Pro Pundits - Ash

How I’m using Liverpool to recover from disappointing Christmas

I’ve never done noticeably well during the month of December in FPL, ever. The festive period of 2019 was no exception.

After having a yo-yo start to the season, I needed a platform to push my way up. Buying Patrick van Aanholt (£5.5m) as an apparent long-term option for a hit only for him to get injured just before Crystal Palace kept a clean sheet didn’t exactly help.

Stalling on Danny Ings (£6.7m) and then missing out on his regular goalscoring proved costly. In addition, the lack of bench cover (due to lost points on the bench during November) was also problematic, especially when Jamie Vardy (£10.0m) wasn’t in the matchday squad for back-to-back Gameweeks.

At the same time, there were some small victories, especially on Boxing Day, with Trent Alexander-Arnold’s (£7.5m) monster haul, Captain Harry Kane’s (£10.9m) returns and Mason Greenwood (£4.3m) randomly delivering for once as a risky starting pick.

However, these punches in the air were damage limitation in many respects after the dour servings of Gameweek 20 and Gameweek 21 which only delivered an aggregate tally of 99 points.

Still, I shouldn’t complain too much, my overall rank increased over 200,000+ places between December 1 and January 1. Every cloud…

One of the biggest frustrations that I’ve had this season, like many of us, is the failure to recognise when to buy Mohamed Salah (£12.3m) and Sadio Mané (£12.3m) – and when to captain them.

I simply failed to gauge their projected form correctly. Sure, I started off with Salah as he registered two double-digit hauls before the end of August. But from then on, you would be forgiven to think that Mané has been their most integral attacking player.

After all, to date, he has outpointed him on more or less all of the major FPL stats (see below). Mané was someone that I sold in September and then bought back in later November, only to be sold again due to the Blank Gameweek.

My impatience with him has been detrimental, with his high ownership and ever-increasing points tally.

At the same time, we need to put Salah’s stats into context. An ankle injury has hampered his minutes somewhat this season. But his points per game are almost identical to Mané’s.

In fact, since Gameweek 16, Salah has scored more points than Mané (45 v 31).

I wouldn’t be surprised if Salah manages to close the gap in terms of FPL points and goals scored during January. After all they have a friendly inter-team rivalry and he will be mindful that he is lagging at the moment.

In addition, Salah’s health has clearly improved – excluding the Blank Gameweek, he has started every Premier League game for Liverpool since Gameweek 16.


You could say that having Mané was the safer option due to his higher ownership level, but that masks over Salah’s recent form. It’s clear that both are as close to essential as it can get, especially with a Double Gameweek around the corner.

Furthermore, Liverpool are not playing Champions League football till February and with the league not yet mathematically secured you would expect them to both leverage this crucial time by playing at their optimum best.

There’s also a case to be made that the vast majority of FPL managers can’t afford both, thus having them in tandem in your FPL team gives you an extra edge. I hope to be in this exclusive club of owning both, it just makes sense, especially with the Double Gameweek around the corner.

Captain Fantastic

After all that talk of Mané and Salah, I probably wouldn’t captain or vice-captain either this weekend. They face an embattled Tottenham team managed by Jose Mourinho who will make it a difficult away trip.

Even if Paulo Gazzaniga (£4.6m) is in the opposition goal, I feel that better armband options can be found elsewhere.

For instance, Vardy is due to play in his first Premier League match since the birth of his new child on his own birthday. The opponents may be a rejuvenated Southampton team but I can’t see them stopping him.

Also, Norwich have the worst away record in the league and they visit Old Trafford next. If I had Anthony Martial (£7.9m) or Marcus Rashford (£9.2m) I wouldn’t think twice about captaining either.

Finally, Raul Jiménez (£7.5m) could be an interesting differential captaincy pick against a Newcastle United team that have conceded 21 goals in 10 games on their travels.

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606 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Planet Head
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    6 months, 3 days ago

    Play one:

    A) Lunds
    B) Zouma
    C) Saiss
    D) Other def 5.1 or under

    One week punt so can be anyone 5.1 or under

    1. Rhodes your boat
      • 3 Years
      6 months, 3 days ago

      A

    2. NielsvanDelft
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      6 months, 3 days ago

      The Lord

    3. Little Red Lacazette
      • 3 Years
      6 months, 3 days ago

      Oh Lordy.

    4. Devo-McDuff
      • 1 Year
      6 months, 3 days ago

      Lund for sure

  2. LangerznMash
    • 3 Years
    6 months, 3 days ago

    Is Eric Garcia (£4.5) likely to keep his place against Villa, or does Stones get the nod.?

