

    or

    Team 2
    Ederson
    Aurier Holebas Arnold
    Brooks Sterling Salah Shelvey
    Deuolefeo King Kane

    Bench: Button, Joringho, Gibson, Navarro

    1. The 5% Team
      • 3 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      Team 2...mainly because team 1 is just awful

  30. Lucky Z
    • 4 Years
    2 years, 1 month ago

    Ryan [Button]
    TAA Robertson Digne Zinchenko [Kelly]
    Sterling Salah Fraser Perez [Den]
    Wilson King [Greenwood]

    What do you think on this BOU triple-up? Based on performance can reassess after first 2GWs.

    1. Netley Lucas
      • 6 Years
      2 years, 1 month ago

      There is an argument that goes each player will score points regardless of how many you have from the same team and that's clearly true. However, I tend to feel spreading it about, especially with teams who aren't the best, is perhaps wiser.

      1. Netley Lucas
        • 6 Years
        2 years, 1 month ago

        Basically I mean Wilson & Fraser are enough. 😆

        1. Lucky Z
          • 4 Years
          2 years, 1 month ago

          Thanks!