Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Champions League & Stuff

A nice distraction from the disaster that is Week 29 & it should be an absolutely cracking midweek of football.

I think Barca will win tonight but my prediction is 2-1 in 90 minutes, meaning extra time & possibly penalties to decide things. I hope I'm right so we experience some pure football theatre & I definitely think Arsenal have a chance of sneaking through. It'll be interesting to see whether Van Persie makes an appearance just 8 days after tearing a knee ligament - it's a huge risk if he does.

I'm slightly worried about Tottenham v Milan tomorrow because everyone seems to be writing the Italians off before a ball is kicked. If there's one team who never make it easy for themselves it's Spurs, and I'm expecting a topsy-turvy clash, but hopefully the return of Bale & Van Der Vaart will ensure we have enough to make through to the Champions League quarter finals.

In addition to these two ties we have the conclusion to the fantasy week as Everton & Birmingham face-off at Goodison Park. Things aren't going too well as I sit on measly 61 points, but with 9 players to go tomorrow there's still hope of breaking three figures. Unfortunately the real damage has already been done by Frank Lampard - who I didn't have - top scoring with a monster 34 points last night.

There won't be a Player Picks post this week as the next deadline isn't for another 11 days, but that will give me time to calculate The Blog Cup results from Week 28 - expect them on Thursday morning.

Despite the gap I've done some barndoor work, and it looks like this:

Howard, Kolarov, Walker, Coleman, Hitzlsperger, Giggs, Nasri, Van Der Vaart, Bent, Defoe, Suarez

I actually really like it as an early team but I'm sure there'll be plenty of tinkering over the next week or so.

How's Week 29 going for you? Who have you got left? Predictions for this week's matches?



Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Good stuff. The barndoor is good. Giggs might be good with Nani probably out for a month. Nasri will be good but must look out for this week FA cup.

Doctor Teeth said...

Fortunately, fat frank made it into my starting 11, propelling my week 29 take to 96.5 points with 8 DGers to go...very pleased, especially since (like many of you) I had to suffer through two zeroes and partial benchings for coleman and kolarov.

Currently sitting on the following team for week 30:

kolarov walker coleman
lampard nasri vdv hitz
surez bent defoe

Could not agree with you more, AM...I just can't see myself whistling through the second half tomorrow comfortably! Have you scored tickets to the game??


gman26 said...

Very Similar Doctor Teeth


I have 10 left in the bank. Thinking of converting Coleman to VDV. Let's see how Rafael gets through the next 10 days or so. Although TOT will be fashionable for the WHU games, I wouldn't touch their defense. WHU have 28 away goals and have been scoring a bunch recently. 5 CS for TOT all season in EPL.

It's great how Luiz's value hasn't shot up yet. I had him a couple of weeks ago for his goal. Dropped him and now picked him back up at 6.50. Approximately how much I paid for him before.

lipantata said...

67.5 with 9 player to go....
my barndoor player..
kolarov, coleman, walker
nasri, t.hitz, c.adam, j.barton
suarez, bendtner, bent.

any comment...

Yeong Chuan said...

where is j.barton ? he do not play for this 2 games, i have him at 5.49, should I drop him ?

Linesman said...

I've given up on this week...58.5 with only 7 to go

Current team

Kolarov Bale Walker Sagna
Hitz Young Nasri Silva
Bent Suarez

Thinking about dropping Bale for VdV and get Adam for Sagna, but with two weeks to decide I'm in no rush to make any changes. Keeping A Young cost me again, but with the upcoming games for Villa I can't get myself to drop him.

He got injured in the warm up for the Bolton game. He should be back for Stoke so keep him.

Steev said...

So, Everton vs Brum. I assume what everyone wants is a high point scoring game with clean sheets all round. So about 30 SOTs in a 0-0 will do the trick. Let's have Zigic and Larsson on today as well please and Foster to make up for that -6. The swine.

A question for AM (or any Spurs fans): what do you make of Defoe this season- do you think his brace at the weekend will propell him back into goal scoring form? I couldn't believe they were his first two prem goals of the season. A couple of peaches they were too. If he gets anywhere close to his form last season he'll be a bargain at 8.37. Do you think the imminent return of Bale and VdV will benefit or hinder his points potential?

@ Yeong Chuan. I'm not sure exactly what's wrong with Barton but with nearly 2 weeks before the next game, I would definitely keep a hold of him for now at least until we recieve any solid news. My best guess is that he will be available.

