Four goals were shared by two in-form teams at the Vitality Stadium on Saturday, with plenty to interest Fantasy managers on the south coast.
Our Scout Notes article below recaps the best of the action.
Bournemouth 2-2 West Ham United
- Goals: Callum Wilson (£7.9m), Josh King (£6.3m) | Andriy Yarmolenko (£5.9m), Aaron Cresswell (£4.9m)
- Assists: Nathan Ake (£4.9m), King | Sebastien Haller (£7.4m), Felipe Anderson (£6.9m)
- Bonus: King x3, Yarmolenko x2, Ake x1
A highly entertaining encounter at Bournemouth ended equal as Callum Wilson‘s (£7.9m) remarkable run of returns continued and Andriy Yarmolenko (£5.9m) reiterated his growing attacking threat.
The Cherries frontman scored his side’s second goal on Saturday to make it seven straight Gameweeks with a haul to his name.
His 46 points to date
And after a less-is-more performance in Gameweek 6’s win at Southampton, in which he scored from his only shot of the match, Wilson was much busier against West Ham.
In truth, Wilson could, and should, have produced more points than the six he eventually managed.
He failed to convert one especially golden opportunity when clean through as substitute goalkeeper Roberto (£4.4m) pulled off a good save, and VAR declined to award him a penalty following a late tussle in the box with Aaron Cresswell (£4.9m).
But with a decent set of fixtures to come over the next six Gameweeks – even Arsenal away and a visit from Manchester United will hold few fears for him – it would be no surprise if Wilson’s ownership surpasses its current 11.5% level.
Maximum bonus on the day went to his teammate Josh King (£6.3m), who swept home when a cross deflected off Nathan Ake (£4.9m) and into his path. The goal was originally deemed offside, only for VAR, after a lengthy, spirit-of-football-sapping delay, to correct the error.
The Norway international then played in Wilson to give Bournemouth the lead after the break.
King, with 8.4% ownership, has played second Fantasy fiddle to his fellow forward so far this season, but he has now produced two goals and three assists – a solid return for a player a full £1.6m cheaper than his team-mate.
With Ryan Fraser (£7.2m) sidelined because of illness, King again lined up on the left wing of a 4-4-2 – although whether the Scot would have been anything other than a substitute anyway after the Cherries’ recent form without him is another question.
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe was fairly pleased with his side’s performance.
It’s too early to make assumptions about where we’ll finish, but in terms of our general play and how the team sets up, I do think there’s more to come from us. It doesn’t mean we have to concede at the other end, it’s not an excuse for conceding. We have to tighten up in that respect as we can’t have to score three to win.
That nod to the Cherries’ defensive fragility once again highlighted the perilous nature of owning members of their backline.
Bournemouth have kept precisely zero clean sheets this season and only two teams have coughed up more attempts than the 118 they’ve allowed, although Arsenal (on 110) might run that figure close by the end of Monday night.
As a result, the team’s two most popular Fantasy defenders, Ake (11.9%) and the 10.8%-owned Diego Rico (£4.1m), have only held their own thanks to attacking returns and, in the latter’s case, a bargain bucket price tag.
The defensive outlook might be brighter with a stalling Norwich, Watford and Newcastle to come in the next few weeks, but a change in the schedule from Gameweek 16, when they’ll have to face Spurs, Liverpool and Chelsea in the space of four fixtures, means that only Wilson and King remain overly attractive options.
The same cannot be said of West Ham who, after a so-so start, are providing good returns at both ends of the pitch.
Manuel Pellegrini’s men came into the match on a three-game run of clean sheets, prompting 134,852 managers to bring in Lukasz Fabianski (£5.1m), who is joint-top of the goalkeeper’s chart with 32 points.
He managed only one point and 33 minutes at Bournemouth, however, as he injured his hip taking a goal-kick.
Pellegrini hedged his bets about the issue post-match:
Lukasz felt a problem in a muscle in his hip when he tried to kick the ball. We need to know more about it with a medical examination.
Goalkeeperis an important player, but I trust a lot in Roberto also. Roberto played well, he’s a very good goalkeeper and we will see what will happen with Lukasz’s injury and how many weeks he will be out.
Using coveted transfer slots on goalkeepers is never high on a Fantasy manager’s list of priorities, but 6.8% of them might be forced into action sometime this week, with a straight swap to Roberto at least freeing up some funds.
Transfers involving other West Ham assets could well be on the minds of many more managers than that, though.
Cresswell scored for the second week running and is a reliable dead-ball specialist, while fellow full-back Ryan Fredericks (£4.5m) recovered from a knock to start his seventh straight match and has been a model of consistency at a competitive price.
But it is in midfield where the Hammers have talent in abundance, with Yarmolenko the pick of a burgeoning crop.
The Ukraine international had double the penalty area touches of any other midfielder at the Vitality Stadium, and he scored for the second week running when he controlled Sebastien Haller‘s (£7.4m) touch, half turned Ake and curled the ball into the net.
His manager was fulsome in his praise after the game, saying:
He’s a very special player, he’s always had goals in his complete career. He was very unlucky that at his best moment last season he had an Achilles tendon injury but he’s returned and worked very hard. I’m very happy for him as he’s not only
scoring,but working very hard.
With three goals from the last four Gameweeks, Yarmolenko has form, fixtures and a generous value going for him.
And the fact that he’s currently only owned by 1.8% also marks him out as a differential candidate, although that figure is already on the rise as he is currently one of the top five transfer targets for Gameweek 8.
Three other West Ham midfielders caught the eye on Saturday, with Manuel Lanzini (£6.5m) and Felipe Anderson (£6.9m) both creating two chances and Pablo Fornals (£6.1m) three.
Fornals and Anderson registered seven shots between them but it was
That made it back-to-back assists – and three for the season – for Anderson, although that might not be enough to persuade those managers who have been stung by his previous taste for inconsistency.
And when Yarmolenko is the cheapest option of all four, if it’s West Ham attacking options you’re after, he looks to be the strongest candidate by a country mile.
Haller’s assist, meanwhile, was his first return since Gameweek 4. But his 5.1% ownership might be concerned that he created twice as many chances as he had shots, particularly as there are a number of more productive forwards available in his mid-range price bracket.
Whatever the option Fantasy managers eventually choose, now looks to be a good time to try and catch the West Ham wave.
They are, after all, a side in a Champions League spot, with six goals scored and only two conceded over the past four Gameweeks, and a good run of fixtures to come before November’s final international break of the year.
Bournemouth XI (4-4-2): Ramsdale; Stacey (L Cook 89′), Cook, Ake, Rico; H Wilson (Danjuma 77′), Lerma, Billing (Francis 89′), King; C Wilson, Solanke.
West Ham United XI (4-2-3-1): Fabianski (Jimenez 34′); Fredericks, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Rice, Noble (Wilshere 75′); Yarmolenko, Fornals (Lanzini 67′), Anderson; Haller.
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