Pro Pundit Teams

Three-time top 200 finisher Lateriser on City, captaincy and the Blanks and Doubles

The reigning FPL champion of India, Lateriser, shares his thoughts ahead of the Gameweek 16 deadline.


Things are moving incredibly fast in the Fantasy Premier League world and it’s important to stay on top of things and react. Traditionally, this is the period where the engaged FPL managers make ground on the casuals (who are getting not so casual, year on year).

For your information, I am writing this article on the morning after Saturday’s games so the piece will not contain relevant information from Sunday’s matches. Due to the current fifth-gear nature of FPL, this will be a freestyle ramble of all things I want to address.

First up, we need to talk about Manchester City. They are one of the prime culprits for my poor start to the season. In my Gameweek 3 Wildcard, I got in a triple City midfield and have had two City attackers for the most part of the season.

That explains my rank (1.7 million at the time of writing, which is a lot better than the 3.1 million it was in Gameweek 12). It has taken me so long to readjust my thinking in this case and I have definitely failed to adapt. Their fixtures from Gameweek 10 to 15 seduced me like prime Demi Moore (Burnley, Fulham, West Brom an Newcastle at home) and being a fixtures guy all my life, I jumped in.

I mean, we’re talking about Pep Guardiola and the most attacking team in the country for the past three years. But one of the signs of a good FPL manager is to adapt. I didn’t and my rank shows that. After watching Manchester City play Newcastle United last night, I was convinced that the play with the Citizens is their defence not their attack. I know I’m stating the obvious but we have three viable defender options from Guardiola’s side (I own two of them), all three of whom are under £6.0m.

For what they offer for their price, I personally think that taking the odd rest/rotation from them is fine because of the significant value they offer. City are playing a different brand of football (all audition games for the Champions League knockout stages) and we need to re-align our thinking with their attack.

One manager who did adapt is my pod-partner and fellow Pro Pundit, Zophar. He’s been sitting on double City defence since his Gameweek 9 Wildcard and reaping the rewards. That move reeks of low-key shrewdness that can go a long way in having a good season. He was sitting at 970k on his Gameweek 9 Wildcard and is currently at 119k.

What about Kevin De Bruyne (£11.8m), though? Well, if we’re talking about the game yesterday, except for that one-on-one chance, he didn’t do much else.

Manchester City are eighth amongst all teams filtered by shots in the box over the last four matches. Yes, De Bruyne is shooting a lot and is playing further up the field, but I get the feeling that while he’s a clean striker of the ball, he takes a fair amount of time to get his shot off. As a result, a large chunk of his efforts just seem to get blocked.

Here’s some more data for you. These are the average expected per goals 90 minutes (xG/90) figures for Manchester City this year and the past three years:

SeasonxG/90
2020/211.6
2019/202.5
2018/192.2
2017/182.1

It just seems like us holding De Bruyne at the moment is for three reasons: ability, history and fear. Yes, he may explode and get a game with a penalty, an assist and a goal. But the more you actually watch Manchester City, the further away such a haul seems given that Pep Guardiola is channelling his inner Louis van Gaal these days.

I myself haven’t made the decision whether I’m holding or selling him but I will need to before Gameweek 16. To fund Harry Kane (£11.0m) into my team, I either need to downgrade Jack Grealish (£7.8m) to Raphinha (£5.4m) or move De Bruyne to Son Heung-min (£9.7M). It’s fair to say that I’ll be scouting some players tonight and Sadio Mane (£11.9m) is also someone I am monitoring closely.

A lot of you will be on a Wildcard while reading this article and I’d like to reiterate and say that don’t have a single-minded, tunnel-vision focus on just the Blank and Double Gameweeks. Every Gameweek counts and focusing on just Gameweek 18 and 19 isn’t going to help you. I urge again to look at the fixtures for players you are bringing in on your Wildcard before Gameweek 18 and after Gameweek 19.

At the moment, I’m looking at going chipless in Gameweek 18 and maybe using the Triple Captain chip in Gameweek 19. It is with this thought that I recruited both the Manchester City centre-backs before Gameweek 15 so as to play them in Gameweeks 18 and 19, and I particularly like their fixtures from Gameweek 20-22.

