Gameweek 30 preview

March 30, 2017

Liverpool v Everton
Burnley v Spurs
Chelsea v Crystal Palace
Hull v West Ham
Leicester v Stoke
Man Utd v West Brom
Watford v Sunderland
Southampton v Bournemouth
Swansea v Middlesbrough
Arsenal v Man City

The Buckets Cup has been won and we’ve got the last international break out of the way. It’s a clear run through to the end of the season. Nine more gameweeks to determine our champion. Two more game months – April and May – the first of which is a six week megamonth. And within that six weeks we’ve had the first of the expected end of season double gameweeks announced. Gameweek 34 sees Manchester United, Middlesbrough and Crystal Palace play twice.

And that, by my calculations, leaves the following fixtures left for rescheduling – Arsenal v Sunderland, Chelsea v Watford, Leicester v Spurs, Manchester City v West Brom, Southampton v Manchester United and Southampton v Arsenal. Two outstanding fixtures for Arsenal and Southampton suggests there will be two more double gameweeks – or could we even get a triple header? Apparently we will find out ahead of GW34 as to when those remaining fixtures will take place, so hopefully we should be able to plan exactly when we want to play our remaining wildcards and chips.

How to play the next nine weeks will be key to anyone catching our league leaders, Aquamar, who presently hold a 46 point lead over their nearest rivals and still have their last wildcard, and for what it’s worth, their all out attack chip. They have, however, played both their bench boost and triple captain, leaving the door open for anyone in the chasing pack still holding those assets.

As for this week, we’ve the usual worries over internationalitis to consider. Air miles have been accumulated and niggles and knocks have been picked up. Seamus Coleman broke his leg – in Dublin. Lots of managers will need to consider defensive replacements for him. Arsenal and City play each other on Sunday. That’s surely too important a game for either Sanchez or Aguero to be benched.

Crystal Palace’s upturn in form, which has seen them keep three consecutive clean sheets, will be tested at Cheslea, who haven’t kept one since GW22. They, and many managers will be hoping they can arrest that slide. It’ll be interesting to see if Palace do extend that record further with their double gameweek prospects in mind. The acquisition of Mamadou Sakho looks to be working, and at only £4.7 million, is definitely one to watch. Maybe he’s your Coleman replacement? As are Leicester – remember them – the champions. Finally (just about) justifying their mammoth price tags are Jamie Vardy and Riyadh Mahrez, both sitting high in the form tables.

 

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Gameweek 26 results

February 27, 2017

same Aquamar 15
Noel Driver
52 1461
up When Harry met Alli
Trevor Gordon
56 1444
down The Craggy Islanders
Adrian Roche
55 1442
up Hedgehog Corpse FC
Nick Smith
61 1422
up Biscuitmen
Chris Morton
74 1416
up Uriah Rennie 2nd XI
Neil Greenwood
88 1405
down Yeboah’s Right Foot
Paul Murray
36 1399
down greenyteamy
adam greenwood
43 1396
down Kebab Eaters Utd
Paul Howard
56 1389
10  down 4 Fuchs Ake
Jason Earwicker
58 1385
11  same Cooksters
Peter Cook
63 1382
12  up To Elland Back
Alan Hardy
77 1376
13  up RICO UNITED
JASON REACHER
79 1375
14  up Rip Roaring Reds
Sean Whyton
70 1369
15  down Atlético Chappers
Richard Chapman
57 1368
16  down FC Caligula
Ajay Supeda
54 1361
17  down INIT FC
Mustafa khan
48 1355
18  up Joey Bosa
Paul Bentz
66 1351
19  up Edgbaston
Micheal Dinneen
69 1351
20  up Upper Bullens
Andy Taylor
67 1350
21  down Neil Madrid
Neil Strong
52 1346
22  down Your Ad Here
Matthew Hopkins
60 1344
23  down Go Buffoons Go
Jitesh Lakhani
49 1337
24  same QUEEN OF THE NORTH
DORINE REACHER
50 1318
25  up RG XV
Ryan Garoghan
79 1315
26  same romeoshondavan
Rob Hewer
76 1312
27  down 30:19
Darren Lavelle
32 1311
28  up nO fucHs given
Paul Callaghan
81 1311
29  up Jarvis FC
Matt Jarvis
81 1308
30  same Golden Boys
Stephanie Cripps
72 1302
31  down Jeff Lamp’s Porsche
David Spinks
68 1302
32  same Release The Hounds
Paul Mitchell
69 1282
33  up Hucking Fell
P Hawkins
76 1268
34  up Have a little dink
Ian Williams
79 1265
35  down Shoelace Untied
Caroline Strong
58 1264
36  down Crazy Legs XI
David Caldicott
55 1261
37  down I am not Zlatan
Colin Goulding
62 1245
38  up FTM
Stu Smith
65 1224
39  down jetty city
scott mcgow
47 1223
40  up Ciderheads
Darren Pope
56 1208
41  down Bakerlona
Stuart Baker
43 1207
42  up Real Jorvik
Simon Brown
61 1195
43  up Pudding And Pie
John Seacroft
77 1194
44  down Pepe Le Blue
DEAN CRIPPS
43 1185
45  down Dj daz
darren frankland
37 1181
46  down Big White Chiefs
david frankland
37 1169
47  up Bermie Utd
Glen Davies
92 1143
48  down Pretty Schitty City
Alex Michaluk
51 1143
49  down bazza 28 united
laura barrett
51 1100
50  up Bish Bosh Goal
Simon Purnell
44 1063
51  up Racing Club Skegness
Andrew Swift
38 1053
52  down DJ’s Trail Blazers
Danian Jones
8 1030
53  same Jarv88
Paul Jarvis
37 1022

