Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Week 10 - Player Picks

Yahoo have finally confirmed the double week for West Ham & Villa, so to begin with i'll go back to what I wrote in my Week 10 Preview...

Now this is the first time this season with this scenario. Not the scenario of a double week (we had that in Week 1) but a situation where only 2 teams play twice. West Ham face Sunderland away & Villa at home, while Villa travel to Everton & West Ham (obviously).

Weeks like this are a real conundrum. Do you load up on West Ham & Villa players, sacrificing some discounts & some stronger players with single games? Or do you ignore the temptation as best you can, go with proven single game performers & just pick up 1or 2 double gamers? It's very confusing.

To add the confusion there plenty of other of good fixtures to consider...Man Utd home to Blackburn, Chelsea at Bolton, Sunderland home to West Ham, Man City at Birmingham, Burnley at home to Hull, Stoke at home to Wolves, Wigan at Portsmouth & there are always goals in Arsenal v Spurs.

I'm not going to tell you what you should or shouldn't do in Week 10. It's normally best to strike a balance, but that can be very difficult when there are so many good single gamers - it's really down to your gut feeling.

The strategy taken really is down to the individual. I'm probably going to load up my team with quite a few Villa & West Ham players, but that doesn't mean you have to. If you feel confident that single gamers will outscore double gamers then go for it.

I haven't had time to write my usual 2000 words on player picks. I believe people are now well aware of the pros & cons of individuals and that is why we are starting to see a big difference between each manager's selection as they begin to back their own hunches. However, I have listed the 50 odd player's i'll be considering this week with very brief notes on each.

Gordon - Cheap, clean sheet chance home to West Ham
Myhill - Cheap, away to Burnley, but is making saves
Penny/Jensen - Depending which is fit for Burnley, both are good value
Friedel - 2 games but both are away & he's pricey
Green - 2 games, but in a struggling team, chance of minus points

In my opinion, if you're spending more than £7m on a defender then you should be looking to pay that bit extra for a double gamer.
Vermaelen - Duh
O'Shea - Under £7m & will certainly start in a home game to Blackburn
Brown - VERY cheap & could play with Ferdinand out of form & Neville suspended
Heitinga - But I'm off the bandwagon
Wilkinson - Huth is still suspended & home to Wolves is a nice game for Stoke
R Johnson - Value has plummeted after yellow card last week
Alexander - Home fixure & penalty taker
Dunne - Pricey but great average
Collins - Ditto
Upson - Dangerous at set pieces
Warnock - Pricey but will get forward
Illunga - Good value, will start both games
Cueller - Good value BUT his place in both games could be at risk from Luke Young's return
Spector - Bargain if he plays both but tough to call

Lampard - Only if you have him at £18m. Still alot to spend on a single gamer in a double week. Away at Bolton isn't easy.
Fabregas - Off the boil since his Blackburn heroics but likely to perform vs Spurs
Giggs - Good value at home to Birmingham
Nani - Ditto
Arshavin - Probably too expensive, but I have feeling he could cause Spurs problems
Boateng - Loves to shoot at home
Reid - Dissapointing last week but good fixture
N'Zogbia - Improving every week & playing Pompey< O'Hara - Cheap set piece taker at home
Billy - May be back from injury
Bentley - Yes, DAVID BENTLEY. Huge outside hunch pick, but will play with Lennon out, against his old club & was outstanding vs Everton last night. 
Milner - Should be in everyone's team in Week 10
Noble - Good average, though Diamanti has stolen some set pieces & penalties
Young - Tough to justify his price considering his average, but you never know
Petrov - Should return his value+ over 2 games
Behrami - Ditto
Sidwell - Bargain at under £4m

Drogba - Duh
Rooney - On a bad run, but no better way to end that than home to Blackburn
Rodallega - On form, at Pompey, uh-oh
RvP - Is on fire now i've dropped him, and home to Spurs
Bent - Turned rubbish when I picked him last week, but home to West Ham
Benitez - Bit of a hunch, but played far better than his points return suggested  last week (just ask Fidan), so could be a bargain at under £6m
Piquionne - Scored twice in the Carling Cup so should get a start at home & also under £6m
Agbonlahor - Doesn't always return a huge amount of points, even when he scores, but he is in form so with 2 games he should be considered
Cole -The focal point of everything good West Ham do
Diamanti - Set pieces & penalties, changed the game from the bench vs Arsenal, very good pick.

