“If I could turn back time. If I could find a way. I’d take back those words that hurt you and you’d stay”
So, what do we do now? Plans are in tatters, games are being cancelled, chaos surrounds us, if only we could turn back time and not transfer in all those Arsenal and Man City players or even play our Wildcard like this writer did, who decided that was a Great and Good idea!
These are strange times for us all, uncharted territory with the real world events caused by the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) having major implications for this Gameweek, the remainder of the season and for daily life in general.
The Great and The Good like many us had stocked up on Arsenal and Man City players with the lure of a Double Gameweek (DGW) that was never meant to be and now await the press conferences to see what further impact the current self-isolation of some of the Arsenal players will have.
As a reminder The Great and The Good are a handpicked group of FPL celebrities (?), FF Scouts or Pro Pundits who I will follow to see what we can learn as they navigate their way through the season. They are the Scouts (Mark, Joe, David, Geoff and Neale), FPL “celebrities” (Az, LTFPL Andy, FPL General and Jules Breach) and finally from the Hall of Fame we have Ville Ronka, Matthew Jones and Sean Tobin.
Fortune favoured the cautious this week as Matthew Jones led the way with 82 points, he ignored the clamour for DGWers and only had Kevin De Bruyne who was due to play twice going into the weekend and even that was shoulder permitting, yet he was wise as Sadio Mané, Mo Salah, Harvey Barnes and even Alex McCarthy scored double digits for him.
This saw him move up 113,000 places and up to 131,000 overall rank which is his highest for the season, with only eight players ready for Gameweek 31 (seven if you discount Diego Rico) then I do wonder if he’ll take only his second hit of the campaign to keep the momentum going into the next 2 weeks.
FPL General continues to make progress and caught a few off guard by playing his Bench Boost, it gave him his fifth green arrow in a row and moved him into 2nd place but I suspect he may be slightly disappointed by the 16 points coming off his bench with 12 of those down to McCarthy.
I suppose I should also mention Neale who is making the race to be the greatest of The Great and The Good a Liverpool like procession with another strong score of 74.
He even gave the chasing pack a chance by transferring out Jamie Vardy and Anthony Martial but nothing seems to stand in his way and the ultimate glory, he’s not been outside the top 20,000 since Gameweek 15.
The captain choice turned into a bit of lottery as most went with Aubameyang, who ended up with only a single game to disappoint but Geoff, Jules and Matthew had a little luck as their Kevin De Bruyne pick turned into Mo Salah.
This is a summary of the transfers for this week:
Andy – Aubameyang (Firmino)
Az – Aubameyang, Sarr (Martial, Vardy)
David – Aubameyang, Pepe (Grealish, Ings)
Joe – Aubameyang (Firmino)
Jules – No transfers
FPL General – Aubameyang, Saka, Masina (Ings, Traore, Robertson)
Geoff – No transfers
Mark – Pepe (Traore)
Matthew Jones – Doherty (Saiss)
Neale – Aubameyang, Doucoure (Vardy, Martial)
Sean Tobin – Femenia, Aubameyang (Rico, Calvert-Lewin)
Ville Ronka – Aubameyang, Sarr (Vardy, Martial)
*transfers out are in brackets
Aubameyang was the key target this week for The Great and The Good with six of them taking hits to secure his services, a move that looked good on paper and they will hope he is available for the Brighton game*. Az, Ville Ronka and Neale will feel the pain the most as they sold Vardy along with the minus four to bring in the Arsenal frontman.
*Editorial Note – Whilst this was correct at time of writing, it has since been announced that Brighton vs Arsenal has been postponed.
The template for The Great and The Good looks like this:
McCarthy (8) Button/Henderson/Pope (4)
TAA (12) Boly (7) Stephens (5) Saiss/Robertson/Taylor/Doherty (3)
Salah (12) De Bruyne (7) Barnes (5) Fernandes (4) Mane (4)
Ings (10) Jimenez (9) Aubameyang (9)
*brackets show number of teams they appear in
The template moves on and we see the arrival of Bruno Fernandes which I suspect to be a permanent one with Spurs up next, who have conceded on average of 2.78 big chances per game since Gameweek 21, credit The Fantasy Freak for that one.
Confusion reigns in defence with a split between cheap and cheerful in Charlie Taylor, Romain Saiss and pricey but potent in Andy Robertson and Matt Doherty.
Upfront Aubameyang replaced Calvert-Lewin who continues to have an impressive number of big chances, six over the last 4 weeks, only beaten by Alli on seven who looks a favourite for the blank Gameweek 31 template.
Geoff sits at the head of the Captain’s table with an average of 13.2 per armband choice, Salah as his vice-captain was his saviour this week with De Bruyne missing out and over the season the Egyptian has averaged 21.7 points for the Canadian Kingpin.
In fact, Mo Salah has been the majority pick this campaign with the armband going to him 29% of the time across these managers, Mark should consider captaining him more often as his favoured choice Raheem Sterling who he has gone for 11 times has only averaged 8.9 points giving Mr Sutherns only a 9.6 average overall.
Only the brave would predict what’s going to happen over the next few weeks in the world of FPL with speculation ranging from postponement, matches behind closed doors to cancellation of the Premier League season.
From an FPL perspective caution is your best tactic as we wait to see how real life events unravel but whatever happens, stay safe look after yourself and each other as some things are more important.
Anyway, that’s all from me for now and remember don’t have nightmares.
For those effected by any of the topics raised in the above article they can find me on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Greyhead19
If you want to keep up with the Tweets of The Great and The Good you can find them here
All information correct at time of writing