Manager of the week – Kebab Eaters United – Paul Howard – 113 points
Only five 100+ scores in what was an underwhelming double gameweek. The highest scorers averaged not much more than what you’d expect from a single gameweek; and rotation, as it always does, reared it’s annoying, ugly head. Most managers played the week as best they could, utilising their bench boosts and triple captains, and most topped the worldwide average of 64 points, which is the highest of the season so far. The best Buckets team were the Kebab Eaters. Their 113 points was enough to climb them six places and within sight of the top 10. They bench boosted with Chris Smalling, Pascal Gross, Romelu Lukaku and Luca Milivojevic all among their XV.
The Vinegar Pissers stretched their lead at the top to 61 points and have gone top 10,000 in the world. They also topped the century mark. As did The Craggy Islanders, who are now in second, and FC Caligula, who now sit seventh. And like a Grand National finish, the favourites are taking their positions and getting ready to pounce in the final furlongs. Despicable Mee also rose another two places into fourth. The chipless Hornets dropped to third but did well not to lose too much ground and still post a respectable 74 points. Both Nashton and Brexiter, who didn’t use a chip this week, also scored well and despite dropping places aren’t out of the race. They do have one chip left each – their bench boost – surely lined up for GW37. The VPs, the Islanders and Despicable all have their triple captain remaining. But keep an eye on Caligula. They still have their free hit, probably primed for the upcoming week, and their triple captain, again no doubt ready for GW37. Some teams may be a player or two short for the coming week’s reduced schedule – Caligula can pick who they want.
Player of the week – Chris Smalling – 16 points
Man United defenders were always likely to be well positioned to score highly this week with two fixtures against West Brom and Bournemouth. It didn’t start well with a 1-0 loss to the bottom club. That prompted all kinds of unsettling hints from Mourinho about dropping players. Smalling played both games, perhaps underlining the fact he’s as guaranteed a starter as anyone at the moment. He also made up for conceding against West Brom by scoring against Bournemouth, earning back the clean sheet points he should never have lost in the first place.
Bargain of the week – Jan Bednarek – 13 points
Drafted in by Mark Hughes to make his Southampton debut out of sheer desparation – and it paid off – if you’re a fantasy manager and you’d taken the longest punt imaginable and plonked him in your squad. Only 6,000 managers have him in their team in the world and I imagine most of them aren’t playing any more. He may appear in a few more next week as he managed a goal and a clean sheet across his double gameweek appearances. He could come in very useful come GW37 when Saints play twice again and you want to save some money.
Twat of the week – Wayne Hennessey – 0 points
One of those weeks where no-one really earned the wooden spoon award. Hennessey conceded two and picked up a yellow, so he’s the worse player you could have picked. Palace don’t really keep clean sheets, so more fool you if you thought they would in this relegation scrap against their so called derby rivals.
Goal of the week – Any Carroll.
Another double gameweek let down – given the amount of games you’d have expected at least one screamer. This was the best of a pretty lame bunch. 2m29s