Keep up the good work

Anonymous said...

@ Steev, I think getting Defoe is pure point chasing at this point, since he has not scored until this week. I would look elsewhere.


Anonymous said...

55 with 4 dg's to go, not really looking forward to the next match. Any news on Nani?

Currently team
Kola Walker Luiz Bale
Nani VdV Hoillet Hitz
Bent Chicharito

8.24 left. I'll bring in VanPersie or A.Young or both of them later.


Assistant Manager said...

Bringing in Defoe wasn't points chasing for me - he has an unbelievable record or scoring against his old clubs, especially West Ham. I was seriously considering him even before his 2 goals vs Wolves but I do now expect him to go on a bit of a scoring run.

Kellz said...

Team atm:

Smalling, Walker, Kolarov
Lampard, VDV, MGP, Ethrington
Bent, Defoe, Suarez

1.66mil left in bank.

Taking a risk with MGP and Ethrington, but seeing as both are on SP duties, both will take PK's (Dunn should still be out) and both are playing at home to winnable opponents, seems like the risk is acceptable.

Lots could change though as games won't happen until the weekend after next.

Anonymous said...

Dumbest Red Card in the world on RVP
Refs handing barca the game

Superfly Jim said...

Almunia now a cheap option for GK spot against a goalshy West Brom team.

FLScott said...

Hmmm... I gotta say I understand Bent, Suarez, Defoe, and the hamburglar.... but everyone else.. umm no.

Here's my current (comment away!):


S. Carr
P. Jagielka
P. Evra
G. Clichy

T. Hitzlsperger
L. Osman
D. Silva
D. Duff

Luis Suárez
J. Hernández

Cheers ALL!

chrism said...

OK WTF!!! RVP starting the CL game when he was suppose to be out 3 or 4 weeks. Leaving all of us who had him at 9 and sold him seeing red, as he did, in one of the worst calls I have seen this year. He shot the ball less than 60 seconds after the whistle, with 90,000 screaming fans, and he gets sent off. Granted Barca outplayed the gunners but RVP got screwed.

Anonymous said...

Not RVP's fault. He had jack shit going for him all game, so why not take the only shot on goal that you're gonna get ?

Red card made no difference in the end. At the most, the most Arsenal missed of RVP was his presence in defending. If anything they improved with him gone, managing that oh so significant shot on goal with bendtner.

greginho said...

i will not make any excuses as i have been all night, but arsenal was outplayed for 60 minutes, by barcelona in the first game and came back to take the midfield when barca tired, this game they were never given the chance. many times teams are dominated and still win. netherlands and brasil in the last world cup, brasil could have been 3-0 up in the first 60 minutes and holland get 2 goals to win it.
the reason arsenal lost is because of wenger. in the group stages, arsenal had set a record for goals scored in the 1st 3 games, with chamakh dominating everyone. wenger puts in for 2 games bendtner and denilson and arsenal lost, not only the games but also the momentum, eventually finishing second and playing barca this round. also cesc's shocking backheel to iniesta in front of his own box with a 0-0 game and the half closing in.

i am now rooting for spurs to be the only london and england team in the semis and finals.

Anonymous said...

No one pick Rooney vs Bolton (with Nani out) and only Linesman pick Villa's MF so far??...
Am I the only one who is thinking about getting Rooney, Meireles and Downing?


greginho said...

i may drop nasri for rooney and nani is gone for downing.

Anonymous said...

and abidal (i think) choking van persie's neck didn't deserve at least a yellow.. lol

Anonymous said...

Nani might just miss one EPL game (vs Bolton) with MU still in contention in FA Cup and Champions League ties. Even the game against Bolton might be postponed if MU draw with Arsenal in the FA Cup.


donut said...

Valencia is back full training - lets see how the cup goes (imagine he'll come off the bench) but he could be a sneaky pick to come straight back into the team with Nani out...and at 6.77...

Bale Kolarov Smalling
Arteta Osman Beau Nasri
Saha Bent Defoe

Last minute change from Howard to Foster this week. Sticking with a few Eve/Brum discounts for now to see how they get on tonight but all could go...
Bale at full price but I don't care - he almost scored 2 in 15 mins and if he comes through the CL game I'm having him...

Anonymous said...

guys any news on nani?????

Anonymous said...

Only Arsenal player that showed up in Nou camp was Jack Wilshere, the youngest and most inexperienced of them all. I stopped supporting Arsenal in 98 and i sleep well now, Van Persie heard the whistle very well, he can pretend all he wants but he screwed Arsenal up just like he did Holland @ the world cup- a bloody passenger for all the time he was on. Barcelona are still the biggest cheats though.