I’ll briefly talk about captaincy in Gameweeks 16 and 17. Scanning through the fixtures, Mohamed Salah (£12.6m) and the Spurs attacking duo stand out as captaincy options. The game against the Cottagers seems like a more Kane than Son game as I expect Fulham to sit deep, which means more chances closer to the box for the England international.

That said, Fulham are on a bit of a resurgence and are in the best five teams for expected goals conceded (xGC) in the last four matches. Spurs, on the other hand, are second only to West Brom for expected goals (xG), but we’ve seen that this does not seem to matter with them too much because if they score, it is very highly likely that their premium FPL duo will be involved.

I just happen to trust Salah and Liverpool a lot more than Spurs at the moment, which is why Salah will likely have my armband in Gameweek 16. Unlike Fulham, Newcastle are in the worst five defences in the league for expected goals conceded in the last five matches.

Gameweek 17, though, is where I’m looking to captain a Spurs attacker. A match against Leeds United should be considered as a prime fixture for captaincy and on paper, this just looks like a Son game to me, given the space Leeds United offer their opposition. The one good thing about this game is that we know that Bielsa is stubborn about his style of play and we can rely on him to offer the opposition tonnes of space to run behind. This captaincy call in Gameweek 18 might be what influences my transfer decision later tonight, depending on how the games pan out.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading what is possibly my last article for the calendar year. Here’s hoping that 2021 is a much better year for all of us.

As a side note, I would like to thank Fantasy Football Scout for the opportunity to write for them and all of you for reading my articles, supporting me and always providing me with valuable feedback.

Given the year that we’ve had, I’d just like to add a small note on mental health. I haven’t had a good season from an FPL point of view (so far) but I’m slowly beginning to climb the table. That hasn’t affected my enjoyment of the game at all.

Firstly, those of you that are struggling should remember that at the end of the day, this is just a game and that is exactly how you should treat it. If you ask me personally, I’m really enjoying this challenge of a bad start and am simply focusing on making good decisions week on week.

One of the best things about this game is that it enables you to talk to likeminded strangers from all over the world and develop new friendships. That is the essence of the FPL community. That is the primary. The rank is secondary. A lot of you ask me about my rank goal and I personally feel it is too early to think about that. FPL is about assimilating information between Gameweeks and then making decisions. Focus on that and make good decisions and leave the rest to chance because the rest isn’t in your control.

Secondly, the ‘perceived’ bad luck appears greater than it is because of the slow-drip of games that we are witnessing. So if you do end up watching a lot of matches, you do end up seeing a lot of chances missed, which just leads to a greater tilt. Just know that on an average, it takes four to five chances for a player to score a goal and these single incidents become magnified in your head because in most cases, you are watching one game at a time. Expectation management during FPL is a thing so that you don’t drive yourself crazy.

 I repeat, it’s just a game.


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1,821 Comments Post a Comment
  1. kysersosa
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Captain -

    A) Kane
    B) Salah

    TIA

    1. popcoin
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      B

    2. Dele
      • 4 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      B

  2. MMN
    • 7 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    1 FT & 2m ITB. FHing in 19, save FT this week or do you see anything worthwhile?

    McCarthy
    Stones, Zouma, Cancelo, Taylor
    Salah (C), Son, Zaha, Graelish
    Kane, Bamford

    Forster, Wilson, Kilman, Reiderwald

    1. Gooner Kebab
      • 8 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Save

    2. aapoman
      • 7 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Looks good. Nice to see a fellow Cancelo + Stones owner 😀

    3. fc_skrald
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Play Wilson instead of one of the defenders maybe.

      1. MMN
        • 7 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        Start Wilson ahead of who? I can't see who he is likely to outscore from those 4? Perhaps Stones or Zouma but with rotation for Everton and Zouma's attacking threat I feel like their chance of points is slightly higher.

    4. MMN
      • 7 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      It's mainly Bruno that I want but no easy way to get him in and would also be selling someone with 3 games vs his 2 (in the next 3). So probs not worth it.

  3. estheblessed
    • 6 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    G2G here or anything need addressing?

    Martinez
    Balbuena, Cancelo, Dier
    Son, Salah(c), Bruno, Grealish
    DCL, Kane, Bamford

    Nyland, Vestergaard, Anguissa, Kilman

    1. It’s gonna Ben Mee
      • 7 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Any FT? Anything ITB?

      1. estheblessed
        • 6 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        No £ or FT

        1. It’s gonna Ben Mee
          • 7 Years
          3 months, 25 days ago

          Leave it

          1. estheblessed
            • 6 Years
            3 months, 25 days ago

            Cheers. I was thinking the same

  4. Marcin the Pole
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Okay, last WC dilemma. Any opinions much appreciated.

