The Irish Times Fantasy Premier League: Guide to Selecting Midfielders – Part 2

Thursday, August 16th, 2012 at 1:12 pm by Phil Mc Grath

In this the second of our midfield strategy pieces we discuss the issue of doubling up on players from the same premier league team and problems that could be caused by Van Persie’s switch to Manchester United. We also talk you through the importance of finding value players for your fantasy premier league team and point you in the direction of some quality bargain players to be considered.

Double Team

There is of course the potential to double up on a midfielder and a striker from one team, like Hazard and Torres or Silva and Aguero, these combinations could yield great returns for fantasy managers but there is also the danger that if the team have an off week neither player will get you the points you want, so it may be wise to diversify and reduce your amount of exposure to any given team.

Some of the teams will make this decision a little easier for you like Tottenham for example, Spurs have yet to secure the services of Adebayor and look devoid of options up front without him, so really it has to be midfield coverage for fantasy managers which will lead you to either Bale, Van der Vaart or Sigurdsson.

Others will not be so easy with the options at City and United looking fixture proof. For United the obvious choice is Rooney and assuming you haven’t used a United defender or goalkeeper your other choice falls between Valencia, Nani, Young and new boy Kagawa. City on the other hand is a little more complicated and depending on budget you could either have Aguero or Tevez up front, with Aguero seemingly the preferred option of most. The midfield again throws up a number of options such as Silva, Yaya Toure or Nasri and again this may come down to whether you have Kompany at the back as I suspect many will.

Unsure about Arsenal

Prior to the news being confirmed that Robin van Persie had secured a move to Manchester the feasibility of the Arsenal midfield looked shaky, however now that the matter has been resolved the prospects in the Arsenal midfield look a lot brighter with Santi Carzorla and Theo Walcott now looking like good investments due to the fact that Podolski looks set to lead the line instead of an unhappy RVP.

This does however have a knock on effect at Manchester United with Van Persie in the ranks the fantasy prospects of Manchester United’s new acquisition Shinji Kagawa have been shot down over night and it seems that we may not see as much of him as initially thought.

Chelsea of course are an interesting prospect with the arrival of Oscar and Marin into the Pensioners midfield alongside Mata, Lampard and Ramires and again this is going to be down to whether or not you have two Chelsea player still to choose from assuming you do it’s a tough call to make but I do worry whether the two new boys will get game time.


Where is the Value?

This is something I think every manager needs to asking themselves when they are selecting their team for week one, while the importance of the big names is obvious, it will be the acquisitions of the cheaper midfielders that will ultimately decide your faith, as stated in part one of our midfielders guide, cheap midfielders never cease to amaze every season and this season will be no different.

Your team will rely on them to pick up the slack and make up the remainder of your midfield after the big bucks are spent and these players are most likely to be the ones that will be transferred in and out as the season progresses but they are also the most likely to throw up pure fantasy gold like last seasons surprises Scott Sinclair, James McClean and to a lesser Stephane Sessegnon.

Looking at this season McClean looks like another viable mid priced option along side prodigal son Steven Pienaar who has returned to Everton, Jon Walters, Charles N’Zogbia, Michu, Scott Sinclair and maybe just maybe Victor Moses to name but a few are worth your careful consideration.

Bargain Options

As for the budget options, it’s hard to ignore West Ham’s Mark Noble given his spot-kick duties and assured starts. Another possible option is Reading’s Danny Guthrie for the double fixture in week 2, not to mention the array of possible talent from Southampton.

So really what you want is one or two big names, one mid priced and one cheap midfielder assuming you subscribe to my four man system that is.

But really it all comes down to two things, player preference and price, at the end of the day only you will know which way your opinion sways when it comes to certain players and clubs, but one thing is for sure with such a large array of talent on the board it isn’t going to get any easier.

But remember with the opportunity to make unlimited transfers coming up at close of the August transfer window mistakes need not be long lived and can be rectified easily at this point.

Don’t forget if you register your team for The Irish Times Fantasy Premier League before Saturday you could be in with a chance of winning €200 for the best team name!

Categories: Rules & Strategy

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