The usual suspects let the side down

With the average FPL manager's points this week being a ridiculously low 24, the usual suspects have disappointed us. Of course, the way to do well in the FL is to have a good start because sooner or later everyone's team morphs into one with only the choice of captain or some smart use of the chips making any real difference and so this week, most of our favourites that we all rely on have let us down - badly. And some of the most popular choices as captain like KDB, Sanchez, Pelle and Mahrez have come in with just 2 or 3 points. Before you get the hump and start transferring some of them out, please remember that there are two International friendlies next week so hold fire in case of injuries.

In our league Jay Egersdorff has just about held on to the top spot once again but that’s two weeks on the bounce with a disappointing score, this time with a 43. Interestingly enough, Jay played his All Out Attack (AOA) chip this week – not that it did him much good mind you. His additional midfielder was Payet who only got one point.

AOA means that you can change your formation for one GameWeek only, into 2-5-3, i.e. have only two defenders and replace them with your bench midfielders or attackers.

The received wisdom from the fantasy league geeks is that this chip is the least valuable of the lot. Nobody seems to know what they might do with it. It probably isn’t worth wasting a Double GameWeek on it when the returns for Triple Captain and Bench Boost for those weeks seem so much better. For most of us, the likelihood of us having a decent midfielder languishing on the bench who is could gain more points than our third best defender is remote.

We think the only time you would use it is if three of your defenders are facing the likes of City, Arsenal and Leicester away in the same GameWeek. Please also bear in mind that you can’t play two chips or a chip and a wildcard at once.

Talking of chips, we think that many managers are wasting their TC and BB chips by playing them too early. It’s surely better to wait until March when the double gameweeks start coming and getting double bubble on them?

Before we go, a quick shout out for David Head, the publisher of the Recruitment International magazine. David has been playing this game for 4 seasons now and we don’t think he’s ever managed to get on Page 1 before. Well this week he has. Well done David. Must be that Neil Warnock effect.

The Top 10 are as follows:

Jay Egersdorff

Luis Cruz, ConSol Partners

Adam Grainger

Bartley Hilliam

Alan Furley

Gary Smith

Natasha Wilcox, FuturaRec2Rec

Jon Pheasant

Wes Farrington, KPI Recruiting

Jonathan @ PDA Search and Selection

Manager of the Week

Daniel Griggs

Arsenal fan Daniel has just squeezed onto page 1 this week in 50th place with his superb score of 67 points. He scored 22 points from his attack alone made up of Lukaku, Vardy and Martial, and whereas his midfield disappointed, he scored 16 by having Ozil as his captain. Throw in Kompany and Smalling and that’s a great team for a week like this.

A superb week Daniel.

Page 2 Pacesetter

With 74 points in 81st place, we find Paul Anderson. Paul has managed one of the best scores of the week in the whole league without even playing a chip. His midfield let him down except the ever-improving Coutinho, however his defence was solid and he had Harry as his captain. Paul has been a bit light on his transfers with only 8 in 12 and £6m in the bank. If we were you Paul, we’d get spending it and getting rid of the likes of Schwarzer.

Next stop Page One Paul. Get that wildcard played before it runs out.

The Best of the Rest

With 75 points in 159th place we find Comvergent’s Andrew Brown. Andrew rather wisely went for a 5-man midfield this week and dropped 2 point Ighalo to the bench. His midfield didn’t do bad considering all this week’s misfires but his defence was outstanding with Kompany, Smalling, Kolarov and Butland all keeping clean sheets.

What a week Andrew. At this rate Cameron will be getting a little worried! 

Taxi for...........

Matt Targett......

Many of us saw the Southampton defender as a really cheap way into their superb defence and at £4m he was something of a bargain. However, he’s not if he’s not playing and after starting the first 5 games he’s done diddlysquat since. Some managers might think there’s value in keeping a £4.0m man on the bench but there are now cheaper alternatives that are playing every week such as Leicester’s Danny Simpson or Stoke’s Philipp Wollscheid. 

Get him binned!

One to watch..........

Nicolas Otamendi......

It hasn’t been easy for City’s Nicolas Otamendi to transfer his La Liga form to the Premier League since his switch from Valencia in the summer however, there have been clear signs in City’s recent matches that he is looking more comfortable in defence and is also a goal threat from set pieces.

He’s not only City’s go-to partner for Kompany having played in the last 7 league games, but he’s also City’s most in-form PFL player having averaged 9 points per game over the last 3. He got a goal against Norwich a couple of weeks ago and he has had 5 attempts on target in the last 3 games including the CL match against Seville. This shouldn’t come as any surprise to those aficionados of Spanish football as last season he was La Liga’s highest scoring defender.

It’s been rare since City’s takeover in 2008 that they have had two centre-halves playing consistently well together, but alongside Vincent Kompany, who is fully fit again after his recent calf trouble, City have a partnership that looks simply rock solid with Kompany only having conceded a single goal all season – and that was as a result of Joe Hart dropping the ball.

And best of all, the Argentina Blue only has a 1% ownership.

No Brainer!

Team names please

The reason we ask for your agency name as part of your team name is because it’s the only way we can ensure that we are paying the prizes out to the correct managers and that those managers are genuinely in the recruitment industry.

With the latest hacking of our league from semi-professional FL-ers, its even more important. Please help us manage the league better by doing this.

However, those of you who aren’t putting in your team names are missing out on some great publicity for your agency and, as recruiters tend to be competitive creatures, isn’t it better to beat you rivals in business AND in the fantasy league?

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“When I first approached Megan about beginning a search for a move into another job she quickly understood exactly what I was looking for and was able to identify suitable jobs. Ahead of my interview Megan offered fantastic advice and went into great detail about the role and specifically the company, which meant I was fully prepared. At offer stage once again Megan was on hand with great advice and ensured the process went through without any issues. I'd certainly recommend anyone who is looking for a new role to get in touch!”

Futura candidate