    McCarthy Johnstone
    Justin Robbo Cancelo Taylor Coufal
    Salah Fernandes Soucek Raphinha X
    DCL Bamford Wood

    For spot X, I will have either Son or Mane, but want Mane for the DGW. Do I put Mane in now and back him to outscore Son over the next 2 weeks, or use Son as a placeholder and risk either being priced out or having to take a -4?

    Leaning towards just going with Mane and gambling a little bit.

    1. Neves say Neves
      • 2 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      i'm going rashford myself

  5. It’s gonna Ben Mee
    • 7 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Chance of Bruno coming up on top again while I’m pondering Salah or Son for the armband?

    1. Gooner Kebab
      • 8 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Or you could be picking the wrong captain back to back

      1. It’s gonna Ben Mee
        • 7 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        I’m already on a streak

  6. as33
    • 5 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Justin or Dier?

  7. RyanC
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Who to play?

    A. Taylor (SHU)
    B. Dallas (wba)

    1. Houldsworth Hatter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Taylor

    2. aapoman
      • 7 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Taylor

  8. Houldsworth Hatter
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Play

    A Soucek or
    B Neto

    1. Gooner Kebab
      • 8 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      A

  9. fc_skrald
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Any ideas of what to do with this team? Get Kane maybe?

    Martínez
    Coufal, Robertson, Taylor
    Son, Salah, Fernandes, Grealish
    Wilson, Bamford, Ings

    Button, Burke, Lamptey, Douglas
    2 free transfer, 2.6 million in the bank

  10. karsworde
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Pope In or Out on WC?

    1. HuttonDressedasLahm
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      When’s WC?

      1. karsworde
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        WC active now!

  11. Pep Roulette
    • 3 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Hey fam! WC Active! GTG?

    McCarthy
    Justin Dallas Taylor
    Salah Mane(C) Bruno Son
    Bamford Wood Adams

    Johnstone Soucek Coufal Balbuena

    0.1 ITB to do Son to Rashford for free in DGW19

    1. HuttonDressedasLahm
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Decent
      Not sure on double Hammers defence, but I guess it’s a price thing

      1. Pep Roulette
        • 3 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        Cheers mate!

    2. karsworde
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      No love for expensive strikers? Kane & Vardy are tempting!

      1. Pep Roulette
        • 3 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        Don't fancy Spurs double up as FHing in GW18. It's between Mane and Vardy, I think Mane will do good in the upcoming weeks!

  12. gellinmagellan
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    anyone thinking about a punt on martinelli?

    1. HuttonDressedasLahm
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Nope

    2. Brimble82
      • 2 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      I just punted on Saka over Soucek as a 5th MID.

      Arsenal’s fixtures are tasty.
      But it still feels like a trap!

      1. gellinmagellan
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        It really does though every team is so similar, i'm tempted

        1. Brimble82
          • 2 Years
          3 months, 25 days ago

          Exactly why I did.
          Some times it’s more fun to roll the dice!

    3. AC/DC AFC
      • 5 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Arsenal have good fixtures, like Spurs, he will come good soon enough.

  13. Jellyfish
    • 9 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Play Mendy or Johnstone?

    1. HuttonDressedasLahm
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Mendy

  14. sailor x
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 11 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Is Jack Stones nailed for MC?

    1. HuttonDressedasLahm
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Who’s he?

      1. Houldsworth Hatter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        In fairness Jack is another name for John.

    2. sailor x
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Sorry, John Stones 🙂

    3. aapoman
      • 7 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Not nailed but should play most games. Been really solid.

  15. HuttonDressedasLahm
    • 11 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Play 2 please...
    A. Stones @eve
    B. Watkins @chelsea
    C. Klich @wba
    D. Dallas @wba

    Currently on A+D

    1. aapoman
      • 7 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      AB

    2. fish&chips
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Tough one. I fancy villa to do well against Chelsea so maybe B D but it's really hard to call that. Not C though as it seems he's lost pens for now.

    3. Gooner Kebab
      • 8 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Gtt

  16. HD7
    • 4 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Salah Bruno Kane Son

    Captain and why?

