Are you dreading the thought of confirming your football fantasy team this Saturday? Well, this is the for you Mr. Average Joe. I'm going to transform you into the next Tactics Tim, Sam Allardychi or with some luck, the new Wally with a Brolly.
All you need to do to achieve this transformation is simply follow my step-by-step guide on picking the MOST SUPER EPIC ULTRA team possible. I've split the guide into Goal Frame Defenders, Line Backers, Fancy Dans and Bentekes. Within each position I have chosen who I believe will bring home the bacon, who will make you cry at work for the rest of the week and who will cost you less than a packet of space invaders.
The two safest pair of gloves that you're going to find this season will be residing in the West and North of London. Courtois and Cech are both 5.5m. Albeit they're your priciest picks in goal but Chelsea and Arsenal will keep clean sheets at home, more than JT at least.
Or you could be a bit of a chancer and go for Hennessey and McCarthy at 4m each. With Speroni injured, one of these two shot stoppers will be protecting the Eagles nest. I'd pick both as you'd then be guaranteed a starter either way.
I'd say for the first couple of weeks avoid anyone who did well last season for a mid-table club as it might not be a great representation of their performances this year. E.G. Fabianski and Adrián.
Stellar choices in defence are Ivanovic or Terry as they'll always get goals and are more than handy at totting up your points. Though they come at a price tag of 7m. Next on the pitch would be Koschielny at 6m as he'll get you some goals. Paired with his new buddy Cech, clean sheets will be a gunnin'. Jumping off the glory hunter's band wagon for a moment and into the hipster's one, Fonte at 5.5m would be my next suggestion. Southampton were a solid defensive squad last year and a relaxed start will see them sitting comfortably on their clean sheets. Leaving him behind at Southampton is Clyne, who's gone on to better things at Merseyside... I mean just look at how it worked out for Lambert! However, he is only 5.5m and will get a few goals/assists this season.
A great starting place for defensive bargain hunting would be the food banks of Bournemouth and Watford. I've heard at Watford they are offering a Prodl, Angella and Holebas all at 4.5m a piece. They have an eye for goal and should be apart of a 3 man defence, guaranteeing starts for each. In Bournemouth however, they've got a Francis for 4.5m, who a little birdy told me, was going to be this seasons next Trippier. That's not so bad but Tottenham will want to buy you.
Here's a few teams that I'd avoid: Villa are unfortunately due a relegation and I've got a feeling the Tim Magic from last year will run out, so they could be at the end of a few hammering's. With a quick glance at Everton you might want a Jagielka or Baines due to them having a poor season last year. They should be on the up but with an incredible tough run-in it's unlikely there will be many clean sheets around Goodison. Sunderland conceded 8 to Southampton last year and nothing of their transfers to date have convinced me they won't hit the highs of 9 this year. Oh, and Man Utd because you'll pick Jones but Van Gaal will pick McNair, so don't do it to yourself bro.
Before you read what I have put in the midfield section I need you to follow these 3 steps;
- Go on to fantasy.premierleague.com
- Pick Hazard
- Give yourself a pat on the back
This year Silva at 10m will be worth more to you than Sterling. You may tempted by the big money move of the summer but your much better off going with the tried and tested. He's worth a pretty penny but with 12 goals and 12 assists you'd be a fool not to play him.
Then there's the assist machine, Cesc Fabregas rated at 9m this season. We all saw what he could do last year so there's nothing stopping you from raking in the points he'll undoubtedly assist you with.
With Eriksen as the only player I can see doing anything for Tottenham this year he's a fine choice costing 8.5m. Hopefully he can replicate last seasons 10 goals, even more likely if Soldado leaves.
Like Erikson, Mata is also 8.5m and with more game time guaranteed at United there's no reason to think the old matador from a couple seasons back wont return. Let's cross are fantasy fingers he does that again to get us shooting up the leagues. A few more good choices in midfield will be Mane and Henderson, 8m and 7m respectively.
But where is Alex Sanchez in all of this I hear you ask? He's a great footballer worth a tasty 11m, but I reckon he'll be lacking in the fitness department so will be spending most of his time warming the bench.
If you can't resist having a bargain in your midfield then I'd look at Matt Ritchie for Bournemouth. He was the Assistornator last year in the championship and could regain the title again for them. If you can't cram in any more Bournemouth players because like me, they make up half your defence already, you might want to risk it for a biscuit on Nathan Redmond. Having racked up the assist for the Canaries last season and at 5.5m, he could be the man to brighten your Tuesday morning after the points have been confirmed.
I would avoid any new boys to the premier league this year. It's incredible tempting to throw a few into the team but you have no idea whether they'll start and if they'll perform. A couple of great examples are Payet and Ayew. Both are marque signings for their clubs but we all know how well that went for Lamela. It's best to pop them on the watch list and add them in if they are pulling a Sanchez, however unlikely.
Benteke at 8.5m because I've been brainwashed by Ashley Kernsworth into believing that he's better than Messi, God and Pizza. So yeah, make sure you have him. It would also be legendary if everyone in the league had him so we were some sort of Benteke cult fantasy league but dreams are only dreams. My other two choices aside from the big man, even though I know you will all pick him, are Rooney and Pelle. Rooney will be scoring goals galore with him being the only one up front this year. Although he comes in at 10.5m, he could get you all the points you need. And Pelle, at 8m he's a cheaper, more Italian version of Rooney and with Southampton's relaxing start, it could be a winning formula.
My two cheap choices are going to rip off last seasons success stories of Austin and Ings. With Wilson and Deeney at 5.5m playing for newly promoted teams, I'm betting there's a repeat of last year. You can thank me for that when you've got a thousand points.
I'd avoid Kane, not just because I'm a West Ham fan but also you never can tell when a winning streak will end. Let him play for a bit to judge whether he's still got it. Though I warn you now, some feller called Peter would have picked him ages ago and be sitting top of the league all smug cause Kane's scored 12 hat-tricks.
Also, you can still join the The Gaffer Tapes league on PIN: 142755-38788
Leave a comment below if you've got suggestions of your own or if you want to vent some teenage angst at my decisions!