With lofty exceptions, there was a letdown at the conclusion of the weekend games. I started GW34 with 4 players involved in DGW action; Bailly, van Aanholt, Zaha and Gibson. The only DGW fixture that appeared straight forward was Man United visiting Turf Moor and Burnley. Many managers, including myself took a chance on Middlesbrough. Gibson had been starting since GW30, but many transferred him in. I took a hit last week and bought Zaha to start in my 3-5-2. Van Aanholt and Bailly were late transfers, in order to take advantage of DGW34 and DGW37 for Man United. Crystal Palace also has good fixtures in GW35 and GW37.
The weekend started off greast with King getting on the scoreboard for Bournemouth, but finished with just the one goal and no bonus points finishing with 8 points. Ten man Hull played outstanding after losing Niasse but Watford didn’t mount much of an offensive showing and goalkeeper, Jakupovic kept a CS for 6 points. Everton, as expected disappointed at West Ham, Lukaku had but one shot and really never was in the game, looked a bit lethargic offensive. Yet, that’s been his road form, poor…piss poor. This is the final weekend I will own Lukaku, who is being transferred out for GW35.
Top performer over the weekend, Eric Bailly, solely based on the captain’s armband. Looking over my starters, including three Spurs players and a few different captain polls, there was never really a consensus captain. Names such as Negredo and Rashford, as well as Benteke and Kane seemed to come to the forefront. I decided on Bailly, as he had a DGW facing Burnley (A) and the Manchester Derby against City. Rolling the dice, I felt good about United shutting out Burnley, which they did, 12 points for Bailly to start the week.
While City wasn’t involved in an EPL match this weekend, but visited Arsenal in an FA Cup semifinal match. City lost 2-1 in extra time, but registered 20 shots with just 3 on target. United have won 2 of the last 3 games, in all competitions against City. The last October 26, 2016, 1-0 in the EFL Cup 4th Round with 1-0 victories in their two wins. Confidence is high, this game could be played out to a 1-0 or 0-0, which would mean Bailly ends with a minimum of 24 points for the DGW. Of course that’s speculation, but that was my rational for captaining him.
My 31 points tentatively gives me an 8th green arrow in a row, now globally ranked at 699k, but expecting better at the conclusion of the week. There is no movement in either of my mini leagues, but just 55 points off the leader and 5 points from second place. My other mini league has second and fifth separated by 27 points, I feel confident I can push into second place by the end of DGW34,
With lineups already set, it’s not too early to look to GW35 and impending changes to my squad. My “Seeing Double” plan went out the door in GW34, when I decided not to pick up Sane for City, as I was going to triple up with Sterling and Aguero rounding out my squad. A knock picked up by Aguero in their FA Cup match may have me changing strategy before GW35. More GW35 discussion later this week at the conclusion of DGW34.