Nik Argiropoulos

Perfect XI

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AM's Perfect XI - Week 38

Thursday, May 18, 2017


Welcome to AM's Perfect XI - Week 38 player picks for the final weekend of the 2016/17 Premier League season. This column focuses on Togga's Perfect XI game, which you can play via their IOS and Android app. Find the apps here and make sure you update regularly to take advantage of the constant enhancements: https://www.playtogga.com


We've set up a Rotoworld PL Private League which allows you to challenge myself and the rest of the RW PL team over the course of the season. To join it download the app and then click the below link from your device, or find us from the Featured Leagues tab:


http://tog.ga/rotoworld


Each week I provide a Perfect XI of my own for the upcoming gameweek, recommending 11 players to consider along with some honourable mentions. The players listed won't necessarily be the exact 11 selected for my own Perfect XI fantasy side. The point of this column isn't to tell you exactly who to pick; it's to present some ideas and get your brain whirring. I'll be listing a combination of the must-haves and slightly riskier options, alongside the odd hunch. Hopefully you'll find this useful whether you're playing Togga's game or looking at potential transfers for your official Fantasy Premier League team.


I'm delighted with how the Week 37 double has worked out for my own PXI side so far, amassing 280 points with Jan Vertonghen and Christian Eriksen left to play tonight. This has been enough to push back up in to the Top 80 overall, still 30 places (and a couple of hundred of points) below where I wanted to end the season, but it's something to build on ahead of the next campaign.


The final set of fixtures take place this Sunday with ALL TEN matches kicking off at in parallel at 3pm BST (British Summer Time). Remember in Perfect XI you can swap out a player right up to one minute before their match kicks off and bring in an alternative player whose match is also yet to kick off. This flexibility will allow you to avoid the pain of a surprise end-of-season benching or unreported last minute injury and a big fat zero. Ensure you keep your eyes on Twitter for line-ups from 2pm BST on Sunday.


Here are your fixtures:


Sunday 21st May
Arsenal v Everton
Burnley v West Ham
Chelsea v Sunderland
Hull v Tottenham
Leicester v Bournemouth
Liverpool v Middlesbrough
Manchester United v Crystal Palace
Southampton v Stoke
Swansea v West Brom
Watford v Manchester City


And a look at the players to consider:


KEEPERS
Thibaut Courtois or Asmir Begovic - Check the starting line-ups to see which of the two Chelsea keepers gets the start against Sunderland. Whoever it is should be nailed on for a clean sheet as the title party reaches its crescendo with a comfortable win in front of the joyous Stamford Bridge faithful.


Honourable Mentions: Simon Mignolet at home to Middlesbrough, Tom Heaton at home to West Ham


DEFENDERS
Marcos Alonso - The defensive star of both the PXI game and of this Chelsea side over the course of the season, Alonso got a well-deserved rest against Watford in midweek but should start the final game. My reasoning? I just can't believe Antonio Conte will to want outfield players going in to the FA Cup final having not played a competitive match for over two weeks. But as always, please check the line-ups.
Dejan Lovren - Liverpool know a win will secure a Champions League spot and will be confident of achieving it by dispatching relegated Middlesbrough at Anfield. Like Chelsea this should be a a win to nil for Jurgen Klopp's men and I have a hunch Lovren may add to his clean sheet points by popping up with a rare goal from a set piece.
Ben Davies - Knee surgery for Danny Rose means Davies is certain to start the clash with Hull at left back and Mauricio Pochettino will be hoping the Welshman's excellent form continues. Defensively solid and delivers an excellent cross on the overlap so expect fantasy returns from contributions at both ends of the pitch.
Hector Bellerin - Overall it's been a massively disappointing season for Bellerin, performing nowhere near the levels the Arsenal fans had come to expect from the two previous campaigns, and certainly not good enough for that rumoured move to Barcelona. However, Arsene Wenger's switch to 3-5-2 suits attacking full-backs and so the Spaniard has the chance to end the season on a high in the absence of the injury-plagued Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.


Honourable Mentions: Vincent Kompany away at Watford, Maya Yoshida at home to Stoke, Martin Olsson at home to West Brom, Christian Fuchs at home to Bournemouth


MIDFIELDERS
Philippe Coutinho - The first name on my PXI team-sheet given Liverpool's match up with 'Boro. I had one free transfer in the official FPL game and it was used on Coutinho. The Brazilian will also wear the captain's armband. That's how confident I am of a huge points return.
Cesc Fabregas - Another hunch selection to end the season. Fabregas has spent a lot of his time on the bench this season but has performed well whenever called upon and has a particularly good record at Stamford Bridge with eight goals and four assists. Another goalscoring cameo on Monday should be rewarded with a start on Sunday. He'll run the show.
Gylfi Sigurdsson - Siggy has been magnificent throughout the season, scoring nine goals, laying on 13 assists and leading his teammates to Premier League safety. Rumours suggest the Icelander, who at 27 is entering the peak phase of his career, will be leaving the Liberty Stadium once again this summer in search of European football. Whether these rumours are true I expect another big performance to celebrate survival and possibly as a goodbye thank you to the home fans.
Kevin De Bruyne - Rotation is usually a concern with Man City but with 3rd place not yet secure it will force Pep Guardiola to field a full strength side for the trip to Watford. De Bruyne is likely to be the key creative force once again as he looks to add to his chart-topping 16 assists for the season.


Honourable Mentions: Christian Eriksen away at Hull, Riyad Mahrez at home to Bournemouth, Mesut Ozil at home to Everton, Wilfried Zaha away at Manchester United


STRIKERS
Harry Kane - I'm writing this column on Thursday afternoon before Spurs play Leicester to close out Week 37. If Kane was to score tonight then he could be within a goal or two of ending the season as the Premier League's top scorer for the second year in a row. Even if he doesn't score tonight, a hat-trick might be enough. Either way, Kane will be in full-on greedy mode against relegated Hull which should translate to a bumper fantasy points haul.
Alexis Sanchez - Sanchez has been single-handedly keeping Arsenal in with a (very slim) chance of snatching 4th place from Liverpool with a series of match-winning displays and - like Kane - is hot on the trail of current top scorer Romelu Lukaku. Although the Gunners will almost certainly fall short, the Chilean is still in the sort of form that makes him impossible to ignore across all fantasy formats.


Honourable Mentions: Diego Costa at home to Sunderland, Gabriel Jesus away at Hull, Jamie Vardy at home to Bournemouth, Fernando Llorente at home to West Brom


That's it for the season. Thanks to all my readers for following this column over the past nine months ... hopefully you've found it helpful! Good luck to all managers this week, enjoy some time off and I'll see you back here in August.



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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