Sunday, 6 November 2016

Gameweek 11 Review: Hazard Back To Brilliant Best

Eden Hazard and Diego Costa reminded Stamford Bridge of their riotous scoring exploits in the 2014/15 season which won Chelsea the league.

While Costa has been consistent in front of goal so far, yet to go two games without a goal, Hazard's return to form has been somewhat unexpected and has caught even the more experienced FPL managers by surprise. Hazard has been difficult to weigh up as an FPL option this season, especially after last season's derisory returns. After showing his class in the opening gameweeks, it seemed he would continue to be a regular point-scorer, only for him to fail to score or assist between gameweeks 4 and 7. It seemed the mercurial Belgian had gone from effortlessly good back to last season's no effort and poor output.

Hazard is well and truly back to form now, as Chelsea's 'beauty and the beast' strike partnership have scored a combined 8 goals in the last 4 Premier League weekends. Still not necessarily must-haves, Hazard and Costa might be confidence players more than season keepers, proving right this blog's title. Right now they are very high in confidence.

Coutinho, Firmino and Co in Fino Formo

Phillipe Coutinho has hit the form of his Liverpool career. It is now 3 goals and 6 assists for him in 7 games, and FPL managers continue to flock to transfer him in....

Yes, this paragraph is very similar to the one last week. It's the same story again, but what's new this gameweek is his teammates were equally impressive. The Liverpool front 4 combined majestically to score 6 past a Watford team that had previously not conceded for over 5 hours of Premier League football.

Liverpool's attacking starlets were firing from all angles. Mane struck the first and forth. Firmino bagged his 5th goal and took his assist tally up to 5, Can joined the party, Wijnaldum scored from off the bench to better Chelsea's 5 goals against Everton. Liverpool's midfield is quite obviously the main source of FPL points this season. The only concern with Liverpool is their defence. Watford somehow managed to score from 1 of their 8 shots on goal despite being dominated in all areas.

Save Points over Clean Sheets?

Clean sheets are very rare this season. It is now conclusive. Baring gameweek 9's nine-clean sheet anomaly, gameweek 11 was the opposite extreme. It marked a rare week in FPL when there was only one clean sheet for me to write home about.

That clean sheet was a significant one, as it was by a Chelsea team recognised as defensively solid until Antonio Conte's steely guidance. Chelsea haven't conceded in 500 minutes. Their defenders come at a premium price of 6.0 and above, but Marcos Alonso, who scored against Everton, made 5 crosses and 25 attacking third passes, is proving great value. The deadline day signing is playing so far up-field in his left wing-back role he should be considered as more of a 6th midfielder that can also score clean sheet points.

However, FPL managers will be wise not to transfer in Thibaut Courtois, who is 7 points behind Tom Heaton overall, and just 5 points ahead of Artur Boruc despite having kept 3 more clean sheets than both. 

Written by Kyle Norbury, 

Stoke fan and Fantasy football nerd.

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