Those are all the players in my consideration (until we hear of any injury news) & that's all I have time to type this week!

Blog League 6 is filling up quickly so if you don't have a space in one of the leagues yet then be quick as this is definitely the final one. Details below:

Group ID: 23246
Password: yahoo

Have I missed anyone? Who's in your team at the moment? What's your strategy in a double week like this?



Mark said...

Am, are you fairly certain Nani will start this weekend? But considering the fact that there is a mid week champion league match 4 man utd next week, I guess Nani could be handed a start right?

Doctor Teeth said...

My current team:

Verms Heitinga Wilko O'Shea
Lamps Billy BFAY
Drogs Diamanti Berbatov

I am very close to moving to:

Verms Heitinga Wilko
Fabregas BFAY Milner Billy
Drogs Diamanti Berbatov

I think the "sleeper" pick this week is Berbatov. Two weeks ago he looked absolutely world class for United in their CL match and for Bulgaria in their WC qualifier. I would hazard to guess that his YFF valuation in the last 2-3 years has never been lower than his current price (11.16). I just feel he culd bust out with a huge game against a sputtering Rovers squad. I have had Rooney penciled in this week but fielding Berbs instead and saving 6.5 gives me so much more flexibility in my MF. By the way, here are the two week performances for Berbs this season (might surprise you): 31, 24.5, 9.5, 17.5, 22.5, 28.5, 19.5, 0.

Speaking of my MF, I also love BFAY as a "hunch" this weekend. I think most managers will select Milner this weekend if they choose only one AV midfielder (and perhaps rightfully so). But I'm betting on BFAY to rediscover his form of last season when he was one of the top five most lethal fantasy performers for the entire year. Similar to Berbs, I don't recall BFAY going for as low as 13.5 in the last few years on YFF. And I like him in a two-gamer. Again, his two game performances for the season are respectable: 14.5, 16.5, 12.5, 12.5, 14, 8.5, 14.5, 10.

I hesitate over dropping Lamps at my 3+ discount but it is always tough for road teams to play at the Reebok (not sure why - the stadium is always half empty) and I'm still not sure if his performance last weekend was an aberration or a return to his form of yore. In addition, fielding him would mean I need to drop Fbas who I (unfortunately) foresee tearing up the Spurs at home this weekend.

Like AM, I could jump off the Heitinga bandwagon and replace him with Graham Alexander for this wekeend.

Doctor Teeth said...

I meant to mention that, while I can't recall the exact games, I can remember there being 2-3 occasions where Berbs had goals stolen from him on absolutely amazing saves...point blank headers or tap ins that were doomed by those reflexive, 1/100 saves that good GKs come up with occasionally. I raise that only to point out that he could easily have a few more goals this season.

Anonymous said...

To play devils advocate, I think Owen will get a start this weekend.

Doctor Teeth said...

Anything is possible but Berbs has started 8/10 games this seaon for United.

One of the issues I have with O'Shea is if United do the same thing to Backburn that Chelsea did las tweekend and Fergie subs in some of his second team defenders for a run on the pitch prior to the 75th minute.

Bojan said...

Wigan news-M'Zogbia could play in place of Figueroa, so Jordi Gomez for 6,89 could be a very decent midfield pick @ Portshmouth

Bojan said...


Bojan said...

stoke goalkeeper?

Assistant Manager said...

If N'Zogbia is shifted to defence then Gomez could be a very good pick Bojan. Not sure about Valencia or the Stoke Keeper, as both are quite expensive & I believe there are better ways to spend your hard earned £££


Macunian said...

I BD Stoke GK Simonsen at 6.14units... I'm really wondering if he's going to start over Sorensen but I totally have no clue! Anyone could help me on this issue? Thks a mil!

Bojan said...

i think that Nanni and Valencia are picks in the same categorie, if they start they'll do great if not then that isa a 10M+ loss--

Bojan said...

