FPL Community Questions: Gameweek 10

I’ve teamed up with FPL Partridge, as he’s known on Twitter, to answer the community’s hottest FPL questions with regard to the upcoming Gameweek 10

Welcome back to our ‘Community Questions’ series where I (Simon), usually have my say on the communities conundrums in an attempt to provide a different perspective, or perhaps some statistical information or insight some of you may not have thought about.

Each week, I’m going to set up a thread and ask the community what questions they have and I’ll pick the interesting ones, or the questions that apply to a wider majority, to feature on this article where myself and a guest/guests from the FPL Twitter community will join me in providing you with our own answers.

This week, I’m joined by FPL Partridge!

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Well, where to begin? It was during my time at North Norfolk Digital that I took up the role as manager of FPL Partridge FC. The club was a mess, having finished around the 600k mark in the previous season. I came in and knew I had to assert my authority immediately. Within days, all sugar was banned from the team cafeteria and plate sizes were reduced from 12 inches, to 8. There was resistance and conflict. At one point I had Peter Crouch in a headlock, which he has conveniently failed to mention in his recent autobiography. The players eventually bought into my ideas and we earned a finish of around 4600. Jumping ahead to this season and we are sat around 116k, following two Harry Kane shaped red arrows. Although I am confident we will bounce back as we aim for a top 10k finish.

If you want to follow FPL Partridge FC’s progress, as well as the brilliant humorous tweets from their gaffer, you can do so on Twitter here >> https://twitter.com/FPL_Partridge

Will Yarmolenko’s injury negatively impact Arnautovics’ output?

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Simon (FPL Connect): 

In the last 5 games, Yarmolenko has only created 3 chances. Felipe Anderson has created 13 chances and even Snodgrass, who’s only played 139 minutes (215 minutes less than Yarmolenko), has created more chances than Yarmolenko with 5.

So as you can see from the above, it’s abundantly clear where the chance creation is coming from –  it’s not Yarmolenko. He’s more of an inside forward than a winger, whereas Felipe Anderson is the winger/advanced playmaker from the left. If we see an injury to Anderson however, then I might be a little more concerned with Anautovics’ output, but right now, I don’t expect the injury to Yarmolenko will have any negative effect on Arnautovics’ FPL returns.

FPL Partridge: 

This is something I’ve been wondering myself. Their fixture run is glorious and Arnautovic looks to be a constant threat. Yarmolenko shouldn’t have a direct effect on chances created (3 in his last 4 games) so that tells me things shouldn’t change too much.

It does depend who comes in to replace him and I’d be tempted to give it a week or two to see for sure. Although if you need to move now, my suspicion is that it won’t negatively affect things too much.

Will Kane be re-united with FPL Partridge FC? Trent to Robbo?

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Simon (FPL Connect): 

You clearly haven’t been listening to enough DJ Khaled if you’re even having to think about that move! Baby, it’s a no-brainer, yeah-ee-yeah yeah, yeah-ee-yeah yeah, wow-ooh-wow oh, ooh-oo-ohh oh.

FPL Partridge: 

I can confirm that I have received calls from Harry. You may have seen that he was forcibly removed from the FPL Partridge FC training ground this week, after he attempted to participate in training. Unfortunately there is no way back for Harry.

We spent 4 points to bring him in and gave him the captaincy for two games. The whole move gave us 2 points. Our Head Scout, Julie Anderton has been made redundant and Harry Kane, was informed that he will soon be leaving the club.

Trippier and Kane out with Spurs’ fixtures toughening up? Has Richarlison moving OOP had a diminishing effect on his FPL returns? Bring Salah in?

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Simon (FPL Connect): 

I think if you have other pressing concerns, Trippier is good enough to hold onto but I’m always extremely wary of rotation when it comes to him. I took him out myself last week, but it was because I felt Robertson was the better option of the two and I had no other pressing concerns. My feeling on Kane was to wait until GW15. I can’t see much for him in the next 5 so yeah, I’d be looking to someone else for that time.

