Well with a somewhat unusual midweek selection of fantasy premier league action coming to a close it seems only right that we take a look back at the major talking points from round 14 of the Irish Times Fantasy Premier League as we would normally of a Monday we they weekend fixtures. It was indeed a strange sort of a week in many aspects with some of the usual suspects getting back in the points but there were also a few frustrations as far as fantasy managers were concerned with a number of man men either failing to produce or failing even to make it onto the pitch, but that’s why we love the game right?
Fellaini Foils Gunners
Marouane Fellaini returned to the Everton line up after serving his one match ban much to the delight im sure of many fantasy managers with a vested interest and he didn’t disappoint. The big Belgian took little time to get back in the grove and cancel out Theo Walcott’s first minute opener for Arsenal to add to his already impressive tally of having returned attacking points in all five of his last starts for the Toffee’s. With much of Everton’s threat carried on the shoulders of Fellaini to say he is central to David Moyes’ plans is an understatement. With his form showing no sign of stopping it looks like Fellaini is quickly becoming a must have player for your fantasy side and at £4.0 million it’s easy to why.
Bale Bounces Back
The title seem’s a little cruel I know but I assure you it has nothing got to do with the Welshman’s rater unfortunate own goal at the Lane against Liverpool and is actually about his recent return to form. Having failed to make an impact in the early part of the season he has gone on to pick up attacking points in his last three games which of course included a goal and an assist as Spurs went onto beat Brendan Roger’s side 2-1 last night. With two away games on the horizon in the form of trips to Fulham and Everton it will be interesting to see if he can continue his good scoring run,but with AVB seemingly beginning to get it right at Tottenham there is no reason why he won’t.
Rafa Goes Defensive
The new era at Chelsea under Rafa Benitez is well and truly underway and as we though the effects are being felt by fantasy managers, Rafa’s style of football has somewhat compromised their attacking potential however it has made them stronger at the back with the Pensioners picking up 2 clean sheets on the bounce. The former Liverpool boss has made his name over the years by making sure his sides are solid at the back and it looks like he is up to his old tricks again at Chelsea. It is of course rather unfortunate given the amount of attacking prospects at his disposal that were are now talking about Chelsea’s defence, but with the goals drying up for the moment it may be wise to starting looking at defenders rather than attacking options over the coming weeks.
City Also Sure Up
Another side who have plugged the gaps at the back are current champions Man City, after last night’s clean sheet against Wigan the City backline has now produced five clean sheets in their last six league outings. It is also worth noting that this run has coincided with the introduction of Matija Nastasic alongside skipper Vincent Kompany. With three home matches in the next four, City look likely to maintain their current lock out at the back and with Nastasic offering a cheaper alternative to Kompany at £4.6 million fantasy managers would be wise to cash in on him now while they have the momentum.
Michu Keeps Firing
After a rather frustrating period of three games without a goal many fantasy managers were wondering had Michu’s time come to an end, but it would seem that after being shifted back into his preferred positon just behind the striker the goals have started to come again for the Spaniard. Swan’s 3-1 victory over West Brom was no fluke and they were value for their 3-0 lead inside 40 minutes. Michu’s prospects however a little frail over the coming weeks as the Swans face Arsenal,Norwich, Tottenham and Manchester United, but if he continues to feature in that role in “the hole” behind the striker we could well see a lot more goals from him over the christmas period.
He’s Like Bent Only Longer
Christian Benteke made it into our tips for the first time this season in round 14 and he didn’t disappoint as he notched up a late winner for Villa as they beat Reading 1-0 at Villa Park on Tuesday night. Benteke has been hotly tipped as the replacement for out of favour Darren Bent and the 21 year old is starting to live up to his billing with 2 goals and 2 assists in his last six games. As far as a differential goes Benteke isn’t a bad option for fantasy managers looking to find an alternative route to the top Benteke could be the man to help get you there, however with some tough games coming up after round 17 caution is advised.