As much as some fantasy premier league managers complain about how the game has changed season to season, one truth has remained steadfast: the right captain pick will one hundred percent make or break your gameweek score. My own personal record of picking correctly has been pretty piss-poor in 2017, but I keep reminding myself that you have to play the best choice with the information at hand and not beat yourself up too much for getting it wrong. I’m hoping to improve and see green arrows again, and if not, then I will ask for support from this week’s theme and everyone’s favorite household object, whiskey! Best of luck!

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Rankings are fun to do in general.  Add in the flavor of this week’s fixtures and you have yourself some fantasy gumbo.  I get that the City/Chelsea fixture is the premium this week but don’t let that steer you clear of playing top options.  Yes, they will steal value from each other, but that is more from the defensive side of the ball.  It is full bore on the offensive end and that is where we invest our fantasy goodies.  we want goals and i think this slate will have plenty.  The Leicester/Bournemouth match will be fun to watch as both teams are taking on a mini Liverpool defensive minded approach and will have the way with each other.  So if you are waiting to make your transfers now that the UCL is over by all means use my rankings as a guide to FPL futility.  Enjoy the week and good luck.  Cheers!

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Much of the transfer market is stirred by midweek game sets, injury concerns and injury returns.  This week stirs the pot with all three.  The Champions League is back again to disrupt our brain waves and make us question who to bring in and who to be hesitant with.  Philippe Coutinho returned last week to full fledged fantasy diva with a goal last week, and now has added a goal in the UCL game.  Adding to the Liverpool conundrum is the return from suspension in Sadio Mane.  Coutinho’s price and propensity to flash usefull fantasy goodies is the reason we awaited his arrival.  Checking in as the cheapest useful midfielder in the trio of middies that Pool offer.  His price will undoubtedly go up because of the goal output we have seen with 2 in two games, making him, in most cases the transfer of the week for me.  If he continues to deliver his price will most likely never be lower, so monopolizing on his price and form is key to him being added now rather than later.  Because saving a penny by being ahead of the curve saves you a penny later when you need to upgrade elsewhere later.  Let’s see what else is going down in the world of in’s and out’s in FPL.  Cheers!

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Away: Bournemouth (1) – Home: Niasse (2)

Oumar Niasse doubled the Toffees goal total on the season with his 35 minutes of heroics, saving Everton from embarrissing defeat to Bournemouth. Niasse bagged his brace after coming in as a sub for the battered and bloodied Wayne Rooney, scoring his first goal with 13 minutes to go in the 2nd half. The game winner was the ultimate scrappy goal, as he corralled his own blocked header from 6 yards out and buried it home past Begovic. His efforts gave Everton their first two goals in the Premier League since August 21st, when their other top goal scorer on the season, Wayne Rooney, scored his 2nd on the season and remains on 2 in now 497 minutes.

While it would be something special for a magical 5.0m forward to emerge like a phoenix from the ruins that Lukaku left bare at Goodison Park, especially in a season currently defined by the plethora of marquee, expensive forward options, there is nothing here to make me truly believe we are witnessing the first roots of fantasy glory. Nobody knows, nay, not even Niasse, if he is suddenly going to supplant Wayne Rooney or Calvert-Lewin up top in the Toffee’s attack. What I do know, however, is that performances like his on Saturday are what make the Premier League worth watching. This is a player that Ronald Koeman (clearly not a football savant) had played a grand total of 0 matches prior to the weekend’s game. Rather than play a single minute during the first half of last season – playing time is slim pickings behind Lukaku – he was loaned last January to Hull City, where in 19 appearances and 1213 minutes under Marco Silva (definitely possibly a football savant), he scored 5 goals and made 1 assist, averaging just over 60 minutes a match. Koeman has never wanted to play him, but was forced to put him on for a clearly tired, ailing, aging and ineffective Rooney in a match that Everton did not really deserve to win.