Anonymous said...

Early doors lifted the words right out of my mouth, couldn't have said it better


Anonymous said...

rvp pushes danny alves in the face and gets first yellow for a schoolboy, playground reaction. he deserved to go off-- tough.

Barca played on a sublime level without puyol and pique, which likely caused the own goal.
arsenal did squat and should have played chamahk, not rvp and not fab from beginning, who was hurt. fabs backheel was boyish.

arsenal trying to win all four, but now they will win none. now they get to play west brom away.. more their style than barca. first barca arsenal result was a fluke.

Anonymous said...

barca 19 shots on goal, arsenal 0 sog, rvp on for 56 minutes-- facts don't lie. forget the semi- harsh redcard. arsenal very weak, barca played on a different level. kos escaped a red card and pen for first tackle.

wengerjerk blames refs, not his own forced picks of semi injured players. well deserved loss.

greginho said...

i think abidal deserved a straight red for grabbing van persie by the throat and i certaintly don't think barcelona win the tie, with 10 men.

Anonymous said...


anon 11:52, anon 12:09


Ken said...

I must be learning as my team appears to mirror many others on several positions which can be good, but not so much IF you are trying to make moves. I also(try) and finalize my team before checking what others are doing...


Had both Kuyt & Albrighton on the door but dropped both for Nasri/Hitzlsperger...not sure of that move.
My defense is of concern but limited funds are the main reason.
I like Friedel this week especially at his current price, should see plenty of shots (hoping they all stay out) and expect to see him on many managers teams.
Banking on both Adam/VDV are ready to play.
Like my strikers, but Bent has yet to perform when he is on my team, so beware.

Good luck all.....

Assistant Manager said...

Ken - I have picked Darren Bent on numerous occasions over the past 5 seasons and he has NEVER performed for me. Still doesn't stop me though :)

Ken said...

A question from the rookie...

On these "double game" features where there is a very limited offering of games, this time being two, and one of those "choices" the two team play each other..

Is it NOT counterproductive to have a (mix) of both offensive & defensive players from a "double game" feature where those teams play each other?

I would think EITHER a good mix from a (single) team, or a choice of EITHER ALL defensive/offensive players
from your selected team would be correct.

Having 8 players going today with 4 Everton defenders, including goal, lining up against 4 Birmingham attackers sort of cancel each out?

Maybe cancel is a poor choice of words but would it not "limit" your expectations of points?

Are there options here I am missing?

Assistant Manager said...

It's a valid question Ken, but more often than not it works loading up on both teams. Players still pick up points, even if they are on the losing team, especially defenders who block a lot of shots (see Roger Johnson) and players who take set pieces will always get chances to sling a few crosses in/win a few corners.

Ken said...

Thanks Nik....

This is a very interesting game...

Assistant Manager said...

It took me years to get it - I never used to like loading up on double gamers in weeks like this at the start but then I realised the damage that can be done if you don't.

We've seen double weeks where you could pick up 160-180 points with DGers from just two teams, while people who went single gamers can be down at 60-80 points; it can put a huge dent in your season.

The likeliness of the damage being the same the other way round (i.e. a person with single gamers outscoring dgers by 100 points) is slim to none, so as well as giving yourself two chances it's also a tactical thing

Ken said...

Well put...I do see the logic of picking single gamers (done correctly) doing better then a managers double game line up, but now understand that this is more often rare, with the advantage being "minimal"......even done correctly.

Where as the "reverse" done poorly will leave you more often with a minimal loss and done correctly could make it a week worth bragging about!!

Hopefully, a lesson learned but I do love a risk now & then!!

Thanks again

Anonymous said...

anon @ 9.55 am.

pmsl. You can't just stop supporting a team, you were clearly never a real fan.


Martin said...

Antonio Valencia, Kieran Richardson, anyone?

Dave said...

Bentley and Arteta both off injured inside 10 minutes! At least that brings Coleman off the bench.

Anonymous said...

Beausejour? Heitinga? Jordan Mutch?

How did we not all see that happening?

greginho said...

congrats spurs for beating the team leading the serie a. the impressive part is not beating the side because milan's midfield and defense are shaky, but holding the best forward lineup europe to zero goals.

Anonymous said...

Hmm Nasri or C.Adam for Week 30? Both have the same price.

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