- Robin van Persie made his Man United return for the U21s v Leicester [Individual highlights]
- Russian international Ivan Novoseltsev proposes to his girlfriend on the pitch at full time [Video]
- Michael Owen doubles down on his belief that Liverpool’s Sterling is better than Arsenal’s Ozil [Video]
- Man United & Liverpool’s hopes to sign Memphis Depay complicated as Pep Guardiola reveals his hand
- Borussia Dortmund’s Marco Reus now faces a criminal record for driving without a licence [Bild]
Fantasy Premier League tips & predictions: Gameweek 1!
- August 14, 2014
Over three million Fantasy Premier League managers are mulling over the same question right now:
Do I build my 2014/2015 Fantasy Premier League team for Gameweek 1 or the long haul?
Get off to a flyer and you are sorted. Crash and burn early doors and you may be giving up within weeks.
Here are some thoughts, tips and predictions on Fantasy Premier League Gameweek 1. Bear in mind, we don’t always get it right!
1. Manchester United’s 3-5-2 offers opportunities. Manchester United kick off the Premier League season at home to Swansea and Fantasy Premier League managers are expecting big things.
Over 40% of managers have Wayne Rooney in their side. And Juan Mata is included by more than 20%. The intriguing aspects are who Louis van Gaal includes in his starting XI.
Tyler Blackett impressed against Valencia in midweek. Darren Fletcher, the new Manchester United vice-captain scored and looks set to start in midfield versus Swansea. The wing backs will likely be Ashley Young and perhaps Reece James. The former Aston Villa winger looks, at this early stage, to have caught the eye of LVG and could be a cheap buy at 5.5.
Luke Shaw, picked by over 17% of those playing, is injured and out for a month. Below is the Manchester United starting XI v Valencia.
2. Thibaut Courtois is Chelsea’s starting goalkeeper. The Belgian played against Real Sociedad in midweek and expressed his delight after the game at appearing at Stamford Bridge.
Cue reports that Petr Cech has been told he can leave. So, Belgium’s brilliant goalkeeper will be number one for the best defence in the Premier League…
Expect this to be confirmed at 19:00 at Turf Moor on Monday evening.
3. Liverpool have two attacking Spanish full backs. Javier Manquillo (5.0) and Alberto Moreno are Liverpool’s first choice full backs for this season. At least it looks that way. Jon Flanagan and Glen Johnson will undoubtedly get their games but two flying full backs in a defence that also now includes Dejan Lovren, should be tighter than last season.
A home game against Southampton, besides all the jokes, looks like the perfect opportunity for a winning start for Brendan Rodgers’ side.
4. Diego Costa is banging them in.Over 30% of players in the Fantasy Premier League have Diego Costa. And, its no surprise as the former Atletico Madrid striker has been scoring at will in pre-season. The latest goals, against Real Sociedad on Tuesday, came within seven minutes of kick-off
5. QPR are also playing 3-5-2. Rangers like many Premier League sides, are not easy to predict going into the opening home game against Hull. Almost everyone expects Harry Redknapp’s side to do well and the arrival of Glenn Hoddle as coach will reportedly signal a change in tactics to 3-5-2.
Charlie Austin is a great goalscorer but might Loic Remy get some game time? Mauricio Isla (5.0) is potentially a wing back, down as a defender in the game, who could bag plenty of assists and clean sheets. Steven Caulker scored five goals for Cardiff last season and is a threat at set pieces.
6. Manchester City’s start looks impossible. Will Manuel Pellegrini’s side have the hunger to take on the Premier League’s best in their opening fixtures? If the Community Shield is anything to go by, then almost certainly no.
City’s away game at Newcastle on Sunday is their second easiest game in their opening five. Games against Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal could prove tough for the champions unless they bring their A-Game immediately.
7. Alexis Sanchez will start. Aaron Ramsey to get amongst the points. The opportunities in the Arsenal midfield are almost endless, there are tons of players that will bag points. Mesut Ozil and Theo Walcott won’t play against Crystal Palace, so it looks like a straight choice between Alexis Sanchez or Aaron Ramsey.
Santi Cazorla could well be a good option after his goal against Manchester City at Wembley. Ramsey is currently leading Alexis Sanchez 33% to 21% in % of teams selected by. Only 3.5% of the game has Cazorla in their side.
Palace will likely be shell shocked after the departure of Tony Pulis, it could be a rout!
8. The games that could go either way. Leicester-Everton, Stoke-Villa, West Brom-Sunderland and West Ham-Spurs look very hard to call.
Leicester blitzed the Championship last season but Roberto Martinez has a great, well-drilled side that should be able to cope with the Foxes. Will Stoke and Bojan Krkic blitz Villa? Maybe! West Brom look woefully underprepared. And, West Ham will be confident of a fourth win over Tottenham in less than a year.
But, none of these games look like the bankers in front of Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea…
10. Most selected 15. Below is a screenshot of the 15 most selected players in Fantasy Premier League with the season less than two days away.. It would leave you 12.5 million over budget.