Goops’ Blog: A Week Is A Long Time (GW 11 Review/GW 12 Preview, 2019-20)

Tom’s good mate FPLGoops is writing an FPL blog for us this year from the perspective of an “FPL Everyman”.

See his Intro Post here. Follow him on twitter @FPLGoops.

He’s also teamed up with Jeremy, otherwise known as FPL Doodles, to bring you an exclusive “Doodle Corner” every week. Follow Jeremy on twitter @FPLDoodles1.

It’s not often FPL plays out in the fashion that you want it to or captures your message perfectly but….

I’m rather chuffed with what happened in GW11.

That’s because it has helped restore my faith in the game and hopefully demonstrates to readers of this blog that a week is indeed a long time in FPL.

Let me take you back to my GW10 Lesson Learned:

Gameweek 10 – Every once in a while you have a terrible week.  You are entitled to wallow in self-pity briefly but remember next week YOUR differential could smash it. Back yourself.

Tom, who knows me very well, has been telling me to stop moaning and pull myself together for weeks.

He thinks my start has been absolutely fine in what’s been a tumultuous start for even the most seasoned players and is fed up with my negativity!

Tom, I’m cheery again! (thank f for that – ed.)

I dusted myself down, I trusted in Aguero for 1 more week, I rode my luck owning and, crucially, playing both Lundstram (21) and Soyuncu (14). I registered a corking 82 points to effectively regain my rank from the previous week.

As you were, folks.  As you were.

I did take a hit.  I moved the misfiring troll Wilson down to Connolly in order to fund a gamble move of Mount to bring back Sterling.

I then backed Sterling with the captaincy, so the net impact of my hit was rather poor. However, the Gameweek was so successful it hardly mattered.

In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever achieved such a high score when my captain (AGAIN!) has failed to deliver.


Gameweek 11 Review

Lord Lundstram and Soy Sauce were not the only one’s to bolster my GW11.  Mane’s late salvo and Tammy’s tremendous away form played their part.


In fact, for the first time in ages, over half of my team registered some form of return.  Tomori was unlucky to lose his clean sheet and Connolly blanked vs Norwich in what was effectively a free hit to enable Sterling.

The City midfielders incredibly delivered nothing much to mutual chagrin of the whole Community.  On the whole though, a massive green arrow and a really positive bounce back. 

I said last week it’s important to ride the lows and then celebrate the highs. So, I make no apology for my much improved mood.  It does go to show that we can all have a blip, but we need to remember we’re playing for the long term and shouldn’t unduly panic.

It feels rather churlish to say, but that late Vardy goal did remove some of the gloss.  Would you believe it contributed a 150 rank fall, just that 1 goal because he is so highly owned?

And this leads me to consider what impact the Chelsea and Leicester assets in particular are having on our choices as the template shifts again in the lead up to Christmas.  Sadio Mane seems to be the only Premium truly displaying any level of consistency.    Would we have previously dared before to contemplate a team set up without any of Sterling, Salah or Aguero.  A lot of FPL stalwarts are certainly considering it now, brought into sharper focus in GW12 with the first big matchup between these 2 standout performers.

It always comes down to one thing for me.  Have you been lucky enough to pick the right players at the right time?

It certainly feels like a time you can survive and indeed thrive without the usual big hitters and the notion of a ‘Season keeper’ is being cast into serious doubt for perhaps the first time.


Gameweek 12 Planning

As it turned out my FOMO over Sterling was unjustified and I needn’t have worried about the hit. My existing squad delivered the strong performance.  However, what it did achieve is important. It has given me the opportunity to (finally) join the Vardy Party by removing Aguero.  Thanks for signing off with a goal, Kun, it’s the least you could do.

My challenge this week is whether or not to finish the squad realignment with another hit or ride it out with a slightly imbalanced squad.  My move for Sterling has left me with 3 attacking players in the bargain basement priced at 4.6m.  That’s one too many.

Ordinarily I would be satisfied playing Cantwell at home to Watford but his loss of form and now his place puts a big question mark on that.  I could risk it but I suspect he’ll return a 1 pter at best.

