Fantasy Football Blog

  • Tactical review: One goal or two?

    After six matches, it is a strange old game week, and probably a good one to have four at the back given the glut of goalless draws yesterday.

    The main water cooler topic for Fantasy fans is Manchester City's second goal against Birmingham yesterday.

    The goal was initially awarded to Nedum Onuoha (17.5pts), which was good news for The Fantasist as it has the defender in its team.

    But those points have now been transferred to Carlos Tevez (30pts), who got the final touch and was desperate to claim the goal.

    The Argentine is owned by more than 20 per cent of managers, so those points could

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  • Foreign View: Maxi priest

    Remember when Maxi Lopez was the next big thing at Barcelona? Well, apparently he was made obsolete by some kid called Lionel something.

    Undeterred, the lank-haired hitman is now making a name for himself in Serie A, with six goals in 11 games for Catania since joining at the turn of the year. That other kid Lionel, meanwhile, has faded from prominence altogether.

    ITALY - UP

    Maxi Lopez (FW, Catania, 15.98) +5.90
    Thiago Motta (MF, Inter, 9.09) +5.22
    Giampaolo Pazzini (FW, Sampdoria, 16.59) +2.53
    Lorenzo De Silvestri (DF, Fiorentina, 9.27) +2.51
    Samir Handanovic (GK, Udinese, 10.82) +2.18

    DOWN

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  • Injury Report: Gameweek 27

    As the season reaches squeaky bum time, there are a huge number of injuries.
    Club Gameweek 27 Status Player Injury
    Arsenal OUT Robin van Persie Ankle
        Johan Djourou Knee
        William Gallas Calf
        Kieran Gibbs Foot
      Aaron Ramsey Broken leg
      QUESTIONABLE Tomas Rosicky Groin
      Carlos Vela Knock
        Cesc Fabregas Hamstring
    Aston Villa OUT Nigel Reo-Coker Ankle
    QUESTIONABLE Gabriel Agbonlahor Groin
    Wilfred Bouma Toe
    Birmingham OUT Lee Carsley Ankle
    Garry O'Connor Groin
    Stuart Parnaby Ankle
    QUESTIONABLE Gregory Vignal Calf
    Blackburn OUT Paul Robinson Calf
    QUESTIONABLE Vince Grella
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  • Injury report: Gameweek 29

    Hell's bells there are some big injuries this week, with a lot of heavy points scorers out of the reckoning.

    Wayne Rooney - crocked.
    Cesc Fabregas - crocked.
    William Gallas - crocked.
    Andrei Arshavin - crocked.
    Ricardo Carvalho - crocked.
    Didier Drogba - not crocked.

    Rooney's injury makes Dimitar Berbatov that much more attractive, although at 17.32 he's not cheap.

    On the Arsenal front, you'll be wanting Sol Campbell (5.79) and Theo Walcott (8.38) for the game againt Wolves.

    And it's all systems go for Drogba after Carlo Ancelotti said he will start at Old Trafford. Great if you're locked in

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  • Tactical review: Kirkland rules

    As with
    last week, the Fantasist's performance should only be rated after the midweek
    games featuring Chelsea, Villa, City, Everton, Pompey, Sunderland, West Ham,
    Wolves, Birmingham and Blackburn.

    That said,
    it proved to be a decent start to the game week, with a number of picks putting
    in sterling points performances.

    Chris
    Kirkland (2.64)
    was
    an inspired selection, the Wigan keeper earning 16.50 points with a clean sheet
    against Burnley. Likewise, Tim
    Howard (7.18
    ), who gathered 16 points, but
    less so
    Brad Friedel (13.96) after the Villa keeper let in two
    against Wolves and emerged from the

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  • Movers and shakers: Ade up

    UP

    No surprise to see two Manchester City players at the top of the list, with Emmanuel Adebayor (the week's biggest scorer with 23.5) and Adam Johnson featuring heavily in the 6-1 marmalisation of Burnley.

    Arsenal might have taken 95 minutes to crack Wolves, but for sheer weight of crosses, shots and corners won, Tomas Rosicky, Theo Walcott and Bacary Sagna all crack the biggest risers.

    The weirdest stat line of the week belongs to Heurelho Gomes, who conceded three goals in Spurs' defeat at Sunderland. However, the Brazilian made two penalty saves and five other stops to rake in 19.5 points

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  • Tactical review: Top four = No score

    The Fantasist broke the habit of a lifetime by sticking its neck out on a big four clash, and wishes it hadn't.

    Not so much because the Manchester United players it tipped failed to deliver, but the low scores from their Chelsea counterparts proved that backing either side in such a match is a mug's game.

    Of the United players fancied in the match at Old Trafford, only Patric Evra (8 points) provided something approaching good value while Rio Ferdinand (3.5), Nani (2), Park Ji-sung (1), Antonio Valencia (2.5) and, predictably, Dimitar Berbatov (3) all underwhelmed.

    At least Didier Drogba (11)

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  • Choose ‘em or lose ‘em

    It's the biggest week of the year in Fantasy Football - and the Fantasist means that in a very literal sense, since Gameweek 17 is actually 12 days long and takes in a thumping great 22 football matches!

    Picking your team for so many matches will always be a bit of a lottery; but the Fantasist can hardly do worse than last week's debacle, so here goes...

    GOALKEEPERS

    Choose 'em: Four teams will be playing three matches during the Christmas period - Stoke, Arsenal, Bolton and Fulham - but the only one of them we'd trust not to let in a hatful at some point is Fulham. Yet entertaining Tottenham

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  • Foreign view: Canna can

    It was a great week for Fabio Cannavaro's kid brother Paolo in Serie A.

    The defender pocketed a whacking great 24 points after keeping a clean sheet and scoring the winner in Napoli's 1-0 win against Catania. 

    He added a last-man saving tackle, won a corner, completed a cross and intercepted five passes in an all-action display.

    It might have been even better but for a yellow card that cost him three points. 

    ITALY

    UP

    Houssine Kharja (MF, Genoa, 13.43) +5.53
    Paolo Cannavaro (DF, Napoli, 7.31) +4.35
    Javier Vargas (DF, Fiorentina, 23.54) +3.95
    Francesco Tavano (FW, Livorno, 10.91) +3.40
    Riccardo

    Read More »from Foreign view: Canna can
  • Choose ‘em or lose ‘em: It’s a Given

    GOALKEEPERS

    Choose 'em: For your custodian this week look no further than Shay Given (7.50), the reasonably-priced Manchester City keeper who will face Wigan at Eastlands. A more expensive, yet none the less astute, option this week is Heurelho Gomes (10.53) with Spurs hosting toothless Portsmouth at White Hart Lane.

    Lose 'em: If you weren't already going to jettison Joe Hart (8.25) after last week's dismal showing that saw the Birmingham keeper rake in minus 10.50 points, then do so now - a match against Arsenal is not what the doctor ordered for the young England hope. And Jussi

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