Scout Notes

Rüdiger forcing way into Chelsea picture ahead of appealing fixtures

FULHAM 0-1 CHELSEA

  • Goals: Mason Mount (£6.8m)
  • Assists: None
  • Red cards: Antonee Robinson (£4.4m)
  • Bonus points: Mount x3, Antonio Rüdiger x2 (£4.5m), Thiago Silva x1 (£5.6m)

OUT OF THE BLUE

Rüdiger forcing way into Chelsea picture ahead of appealing fixtures

Ahead of an appealing run of matches, Chelsea kept a much-needed clean sheet in a 1-0 win over Fulham.

It was the first time the Blues had kept out a Premier League opponent since Gameweek 14 and only their second shut-out since Gameweek 11 – but the signs of improvement were there at Craven Cottage.

And, of course, defensive returns were bread and butter stuff for Frank Lampard’s men earlier in the campaign, with achieved five clean sheets from a possible seven between Gameweeks 4 and 10.

Based on Saturday’s win, the next few weeks could see a return to that sort of form.

When sorting the Season Ticker by defensive potential over the next five Gameweeks, no team ranks higher than Chelsea, who face Wolves (home), Burnley (home), Sheffield United (away) and Newcastle (home) between now and Gameweek 24.

While Wolves have managed to score six times between Gameweeks 17 and 19, they have failed to find the net in every away match at a side inside the Premier League top seven this season (Leicester, Liverpool and Manchester United).

Meanwhile, Burnley (nine) and Sheffield United (nine) are the division’s joint-lowest scorers and Newcastle have scored just once in their last four league outings.

Against Fulham, Chelsea did, of course, benefit from a first-half sending off for Antonee Robinson (£4.4m) but the centre-back pairing of Thiago Silva (£5.6m) and Antonio Rüdiger (£4.5m), despite only making a second Premier League start together, mostly looked in control.

However, that fact does introduce the main problem for Fantasy managers considering the Chelsea defence: how to invest.

Between Gameweeks 6 and 13, Lampard deployed Silva with Kurt Zouma (£5.8m), Ben Chilwell (£6.1m) and Reece James (£5.1m) seven times from a possible eight but that consistency has wavered since then.

Injuries to his full-backs and minute management for the centre-backs have made Lampard’s back-four harder to predict of late and Rüdiger’s form has further complicated matters – although it does provide an opportunity for Fantasy managers looking to take a cheap risk.

Despite Zouma’s consistent presence this season, the German international has lasted 90 minutes in two of the last three Premier League matches, paired with Silva in each of those appearances.

Rüdiger went close to scoring a headed effort at the far post on Saturday too, denied only by a superb diving Alphonse Areola (£4.5m) save.

Considering that James was only an unused substitute upon recovering from his injury, and Silva has required regular rests this season, Chilwell appears the safest route into the Chelsea defence in the coming weeks.

That said, the £6.1m defender has seen a drop-off in creative output recently, registering just one key pass in the last four matches.

MOUNTING AN ATTACK

Chelsea’s attacking options offer a similar challenge to Fantasy managers as Lampard continues to shuffle his pack.

Timo Werner (£9.2m), who missed a golden late chance, Tammy Abraham (£7.2m) and Callum Hudson-Odoi (£5.7m) had to make-do with second-half substitute appearances while Olivier Giroud (£6.7m), Christian Pulisic (£8.2m) and Hakim Ziyech (£8.1m) all blanked.

The Moroccan international is becoming increasingly influential for Chelsea again, taking his fair share of set pieces before Hudson-Odoi replaced him in the 74th minute. He is still without an attacking return since Gameweek 8 despite making five appearances since then although he was denied from the edge of the box and hit the post on Saturday..

Mason Mount (£6.8m), who also struck the woodwork at Craven Cottage, has been a relatively consistent performer, and starter, so may receive some consideration. That said, his Double Gameweek 19 goal was a first attacking return since Gameweek 14 and his first goal, and double-digit haul, since Gameweek 3.

“I thought it was very apt Mason got the goal. I thought he was fantastic.” – Frank Lampard

But considering the wealth of options Lampard has at Chelsea, and the fact that finding a truly devastating combination has proved difficult with just one goal scored in each of their last four matches, we may need more time before a real attacking Fantasy option emerges ahead of those appealing fixtures.

That is especially pertinent considering that the busy schedule played a part in Lampard’s most recent team selection and there are certainly plenty more matches to come in quick succession.

“It was difficult and I was speaking about Callum (Hudson-Odoi) specifically because there has been an uplift from him recently. But Hakim gives us something different. I did have Leicester in mind and we will see how some do over the next day or two.”