With 3.5m in the bank I have choices again.  I could remove one of Guendouzi or Cantwell and triple up on Leicester or Chelsea which looks wise given their fixture run and current form.  I put it out to the Community on which club they recommend for the triple and Leicester is clearly where most of you see the value over the next few weeks.

There is a 3rd option which I like a lot.  Raul Jimenez (Jimmy) is a player I never found room for last season and watched in dismay as the rest of FPL lapped up goal after goal, point after point.  After an indifferent start he has rediscovered his mojo ahead of a delicious looking run of fixtures.

As my backline is perfectly stable, I’m tempted to move Connolly (very much a 1 week punt) over to Jimmy giving me the V-A-J frontline.  In fact, it’s more than tempting.  I like the squad balance and also the sword pick.  It feels like I’m wrestling momentum of my season back.  Two hits in a row is uncharacteristic for Goops 2019/20 (not last year when I took 21 hits!) but it would still only be my 3rd hit of the season and I’m excited about the potential rewards.

Captaincy choice is between Vardy and Abraham.  Whilst Tammy is in great form I’ve waited so long to bring in Vardy I simply have to back that up with the captaincy.

Sorry in advance for the 1 pointer.

I’m undecided on my 11th man here – I should play Lundstram of course and I probably will but I have a nagging feeling Cantwell may have recovered from his niggle and get a return.

Right now my bench will be Cantwell first sub, Rico 2nd and Douzi in 3rd.


Doodle Corner – Lord Lundstram

Jeremy at FPL Doodles has continued to entertain the FPL Community with his sharp-witted Doodles pulling apart the weekend action.

It was an easy choice this week – impossible to look past everyone’s favourite fpl out of position asset John Lundstram.  Not only are Sheffield United keeping clean sheets but Lord Lunny is now starting to pop up in the penalty area like a latter day Lampard.

He’s the gift that keeps on giving.  If you don’t own, ask yourself why.


Goops’ Unexpected Star of the Week


With all the talk centred around Leicester’s amazing attacking assets and a major clamour to bring in Vardy, Maddison or Tielemans, the cornerstone of Leicester’s improvement this season has been their seamless replacement of fan favourite Maguire at the heart of their defence in the shape of Caglar Soyuncu.

Back to back clean sheets and now a goal threat too, like his predecessor.  I bought him in purely on the basis of value and perhaps the opportunity for some bonus.  However, a goal and a cleanie was most unexpected and I’m just relieved I started him.  Looks a keeper!


Goops’ Weekly Pick

Clearly I cursed Martial.  He didn’t look up for it at all as the winds picked up around the Vitality stadium. He’s mercurial and we saw the worst of him.

This week I’m changing tack and going with a player who didn’t actually return FPL points last week but looked amazing on the eye in a very unexpected Newcastle away win – Alain St Maximin

You can see why he’s an instant fan favourite with the Toon.  Tricky and direct, he’s the type of player fans love to see. It may be that he delivers eye catching performances with no FPL return but buoyed after that rip roaring performance at West Ham, I can see him converting that into actual FPL points when Newcastle host Bournemouth this weekend, despite the fact the Cherries have 3 clean sheets in a row, surely for the first time ever.


Gameweek Lessons Learned

I’m compiling a list of my personal key learnings each week.  I’ll start running out of space soon so just going to show the last 5 Gameweeks from now on:

Gameweek 7 – Pep Roulette is part of FPL.  It will annoy you when it works against you but City attacking assets are worth the pain

Gameweek 8 – Key players will get injured. If they’re only likely to be out for 1 week then hold and use your bench.  You’ll be thankful for that extra FT the next week

Gameweek 9 – Rotation is rife with all these midweek European fixtures for the big teams so just like them utilize your bench.  Not all heroes wear capes

Gameweek 10 – Every once in a while you have a terrible week.  You are entitled to wallow in self pity briefly but remember next week YOUR differential could smash it. Back yourself.

Gameweek 11 – When it all slots into place, especially when you least expect it, remember to ENJOY IT. 

Good luck this Gameweek!