GW Points: 54
Overall Points: 54
Overall Rank: 53,933
Transfers: Alli out, Fernandes in (end of game week 1)
Last season I started game week 1 with 93 points and was over the moon with my start to the game. That was until I checked the overall leaderboard and saw that I was sitting around the 62,000 mark. This time around it’s the opposite. Starting with only 54 points felt so disappointing, and Spurs players let me down massively. I honestly thought the review of the game week was going to be all doom and gloom. Ironically, when looking at the overall leaderboard, I’ve actually started the season better than I did last year and made the second best start to a season that I’ve ever made. As a result I can’t be too disheartened. There were some real positives to take from the game week but also some real issues that will need addressing. The big question is when to bring in the likes of Fernandes and De Bruyne. I’d already decided to bring in Fernandes immediately – as a result I’ve taken out Alli already (more on him below). It’s a big concern not to have De Bruyne going into the game week but I’ve decided to take a calculated risk and leave him out for game week 2. Man City are playing Wolves and this is by no means an easy fixture. It will also give us one more week to evaluate where to take the team longer term as I’ve still got some question marks next to many of my players.
Salah hat trick. Always nice to start the new season with some big points for a key player. I didn’t get an awful lot bang on during the first game week but picking Salah was something I certainly got right.
Two assists and a star man award gave Willian 12 points on his debut. More than happy with that – he was a player I’d identified very early on as being good value.
7 points for Aubameyang for a well taken goal. He’s likely to come out when Arsenal’s fixtures become more difficult but more than happy with his start.
I’d only planned to own Traore for game week 1 and didn’t have high expectations after seeing him start at wing back. However, he continued where he left off last season – he seems to get a 7+ rating every time he plays and picking up the star man award in the EFL Cup was a surprise bonus. On that basis, I’ll hold onto him for now. Although it was a little frustrating to see Wolves crash out of the cup given that Traore made the starting team.
I’m still massively surprised by how high the team is on the overall leaderboard considering how many players contributed zero or minus points, but anywhere here’s the negatives:
Spurs didn’t perform well against Everton. This resulted in their clean sheet being taken out and Alli and Kane scoring zero points. Four Spurs players returned zero across the game week. This was far from ideal. On the bright side, Doherty was only going to be a short term option anyway and I always knew Alli was a bit of a punt. Despite this, the Everton fixture was their most difficult one of the month, as a result I plan to give them another game week to see how they perform against Southampton – other than Alli, who I’ve replaced with Fernandes. One of my midfielders was always going to have to make way for Fernandes and Alli seems the obvious choice. He was taken off at half time and didn’t travel for the Europa League qualifier. I’m also keeping a close eye on Ben Davies, who’s position could be in jeopardy with Spurs potentially signing a new left back. I don’t really see this as a problem as there are plenty of options available for replacements. It’s also worth noting that although Alli and Doherty didn’t find the back of the net – they both came very close and it would be a very different write up had they both scored. It’s this very fine lines which make the difference between success and failure.
Alisson and Alexander-Arnold picked up -2 points each. It could have been worse if I’d gone for more than 2 Liverpool assets but either way it wasn’t a great start. I think damage was fairly limited though due to their ownership being so high. They’ve not got easy fixtures on the horizon but I think it’s a case of riding the storm for now. In theory, if I plan to keep them for the season it doesn’t matter if their values fall because I’ve currently got no plans to take them out anyway. But it will be worth keeping an eye on.
Finally zero points for Havertz wasn’t bitterly disappointing. If I could swap him for De Bruyne without interfering with the rest of my team then I’d do this now. Unfortunately this isn’t on the cards. I’ve decided to give him another week, even if he’s dropped in the league, he should get a run out in the EFL Cup.
Tips for Game Week 2
I personally think it’s too early to be making any rash changes and I don’t think there’s any obvious advice for game week 2. I can see value in people bringing in Fernandes and De Bruyne, I’ve just personally decided to hold fire on De Bruyne. This decision could be decided on the toss of a coin though, no one really knows how City will get on against Wolves so we are pretty much guessing at this stage and it could easily go either way. I’ve decided I want to see how it pans out and I’d like to have a bit more information before making too many changes to my team. Ideally, I want to know if Spurs are capable of a clean sheet against Southampton. Can Kane find the back of the net? And did Havertz just have a bad opening game and will he come back with a bang during game week 2? If Spurs let me down again and Havertz does very little then I’ll know it’s time to move them on. At the moment, I can’t say for certain with only 1 game week being completed. If I were to bring in De Bruyne, I’d need to downgrade Aubameyang or Kane this week to accommodate the move. At the moment I wouldn’t know which one to take out. Aubameyang has a good fixture on paper but then they get tough and Kane has some decent fixtures across the month. I also thought Werner started well but I understand he took a knock. I’d also like to see how he gets on against Liverpool if he does play. What I’m trying to say is I think there’s too many questions unanswered to be making 4-5 transfers already.
As I love a good graph, I’ve also plotted last season’s performance and compared it to game week 1 below. It shows progress on the overall leaderboard over each game week. Might make for interesting viewing over the season.
I’d also be interested in hearing everyone else’s thoughts in the comments below.