I think I will go Arshavin instead of FAb4, not sure yet, but closer to Russian

Anonymous said...

Doctor Teeth,

Sorry I don't get what you mean by "two week" performances and "Two game" performances this year for Berbatov and Young. What do you mean by two weeks? You list 8 weeks? And 8 weeks for Young's 2 games. I see 8 games.

Anonymous said...

Seems to me that the points posted by Doctor Teeth were added like this:
Wk1 + Wk2, Wk2 + Wk3, Wk3 + Wk4, Wk5 + Wk6 and so on...

Anonymous said...

AM, with Bentley likely to replace Lennon, would he be sharing corners/freekicks responsibilities with Kranjcar?

Asking as I am still holding on Kranjcar (may still drop him in view of the tough matchup, don't know yet)...

Ban said...

AM, is Nani will start the game?
I am planning Nani in my team..
Any suggestion for MU's players(Midfield)? except Giggs

Doctor Teeth said...

Bojan - yes, I was aggregating week-to-week performances for the players to show how they had performed over each two week period thus far this season. I recognize that Berbs does not have a double week this week...just thought his averages would be illuminating since he had such a bad week last week (would point to him having a good fanatsy week this week, not even taking into account the fact that United plays Blackburn at home).

Mike B said...

He's prestented the points as if they are a double week, like the one we have coming up for West Ham and Villa, although i'm not sure the relevance of posting Berbatovs double week scores, Man U don't have a double week.

Very interesting to see the Milner vs Young double game stats though, good work.

I'm trying to decide if i should drop Krancjar for Milner, Kranjcar is scoring nice points and taking most of the kicks for spurs, and Arsenal leak goals so i'm not sure if it's worth bringing in Milner.

I only have 3 DG picks this week, Dunne, Behrami and Diamanti.

I would only consider Milner, Young or Cole but have good discounts on Drogba, Fabs, Arshavin, Bily and Krancjar, who i think will outperform any Villa or Hammers player over the course of the season.

I'm just gonna take a hit a lose a few places this week i think, so i can keep my team in some sort of order.

It will be as follows.

Verm - Richards/O'Shea - Dunne
Behrami - Fabregas - Arshavin - Kranjcar - Bily
Drogba - Diamanti

I'm also forced to miss the barndoor untill mid November so i need to make sure i'm not stuck with a load of mediocher players just to get extra points for the one week.

asdf123 said...

causing me a lot of heartache this,

Giggs/Behrami or Arshavin/Sidwell

Already have Fabregas and Milner.

bean said...

@DrTeeth - I would only point out that BFAY's performance over two games is not at all "respectable" in my opinion. If you look at those double ups you put together, he only met or exceeded his value (13.50) 4 out of 8 of those doubles. This to me is pretty bad. I expect a player to meet his value on a single gameweek and hopefully double the value in two. So I would hope those doubles would be more like 26 or so... Though what I'm saying here doesn't take into account that BFAY is performing way below his potential and could be due a breakout week, especially over two weeks. He has always been up near the top of avg. points in previous years. The question for me is why is he underperforming? Is it just his own personal performance slump? or is he more effected by Villa playing differently with different players/formation similar to Lamps being effected in these ways?

bean said...

it's pretty amazing to me that Ashley Young hasn't broken 10 points yet this year. I feel like he rarely ever got less than 10 points per week last year...

Doctor Teeth said...

Agreed, Bean.

Although, as a counteragrument, I would say that given BFAY's historical two-week performance this season it is fairly likely that he will at least return his value (13.5) if you pick him which is the hallmark of YFF quality. So, if you take that as the "worst case scenario" based on averages and then consider the upside of him rediscovering his form of seasons past, I think he's a good selection for this week. I'd pick him over Gabby in a heartbeat.

Have not watched enough Villa games this season to understand the nuances of their schemes or uncover if the team is doing something different with its formations this year. But, given that they have the same manager and more or less the exact same line-up as last year, I don't think that that's the issue. Good question, though.

Ruki said...