Frank Lampard

FULL CIRCLE

While Fulham suffered a ninth defeat of the season against Chelsea, they continue to prove themselves harder to beat than some Fantasy managers might be led to believe.

Despite losing Robinson on the stroke of half-time, Fulham still held Chelsea at arm’s length for much of Saturday evening.

Their 1-0 loss means they have conceded either one or fewer goals in each of their last six Premier League matches.

The last time the Cottagers gave up two or more goals was the Gameweek 11 defeat at Manchester City, which serves as a reminder to anyone still targeting them as Premier League ‘whipping boys’.

Manchester United are among their next opponents, although Fantasy managers can do nothing about that match as it forms part of Double Gameweek 19, while Leicester’s Gameweek 22 trip to Fulham should probably not be seen as much of an opportunity as it might do on paper.

In fact, with Brighton (away) and West Bromwich Albion (away) two of the Cottagers’ next three opponents, Parker might fancy their chances of adding to the two clean sheets recorded in the last five matches.

“I thought we defended heroically and we defended very well. It’s a shame they got their nose in front but overall nothing but admiration for the way the team played.” – Scott Parker

Scott Parker

Whether they can offer the same level of attacking potential remains to be seen, especially as Robinson formed such a big part of their threat against Chelsea and Bobby De Cordova-Reid (£5.3m) will miss Fulham’s second Double Gameweek 19 match against Manchester United.

The left wing-back set up Ademola Lookman (£5.0m) in the first half, who was denied by a Rüdiger block, before spearheading a move that saw Ivan Cavaleiro (£5.3m) spurn a gilt-edged chance.

“First half limited them really and then ten minutes before the sending off we were in the ascendancy and missed a big chance with Cavaleiro when really when your us, those chances need to go in. Sending off changes the game obviously.”

Scott Parker

That Cavaleiro opportunity was created by Kenny Tete (£4.4m) who has shown signs of promise since returning from injury. He has now started each of the last three matches in all competitions at right wing-back for Fulham and looks in good form.

In fact, across his last four matches, he has created more chances than any other Fulham player, despite only featuring for 286 minutes in that time.

“I thought it’s the best we’ve seen Kenny (Tete) today. I thought everything about him today has been first class. He’s an attacking full-back and at times in the first half, we saw that getting in the right areas. In the second half, there were limited chance to go forward and he has to defend and put a shift in for the team. Defensively he was very good as well. He’s been out for a long while and we’ve asked him to play two games in a short space of time, that’s where it is and we’re going to need him fully in the next few games as well.”

Scott Parker

Fulham XI (3-5-2): Areola; Adarabioyo, Andersen, Aina (Bryan 83′); A Robinson, Zambo Anguissa, Reed, De Cordova-Reid (Kamara 83′), Tete; Lookman, Cavaleiro (Onomah 79′).

Chelsea XI (4-3-3): E Mendy; Chilwell, Rüdiger, T Silva, Azpilicueta; Mount, Jorginho (Abraham 65′), Kovacic; Pulisic, Giroud (Werner 75′), Ziyech (Hudson-Odoi 75′).

Check your latest FPL rank LIVE on LiveFPL.net every Gameweek

Become a Member and get unrestricted access to our data and articles

Full-year memberships are now available for the price of £19.99. Monthly subscriptions also cost just £2.99. A FREE trial is now available during December.

Join now to get the following:

  • Plot your transfer strategies using the fully interactive Season Ticker.
  • Get projections for every Premier League player provided by the Rate My Team statistical model.
  • Use Rate My Team throughout the season to guide your selections and transfers.
  • Get access to over 150+ exclusive members articles over the season.
  • Analyse our OPTA-powered statistic tables specifically tailored for Fantasy Football Managers.
  • Use our exclusive tool to build custom stats tables from over 100 OPTA player and team stats.
  • Enjoy our brand NEW Flat-Track Bully feature which introduces an opposition filter to your tables.
  • View heatmaps and expected goals data for every player.
  • Use our powerful comparison tool to analyse players head-to-head.

ALREADY A USER? CLICK HERE TO UPGRADE YOUR FREE ACCOUNT

NEW TO SCOUT? CLICK HERE TO START A MEMBERSHIP ACCOUNT

1,148 Comments Post a Comment
  1. George James
    • 6 Years
    2 months, 25 days ago

    Roll the FT? 0 ITB

    Martinez
    James Coufal Stones Cancelo Robertson
    Bruno KDB Salah
    Kane Wilson

    Steer / Biss / Burke / Brewtser

    1. 2OLEgend
        2 months, 25 days ago

        Roll the FT. Interesting team got got there

        1. George James
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 25 days ago

          Haha tell me about it. How I have ended up With this formation I don’t know.