  17. Jet5605
    • 6 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Thoughts on this WC draft? Will FH in 18 and BB in 19. Still 0.5 ITB.

    Two main issues:
    1. Should I get a City defender now instead of Fofana and bring Fofana in on 19?
    2. Feel uneasy about Adams. I know he blanked and frustrated many yesterday but is Wood a better option?

    McCarthy - Johnstone
    Robbo - Fofana - Balbuena - Taylor - Dallas
    Salah - Bruno - Son - Soucek - Rafinha
    Kane - Bamford - Adams  

    1. AC/DC AFC
      • 5 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      I think gw19 BB is over rated

  18. Boss Hogg
    • 11 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Captain...

    a. Kane
    b. Son
    c. Salah
    d. Bruno

    ???

    1. fish&chips
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Salah

    2. royals forever
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      c

    3. The Units
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      D

    4. OptimusBlack
      • 7 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Mooo

  19. fish&chips
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    How important do we think the FH chip will be for GW29? My thoughts are that we would expect a lot of big teams to blank due to FA Cup QF commitments so if you don't have it you'll either end up:

    - bringing in poor players to field a team
    - accepting a poor score through not being able to put a full team out.

    For this reason I'm wondering if it might be better for me to WC in GW19 (was originally going to FH), and try and build to a decent BB in GW26 from there. Thoughts?

    1. AC/DC AFC
      • 5 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      That makes more sense than wasting it on gw18 and 19 with rotation risk.

    2. Boss Hogg
      • 11 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Save it.
      The fixtures for the upcoming blank are not so great. 7 or 8 players for that should allow you about 7 or 8 good dgw players padded out with Spurs. That should get you through 18 and 19 with all you chips in tact for later on.

      1. AC/DC AFC
        • 5 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        Agreed. This.

        Especially with rotation and a little Jan. Rest.

    3. Gandalf
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      How many would you be able to get out in GW18?

      If fair few and comfortable not having KDB (or you may already have him) then should be fine to hold off

  20. user.n
    • 4 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Gundogan to start?

  21. royals forever
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 11 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Are there any DCL replacements that are worth a -4

  22. Napoleon IV
    • 3 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    I wonder if we'll get Scout Picks today?

  23. Joey Barton and Friends
    • 9 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Should I just swap KDB for Bruno?

    1. Rex Lapis
      • 6 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Yes

    2. user.n
      • 4 Years
      3 months, 25 days ago

      I just did

  24. Rex Lapis
    • 6 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Pick Taylor or KWP?
    For WC team

  25. OptimusBlack
    • 7 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    If You have both Mahrez and Grealish would u
    A- Keep both for this GW
    B- Mahrez to Maddison
    C- Mahrez to Raphinha
    D- Grealish to Maddison
    E- Grealish to Raphinha

  26. Taegugk Warrior
    • 2 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    For -4 hit
    Zaha to
    A. Soucek
    B. Rapinha
    C. Maddison

  27. Hryszko
    • 3 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Am I G2G? I've not made any changed, so am I good to bank the FT this week?

    Meslier
    Dier - Dallas - Taylor
    Bruno - Salah (c) - KDB - Soucek
    DCL - Kane - Bamford

    Bench order: Martinez - Stones - Coufal - Burke

  28. MoSalalalalalalalalah
    • 2 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Chillwell to Tierney
    or
    Podence to Soucek

    Arsenal have a good run if fixtures so I am tempted. Otherwise, any other changes to the lineup? Thanks.

    Martinez
    Cancelo | Dallas | Taylor
    Podence | Salah (C) | Sterling | Son
    Watkins | Bamford | Kane (V)

    GK: Steer | Chillwell | Cresswell | Anguissa

  29. Dele
    • 4 Years
    3 months, 25 days ago

    Salah set and forget captain?

  30. the_duke
      3 months, 25 days ago

      Anything worth a hit? Got couple of issues with matip & lamptey injuries and vardy not potentially starting.

      Martinez,
      Dias, Matip, taylor, cresswell, lamptey
      Salah, kdb, bruno, raphina, soucek
      Vardy, Adams, brewster

      Thinking either
      A) Lamptey > dallas -4
      B) bewster > bamford -4 bench soucek

      Appreciate the advice fellas

      1. royals forever
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        3 months, 25 days ago

        A