I think it has. In the last two games where he’s moved up front, he’s only had 2 goal attempts. I’m not sure he’s suited to the striker role, as he likes to get the ball and run at defenders, rather than playing with his back to goal. Then again, it can take time to adjust to a new position and let’s not forget, in those 2 attempts, he did score. Silva trusts him to make the transition, so I think we should give him the time to adapt. 1 in 2 isn’t a bad return.

I don’t believe that one goal can be classed as ‘form’. He took it well, but it’s nothing different to what he’s been offering so far, and what he’s been offering so far is 100% not worth his price. His reaction to his goal (barely celebrated) tells me where his head is at right now (not a good place) and I think he’s currently putting too much pressure on himself. Am I scared of this upcoming game? Yes. Have I considered bringing him in? Yes. Will I bring him in? No, as it would be for a hit and I simply can’t see him exploding in his current form. Feels like a similar scenario to the Kane one and like then, I’m gonna stick with my gut feeling on this and get behind my sofa again.

FPL Partridge: 

Harry Kane is like Cristiano Ronaldo’s £1.8m diamond encrusted watch. It might look impressive on your wrist, but a classic Casio will do the same job. (Available at Argos priced £9.99). Kieran Trippier has two potential clean sheets after the City game. I wouldn’t say he’s a top priority to sell, unless he’s rested, but if you’re looking to move him, Benjamin Mendy is a convenient price point.

As soon as rumours broke about Richarlison playing as a striker, I had my doubts about how effective he would be. Some players can make the switch, but Richarlison’s strength is coming in from the wide position and taking a shot across goal. My gut tells me he won’t be as effective up front but I’d probably hold him until after the Brighton game to give him a proper chance to adapt or move back out wide.

Salah is a tricky one. I’ve held onto him all season because I was convinced he’d hit form. His underlying stats and indeed, his output, haven’t been too different from last season, so I banked on the goals returning. Two out of the next three weeks he will be highly Captained. My advice would be to weigh up the cost of bringing him in and check your alternative, ie who would you captain in the weeks when people captain Salah. That should tell you if you are going to be better off getting him in, or going without. Let’s just say, I’m very happy to own him currently.

Is Alonso justifying his price? Time to move on? 

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Simon (FPL Connect): 

I’d say no to this. It’s not news that his attacking numbers have diminished quite a bit since the start, but it would have been naive to expect those ridiculous numbers to continue. If Sarri had reigned him in and he wasn’t picking up those attacking positions still, then I might be considering it, but he hasn’t.

Alonso is still picking up extremely dangerous positions, like he did against Man Utd where a little clipped ball over the top found him in all manner of space in behind the defence inside the box and had his touch been better, I doubt this question would be being asked. In addition, he also has fantastic fixtures coming up and is nailed on.

FPL Partridge: 

I’m not sure I’d call it stubborn. I think maybe most people have bigger priorities, he’s by no means a bad pick. His position on the pitch is still very advanced, which is a good sign, although his shots and penalty area touches have dropped in recent games. If he’s still getting forward though, I envisage the attacking returns will follow. Not to mention he still has free kick potential and Chelsea’s fixtures look good for clean sheets. He’s one to keep an eye on. If you wanted to save money, Rüdiger looks a good switch with goal threat from set pieces.

Man City mids worth the rotation risk? 

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Simon (FPL Connect): 

I think this depends on the type of player you are. If you’re typically impatient, then the short or even medium term might frustrate you with City assets as we know there will be rotation and limited minutes. If, however, you are a patient person and look long-term with your transfers, then I think yes, they are worth the risk.

If you’re an impatient player, then look to get them in blocks of 5/6 games, and pick a fixture run where the potential for them to score 4/5/6 goals in a game is high. For example, I picked D.Silva for the block of games where they played Fulham (H), Cardiff (A), Brighton (H), Liverpool (A) and Burnley (H) and in two of those 5 games, they ran riot and D.Silva scored an 11 and 9 point return. So even with him missing 1 of those 5 games, he’s scored me a decent return for his price over that time.