From couple games of Villa between last season and this season, I notice that Villa was running left all the time last season, and with high crosses in for Heskey/Carew/Gabby, only on occasion they flipped over right wing and do the same thing. This year however, it looks like they try to play with England tactic, as Carew/Heskey being the wall to flick ball for fast Gabby instead, and a lot of low crosses have been distributed, which is kinda wasted in my opinion, given their target men. Losing Barry could be one of the reason, lack of the guy who dictatingtempo and distributing ball to the wings ( similiar to Pool) could hinder their high cross/header style in the previous year. But again I dont watch enough Villa games to make all of those above valid. Just a wild guess on my part.

Assistant Manager said...

Teeth - thanks for the analysis...I'm also seriously considering Young this week, despite his poor overall return. Call it a hunch, but he scored the winning penalty last night so it may have given him a bit of confidence, and he's a player that thrives on confidence.

Everyone asking me if Nani will play...I'm not Fergie so I don't know! But he was on the bench vs Liverpool and didn't play last night, so I'd say he has a pretty good chance of starting.


chris m said...

This is a repeat of a post that got lost in the blog 6 thread. I think there is some value repeating it. Sorry if I am being redundant.

As a group service I decided to do some math on the Villa/Hammers double issue-this based on my team which many of you might find relevant.

Right now, my front line is Drogba/Torres/Rooney the former 2 at deep discounts, Rooney at 17.65/17.49 I could flip him at at loss of only .16. The play would be Agbonlahor who is at 12.66. This frees up 4.83 pts. With this and what I have free I could swap Given, held at 7.62/7.62 for Friedel at 10.78. This would leave me enough to make only 1 midfield swap, Kightly at 4.11/4,83 for Petrov @ 7.53 with a loss of only .72

The Villa defenders are too pricey too flip.

So, it looks like this for average points.

Rooney 12,89
Given 7.33
Kightly 1.50
--total 21.52
Agbonlahor 7.50/15.00
Friedel 9.17/18.34
Petrov 4.56/9.12
--total 21.23/41.46

Are we following this so far guys. So for a net loss of only .88 pts, I could potentially double my point total based on average return for swapping 3 players.

Now comes the hard part. The match ups, Who is going to do what to whom. Aside from saying I like Rooney to light up a swine flu depleted Blackburn (Dunn who I have will probably be recovered and I have him at a huge discount so I'll probably keep him. Villa vs beat up Everton may be a clean sheet for Friedel. This a mind f*ck trying to figure out. I have no clue what I am going to do.

Hope this helps (actually I hope it confuses everyone more)

chris m
velvet underground allstars.

Bojan said...

"But he was on bench vs Liverpool and didn't play last night, so he has a pretty good chance of starting"

Great sentence, and very logic one... ,-)

bean said...

@DrTeeth - as a counter to your counter, you only have a 50/50 chance of him reaching that 13.50 : ) The main thing for me is just being able to evaluate him compared to other double gameweekers, it seems more the "worst case scenario" is him playing two games but performing similar to single gameweekers. Anyway, I think that's enough talk about him.. You either like him for this week or not, gotta stick with those gut feelings.

I think I'm sticking with Milner, who is cheaper, has been performing pretty well, taking set pieces, etc.. his doubles would be 11.0, 10, 10.5, 22.5, 39.5, 29, 10.5, 6.0 at a cost of (10.67) looks good in the middle there, but the 6.0 over two weeks most recently kind of scares me a little bit.

I'm also not that familar with the in's and out's of Villa lineup, but there have been some rather significant changes in personnel since last year.. Barry gone (which could effect how the midfield works) and almost an entire new backline with Dunne, Collins and Warnock.

Even though Villa have received much criticism, keep in mind they beat Liverpool and Chelsea already, and Liverpool was away.


Bojan said...

@ Chris M

Rooney alone could get 40 points this week... I think that your logic ins't working... If Rooney this week play against Chelsea at Stanford Bridge he would probaby score under 10, but he is playing at home against very poor Blackburn and if Man Utd has a penalty he would for sure score over 30...

Bojan said...

I've watched Wolves-Villa game and I didn't see what set pieces Milner is taking... I saw Warnock and A Young... I know he is taking penalties because A Young fail to score two penalties in the row...

