The Fantasy Football First Site Team

Fantasy Football First 2016/17 Site Team for Game Week 10

My team was nominated as the official Fantasy Football First team. My job is to tell you how and why I have picked certain players and formations for the Fantasy Premier League, and explain my reasoning behind any changes along the way. This article explains the changes I have made to my team and why.

So how did I do in game week 9?

In game week 9 I used my free transfers to sell Capoue and buy Allen. I selected Allen because he is in form, has a new position as number 10, is playing every week, and has a great run of games.

My team picked up 41 points and I fell 40k in the rankings.

In review:

  • In defence Grant, Holebas and Walker all picked up 6 points, while Lovren only picked up two points due to conceding a 81st minute goal to West Brom. Should we be concerned about Liverpool’s defence given opinsions were mixed on this week’s podcast? Well I did some digging into Liverpool’s defensive stats. This chart from Stratabet shows goals conceded, great chances conceded and good chances conceded this season.  We can see that the top 4 teams that seem to have solid robust defences are United, Chelsea, Liverpool, and Spurs, as they have conceded the fewest Great and Good chances. I am concerned that Liverpool and United have conceded so many goals given the low volume of chances, but I feel if I choose my defenders from this collection, based on upcoming fixtures, then I should be OK. The fixture difficulty chart off the site top menu suggests that Spurs are in for a rough ride, but Liverpool should do OK, so I decide to keep Lovern.
  • My midfield picked up a total of 13 points, 16 if you include captain Walcott. This was quite a disappointment. So are these players doing the actions that will lead to points? Let’s look at shots last weekend. The order of the below images from Squawka is Antonio, Allen, Walcott and Firmino.  We can see that of these four mids, Antonio is threatening the goal the least. He is on my outlist.
  • Up front all three of my strikers were a #Fail for the second week in a row. When it comes to Aguero, by instinct I sit on the side of the “keep” fence. However, I’d like to look a little deeper to see if there is something “bigger”. If we look at Aguero’s shot position last season compared to this season, on the image below where last season is seen in the blue and yellow dots, we can see that last season the majority of Aguero’s shots were in line with the posts where as this season the shots are positionally more dispersed. This suggests to me that Aguero is being asked to play a different role in the team. I will be watching City closely this weekend.
  • On my bench, Baines again did not play because of his injury and it looks like Amat has been dropped.

Game week 10

Starting as always with injuries, I have had enough of Baines and his weekly “will he won’t he” soap-opera. I am selling him. Looking at the defensive data above, Chelsea are doing well. I had a Chelsea player in my team some weeks back, but I sold as Chelsea could not keep clean sheets. Now they have kept 3 clean sheets on the bounce so are a viable selection. The fixture difficulty does not put me off because it makes me think they are more likely to play for a draw and keep a clean sheet. Therefore, my first transfer is Baines to Azpilicueta. I selected Azpilicueta over Alonso mainly because I have not seen Alonso play all that much and I want to see more of him. I do acknowledge that under Conte’s system Azpilicueta seems to be instructed to pass as soon as he gets into the final third, and this will limit his assist chances, where as there is no such restriction on Alonso. If I was a less cautious manager, I would have picked Alonso.

I am also frustrated with Antonio. He is no longer a goal threat. So in like Mrs Rocks with the Christmas savings, I go on a shopping spree by selling Antonio and buying Coutinho. Readers who have followed me this season will know I have wanted to double up on Liverpool’s midfield for a while and won’t be shocked by this move, despite the four point cost.

So this is my team for this weekend. My captain will be Deeney.

A word of note, if Aguero blanks again, and does not take shots in-line with the posts nor between the posts then I will sell Aguero and Defoe for Lukaku and Costa. If I make this move it will be tonight, irrespective of the risk that Costa or Lukaku could be injured in tomorrow’s games – it’s a risk I will be willing to take.

Best of luck to you all.

RMT Optibot’s Algorithm team

Site team updated

On the back of this tweet advising Walcott won’t play tomorrow, I have changed my formation so that (1) Azpi is benched to allow Holebas to feature given he faces Hull, and (2) for Azpi to come in if Walcott does not play.


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Site founder, first used stats to try to win his work mini-league. Now helps other managers win theirs.

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