Nik Argiropoulos

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AM's Week 11 Player Picks

Thursday, November 07, 2013


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KEEPERS
Artur Boruc - It took a freak goal from Stoke keeper Asmir Begovic to beat Boruc last weekend, but aside from that Southampton looked solid again and have another opportunity for a shutout at home to Hull. He's currently in net for my Week 11 team.
Costel Pantilimon - Two games in a row became three last night as Joe Hart was left on the bench again, with Pantilimon preferred. The Romanian stopper could do nothing about either CSKA goal so there's no reason for Manuel Pellegrini to revert to Hart for the winnable trip to Sunderland.
Hugo Lloris - There's been uproar about Lloris returning to the pitch after he was knocked unconscious by Romelu Lukaku's knee, but the keeper went on to make two more excellent saves at the end of the match to keep the scoreline at 0-0. That's seven clean sheets in ten games and it could become eight against Newcastle.
WILDCARD: Brad Guzan - If none of the options above appeal to you then save some money and take a punt on Guzan. Villa are struggling for goals, but they aren't conceding loads and Cardiff don't score many on the road. At £7million he also gives you a chance to separate yourself from the crowd.

 

DEFENDERS
Leighton Baines - This is a contentious one. Baines has been fairly disappointing in recent weeks and still costs a hefty wedge, but he faces Crystal Palace and as Everton's penalty and free kick taker he's the only defender in the game capable of pulling out a 30 point week. I'm considering giving him another chance.
Dejan Lovren - The Southampton defender produced a disappointing return at Stoke but that was due to a booking and lack of a clean sheet, and he came very close to scoring. Expect much better against Hull.
Glen Johnson - The England man missed Liverpool's defeat at Arsenal due to illness but all reports tip him to recover for the home game against Fulham and he's a terrific option playing as a right-wing back.
John Terry - I mentioned last week that Terry is looking a real threat in the opposition's box this season and he was unlucky not to grab a goal against Newcastle after hitting the cross-bar, having a shot cleared off the line and returning 12 points without a clean sheet. At home to West Brom he's tempting.
Matija Nastasic - With Vincent Kompany unlikely to return from injury in time for the Sunderland game it will be down to Nastatsic and his current defensive partner Martin Demichelis to keep Fletcher and Co out. They'll have a decent chance of doing that so both represent value around the £10million mark.
Vlad Chiriches - Three Premier League starts for the 23-year-old have brought three clean sheets and he should continue alongside Michael Dawson against Newcastle, with Jan Vertonghen (who is also a good alternative to Leighton Baines) filling in at left-back again. Chriches remains the cheapest way to cover the potential Spurs clean sheet.
Kolo Toure - If you don't go with Glen Johnson then Toure is a cheap way to cover the potential Liverpool clean sheet at home to Fulham, priced below £ 7million.
Mathieu Debuchy - I made the mistake of dropping him last weekend as he put up another big score which I'm sure I'll come to regret. At a price of over £10million I'm not sure he's not worth adding for a tricky game at White Hart Lane, but if you're still holding Debuchy at a decent discount then don't make the mistake as I made - he's nearing "season keeper" status.
WILDCARD: Martin Olsson - The Norwich defender has been deployed as a winger on a few occasions this season, so if team news suggests he gets that role at home to West Ham then he could be one for the gamblers among you.

 

MIDFIELDERS
Philippe Coutinho - After 45 bright minutes against Arsenal it's expected that Coutinho will start against Fulham, and with Steven Gerrard a doubt with a hip injury could will be entirely down to the little midfielder to pull the strings behind Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge, I'm expecting a big week so he's my top midfield pick and is in my team.
Yaya Toure - Another stunning free-kick against, Yaya's fifth goal of the season, and he's likely to dominate the midfield again against Sunderland, getting plenty of chances to push forward.
Mesut Ozil - Not pulling big fantasy scores every week (hitting double figures just three times in seven matches), but the majority of fantasy managers own Ozil at £6million-ish and at that price he should remain in your team. If you don't hang on then you will fall miles behind when he puts up his next 20 pointer.
Aaron Ramsey - Another stunning goal against Liverpool and a brave one against Dortmund for the midfielder in the form of his life, flying 40 points clear of the next best fantasy scoring midfielder. Ozil is my sole Arsenal representative this week as I have been paying full price for Ramsey and I'm not sure he's worth that for an away game at Old Trafford, but if you have him at a discount you keep him for the long term.
David Silva - Excellent against Norwich, he's tempting to hang on to if you have Silva at last week's price as he has the potential to run Sunderland ragged but it's a concern that he's not always as productive away from the Etihad. Currently in my team, but not a certainty to stay there come deadline.
Adnan Januzaj - Rested completely in the Champions League so you can expect Januzaj to start against Arsenal and he hasn't let anyone down so far this season, averaging over 10 points per game when he starts.
Andros Townsend - Tied with Ramsey for most shots on target by midfielders, his return of one goal is nowhere near as impressive but Townsend is returning good scores thanks to these points and from being fouled an awful lot. Newcastle at home is a game he could flourish in whether he scores or not.
Oscar - Poor at Newcastle, but the Brazilian has performed well enough in the "number 10" role this season to be given some leeway for an off day and he should prove to be a danger to West Brom, roaming behind the main striker.
Adam Lallana - Two quiet scores in recent weeks, but before that Lallana hit double figures in five consecutive weeks and along with the likes of Oscar, Janjuzaj and Townsend, Southampton's captain is under consideration for my team as he faces Hull at home.
Ross Barkley - Benched against Tottenham but came on in the second half and improved Everton immeasurably, so expect Barkley to start at Crystal Palace. At a price of less than £4million he should be considered, perhaps for a place as first substitute on your bench in case of a no-show.
WILDCARD: Mile Jedinak - One of the few Palace players who can hold his head high after ten games, Jedinak has been quietly producing some quite stunning points returns despite no goals, no assists and just two shots on target. Interceptions and tackles won have been the name of the game and he should get plenty of chances to add to his impressive stats against Everton.