    1. Devo-McDuff
      • 1 Year
      6 months, 3 days ago

      Who knows. Ota fit again too and Laporte not far off. Zinc even played CB the other day, then Ferna is pretty nailed there and Rodri sometimes CB. Don’t do it!

  3. Lets VARdy Party
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    6 months, 3 days ago

    Schmeichel Button
    Pereira TAA Lunds Aurier Williams
    Salah Traore Grealish Richarlison KDB
    Vardy Ings Rashford

    Already decided Aurier and Williams Benched but who should 3rd sub be

    A. Grealish
    B.Traore
    C.Ings
    D.Richarlison

    1. Crump
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      6 months, 3 days ago

      A or B. I'd go A.

  4. CelticBhoy1
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    6 months, 3 days ago

    First sub:

    A) Rico

    B) Kelly

    1. Crump
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      6 months, 3 days ago

      A

  5. Crump
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    6 months, 3 days ago

    Hi all - currently benched Alli, would any of you swap him in for my current lineup?

    Mane - KDB(v) - Traore - Martial
    Tammy - DCL - Vardy(c)

    1. Miguel Sanchez
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      6 months, 3 days ago

      No

  6. fplfansss
    • 2 Years
    6 months, 3 days ago

    Which one?
    A. Alli to Richarlison
    B. Alli to Maddison
    C. Alli to Traore
    D. Keep Alli

    1. Zlatanzo
        6 months, 3 days ago

        A

      • Bobby_Baggio
        • 9 Years
        6 months, 3 days ago

        A or C

    2. Zlatanzo
        6 months, 3 days ago

        Who we got for captaincy??
        A) Jimi
        B) Martial
        C) KDB
        D) Vardy

        1. Miguel Sanchez
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          C

        2. Bobby Digital
          • 2 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          B

        3. Bobby_Baggio
          • 9 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          C

        4. Arse Craic
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          Vardy has 8 goals and 3 assists in 10 home matches this season, averaging 7.0 PPG

        5. OldBenKenobi
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          Punting on Martial currently but scared of Vardy(c).....

        6. Donnie D
          • 10 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          D with A vc

      • fplfansss
        • 2 Years
        6 months, 3 days ago

        D

      • Bobby_Baggio
        • 9 Years
        6 months, 3 days ago

        Evening all. What to do with my 2FT and 0.2m ITB. Ramsdale > Foster or McCarthy sound good? Thanks.

        Ramsdale
        Soy - TAA - Lund
        Salah - KDB - Maddison - Martial
        Vardy - Jimenez - Ings

        (McGovern) Grealish - Rico - Kelly

        1. claretparrot
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          6 months, 3 days ago

          Yes. Otherwise upgrade Kelly in advance of him losing his place

          1. Bobby_Baggio
            • 9 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            Cool yes Kelly is on my radar

        2. Bobby Digital
          • 2 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          I have 9 of your 11 starters and I've got Schmeichel to your Soy. So basically 10 out of 11 🙂
          The keeper switch sounds good.

          1. Bobby_Baggio
            • 9 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            Cheers

      • Tempestic
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        6 months, 3 days ago

        Anything to do here?
        1FT 0.0ITB
        Guaita*
        TAA Digne Lundstram
        Mane KDB Alli* Martial
        Vardy Tammy DCL

        Button - Traore Soy Rico

        1. Crump
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          I'd save your FT. Maybe swap Traore for Alli.

      • BellyKlopp
        • 3 Years
        6 months, 3 days ago

        Moura to Mahrez for a 2 week punt? Any other better options? Going to get Salah in for the DGW

        1. I SPEAK ENGELS AND DRINK GI…
            6 months, 3 days ago

            Richalison

        2. andre_c
          • 1 Year
          6 months, 3 days ago

          Final choice. Alli to Martial or Mahrez/Dilva?

          1. Firefoxed
            • 3 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            mart

          2. applebonkers
            • Has Moderation Rights
            • 10 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            like the extra security of martial. cue 8 weeks out with minor hamstring injury

        3. st4rty
          • 2 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          Anyone else got the armband on Jimmy? Could 3/4 to nil Wolves imo, gotta be involved. 🙂

          1. Do I Not Like Orange
            • 7 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            I have Jimmy but not captaining, Wolves don't really do pastings.

            1. st4rty
              • 2 Years
              6 months, 3 days ago

              Is Newcastle, though. They've let a fair few in recently.

              Who's your captain?