      • Il Capitano
          2 months, 25 days ago

          Roll

      • Sz21
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        2 months, 25 days ago

        Think its past time to drop a Liv player here (or 2).
        Mane-> KDB looks an obvious move. 3 blanks in a row since I've owned.
        Robbo -> Cancelo is staring at me too.
        Anything jumping out? Triple West Ham looking dodgy as well.

        McCarthy.
        Robbo, Stones, Coufal.
        Salah, Son, Mane, Fernandes, Soucek.
        Antonio, Bamford.
        Forster, Dallas, Brewster, Ferguson.
        1ft, 0.8m ITB.
        Just WC, BB left.

        1. Camzy
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          2 months, 25 days ago

          Mane > KdB

        2. 2OLEgend
            2 months, 25 days ago

            Mane to KDB or roll the transfer imo

          • Il Capitano
              2 months, 25 days ago

              Mane to KDB looks like the move

            • Jimbo-Jones
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 4 Years
              2 months, 25 days ago

              Quite like both of those moves - Robbo/Mane to KDB/Cancelo.
              Will give you money itb to upgrade one of the WHU guys further down the line too.

          • 2OLEgend
              2 months, 25 days ago

              Looking for some more feedback (Thanks Don)

              BB19 causing me some serious benching headace for GW20.
              1.8 itb and 2FT

              DDG
              Dias, Stones, Coufal
              KDB, Son, Bruno, Soucek
              Bamford, Vardy, Antonio
              (Martinez - Zouma, Dallas, Raphinia)

              A) DDG -> Button (Going with Martinez long term, but DDG has SHU in GW20)
              B) Zouma -> Mitchell (Zouma now a doubt with Rudiger back)
              C) Vardy & Raphinia -> Brewster & Salah
              D) Anything else?

              1. Rupert The Horse
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 8 Years
                2 months, 25 days ago

                Probably B. You’d almost certainly be the solitary person actually getting Salah.

                1. 2OLEgend
                    2 months, 25 days ago

                    Thanks Rupert. The best time to get Salah is when everyone is selling right before his 20ptn haul 😉

                2. aleksaa2
                  • 4 Years
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  Replied on the last page.

                  1. 2OLEgend
                      2 months, 25 days ago

                      Cheers dude!

                3. Rupert The Horse
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 8 Years
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  I smell a new article coming.

                4. Bury94
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 3 Years
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  Not expecting anything from Wilson tonight, any more than 2 points will be a bonus..

                  1. Rupert The Horse
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 8 Years
                    2 months, 25 days ago

                    Yeah. I can’t see him doing much.

                  2. Warby84
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 5 Years
                    2 months, 25 days ago

                    Penalty is my hope

                5. Jimbo-Jones
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 4 Years
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  Roll FT?
                  Bench correct?!

                  McCarthy
                  Stones Coufal Cresswell
                  KDB Salah Bruno Gundo Soucek
                  Kane Bamford

                  Johnstone, D-Reid, Pieters, Dallas

                  1. Bury94
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 3 Years
                    2 months, 25 days ago

                    Wow your sense of smell is impeccable!

                    1. Rupert The Horse
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 8 Years
                      2 months, 25 days ago

                      🙂

                6. Flair
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  Can see the BB becoming more of a hindrance than help when wanting to use it in 26 due to the amount of cash on the bench, tempted to use FTs to get a strong bench boost in 26 and then WC out of it. As I don't have FH it could prove useful to navigating 29 too. Only concern is that it would require accurate predictions of the cup draws and reschedulings could throw a spanner in the works

                  1. Jon Walter's Hatty
                    • 7 Years
                    2 months, 25 days ago

                    I'm keeping a strong bench all the way now. Have BB and FH left but there is still Covid, European game rotation and general injury wear and tear. Certainly 2 subs the bare minimum.

                7. Jamie_GAWA
                  • 4 Years
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  What weeks are likely to have DGWs? Gw26 and what else?

                8. umerlfc
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 5 Years
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  Start 3: (2 must be defenders)

                  A) Robbo - TOT(A)
                  B) Cresswell - CRY(A)
                  C) Coufal - CRY(A)
                  D) Dallas - NEW(A)
                  E) Raphinha - NEW(A)
                  F) Adams - ARS(H)

                  1. Warby84
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 5 Years
                    2 months, 25 days ago

                    A and B

                9. Ajax Hamsterdam
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  Would you do soucek to Maddison. Could do that move over 2 gws ( not point selling soucek before palace ). Thanks.

                10. manu4life99
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 25 days ago

                  Roll ft?
                  (Had pencilled in Saiss>RJames but likely wait and get Dier instead)

                  Martinez
                  Dias Stones AWB
                  Bruno Salah KDB Lookman
                  Vardy Bamford Antonio

                  areola, soucek, coufal, saiss