The international break might be in full swing but that's not going to stop us looking ahead to Gameweek 9. We'll start, though, with a quick recap of recent FPL events.
Sometimes, words aren’t needed…
Then there are the smug non-Harry Kane (£12.5m) owners...
Another good gw, 77 points and 15k overall. No kane gamble paid off, hazard capt delivering the goods again. Moving forward, thinking of doing TAA in for double Liverpool D, and maybe salah(!?!) back for mane? pic.twitter.com/RvtD1OL7FZ— FPL Kokie (@kokierocks) October 9, 2018
He does face West Ham next week though…
Disagreement in the community, then, so let’s see what the numbers say heading into GW9.
GW8’s projected optimum team saw the squad rack up 57 points as five of the 11 projected players provided some form of points return. Leading the line was Arsenal’s French hitman, Alexandre Lacazette (£9.6m), who contributed 12 points and has now offered attacking returns in each of his last six fixtures. Captain for the week Johann Berg Gudmundsson (£6.0m) took advantage of his favourable matchup against Huddersfield, recording an assist. At the back, Marcos Alonso (£6.9m), Kieran Trippier (£6.2m) and Rui Patricio (£4.6m) all kept clean sheets.
The squad was perhaps punished a little for not having any premium assets in its ranks. The same mistake has not been made this week as the big-hitters all return for GW9’s projected best XI.
The team lines up in what is now its customary 4-3-3 formation.
Between the sticks is Liverpool stopper Alisson (£5.6m). The Liverpool goalkeeper faces a Huddersfield side that is still yet to find the net in front of their own fans.
A quartet of Englishmen makes up the back four. Trent-Alexander Arnold (£5.2m) joins his England teammates Kieran Trippier, Kyle Walker (£6.6m) and Danny Rose (£5.9m) in the line-up. The foursome combine probable clean sheets with potential attacking returns – Gareth Southgate will be delighted!
Across the middle is 2018-19 fantasy darling Eden Hazard (£11.3m), projection favourite Raheem Sterling (£11.1m) and Bournemouth playmaker Ryan Fraser (£6.0m). Hazard takes the projected best XI’s armband. The Chelsea magician has already put up 74 FPL points this campaigh, either scoring or assisting in seven of his eight matches.
Hazard this season:— DuncanJones (@jonesyduncan) October 11, 2018
7⃣ x7 x3
Man Utd this season:
8⃣ CLEAN SHEETS - 1⃣ CONCEDED - x14
Hazard has scored 10 or more points 4 times already this season and United look suspect at the back. Interesting captain differential choice! #FPL #FantasyPrem #GW9
(Hazard has made eight appearances, but you get the picture!)
Sterling gets to feast on a porous Burnley defence, while Fraser just keeps picking up fantasy points as the Bournemouth results train rolls on. He’s fast becoming the 2018-19 Pascal Groß (£6.7m) and assuming he overcomes his knock, he is a shoe-in for GW9. He also has previous when it comes to hauling after an international break despite the doubts over his fitness, lest we forget.
Leading the line are the top two forwards in FPL at this point – Sergio Aguero (£11.3m) and Callum Wilson (£6.3m). Both should be fresh after the international break, as neither has been called up for their respective countries. Wilfred Zaha (£7.0m) takes the projected best XI’s final spot. Crystal Palace will look to get back to winning ways when they travel to Goodison Park to face an Everton side that may score plenty but concede just as much.
Top billing for projected goalkeepers in GW9 goes to Manchester City’s Ederson (£5.7m). City’s opponents are Burnley and their No. 1 Joe Hart (£4.6m) also makes an appearance; Hart may seem a surprise inclusion to begin with but having pulled off 36 saves already this season, he gets his spot due to his save potential. This potential is only matched by Lukasz Fabianski (£4.5m), who takes the fifth spot on the projected top five GKs.
Spots three and four are reserved for Rui Patricio (£4.6m) Bernd Leno (£4.8m), who both face home matches against Watford and Leicester respectively.
Andrew Robertson (£6.3m) is set to keep his strong start to the season going, while owners of team mate Virgil van Dijk (£5.9m) will be expecting a minimum of a clean sheet when Liverpool face Huddersfield. Spurs duo Toby Alderweireld (£5.9m) and Davinson Sanchez (£5.8m) will attempt to build on their recent form away to West Ham. The ever-present Aymeric Laporte
(£5.7m) completes the top five.
Leroy Sane (£9.2m) has a goal and two assists in his last three starts but his gametime will need to be monitored closely following the return of Benjamin Mendy (£6.2m). Against a stubborn Burnley side, David Silva (£8.5m) may prove vital for City in unlocking the Claret’s backline. Despite only one goal in their last four league matches between them, Sadio Mane (£9.9m) and Mohamed Salah (£12.8m) are expected to be back among the points when they play a Terriers side that have conceded 17 goals already this season. Meanwhile, Lucas Moura (£7.4m) faces the inconsistent West Ham.
Aleksandar Mitrovic (£6.9m) sits second on total shots this season, just four behind Aguero, and he could well catch the Argentinian when Fulham visit winless Cardiff. Romelu Lukaku (£10.9m) faces a revenge match against the team that let him go in 2014.
Josh King (£6.3m) and free-scoring Bournemouth host Southampton in the South Coast derby, whilst in London Olivier Giroud (£7.8m) plays Manchester United. Finally, Kane will aim to repay the faith to those managers who have stuck by him when Spurs travel to West Ham.