1. The Fantasy Cup- For the first time ever, my fantasy football team is on a cup run, beating some poor, helpless bloke to reach the Fantasy Cup eighth round. Just to put that in perspective, I still have to win nine more “matches” before my results are featured for all to view on the front page of the Fantasy Premier League website. Is the Cup distracting me? Yes, probably. I have plummeted down the EPL Talk standings over the last month in a half, focusing instead on designing a team to neutralize my Cup opponents’ best assets. All my eggs are firmly in one basket. Wish me luck.
2. Sunderland’s Steel- If the Premier League had started when Martin O’Neill took over at Sunderland, the Black Cats would sit top of the table. It’s a shame things don’t work like that, though, especially in the Fantasy Premier League where, as we inch towards the season’s closing months, certain managers will make more significant marks on the living room upholstery than on the FPL standings. Anyway, there are a number of Sunderland players worth signing. James McClean’s goal on Saturday was set-up by the ever impressive Stephane Sessegnon, while defenders like Phil Bardsley and John O’Shea have steadily improved as the season has drawn on.
3. Edin Dzeko– After a dry patch in front of goal, Edin Dzeko seems to be edging back to his August form. Since scoring the winner at Wigan last month, Dzeko has found the net twice in all competitions, including a tap in on Saturday. With David Silva orchestrating the midfield, City strikers can only go so long without scoring. Those clichéd floodgates are creaking open.
4. Don’t Sign Paul Robinson– On Saturday morning, Paul Robinson made a single save. Arsenal’s eight shots on target yielded seven goals, and the keeper who sealed a place in fantasy folklore with a goal against Watford in 06/07 plummeted to another disappointing gameweek total. Robinson rests 22nd in the goalkeeping standings, despite having played in all but three of Blackburn’s games this season. Mind you, the high-ups at Rovers probably blame the defensive rot on Ewood Park pariah Christopher Samba.
5. Cisse’s- The January transfer window was a productive period for players called Cisse. Djibril secured an escape from his increasingly embarrassing stint in Serie A, while Papiss sealed a move to maybe-but-probably-not-really top four contender Newcastle United. Both players scored on their respective debuts, but the hotheaded Djibril managed to cancel out his strike with some utter stupidity at home to Wolves.
Naturally, Papiss is the only Cisse worth buying at the moment, but once Djibril completes his ban he could become an interesting option.