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So I saw It over the weekend, and while I didn’t even come close to crapping my pants in fear (thanks hangover!), I’m about 99% sure that Harry Kane’s fear of August shares a creepy amount of commonalities with that homicidal crazed clown creature; both of them enjoy floating through open space (Kane on the pitch; the clown in a mind-altering expanse of sewer pipe only Mario would be jealous of), speaking in weird accents (seriously, listen to Harry Kane give an interview sometime), have an affinity for the color white (duh), and lastly, they both enjoy making red balloons go POP! (metaphorically speaking, that would be the hopes/dreams of all Gunner fans everywhere; FFS that’s not a spoiler! he’s a clown, he owns balloons!) Whether or not the fear of August (Augustamphobia?) has an actual effect on Kane’s past performances (it doesn’t), it’s good to see him conquering his “fears” and getting on the board with a brace, a very important and necessary step as he looks to become only the third player in Premier League history to win three consecutive Golden Boots. The other two are Prem Legends Alan Shearer and Thierry Henry, who were 24 and 26, respectively, when they won the first of their three Botas Doradas. Kane just turned 24 this past July and has two under the belt. To paraphrase another mildy entertaining movie, you’re [once again] a wizard, Harryyyy!

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Oh, Week 4 you young and burdening beast.  The season has just started and we are already questioning the judgments that we made yet a month ago.  No worries though faithful followers of the Razz.  Each week is almost like a new beginning if you had a wildcard to use at your discretion every week.  The rankings of midfielders and forwards is blossoming into a conundrum right before our very eyes.  We planted it in the summer, watched the transfer window closed and now that the shop is closed this is where we are.  18 more weeks until roster shake-ups again (if any) and the inevitable new wildcard.  So if you haven’t used your first wildcard yet, bene.  You have more restraint then most of the 5 million other players of this game.  So here are the rankings for the midfielders and forwards for week 4, regardless of wildcard.  Cheers!

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The highest scoring matches this week both ended up being shutouts, and GW 3 ended with 9 teams acquring  clean sheets, almost 10 after Burnley’s late equalizer to tie it. Certainly, all of those defensive clean sheets must have given some FPL managers a huge boost if their attacking returns over the weekend were less than imagined. If you didn’t manage to pick up any clean sheets, then you defensive options may not be the best moving forward, but I wouldn’t burn your wild card trying to sort them out. Why? Clean sheets are litterally a crap shoot to predict, so wild carding just because your defense let you down doesn’t make any sense – save it for the higher priced forwards and midfielders you’d like to bring in over the next few weeks.

Here are some notes on players I like/dislike from Game Week 3:

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The second installment of rankings is sometimes the favored.  Because who doesn’t like to score or assist to score.  In almost any format that last sentence holds sway.  But for now let’s just skip the images in your head and talk about the meat and potatoes of the FPL weekly rankings.  These fellas are more reliant on goals, assists and the BPS to drive them over the top.  So with match-ups, form and common sense as the wind to their ranking sail the list is based on just those three things.  So look at the schedule, trust the form and pray that I have some common sense when ranking these players.  Here are the Week 3 rankings for the midfielders and forwards in the FPL. Cheers!

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As always, the second post is usually the more awaited of the week.  Why?  It’s the same reason that people love the home run, the touchdown, or the over.  It is no different when we start talking about the middies and strikers for the week.  We fall in love with the goals and the tallies that come along with them.  All just facts.  Also a fact is that like always the rankings are always based on price, match-up, form and common sense.  So if you disagree… say so.  I am here for your service in this FPL game that we all love so much.  So enjoy the rankings, long intro’s are for squares and for people who don’t really have much to say so they make it long winded.  Cheers!

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The Prem is here, and we can all now rejoice. Now that the season has kicked off, I will be doing my best to fill your Mondays with sweet, fond memories from the games from over the weekend. I also ask for some patience as I work through how to best provide both a summation and meaningful outlook on the matches.

I was hoping to write about all 20 teams for this post, but it started to become lengthy and I started to get sleepy. So, here are my notes over the weekend on Arsenal to Liverpool (alpha order because why not?)…I will hopefully have Man City to West Ham by tomorrow.

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