 

It looked like an even split of managers hoping for either a Harry Kane week or a Romelu Lukaku week. Everton welcomed Sunderland, while Spurs had Stoke to contend with. The odds may have been slightly with Lukaku, but it was Kane who provided the bigger points haul – 20 in total – 40 if you had him as captain. Lukaku’s goal came as welcome relief to those who went with the Everton striker, but come mid-afternoon Sunday, that would have been no consolation has a whole host of teams came sailing past carrying the Spurs forward and their 70+ scores.

Our weekly winner, monthly winner and most of the teams that advanced to the Buckets Cup quarter finals all had Kane, and most had him with the armband.

No-one could top Bermie United, whose unwavering faith in Leicester City finally paid off with a mindbending final total of 92 points. And all achieved whilst the manager is biking round ‘Nam for charity. Maybe Claudio is with him. Last season’s holy trinity of Vardy, Mahrez and Drinkwater contributed 23 points on top of the 40 from Kane. They made one transfer in gameweek four, and only managed to put out nine players for the weekend. Classic ghostship.

Uriah’s deserve a mention. Playing the game properly, they amassed 88 points. As well as captain Kane, they benefited from Christian Eriksen’s assists and another goal scoring performance from Gareth McAuley. He’s West Brom’s second top scorer, the league’s top scoring defender and moves into sixth place on the defender charts.

The manager of the month changed hands dramatically at the final reckoning. Both Lukaku and Kane had carried RG XV to the top of the monthly table before Monday’s game – they were 9th after last week’s fixtures. RG also had McAuley – and Seamus Coleman, who contributed anther double figure total with a seventh consecutive scoring week. Yet it wasn’t enough to hold off Rico United who pipped them by a point and have Matt Phillips to thank – for not playing. Rico utilised the bench boost expertly. Captain Phillips defaulted to vice captain Alli, and the extra eight points carried them past RG to the prize. They’re our first double month winner.

up RICO UNITED
JASON REACHER
79 208
up RG XV
Ryan Garoghan
79 207
same Hedgehog Corpse FC
Nick Smith
61 198
up Edgbaston
Micheal Dinneen
69 197
up Biscuitmen
Chris Morton
74 197
up Uriah Rennie 2nd XI
Neil Greenwood
88 197
same Upper Bullens
Andy Taylor
67 196

 

Our cup quarter finalists have been decided. FC Caligula will not defend their trophy, falling to Release The Hounds, who will take on Jarvis FC in the next round. Rico’s month winning total was enough to see them through to play Upper Bullens. Bakerlona are the lowest ranked team left in, creeping through in a battle of the ghost teams. They face league leaders Aquamar, who only just squeezed through themselves with the second lowest cup score of the week. Joey Bosa and Shoelace Untied make up the draw. Aquamar are the only top 10 team left in the competition and there are more bottom half than top half teams remaining.

 

Player of the week – Harry Kane – 20 points. Another hat trick. Time for a few weeks off now, eh Harry.

Bargain of the week – Idrissa Gueye – 10 points. Everton’s Kante. The scoring will stop here.

