So, week in and week out, we will be giving you our loves and hates for this week in a segment called Start/Sit.  We will each pick one option from each position, and then for a bonus, we show you our genius line-ups for the week.  Pretty cut and dry and basic.  The best part is, you get two opinions for the price of one.  We do this as a tandem, it’s the Smokey and Ralph Start/Sit show.  It’s like musical chairs, without all the screaming kids and regretful feeling of loss.  So, Week 9 has a few excellent match-ups, and some that look lopsided to me. Fear not though, as there are no lopsided matches in Fantasy EPL.  Well, there is if you don’t have the foggiest idea of what you are doing, or just don’t listen to us. So have a look at who we would start and sit based on match-ups and value.

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Gentleman and ladies, and by ladies I mean my Mom, let’s talk a little strategy today shall we? Success in Fantasy Premier League, as much as any of the other fantasy games out there, is predicated on good strategy and planning. There are numerous approaches and styles when it comes to roster building. Much of your focus, regardless of your team’s formation, needs to be on buying players with opportunity, and the ability for those players to make the most of those opportunities as they present themselves. Let’s not forget with a limit of one transfer per week, and two wild cards over the course of 38 weeks, you need to buy for the long haul. With this in mind, it’s important to target players involved in their club’s set pieces. It’s pretty easy to see why. Players who take penalties, directs, in-directs, and corners score more. Shocking! Earth-shattering! I know, basic as plain oatmeal, but you’d be shocked by how many players miss the boat when it comes to this. So, to help everyone out I’ve provided a handy chart below to guide you in your buys and sells in the next few days. I’ll continue to update these charts on a weekly basis. One important side note: If a club’s important set piece taker goes down (i.e Mesut Ozil) I won’t remove them from the chart but simply push them back a spot in the pecking order. Capiche? Capiche!

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Ever upward…  That’s the state motto of New York.  (Although it’s done in Latin, and I’m only fluent in Sanskrit.)  The forward position is the sexiest, highest scoring, most Captained position in fantasy EPL.  That’s why they are so expensively sexy.  This isn’t where you lose it, but it sure doesn’t help when you don’t have the right combo in the for the fixtures that week.  Have no fear, Ralph and Smokey are here.  We break down every position for the week, and give you the dynamite insight of why we do what we do.  We use the theory of fantasyitivity… it factors in value, match-up, and a good ole educated guess.  It sure seems to work with the ladies, as they are all flocking to Razzball Soccer site thinking this was a dating site.  Seriously, we have eclipsed all the other fantasy sites combined already, and only been live a week.  So if you’re a fella, looking for a lass, let Razzball be your eHarmony of fantasy.  Oh, by the way, by girls, I mean big husky guys.  Still interested in staying around?  Good, read about our Week 9 best forward options in EPL…

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Good afternoon my Razzbol FC clan, and welcome to the first installment of the weekly Midfielder rankings. Just so we’re all clear on the format here, we will be using Premierleague.com scoring and values for all of our rankings posts. It’s the most common format for EPL and the standard bearer for the fantasy game. Keep in mind, when reading these rankings, that it’s a one week snapshot, similar to the ones done by Jay on the Fútbol Americano site. So try not to focus on rest of season value when reading these. This would also explain why I’ve chosen to exclude Ángel Di María. I, unfortunately, do not expect the anchor of my fantasy teams midfield to be active due to a thigh injury sustained in Monday’s match. If by the grace of Eric Cantona (he’s god okay!) Di Maria plays, he’d be wedged between Cesc Fábregas and Eden Hazard. Are we clear? Okay good! Now onto the rankings!

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So, we continue on with this week’s rankings by looking at the guys who man the box.  No, it’s not the top XI UPS workers, or porn stars for that matter, but rather the top XI defenders.  Can you feel the excitement? I know you can.  Don’t make me get the Razzball T-shirt cannon (that may or may not malfunction at a moments notice).  Just in case, look at the bright side… you get a t-shirt and a nice welt.  So the defender rankings are basically like this: You own Leighton Baines, you own Branislav Ivanovic, and then you fill in where you think the value is.  If this isn’t your strategy, then I’m confused.  The defender’s prices and scoring capabilities are so clean-sheet dependent, minus those two guys, that it’s a hunt and peck system, like when you don’t use the home row keys.  Leighton Baines, week-in-and-week-out is the stud, and it’s easy, because he is involved on so many set pieces as the man over the ball.  That right there is all you need to know.  That, and it’s illegal in Utah to curse at a dead person. So my rankings are multi-faceted. I use form, price, weekly opponents, and a little thing I call a hunch to determine my top-11 playable options every week.  So keep on keeping on to find out more about the men who guard the box.