 

STRIKERS
Luis Suarez - We don't need to go in to too much detail here; he faces Fulham at Anfield and we would all be shocked if he didn't grab at least one goal. As mentioned, Gerrard is a doubt so Suarez would also be on penalty duty. Oh captain, my captain.
Romelu Lukaku - Suffered a dead-leg from the collision with Lloris but reports suggest Lukaku is back in training and ready to face Crystal Palace. His negative score in Week 10 has seen his price plummet to less than £13million and he's could cause the Eagles' defence massive problems, so he's currently in my team.
Sergio Aguero - Thirteen goals in thirteen appearances in all competitions this season, his performances alongside Alvaro Negredo have been devastating and both men can be considered for Manchester City's trip to Sunderland, unless we hear one of them is getting a rest. It seems unlikely that Pellegrini would take that risk with City down in 5th place and in desperate need of an away win, so I'm sticking with Aguero.
Daniel Sturridge - I wouldn't blame anyone for starting both members of the SAS against Fulham after their huge returns in the 5-0 win over West Brom - it's an option tempting me as Sturridge could have a field day, but if you're picking just one it should be Suarez for his ability to score huge points with or without scoring.
Wayne Rooney - The England striker has a decent goal-scoring record against Arsenal and is in excellent form at the moment so he remains a solid choice. Lots of people (including myself) are dropping him for the Liverpool pairing, Lukaku or Aguero so if one or two of them flop and Rooney puts in a good showing you could be moving up the rankings.
Olivier Giroud - Manchester United's defence has been anything but solid, conceding thirteen goals (more than many of the teams in the bottom half of the table) and have looked especially nervy in front of their own fans so Giroud will fancy his chances of adding to his already impressive goal tally.
Christian Benteke - A few games without a goal for the big Belgium striker but Cardiff at home presents an opportunity to end that mini-drought as he continues to build up match fitness after his injury.
Samuel Eto'o - Torres' injury combined with Eto'o's two goals in the Champions League last night should see him start against West Brom and he is darn cheap, weighing in at just over £8million.
WILDCARD(S): Wilfried Bony or Rickie Lambert - I haven't seen a single Yahoo team with either of these men in, so as with my other wildcards they provide an opportunity to stray from the pack. Michu is missing for Swansea so it's time for Bony to step up against Stoke, while Southampton's Lambert is capable of a big performance at home to Hull City. Both men will be on penalty duty.

 

Follow the RotoWorld_PL team on Twitter: Galin | Jeremy | Neal | Nik | Steve

 

So those are the players I'm considering for my Week 11 Yahoo team. For now I have the following saved on my own team page:

 

Starting XI: Boruc, K.Toure, Nastasic, Baines, Y.Toure, Ozil, Silva, Coutinho, Lukaku, Aguero, Suarez (C)
Subs: Barkley, Bardsley, Spence, Elliot

 

It's nicely balanced with a scattering of players from the three best fixtures, although four Man City players may be overkill so one of Silva or Yaya could go. Oscar could come in somewhere, I wouldn't mind a Southampton midfielder and I'm still toying with the idea of bringing Sturridge back in for Lukaku somehow, although money is an issue (and it may be better to hedge my bets). Ben Davies is reportedly back for Swansea, which is good because I accidentally sold Neil Taylor at £3million on Monday. Kolo Toure comes in for now, while I would consider upgrading Nastatsic and Baines isn't nailed on. One thing I am 100% set on is Suarez as captain while Boruc, Ozil and Aguero will stay barring injury.

 

Check back here on Rotoworld on Friday for all the team and injury news coming out of the manager's press conferences to assist you with your final decisions. There is likely to be a fair amount of information to process as we had a full fixture list for the Champions League and Europa League this week, including some long journeys for certain teams.

 

How's your Week 11 team looking? Who's your captain choice?



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Nik Argiropoulos is a London-based soccer writer for Rotoworld and co-founder of Never Manage Alone. You can find him on Twitter @nikarg.
Email :Nik Argiropoulos



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