Five Things from Gameweek 9

Five things that stuck out for us from Gameweek 9, including Alexis Sanchez, Di Maria, and West Ham United

Alexis Sanchez to be the Top Scoring Midfielder

We’re always asking ourselves who the very top scoring midfielder is going to be. During pre-season we thought it would probably be Alexis Sanchez or Eden Hazard. The Chilean took a little while to get going but now he has we think he has to be tipped to finish the season with the most points scored from midfielders. Whether he is worth the full whack of £10.4M compared to, say, Sterling or Ramsey for closer to £9M is an interesting question, but we’d say, on current form, he probably is. And of course, Arsenal versus Burnley for GW10 is a good time to buy with Sanchez’s price likely to rise another £0.1M this week after already rising by £0.1M on Sunday.

West Ham Are Very Good!

West Ham are doing great, sitting in 4th place in the Premier League behind Southampton. We looked at the Saints form last week and will accord the Hammers with the same conclusion; they are up their on merit. You’ll notice their position in the “adjusted xGD” table from that earlier post too. So, which players to look at you’re your fantasy team? Sakho has been prolific so far and at £5.7M is a great option. We’d have to rate Saido Berahino, available at a similar price, as the slightly better option though, under the assumption that he is now West Brom’s regular penalty taker. Additionally, Sakho’s shoulder injury looks to keep him out of the GW10’s trip to Stoke. Outside of the Senegalese striker though, options are a little more limited. Stewart Downing is the obviously player to look at but, for us, he's not showing that much potential to be worth a place in your team as a regular 3rd/4th midfielder over, say, Sigurdsson or Chadli.

Sigurdsson Keeps It Going

FPL veterans like to scrutinise the form of the most owned players in the game and Siggy has continued to receive sales from experienced managers who look to try and differentiate their teams from the popular template where they think a player's form might be about to drop. Sigurdsson, though, is yet to let up. Hs current yellow flag on FPL coupled with impending difficult fixtures for Swansea - EVE(A), ARS(H), MCI(A) – will influence many more to drop the Icelandic star. His withdrawal on Saturday looks to be precautionary though, and a look ahead through the fixtures reveals Swansea subsequent two games are at home against Palace and QPR. Siggy’s going nowhere as far as our own team is concerned. 

Dangerous to Drop Diego

Last week we saw the biggest fire-sale of the season so far as around 370,000 managers dropped Diego Costa from their teams, presumably tempted by a direct swap to Sergio Aguero (370,000 transfer in). We kept Costa in our team. We’ve had to double and triple check Chelsea’s next fixture but nothing’s changed; Chelsea still play QPR this weekend. The top scoring team in the Premier League, at home, versus the worst defensive team. The word before the United match this weekend was that Costa had come through training okay on Saturday. Obviously he didn’t quite make it, but we would expect him to be back up to fitness for GW10. Whilst Aguero will make a strong case for captaincy with City at home in the Mancheter Derby, you'd have to put Chelsea vs QPR up there as one of the biggest goal expectations for a team in any one match-up over the entire season.

Di Maria Maintains His Threat

A few weeks ago we took at look at Di Maria’s blistering start to his season and doubted that he could replicate the kind of form which made Yaya Toure such a fantasy success last season. Whilst rueing not catching the Argentine’s early bandwagon ourselves, with just an assist to his name since and an away day at City for United next up we think we were right not to jump on at a later stop. However, we also said that if he can maintain his early form through a more testing period for United then we’d want to re-evaluate his potential. Against WBA and Chelsea, Di Maria has maintained his early season threat and whatever happens at the Etihad he’ll still be ranked near the very top in our metrics. As mentioned, City up next is far from ideal but, after this United have a run of three home games in four including Palace, Hull and Stoke. 

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