Is he taking free kicks from left, right or both sides?

bean said...

one more thing to note, I know it was just Peterborough, but Blackburn did just win 5-2 in Carling yesterday. Doesn't mean much as they are traveling to Old Trafford, but if they can muster that win with a depleted squad, maybe it won't be such a goalfest against ManU? I would imagine Big Sam will have them play pretty negative football which could frustrate certain people who get frustrated easily (i'm looking at you Wayne)

Bojan said...

Black Cats suffer fresh knocks to McCartney, Zenden, Campbell and Mensah

Bojan said...

# N'Zogbia set for left-back role

about 9 hours ago from web

Anonymous said...

My team is currently:

Vermaelen O'Shea Sonko
Fabregas Boateng Bily Milner
RvP Drogba Diamanti

I know Bily&Sonko are risks, because they both aren't sure starters, but in any case I have 2 double-matchers to cover that. I still believe they both have a chance to play (I really don't know why Brown didn't use Sonko last time, he really can't afford to drop any defender now...). Sonko was the only way I could afford Milner.

Any suggestions?


Bojan said...

Ivanovic or Cech on discount, maybe???

Chelsea won last 6 games at Reebok stadion without conceding a single goal...


Bradley said...

Both Arsenal and Liverpool are going with radically different line-ups today. Good to see Nasri back, but picking an Arsenal midfielder becomes even trickier. With Kyrgiakos starting, the PhysioRoom needs to drop the "13 mths" out.

Bradley said...

Kompany, Zabaleta, and Santa Cruz starting for ManCity. Ireland's scored 3 minutes in. Why hasn't he been doing that in the PL (apart from the fact they don't normally play Scunthorpe)?

bean said...

@Bojan - re:Milner, I meant penalties. I guess I thought he was taking some of the set pieces as well, maybe at least getting on some of the corners?

I think PhysioRoom is worthless. They don't seem to update their list much at all, which is the whole point of having the list so we don't have to go and look up injuries. If I don't trust them to be accurate then I have to go look up each of the injuries anyway.

bean said...

@Bradley - re:Ireland, he hasn't started the last 4 premier league matches. The last time he started was the Manchester derby. Which kind of sucks, compared with last year.. I wonder too if the style of play changes quite a bit with Adebayor up front, and typically playing with 3 forwards.

It's pretty interesting to see the sub par performances of last years studs: Lampard, BFAY, Ireland, Arshavin, Fellaini, ManU defenders, Bosingwa, VDS, Cech, Reina...

Bradley said...

Well, yes, I was clear on the part where Ireland doesn't accumulate points while not playing. :) I picked him up at the beginning of the season but ended up dropping him pretty quickly (-0.5 from a midfielder will do that to you). In the matches I was able to watch back then, he just didn't seem that involved. At the time I wondered if Robinho being on the field had something to do with it.

Anonymous said...

Hey guys I was wondering if I can get some good thoughts from you here.

Ive got 3 slots I cant decide on. It stands between : Dunne,Behrami,Agbonlahor OR O'Shea,Sidwell, Rooney?

You can kind of count on that Rooney will score against blackburn but I really like the two gamers since they offcourse have two chances.

What you think?



mikl-em said...

In midfield I have Bily, Arshavin, Ballack (@9.34), O'Hara & Joe Cole. I figure Cole is going to do well as he's getting back up to speed.

Glad to hear you like Diamanti, am pretty hopeful that he is going to do well.

Wondering when we will know for sure about Jensen--I would go with him, but don't want a zero if he's out!

bean said...

I wonder if O'Shea isn't so much guaranteed a start with Fabio and Rafael da Silva healthy?

Anonymous said...

will billy available this week?
i`m not pretty sure i want to drop him.
any suggestion?


greginho said...

aquiliani got two shots off in 25 minutes. he might be worth a look at 5.76.

i only could watch the first half, but merida was really, really good, and so was the young defender gilbert. for liverpool babel looked great, his best game this year. he was the best pool player in the first half.

i saw the results and am pleased, but don't know how everyone else played.