FPL Partridge: 

This is a big headache. The potential of these players is huge, but the risk of any of them missing a game, is never far away. I like both Mahrez and David Silva but it probably depends on your team structure in this instance. If you have a 8-9m midfield spot, then they are definitely worth considering, as long as you have reasonable bench cover.

With the emergence of cheap strikers and attacking defenders, a lot of managers seem to have filled their midfield with one or two premium players (Hazard, Salah..) and then high performing cheaper options (Maddison, Fraser, Richarlison). The 8-10m spot hasn’t caught fire so far this season. If you’re in that price point, they could be worth the risk. If not, I wouldn’t restructure your team to get them in. If you can stretch to afford KDB, he’s the one I’d go for.

Move Kane out? Aubameyang in? 

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Simon (FPL Connect): 

Kane out is fair for sure, but for Aubameyang? I’m not so sure. I mean his numbers and his goals per min right now is incredible, but that is only right now – how long can we expect those numbers to be sustained? Lacazette seems to be the preferred player to play as the lone striker and Emery has made it clear he only intends to play with 1 striker up top.

So, if you’re liking the Arsenal attack, why not go for the player who’s playing 90 mins week in, week out and is £1.1m cheaper? Aside from the last game (where he should have scored), he’s been excellent and is offering the better value of the two. Assuming you’ve already got Agüero (advise getting Agüero if you don’t), then Lacazette is my advocation.

FPL Partridge: 

Kane out? Don’t let me stop you. As has already been proven, Auba playing for 20 minutes can be more productive than a 90 minute Kane. Aubameyang is currently on 6.1ppg, with Aguero only just ahead on 6.4ppg but, I personally don’t like the uncertainty of bringing in players that could be benched in any given week.

In his last two games he’s played less than 30 mins each time. We can’t rely on him maintaining his super sub form. The 9-11m strikers have proved pretty disappointing so far this season. Firmino, Lukaku, Morata (remember him?)…we are crying out for a good option and Auba could easily fill that gap. If you already have Agüero and the other important players, then Kane to Auba in isolation doesn’t look a bad move, but for me, the rotation risk puts me off.

Avoid Alexander-Arnold, Gomez and Lovren? 

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Simon (FPL Connect): 

I will be avoiding those players. If you want Liverpool defence, then I’d stick to Robertson, van Dijk and Allison. In my opinion, the others will continue to rotate.

FPL Partridge: 

This is a pretty frustrating one, as I have owned Robertson and TAA almost all season so far. My Liverpool defence double-up was going to be my secret weapon going into this lovely run of games. That was until TAA was benched out of the blue. I’m looking to get rid, as uncertainty is never good.

I feel that Gomez and TAA will be fighting it out for the RB position and Lovren will become first choice to partner VVD. However, that is just my suspicion, and I don’t want to jump from one risk to another, so I’ll be avoiding all three at the minute. If I had to choose one, it’d be Lovren at this stage.

Time to go 4 in defence?

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Simon (FPL Connect): 

There’s value in it for sure, but I’ve been with 3 at the back for the whole season and I’m at 21k overall rank, so just because good options are presenting themselves at the back, doesn’t mean there’s an obligation to move to 4 at the back.

You always need to be flexible and if you have built a team structure that allows this, then you have the freedom to move around various formations without affecting the overall balance of your team. Pick the players that you think will do the best and the formation will pick itself.

FPL Partridge: 

I hope so! I’ve been on 4-4-2 since day one. I was so far ahead of the curve that the curve wasn’t even within sight! Looking at points per game, the premium defenders have given good value. Alonso, Robertson and Mendy, plus with the value picks of Wolves defence…4 at the back does seem the obvious pick in my opinion.

As long as the budget strikers keep performing (Wilson, Arnautovic, Mitrovic..) and the premium ones, don’t, then I’ll be keeping a significant chunk of my funds in defence. I think the best example of this is that Harry Kane is currently on 5.2ppg, whilst Matt Doherty is 5.6ppg and Benjamin Mendy, 7.8ppg.

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