Our World Cup of FPL tournament continues with Group E, as Wayne Rooney, Raheem Sterling, Nemanja Vidic and Marcos Alonso all vie for a place in the round of 16.
In this series, we’re giving Fantasy Football Scout site users the chance to vote for the greatest Fantasy Premier League asset of all time.
We’re operating on a group-by-group basis at first, with 32 of the most popular FPL players sorted into eight foursomes.
Readers can vote for their two favourite assets from each group, with the two options garnering the greatest share of the vote qualifying for the knockout rounds.
We’re at the halfway point of the group stage, with eight FPL legends past and present having already progressed to the last 16.
|Group A||Group B||Group C||Group D|
|1. Frank Lampard||1. Thierry Henry||1. Harry Kane||1. Cristiano Ronaldo|
|2. Robin van Persie||2. Gareth Bale||2. Didier Drogba||2. Trent Alexander-Arnold|
|3. ||3. ||3.||3. |
|4. ||4. ||4. ||4. |
|Group E||Group F||Group G||Group H|
|Marcos Alonso||Clint Dempsey||Cesc Fabregas||Alexis Sánchez|
|Nemanja Vidic||Gareth McAuley||Jamie Vardy||Mohamed Salah|
|Raheem Sterling||John Terry||Kevin De Bruyne||Petr Cech|
|Wayne Rooney||Luis Suarez||Leighton Baines||Sergio Aguero|
Our latest article below takes a closer look at each option in Group E.
The poll can be found at the bottom of the piece and in the sidebar of the homepage.
Revered by FPL managers more than Chelsea fans, Marcos Alonso is the classic example of a player who receives a lot more acclaim for his Fantasy returns than for his overall displays on the pitch.
He has long ceased to be a “must-have” in Fantasy Premier League but even in the current campaign, in which he has mustered only 858 minutes of pitch-time, Alonso has hinted at what he is capable of: in not one of his nine Premier League starts in 2019/20 has the Chelsea left-back blanked.
Only four FPL defenders, all of whom have clocked up more than twice as many minutes in the top flight, have more attacking returns to their names than Alonso (seven) this season.
Before the rise of Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andrew Robertson, Alonso was perhaps the go-to premium defender.
The Spaniard averaged five goals, five assists and 14 clean sheets per season in the three campaigns before this one, racking up over 160 FPL points in each of them.
There have been numerous individual highlights, including a brace against Spurs in August 2017, five assists in four Gameweeks at the beginning of 2018/19 and a 16-point haul against Bournemouth in February of this year.
Perhaps his most memorable day came in Gameweek 21 of 2016/17 against Leicester City.
Alonso scored two of Chelsea’s goals in a 3-0 win over the Foxes, collecting clean sheet points and maximum bonus for a bumper 21-point return.
The Blues defender has twice featured in FPL’s end-of-season Dream Team and he has never been initially priced up under £6.0m in each of his four years in west London, reaching a career-high of £7.4m midway through 2017/18.
Likely to be the rank outsider in Group E, Nemanja Vidic is not the first player to spring to mind when we think back to our favourite Fantasy hall of famers.
It’s easy to forget that Vidic was on more than one occasion more expensive than Trent Alexander-Arnold is now, however, even if FPL’s pricing structure for defenders has been slightly tweaked since the glory days at Old Trafford.
The Serbia international began 2009/10 at £8.0m and, in the following campaign, rose from a starting price of £7.0m to a season-high £8.2m, finishing at £8.1m in May 2011.
Vidic was a fixture of the Manchester United defence for the best part of a decade, even if injury curtailed his pitch-time on occasion – especially towards the tail-end of his time in England.
When he was fit, he was a defensive asset to be reckoned with.
The rugged centre-half scored on 14 occasions from 2006/07 to 2010/11, notching a career-best five goals in the last of those seasons.
This was a halcyon era for the United backline and, alongside Rio Ferdinand, Vidic formed one of the Premier League’s most effective central defensive partnerships.
In 2008/09, the Red Devils racked up an incredible 24 clean sheets – of which Vidic was present for all bar the very last of them.
That season featured a run of 14 consecutive shut-outs for Alex Ferguson’s side, with Vidic finding the back of the net on four occasions.
The Serb finished the campaign as FPL’s highest-scoring defender and that was to be his one and only appearance in the Dream Team.
Vidic had personally racked up 20 clean sheets in 2007/08, too, with United’s defence conceding fewer than 30 goals in each of his first four full seasons in Manchester.
Our World Cup of FPL perhaps comes at an inopportune time for Raheem Sterling, given how far his stock has fallen in Fantasy circles this season.
Still, it should be reiterated just how superb the Manchester City winger was in the previous two campaigns.
Sterling plundered 67 attacking returns in 2017/18 and 2018/19 combined, easily cracking the 200-point mark on each occasion and featuring in FPL’s Dream Team in both of those seasons.
The 2017/18 campaign was a particularly memorable one, as Sterling registered 18 goals and 17 assists having been initially listed at a cut-price £8.0m.
There was a substantial price rise last season but Sterling still proved good value even in the premium bracket, going on to record a career-best total of 234 points.
We go way further back with the England international, of course.
Sterling first came to prominence as a £4.5m midfielder in 2012/13, registering eight attacking returns in his breakthrough season at Liverpool, before contributing nine goals and seven assists in the following campaign.
That was the season in which Brendan Rodgers’ free-scoring team almost clinched a first-ever Premier League title and Sterling was an integral part of the Liverpool side from December onwards, starting all bar three of the Reds’ final 26 matches.
Sterling could have been snapped up for a now unthinkable £5.5m at the start of 2013/14 and was swiftly handed a price hike in his final season on Merseyside, before departing for Manchester the following year.
In total, Sterling has racked up 1,201 FPL points over the last decade.
Two 21-point hauls last season, an opening-day treble in the current campaign and a Gameweek 9 hat-trick in 2015/16 are just some of the stand-out displays that put his current dry spell in context.
FPL’s all-time leading points-scorer, Wayne Rooney has amassed 1,835 points since records were first kept in 2006/07.
England’s record goalscorer already had four seasons in FPL under his belt before that point (the game having been launched in its current guise in 2002/03) and had scored on 42 occasions in the top flight before we had reached the stage of historical returns being logged for posterity.
On two occasions did Rooney pass the 200-point mark, in 2009/10 and 2011/12, although he came close to the hat-trick in 2013/14.
The former Everton and Manchester United striker made the FPL Dream Team in all three of those campaigns and had done so in 2006/07, too, when registering 26 attacking returns en route to a season total of 184 points.
No FPL forward past or present can better Rooney’s four appearances in the end-of-season Dream Team.
The Derby County player/coach’s best-ever campaign came in 2011/12, with his 27 goals and eight assists helping him to an FPL points tally of 230.
Perhaps his most-remembered season is 2009/10, however.
Rooney supplemented his 32 attacking returns with a staggering 46 bonus points and recorded FPL’s highest-ever Double Gameweek score in January of that campaign, scoring five goals (four of them against Hull City) and banking an assist on the way to a 32-point haul.
The Liverpudlian never started an FPL campaign under £10.5m from 2006/07 right the way through to 2015/16 but there was good reason for that, with Rooney plundering at least 19 attacking returns in the first nine of those seasons.
Aside from that four-goal salvo against Hull, there were a further six hat-tricks for his owners to enjoy, including back-to-back trebles in Gameweeks 3 and 4 of 2011/12.
Another FPL career highlight included his run of 18 attacking returns in Gameweeks 4 to 18 of 2013/14, although there are plenty of high-points to choose from throughout his stay in the north-west.
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