Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Fantasy Football - November 2013/14

The end of October marks the end of the first Quarter of the season. Q1 had a clear winner in Andrew and a clear loser in James, with over one-hundred points between them. The middle of the table, however, is far closer run. I finished 2nd for Q1.

The League Table at the end of Q1

The transfer news going into GW10 was fairly quiet. I sold my two Spurs defenders (Vertonghen & Naughton) for two Chelsea defenders (Ivanovic & Terry) ahead of their strong fixtures. Paul sold Soldado for Benteke, while Andrew sold Moses & Grandin for Morrison & Lallana. Everyone else shuffled their bench players or saved transfers for next week.

GW10 was won be me. I captained RVP, and he scored, assisted and won 3bpts. I played five defenders, and they picked up two clean sheets - Ivanovic & Terry losing 2-0 away to Newcastle. Andrew had Rooney as captain, as did James, and Wayne did exactly as well as RVP. Every other striker failed to win points. (No-one in our league has Soldado anymore, not that he would have helped.)

In preparation for the next week, both Andrew and I buy Aaron Ramsey. He's been the breakout player of the season so far. James drops Michu for Nasri and Lukaku for Sturridge, and Paul drops Vidic for Coleman. And then, at the last minute, David Silva picks up an injry that will keep him out for the month! Ross, who'd only just brought him in, is forced to sell him for Nasri, and Paul to sell him for Yaya Toure; they both take a -4pts hit for their bad luck.

GW11 is full of suprise results. Chelsea rescue a draw at home to West Brom, Newcastle beat Spurs 1-0 at WHL, and Man City lose to Sunderland. This is a curveball which throws off quite a few teams - and that includes my own. I only made 32pts for the week, Coleman and RVP the only players to score any meaningful points. Doubling up on Chelsea defenders has gone horribly so far. Between two of them they've only earned 3pts over two weeks! Luckily for me, Jon does even worse. He only made 21pts and dropped down to fifth in the table.

The real deciding player is Luis Suarez, who runs the show as Liverpool beat Fulham 4-0. The only real differnce between teams this week comes from their Sturridge/Suarez choce. He scores twice, gets an assist, and earns 3bpts for a total 16pts. (The only other striker from our teams to score was RVP; it was a poor week.) Sturridge played only 75mins and earns only 2pts. Teams who captained Sturridge lose out - James, Jon, and myself. Andrew, Paul, and Ross, however, captained Suarez, gaining 32pts. This dramatically shakes up the table, and it's all down to one player and one decisive captain choice. Suarez has made 64pts in the last six weeks, and Sturridge only 40pts.

I immediately transfer out Sturridge for Suarez.

There's a long international break between GW11 and GW12. There are some minor transfers, but nothing major. Paul and Mike both bring in Cabaye, while Ross make room for John Terry. In injury news, RVP is again suffering from those same groin and toe injuries, Benteke still isn't fully fit, and Sturridge has a slight injury.

GW12 is won by Andrew with 73pts, who stretches his lead at the top of the table. He captained Rooney for 22pts. Jon came second for the week with 71 thanks to two Lampard goals, and I was third with 65. My two Chelsea defenders provide clean sheets, while Suarez, Mirallas and Giroud are all in the points. Ramsey has a second unspectacular week, after I've brought him in.

Not everything went according to plan in GW12. Through some terrible brain-fart, I put Luke Shaw in my starting eleven and left Mertesacker on the bench. Arsenal went on to beat Saints 2-0, and Shaw notched 1 solitary point. Meanwhile Mertesacker picked up 11 points for his clean sheet, assist, and bonus, of which I recieved none. I would have won the week if my brain had been working! Stupid mistakes cost points, and I lost out.

Injury news, as Sturridge does his ankle on Friday afternoon before GW13. In response James and Ross both transfer him out, at a -4pts cost, for Aguero and Rooney respectively, but Jon still has him. Ross and James also both feel done with Ozil, James bringing in Ramsey and Ross gets Walcott. James also made a third transfer, Nasri out for Mirallas. Meanwhile, Andrew brings in Ivanovic for Huth.

GW13 starts, and Suarez is chosen as captain by all who have him. (Only James and Jon are without Suarez now.) Suarez plays 90mins but does nothing else, to the disappointment of all, but this doesn't affect the table much at all. Paul wins the week with 74 points, Jon is last with 45. Chelsea again failed to keep a clean sheet. Ramsey has another great week, scoring twice and earning 3bpts; Ross & Jon are the only two not on the bandwagon, and they lose out despite having other Arsenal midfielders (Walcott & Ozil respectively).

The Overall Table, as it stands at the end of November.

In the head-to-head at the top of the table, Andrew beat me by 7pts. He's outscored me 4 out of the last 5 weeks, and has 42pts more than me for November. The key difference between our teams now is that while I have RVP, he has Wayne Rooney. With small niggling injuries, RVP has missed the last two weeks. Rooney has totalled 24pts in those two games, and has earned double-figures 4 times from the last 5 weeks.

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