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I’m going to open today’s Goalkeeper Rankings with an analogy… Goalies are to Fantasy Soccer as Kickers are to Fantasy Football. They can put your week over the top, but they’ll never carry you. You need to start one on your team, and you need a good one, but they’ll never get you more than 10-12 points max. The long and the short, Goalkeepers are the wrong place to invest your money. The best strategy is to find a goalie who sees a lot of shots, but one who’s team isn’t completely hapless. This way, they’ll rack up the saves, but won’t be shell-shocked. Plus, they’ll get some clean sheets.

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Transfer Tuesday. Transfer Tuesday. So if you’re new to the Razzball Fantasy EPL party, well technically we all are, Tuesdays going forward will be commingled garbage day covering Transfers and the upcoming week’s schedule. That first line is kinda ringing in my ear like I have Tinnitus.  So grab your portable device find your favorite porcelain seat, and enjoy the transfer targets for the upcoming Week 9 of fantasy EPL.  I am giving you all a look at who looks good, at the price they are, who is a bargain, and who is showing good form to grab on the cheap.  Pinching pennies is all the rave nowadays. My grandma has one, and she is about as hip as Huey Lewis and the News.  So enjoy my view from the weekly transfer window, or don’t.  Please don’t throw rocks though, they hurt more than Tinnitus.

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Manchester United vs. West Bromwich Albion

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In the Monday night game, the surging Manchester United travels to the Hawthorns to take on West Bromwich Albion. So far in the young season, West Brom are 1-1-1 at home, having beaten up on Burnley three weeks ago in their last home match. The Baggies seem to be carrying on their long tradition of being offensively challenged, as they’ve already been shutout three times in seven games. This shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone that’s been paying attention, because outside Sadio Berahino, no one on the squad has any real firepower. Manchester United on the other hand is a whole different story. Since the transfer window slammed shut, the Red Devils have significantly upgraded their attacking options with the additions of Radamel Falcao, Angel Di Maria, and Ander Herrera. The issue with United so far is their lapses of intensity and haphazard defending. There has been a noticeable improvement on the back line over the last two matches against Everton and West Ham, as they’ve switched to a four-man back line featuring Rafael, Luke Shaw, Patrick McNair, and Marcos Rojo. With that said, even with the improved play of the back line keeper David De Gea had to more or less stand on his head to keep Everton from scoring the equalizer two weeks ago. Whether this is the week the new look Red Devils squad puts it all together remains to be seen.

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On June 2, 1988, Diego Maradona flew home to Buenos Aires after a long season with Napoli. Maradona was tired, and looking to unwind after yielding the Serie A Championship to A.C. Milan. With the desire to explore the unknown, and maybe bag a little strange, he headed to a club in the Las Cañitas section of the city by the name of the Kum Kum Room. After a long night of champaign and fine Colombian marching powder, Maradona stumbled home. As he shuffled one intoxicated step after another, he stopped to pee in the bushes outside a three-family home. While relieving himself in the well groomed shrubbery of Mr and Mrs. Antonio Aguero, he heard the cries of a newborn baby coming from the second floor of the home. In a cocaine-fueled delusion of grandeur, Maradona raised his right hand in the air and bestowed a divine sanction on the newborn babe. He then joyfully proclaimed: “May he be known as Kun!”

Fast forward 26 years, and that baby is now the father of Diego Maradona’s grandchildren, and one of the deadliest strikers in all of Europe. Yesterday afternoon, Sergio “Kun” Aguero had one of those vintage Maradona type of games. The Argentine scored all four of Manchester City’s goals, as the the Citizens outclassed Tottenham from start to finish. Aguero’s first goal was a thing of beauty, as he shook Younès Kaboul out of his boots, and belted a low hard strike past Hugo Lloris to the far right corner. His second and third goals came on penalties to the low left corner, that Lloris guessed terribly wrong on, both times. His coup de grâce came on his fourth and final goal, as he took a long pass down the right wing, made a move on Jan Vertonghen, and put a beautiful strike off his left foot into the far corner of the net. In the process of putting up a hat trick plus one yesterday, Aguero also became Manchester City’s all-time leading premier league scorer, passing Carlos Tevez on his second goal of the day. I think it goes without saying, when Aguero is healthy and in form, he’s one of the top two or three fantasy players in the Premier League. If you don’t own Diego Costa, Aguero, or Wayne Rooney as one of your strikers, you’re doing it wrong.

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Well, all you Razzball faithful guess what? Smokey here to tell ya, we blew out the walls that separate us (mostly bad teeth and charming accents) and have expanded across the pond.  That’s right, we are going to be doing Fantasy Soccer, focusing mainly on the EPL and various other tournaments that we as fantasy degenerates like to peruse in an effort to throw time and money away. Week 8 is our starting point, and we’ll be a continuous treasure trove of information, advice, and outlandishness from here on out, basically everything you’d expect from Razzball, but now with more balls. Soccer balls that is.

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