Donkey of the week – Ashley Barnes – -1 points. Another cheapo striker’s honeymoon period is over.

Goal of the week – Danny Drinkwater. They won’t get relegated.

 

Gameweek 22 results

January 23, 2017

same The Craggy Islanders
Adrian Roche
46 1253
same Aquamar 15
Noel Driver
46 1244
same Yeboah’s Right Foot
Paul Murray
49 1235
same When Harry met Alli
Trevor Gordon
67 1229
same Kebab Eaters Utd
Paul Howard
52 1213
up greenyteamy
adam greenwood
71 1203
down Hedgehog Corpse FC
Nick Smith
64 1194
up 4 Fuchs Ake
Jason Earwicker
67 1183
up Uriah Rennie 2nd XI
Neil Greenwood
61 1181
10  down Biscuitmen
Chris Morton
47 1176
11  down Cooksters
Peter Cook
48 1174
12  same Rip Roaring Reds
Sean Whyton
60 1173
13  up FC Caligula
Ajay Supeda
61 1171
14  down INIT FC
Mustafa khan
53 1168
15  down Go Buffoons Go
Jitesh Lakhani
52 1163
16  same To Elland Back
Alan Hardy
54 1160
17  up 30:19
Darren Lavelle
66 1158
18  down Atlético Chappers
Richard Chapman
55 1158
19  up Neil Madrid
Neil Strong
63 1155
20  up Joey Bosa
Paul Bentz
74 1149
21  same RICO UNITED
JASON REACHER
59 1139
22  down QUEEN OF THE NORTH
DORINE REACHER
37 1132
23  up Your Ad Here
Matthew Hopkins
61 1130
24  down Edgbaston
Micheal Dinneen
54 1128
25  down romeoshondavan
Rob Hewer
49 1119
26  same nO fucHs given
Paul Callaghan
45 1111
27  up Upper Bullens
Andy Taylor
59 1108
28  down Golden Boys
Stephanie Cripps
51 1104
29  same Jeff Lamp’s Porsche
David Spinks
54 1099
30  up Jarvis FC
Matt Jarvis
50 1095
31  up Crazy Legs XI
David Caldicott
56 1082
32  down Hucking Fell
P Hawkins
35 1082
33  up Shoelace Untied
Caroline Strong
77 1078
34  up RG XV
Ryan Garoghan
58 1066
35  down Release The Hounds
Paul Mitchell
40 1063
36  down Ciderheads
Darren Pope
28 1050
37  up Have a little dink
Ian Williams
69 1048
38  down FTM
Stu Smith
46 1046
39  down I am not Zlatan
Colin Goulding
44 1037
40  up Pepe Le Blue
DEAN CRIPPS
53 1018
41  down Real Jorvik
Simon Brown
48 1009
42  same Pretty Schitty City
Alex Michaluk
48 998
43  same Bakerlona
Stuart Baker
54 994
44  up Dj daz
darren frankland
62 984
45  up jetty city
scott mcgow
56 981
46  down Pudding And Pie
John Seacroft
41 980
47  down Big White Chiefs
david frankland
47 980
48  same bazza 28 united
laura barrett
39 941
49  same Bermie Utd
Glen Davies
38 931
50  same DJ’s Trail Blazers
Danian Jones
36 909
51  up Bish Bosh Goal
Simon Purnell
52 897
52  down Racing Club Skegness
Andrew Swift
45 892
53  same Jarv88
Paul Jarvis
41 856

 

As the 96th minute rolled round at the Emirates yesterday, Alexis Sanchez was sat on two points, and with the rest of the Arsenal team, feeling aggrieved at the seven minutes of added time that had afforded Burnley a penalty with which they had leveled up the game at 1-1. A minute later and the fantasy world breathed a sigh of relief as he chipped Arsenal’s own slightly dubious penalty down the middle of the Burnley goal and added a much welcomed six points to his score. With most of us seemingly carrying him as captain this week, that amounted to an extra 12 points, and an above average total in the 60’s, and in some cases, the 70’s.

The highest of which was Shoelace Untied who hit 77 points. Sanchez’s 16 point contribution was backed up by 34 points from their defence, courtesy of a clean sheet each from Cesar Azpilicueta, Gareth McAuley and Seamus Coleman. McAuley and Coleman also added an asisst and a goal and top bonus marks. Coleman ended up as player of the week as the Everton bandwagon gathered pace. They’re the latest team to change to three at the back giving us five of the Everton defence scoring meaningful points. Three consecutive clean sheets has promoted Coleman into the top table of defenders with Leighton Baines two positions behind. Given the kind run of fixtures on the horizon for Everton, their totals and their stock should continue to rise.