          2. applebonkers
            • Has Moderation Rights
            • 10 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            sounds like newcastle are getting some players back from injury as much as some others are ruled out. don't mind the option but also feel like it's trying to catch a 9 pointer than a 16 pointer

          3. Royal5
            • 8 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            Feel Wolves does better against the top teams. Worried it could be 1-0.

          4. Donnie D
            • 10 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            He’s my vc atm. Vardy has the armband

        4. Tony Martial
          • 1 Year
          6 months, 3 days ago

          So Salah for captain?

          Have

          Mane
          Vardy
          Kdb.

          1. Bury94
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 2 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            I'm really struggling to decide. May just go Vardy to be safe more than anything, Mane is tempting though

        5. screamer73
          • 4 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          Pope to Foster for free?

          1. applebonkers
            • Has Moderation Rights
            • 10 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            why not. not the best fixtures for watford but would say burnley's are more gross

        6. andres
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          6 months, 3 days ago

          Hedno
          Sidibe TAA Soy
          Kdb Alli Salah Traore
          Rash Vardy Ings

          Cantwell, Lund, Kelly 2.5, 1FT

          A rash, alli => dcl, mane (-4)
          B do it for free next week, and play Lund ahead of Alli?

          1. Stram Dunk
              6 months, 3 days ago

              B

          2. wulfranian
            • 3 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            Is Auba ok?

          3. Fishy
            • 11 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            im not sure how i can improve this lot??? Got 2 free transfers btw. Would bench button, aurier, kelly and moura this gameweek.
            Schmeichel button
            Aurier taa kelly lundstram sidibe 
            Moura martial kdb salah traore
            Vardy ings dcl

            1. claretparrot
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 1 Year
              6 months, 3 days ago

              If you'd otherwise burn a transfer, replace Kelly before he loses his spot

          4. Le Bluff
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            https://twitter.com/LCFC/status/1215598768055377921

            Is that Maddison in the beanie applauding Vardy? Would indicate he's in full training.

            1. claretparrot
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 1 Year
              6 months, 3 days ago

              Basically impossible to tell

            2. Holmes
              • 6 Years
              6 months, 3 days ago

              Looks more like Praet

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

              his stance looks like that of maddison but the squad number on his shorts says 10 as well so 99% chance it is him

          5. Don Kloppeone
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 2 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            Afternoon! This lot G2G?

            0FT 4.1itb
            Guaita
            TAA, Lunds, Soy
            Mané, KDB (C), Martial (v), Maddison
            Vardy, Ings, DCL
            (McGovern) (Cantwell, Rico, Willems)

            Cheers and GL!

            1. Fulchester's New Centr…
              • 2 Years
              6 months, 3 days ago

              That'll do Don, that'll do.

              1. Don Kloppeone
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 2 Years
                6 months, 3 days ago

                Nice one mate! Best of luck to you.

          6. andre_c
            • 1 Year
            6 months, 3 days ago

            Captain?

            a) KDB
            b) Vardy
            c) Salah

            1. Royal5
              • 8 Years
              6 months, 3 days ago

              I'm on KDB atm

            2. Tony Martial
              • 1 Year
              6 months, 3 days ago

              I think I’m going C

          7. The Tinkerman
            • 4 Years
            6 months, 3 days ago

            Injuries to Maddison and Maguire, plus LLoris close to a return. What would you prioritise here (1FT)?

            Gazzaniga
            TAA, Soyuncu, !Maguire!
            Martial, KDB, !Maddison!, Lucas
            Vardy, Jiminez, DCL

            Button; Kelly, Dendo, 3.9

            I was thinking Lucas>Mane in prep for DGW. If I get 2 more games out of Gaz i'd be delighted. Thinking along the lines of:
            Gazzaniga, Maguire, Lucas > Alisson, 5.0, Mane with my 3FT before the DGW.

            1. Zlatanzo
                6 months, 3 days ago

                Not going to have much joy with Maguire, I'd ship him out first.

              • Donnie D
                • 10 Years
                6 months, 3 days ago

                Maguire -> Holgate and then try to squeeze Mane and Salah in for Lucas and Martial. I know you’ll need to downgrade so somewhere to get the cash.
                If it’s impossible to do, then i would prefer to do Gazza -> McCarthy/Ryan and Maguire & Lucas -> Robertson & Salah/Mane

            2. Bobby Digital
              • 2 Years
              6 months, 3 days ago

              Anyone know what happened to the totalfpl site?

            3. Millie7
              • 6 Years
              6 months, 3 days ago

              best Heaton replacement?

              1. Niho992
                • 1 Year
                6 months, 3 days ago

                Im going for Fab