The FPLTips Squad Selection - Gameweek 18
Posted by FFPundits
12:00pm Dec 21 2016
With Chelsea’s Diego Costa suspended for one game, the FPLTips team turn to Manchester United’s star-man for cover…
The big names continue to let the FPLTips team down as Gameweek 17 turned out to be another nightmare week, scoring just 41 points whilst failing to qualify for the FPL Cup.
Judging by the reaction to Gameweek 17 on Twitter and Facebook, it didn’t look to be a friendly and enjoyable week for most, so, let’s brush it aside, dust ourselves off and look ahead to the exciting Christmas fixture schedule which looks certain to shower us with FPL goodies.
As always, we invite you to read the article and then check out the YouTube video below for all the stats and glossy graphics which help support this weeks four picks – and be sure to subscribe for even more Fantasy Premier League tips.
Gameweek 17 Score – 41 Points
It was another poor week generally, but Jordan Pickford and Marcos Alonso certainly played their parts. The Sunderland goalkeeper kept a clean sheet against Watford, while making 4 saves and picking up 1 bonus point.
Marcos Alonso kept his 9th clean sheet of the season, as Chelsea secured a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace. The defender also hit the crossbar from a free kick, so was unfortunate not to produce even more points.
Middlesbrough kept a clean sheet against Swansea, but George Friend wasn’t risked from the start, after recently recovering from injury.
In midfield, for the second week running, only Alexis Sanchez could provide a return. He set up Theo Walcott’s goal against Man City. Eden Hazard put in a good overall performance against Crystal Palace, but didn’t provide much from an FPL perspective, failing to register a single attempt on goal.
However, he did win the free kick that Alonso struck against the crossbar, so came close to an assist there. Christian Eriksen came into the team this week in the end, as a late replacement for Firmino.
The Spurs midfielder was key for his team once again, taking 7 attempts on goal and producing 4 attempted assists, but wasn’t able to return any FPL points on this occasion.
It was the same story for Gylfi Sigurdsson; he managed 5 shots and 2 attempted assists, but failed to break through the solid Middlesbrough defence.
The poor returns continued upfront, as Harry Kane once again failed to score. The Spurs striker took 5 attempts on goal but only found the target with 1 of them.
Andy Carroll was fairly anonymous, as West Ham struggled to take the 3 points against Hull. Finally, Diego Costa proved to be as consistent as ever, as he scored his 13th goal of the season. However, he received his 5th yellow card of the season and will now serve a suspension during Gameweek 18.
Potential GW18 Transfers
Following his suspension, Diego Costa will be replaced by the in-form Zlatan Ibrahimovic for Gameweek 18. It was a choice between selling the Chelsea forward or Harry Kane, and despite the poor form of the Spurs man, I’m prepared to give him another chance to impress.
It will be a risk to go without Costa for Chelsea’s home fixture against Stoke, but after that, they’ll travel to Spurs and Leicester, so the current plan is to hang on until Gameweek 22, to bring Costa back in time for the home fixture against Hull.
Given the way Chelsea have been grinding out 1-0 results recently, I think there’s a good chance of Kane scoring more points in his next 4 games, than Costa will in his next 3.
Jordan Pickford will take on Manchester United this weekend, in a match-up that doesn’t look great on paper for the Sunderland goalkeeper but hopefully, he can pull off plenty of saves to bump up his score.
George Friend is a slight concern, after the manager decided not to put him straight back into the starting lineup last weekend; hopefully he’ll return from the away trip to Burnley.
For the final position in the back 3, it’s between Cedric (TOT), Amat (WHU) and McAuley (ars). None of them have particularly good fixtures, and it’s likely that they’ll all concede but Saints defence can be fairly strong at home, so Cedric gets the nod.
The rest of the team looks fairly solid, although double Spurs attack is a concern. They’ve not been in the best of form and Saints is never an easy place to go. Christian Eriksen has the form though, and Harry Kane was handed a lifeline by Costa’s suspension, so hopefully he doesn’t let us down.
For captaincy this week, there are 3 standout contenders for me, in Eden Hazard (BOU), Alexis Sanchez (WBA) and Zlatan Ibrahimovic (SUN).
Hazard has the fixture but not so much of the form and is now an injury. Sanchez has the form, but West Brom may well try and park the bus. So at the moment, the armband is on Ibrahimovic, for his home fixture against Sunderland.
The Manchester United forward has managed 5 goals and 1 assist in his last 5 games, so he certainly has the form and the fixture to do the damage this week.
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