Average weeks for our top three enabled the chasing pack to close the gap a little. There’s an average of 10 points separating each team in the top seven before the placings concertina with 30 points separating the next 12 teams. We’ve an FA Cup break next weekend, but then an instant set of midweek fixtures to complete February. For the record, the manager of the month table looks like this…

up When Harry met Alli
Trevor Gordon
67 217
up greenyteamy
adam greenwood
71 209
up Neil Madrid
Neil Strong
63 208
up Upper Bullens
Andy Taylor
59 207
down Pudding And Pie
John Seacroft
41 205
up FC Caligula
Ajay Supeda
61 204
down Dj daz
darren frankland
62 204
down Aquamar 15
Noel Driver
46 203
up RG XV
Ryan Garoghan
58 200
10  up Rip Roaring Reds
Sean Whyton
60 200
11  down Kebab Eaters Utd
Paul Howard
52 199
12  down romeoshondavan
Rob Hewer
49 196
13  up To Elland Back
Alan Hardy
54 194
14  up Have a little dink
Ian Williams
69 191
15  down The Craggy Islanders
Adrian Roche
46 190

Plenty of teams in it.

 

Player of the week – Seamus Coleman – 15 points. Form defender.

Bargain of the week – Fernando Llorente – 13 points. Ending the Liverpool challenge?

Donkey of the week – Granit Xhaka – -1 points. The new Lee Cattermole.

Goal of the week – Wayne Rooney. I suppose.

Gameweek 34 preview

April 11, 2014

12 Apr 15:07 Crystal Palace v Aston Villa
12 Apr 15:07 Fulham v Norwich
12 Apr 15:07 Southampton v Cardiff City
12 Apr 15:07 Stoke City v Newcastle
12 Apr 15:07 Sunderland v Everton
12 Apr 15:07 West Brom v Tottenham
13 Apr 13:37 Liverpool v Man City
13 Apr 16:07 Swansea v Chelsea
15 Apr 19:45 Arsenal v West Ham
16 Apr 19:45 Everton v Crystal Palace
16 Apr 19:45 Man City v Sunderland

As well as being aware of the fact that it’s a double gameweek for Everton, City, Sunderland and Palace, managers should also take note that Hull and Manchester United don’t play at all. Hull are competing in the FA Cup semi finals this weekend and their league game with United has been rescheduled for the next double gameweek – gameweek 37.
Of the four teams playing twice, three are definitely worth some transfer investment. You know which three. If you’ve any Sunderland players already in your squad, then by all means play them, but it’d be a waste of a transfer bringing in any Mackem fresh faces. Never mind the fact that they’ve beaten both Everton and City already this season. Their current form is bad, and getting worse. They look resigned to relegation, and their own manager has said they need a miracle. There are plenty of players from the teams playing once this week (Southampton and Stoke in particular) that offer up more points potential than most of the likely Sunderland starting XI.

One more win for Palace could see them safe. They’ve given us the bargain player of the week for the last two weeks. Jason Puncheon at £5 million will probably start both of their games, as should Joel Ward, who at £4.4 million, and along with his fellow defenders, offers the best chance of good double gameweek returns. You could optimistically expect them to keep a clean sheet at home to Villa. Against in-form, free scoring Everton that’s a less likely prospect. Although the ever present Julian Speroni could rack up some decent save bonuses in that game, and post a healthy double figure score.

Everton will expect six points from their two games and a hatful of goals. They’ve scored three in their last four league outings. Which makes Romelu Lukaku the obvious choice for a transfer. Ably assisting Lukaku in recent weeks has been the much cheaper, but no less lethal Gary Naismith, who will only set you back a measly £4.6 million. If clean sheets come with the goals, then Seamus Coleman and Leighton Baines can be expected, as usual, to also offer good returns.

Don’t be put off by the potential injury indicator next to Yaya Toure’s name on your team sheet. It’s highly unlikely he’ll be missing for what could be a title decider, and the game of the season. Good news for City is that Sergio Aguero is back in contention, although that may not be the best news for those managers who’ve been benefiting from Edin Dzeko’s goals in his absence. Will the manager ease Aguero back in, risk him from the start or pair the two strikers together? Aguero will get game time, but Dzeko should still get more.