Anonymous said... pool player in the first half is not saying much at all tho is it. They were poor to say the least... for my 2c I dont see why anyone is considering Young for this week other than hunch/lots of cash left over - he has been RUBBISH (KPB has a better average..for half the price) and is massively overpriced...seems to be the "hes due" mentality that is fantasy death (of course he'll now get a hattrick) even milner im not sold on, although he should return his cost. Villa dont even have good match ups, and midweek games are notoriously flat...

Macgill said...

Deciding between Lampard/MRichards or BFAY/Dunne. I guess it's going to come down to whether I think Young will perform or not. And clearly I'm not the only one dealing with this dilemma.

greginho said...

i agree with you on young and milner. i have to decide if i want to get rid of boateng, whom i have at +2.5. the prince plays at home to wigan and then at blackburn and stoke. i would like to keep him and see if his run can start again. i can get either milner or young. the other midfielders are cesc who is staying for a while, bily, who is at the end of the leash for me for missing games, and martin petrov, whom if pronounced healthy will be too exciting for me to not try in my midfield. city are at birmingham. this is not a fortress, at all.

i am still thinking hard about carlton cole and diamanti up front. i took kellz's advice to heart, but in a double week it might now be too bad to have 2 forwards as you have a chance of missing less points than if you go with one. if this were a single week, i wouldn't do it. let me explain myself. if i pick diamanti and he starts one and comes in late in the 2nd, like he did in the last game. i am running a slight risk. cole doesn't come out, at all, so you have a better chance of getting points with him. diamanti is a much better player, in real life and fantasy, but cole is a major part of the play too. he is not like bent who sits and poaches. i often will pick a mid and a forward for the same team to maximize assists, etc. what is wrong with having two forwards from the same team.

i do want to be the first to put this out there. everyone is saying how young is due. i thought all of the people who claimed the same for lampard, even at his price, where crazy. how wrong was i. i humbly bow to all of you who had faith. if the same people are saying the same about young, maybe we need to listen.

mikl-em said...

I think it's Joe Cole being back that frees Lampard to find his goals.

All season he's had 42 shots, 8 of those were in the last game, 3 of which were on target last game out of 8 total SOT for the year. So I think it's less that he's in a funk and more that he's been had to shift his position without Cole in.

Bradley said...

Tantalizing news for the few, the proud, the Tuncay faithful (as I recall, there are one or two of you left out there):,19528,11661_5657668,00.html

Of course, how good this news is depends on Pulis' definition of "getting close." This could all still be a practical joke on his part.

bean said...

thinkin' about trying the all single match player squad:


Maxer said...

so its confirmed villa and hammers will have doublegame.. thus i'm trying on a doublegamer player on each position to see how the double game week really affect us.. dunne in df, milner in mf and diamanti in fw.. with my other 3 season keeper verma, fab and drogba.. arsh in mf hopefully will cause havoc against spurs.. myhill and bily as my average player and sonko as filler.. i'm trying rodallega in fw too to see how it goes..

my current team.. hopefully no late injury..

verm, dunne, sonko
fab, arsh, bily, milner
drog, Hrod, diamanti


Anonymous said...

keep predicting guys..

i hope that all of you will not pick Beattie for this week as then only i can catch up with the leaders

Anonymous said...

will billy play?


Anonymous said...

Berbs/milner vs Rooney/O'hara??


Anonymous said...

@Colly - great question. Milner's 2-gamer would push me his way.

Scott said...

Coly - O'Hara and KPB may both be out for Po,pey's game this weekend.

kelvin said...

is MARTIN petrov gona start? or is he still injured?

Bradley said...

This news apparently affects only 0.24% of managers, but it's rather startling regardless. Marlon King has been sentenced to 18 months in prison, and Wigan has announced they've sacked him (after the mandatory two-week notice):,19528,11661_5659771,00.html

Anonymous said...

diamanti/drogba/carlton cole


aojk said...

AM, I've Stoke's GK Simonsen at 6.14units. Any idea if Sorensen's still injured?

Anonymous said...

any toughts about torres? He's usually good when it comes to Fulham..

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