Friday, November 25, 2016

Week 13: IEFSA Fantasy League Preview

My side’s time rocketing to the summit of the league table seems like a distant memory now, as I drop to fifth thanks to my second defeat in a row. Last weekend also saw my team post their lowest score of the season, coupled with the largest margin of defeat so far. It was embarrassing from Saturday right up until Monday night. But the pain doesn’t seem to want to stop. Almost half my team (and definitely half my goals) will be absent through suspension, injury, or just sitting out while his current side face his parent club. The fantasy gods really don’t want me to win this week, as I face @RotoWireAndrew, whose only dilemma is which players to leave out! The IEFSA Fantrax fixture computer is determined to see my side plummet down the table.

The league itself is really getting tight now. Amazingly only six points separate the top 15 sides. @jwl_15 is the current leader thanks to his overall points total. @wrigavin in fourth is the form side, having reeled off five wins on the trot. It has been relatively low scoring the last two weeks, a goal or assist either way could swing a tie. With this in mind it’s vitally important to get all your players starting for their teams.

@RotoWireAndrew’s Team

If we faced each other every week we would currently both be with a record of 6-6. This suggests a tight game. Andrew’s team does have more luck in front of goal though. 17 goals for his team compared to 12 for mine (six of which will be missing this weekend).  Charlie Austin and Theo Walcott have five goals each, and both have tasty home fixtures on Sunday. In fact apart from Erik Lamela, who is injured anyway, all his goal scorers will be playing at home this weekend. What is surprising are his assist stats. Walcott is his best provider of these, yet has only contributed two. His biggest signing Paul Pogba has taken the most shot in his side with 34. Hopefully this isn’t the week where a few of these shots start finding the net.
Paul Pogba finding space in a packed midfield here.
Andrew is sixth in the league and has had a very up and down season so far. Some weeks his players run up a high one hundred plus figure score, and others he struggles to reach 80+ points. It’s all down to getting players onto the pitch. Unfortunately for me it looks like some players who were rare starters a few months ago are now more assured of a start. Marcos Rojo at Man Utd looks like being one of their centre backs with Bailly and Smalling out injured. Ahmed Musa only got 12 minutes last week but could be in line for a start on the wing for Leicester this week. Andrew may have to slot Musa in ahead of Bournemouth’s Jordan Ibe who is still recovering from illness, in the OF spot. Ibe is playing on Sunday though; will Andrew leave a slot open for him until then? In goals he has the West Ham keeper. The Hammers head to Old Trafford in the late Sunday kick-off, so he could be in for a busy afternoon. With three possible United players in his line up, Andrew will be watching that game closely.

What I Need To Happen

The United/West Ham game is one I will be monitoring the line-ups for also. With Mkhitaryan seemingly back in favour and Jesse Lingard having scored midweek in the Europa League, I will need both to play considering the list of players that will be missing for me this gameweek. Both of my Arsenal players are out, Bellerin and Cazorla. The other Arsenal player on my roster, Jack Wilshere, will have to sit the next game out. He is not allowed play for Bournemouth against his parent club. With Joe Allen missing because of suspension, I’m struggling to get three Midfield players to play. If things go really pear shaped, I could end up with no players starting for their clubs.
Jack Wilshere won't add to his goal tally (0) this week
Tom Heaton in goals had a below average week last time out when letting in four goals. Things might not get any better when Burnley entertain Man City in the first game of the weekend. If he and team mate Michael Keane can keep Aguero and co. quiet, it would be a good start for me in the matchup with Andrew. I am worried about my Midfield though. Kevin Mirallas is not exactly assured of a start and perhaps it would be prudent to push a player into Inj. Reserve while drafting in a midfielder from the Free Agent list for one week.


Four correct from nine predictions last week. The league as I mentioned is getting really tight. When three quarters of the managers have designs on the title how am I supposed to predict the winners every week? I’ll continue in my pursuit of the perfect week in the face all this though. To see how well these predictions pan out, please follow @THE_IEFSA on Twitter.

Good Luck Everyone.

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