As we saw in gameweek 31 fleshing your team out with double gameweekers does reap rewards. This week you need to decide whether you drop your single gameweeking big names in favour of those playing twice. Could you be tempted to leave the slightly out of form Danny Sturridge on the bench – or any Liverpool player for that matter, given that they’re playing Man City? Eden Hazard’s injury gives those with the Chelsea’s main man in their teams a bit of breathing space for transfers. Early reports are that he’ll miss two games. Benching him until then is an option, but when there’s a double gameweek to take advantage of, you may be foolsih not to take the opportunity

Gameweek 24 preview

January 31, 2014

01 Feb 12:45 Newcastle   v   Sunderland
01 Feb 12:45 West Ham   v   Swansea
01 Feb 15:00 Cardiff City   v   Norwich
01 Feb 15:00 Everton   v   Aston Villa
01 Feb 15:00 Fulham   v   Southampton
01 Feb 15:00 Hull City   v   Tottenham
01 Feb 15:00 Stoke City   v   Man Utd
02 Feb 13:30 West Brom   v   Liverpool
02 Feb 16:00 Arsenal   v   Crystal Palace
03 Feb 20:00 Man City   v   Chelsea

And so we start February, a month of four gameweeks, including one set of midweek fixtures and one weekend off for the next round of the FA Cup. The Buckets Cup starts in the first week of March, and over the next four gameweeks we’ll know the other four teams receiving byes into the 1st round proper. Romeo’s and (Your Ad Here) are already there. If you top the weekly chart between now and March you’ll be joining them.

It’s the last week in which you can play the January wildcard, so if you haven’t used it yet, it’s now or never. And with a new raft of injuries to deal with, a bag load of suspensions from the last gameweek’s play, and some new players introduced courtesy of the January transfer window, there are plenty of reasons to activate it.

News has broke today that Aaron Ramsey is another six weeks away from a first team return, so those Buckets teams valiantly holding on to the Arsenal midfielder, it really is now now time to make that change. Ramsey will still earn you £7.1 millions worth of spends, but had you booted him out when he was first injured, you’d have had an extra half a million to play with. The 11.30am deadline for transfers tomorrow is no help to those sweating on whether Sergio Aguero is going to be fit enough to play on Monday night against Chelsea. Obviously, if you keep him in, he won’t play, and if you get rid, he will. That’s just how it works.

The “light” injury suffered by Seamus Coleman hasn’t healed. He is officially out, and no longer doubtful, adding to defensive woes for Everton highlighted by their hammering at the hands of Liverpool in midweek. Injuries to Sylvain Distin and Antolin Alcaraz mean young John Stones will continue to deputise in the middle alongside Phil Jagielka. Everton’s European challenge is going to be tested over the next few weeks until they can get their first choice defenders back. Add to that the six or so weeks Romelu Lukaku looks likely to be out, which leaves Gary Naismith as their main attacking option. If their periphery players can rise to the occasion, then their cheapness could be an attractive proposition. Stones will set you back £4.2 and Naismith £4.6 million, leaving plenty of scope for splashing out elsewhere.

It’s the North East derby, and Newcastle go into the game without their two best players. Yohan Cabaye has gone forever, and Loic Remy must serve a three game ban for his bout of handbags at Norwich on Tuesday night. It leaves Shola up top. But Shola always scores against Sunderland, so don’t be afraid to pick him.

The last day of the transfer window is under way. There’s rumour on a few big money deals involving City. And Chelsea have signed a kid from St Etienne called Kurt Zouma, but loaned him straight back. There’s a few players who have made switches between Premier League clubs. Zaha has gone to Cardiff with Fabio. Lewis Holtby has switched to Fulham.

Dimitar Berbatov and Adel Taraabt have jumped ship to warm benches at Monaco and Milan respectively. Sunderland have brought in Liam Bridcutt and Ignacio Scocco. Scocco is a once capped Argentinian international, and is priced at £5.5 million. Those kind of transfers could go either way. Does anyone remember Mauro Boselli? Thought not.

As always, it’ll take a week or two to see whether any of these deals will be worth our while. The switches between Premier clubs can generally be relied upon more than the unknown Argentinians. You’d expect Zaha and Holtby to go straight into their respective trams, but they’re the bottom two teams in the league, so they need to start performing straight away.

Breaking news – Aguero out for a month.

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