Fantasy Football Fixtures Analysis Essay

Fantasy Football Fixture Analysis Gameweek 25

Welcome to Fantasy Football Fixture Analysis Gameweek 25. Gameweek 24 divided friendship groups (or mine at least!) and the 247 community alike. For those who captained Aguero, Aguero scored a hat-trick. For those who did not, Aguero scored the worst hat-trick ever televised. It was worse than the goal the rubbish kid on your junior football team scores when you are 10-0 up and everyone’s task shifts to getting him to score. His first never touched him, his second was a penalty and almost saved, and his third was literally like the rubbish kid scoring his goal having stood on the penalty spot for the whole half after your best player who had trials for Chesterfield goes around their whole team to set him up. It is probably pretty clear by now that I do not have Aguero.

So, onto Gameweek 25. I will probably just leave my sofa pulled away from the wall so I can assume the same position I watched last week’s Manchester City game for the West Brom tie next Wednesday.

This will be my first article for the site, which is exciting. I think the formality now is to give a compliment to Init so that he reciprocates in the thread. A wizened uncle or something. Anyway, I digress, onto the Gameweek 25 fixtures.

We obviously need to factor in the GW28 blanks possibilities but Mito has provided an excellent analysis of blank/double GWs here, so I will not add any additional length to this already unnecessarily long piece. Suffice it to say that City and United have some nice fixtures coming up, but it would be foolish to load up on them without a plan for GW28. We shall have a (slightly) clearer picture of who blanks and who doesn’t after this weeks semi-finals.

Whilst you read this it will become apparent that I do not actually think there are that many teams with genuinely ‘favourable fixtures’ over the coming weeks. This is because, whilst there are several mid-table sides with favourable fixtures, they are also mid-table sides. There is no point sugar-coating it. If you actually just want to see which sides play the bottom teams, there is a pretty chart for that! My aim here is to warn you of the warning signs that lie underneath the green ‘1s and 2s’ on the FPL site, and also to offer comfort to those whose teams are riddled with Spurs players.

The All Important Fixture Tracker…

Gameweek Tracker GW25-31

Favourable Fixtures
West Ham – Crystal Palace (H), Brighton (A), Watford (H)
Deceptively, Palace have not actually conceded many away from home all season. If you remove the nine goals the Manchester duo managed to put past them, they have conceded just six in ten and kept three clean sheets in their last five. They face a West Ham side that are arguably (also) ‘on the turn’, having scored two in back-to-back home matches (against Newcastle and West Brom). Before that, the Olympic Stadium was only graced with four Hammers goals from the Hammers in six, although that did include Liverpool, Leicester, Chelsea and Arsenal.

The Hammers have four clean sheets at home and Palace have only scored in three away games all season. Before you triple up though, those three games are also their most recent three which saw them rack up six goals. Watford have also only blanked twice on the road all season (although they both came in their last four). The Hammers have kept just two away clean sheets in 13 (WBA, STO).

Having scored 11 in an unbeaten last four away (including a 1-1 draw with Spurs), their attackers might be worth holding onto for just a little bit longer. Brighton have been strong at the back of late though with three clean sheets in five at home and have only lost to City and Liverpool all season there. The latter did manage to put five past them, but West Ham ain’t Liverpool *claps of applause echo around the amphitheatre for such an insightful comment*.

Stoke – Watford (H), Bournemouth (a), Brighton (H)
Stoke bring a cracking set of fixtures to the table. Their new right-back, Moritz Bauer, might be able to grab you an assist from his Rory Delap-esque throw-ins, but sadly that will probably be all you get from a Potters defender in their next two games. At home, Stoke have managed to keep just two clean sheets all season after beating Huddersfield Town 2-0 this weekend, the first coming against Arsenal back in August. Interestingly though, Watford have blanked in their last three away matches (Burnley, Brighton and Leicester) which probably fuelled their decision to sack Marcos Silva. With new man Javi Gracia now at the helm, it is time to bring out a classic piece of what I like to call ‘pub analysis’. ‘What is that?!’ I hear you cry. I am glad you asked. It is manipulation of information in order to support a point of view which could equally be used to support conflicting opinions. A new manager brings out the best of pub analysis, being able to both represent ‘chaos and disorganisation’ and players ‘trying harder’ to impress. Today I will opt for the former. Tomorrow, who knows?

Things don’t look much better for GW26 either, with Bournemouth having scored seven in their last three at home and Stoke only managing one clean sheet away, which was back in October (against Watford).

So why on earth are Stoke in my ‘favourable fixtures’ section? Well, to be perfectly candid, I threw them in based purely on the fixtures and started blindly writing. Fear not though, Brighton have saved the day. At least if I change this section to ‘favourable fixture’. Brighton have not scored in their last six away, only scoring five in all 12.

For those of you with Stoke attackers, firstly, why? Secondly, they have actually managed to score 2+ in a respectable six out of 12 at home. Promisingly, Brighton have conceded 2+ in seven away and Watford are on a five game losing streak on the road, conceding nine (although this does include the three Pep’s boys put past them). It might be time to dust the Welsh Pirlo off and thrust him into your starting line-up. Then again, the bench is probably fine.

Manchester City – West Brom (H), Burnley (a), Leicester (H)
Two home games in their next three sees Manchester City automatically get a place in my list, whoever their opponents. The ‘Cityzens’ (nope, still not doing it for me) have scored a whopping 42 in 12 at home, scoring 2+ in every tie since their 1-1 draw against Everton back in August. The Etihad has most recently seen four against Tottenham, four against Bournemouth, three against Watford and three against Newcastle.

West Brom have only conceded 2+ on four occasions away though, outperforming Leicester who come in with six. Burnley’s home form is fairly impressive once again this season with six clean sheets already under their belts. Forgive me for not putting City on a par with Palace, Huddersfield, Newcastle, Swansea, Watford or Stoke though, given they have scored 2+ on nine away days.

City are actually keeping more clean sheets away from home: seven compared to four, and Burnley have failed to score five times at home.

Manchester Unted – Spurs (A), Huddersfield (H), Newcastle (A) – – Sanchez
Their 3-0 drubbing of Stoke may signal a resurgence for Manchester United after a rather dismal five in five at home. Once Tottenham is out of the way, Huddersfield make the trip over the Pennines. Jones could be in for another helping of bonus points, the Terriers failing to score in nine of their 12 away matches. It looks like ‘Wagner’s magic’ might have run out, his side having conceded six in their last three on the road.

It is then Newcastle’s turn to receive the Red Devils. Despite United scoring 14 in their last six away matches, Newcastle have only conceded three in their last four, despite visits from Everton (1) and City (1) in that time.
Oh yeah, and that Arsenal reject should be playing for them by next week. That might help.

Tottenham – Manchester United (H), Liverpool (A), Arsenal (H) & then (cry, HUD, bou, NEW)
Whilst Tottenham’s fixtures are clearly awful on paper, I do not think there is cause for total pessimism. It is true that they have only scored 2+ goals in 5/12 home games this season, although in true Harry Kane style that includes putting four past Liverpool and Everton and five past Stoke and Southampton. It is also true that they have not managed to score more than a solitary goal in seven home ties. However, their form suggests they are getting used to the too wide, too narrow, too long, too short Wembley turf, with 17 in their last five home games.

Further, Manchester United have only kept one clean sheet (Everton) in seven away from home. They have not conceded three in one sitting yet on their travels though, so Kane probably is probably not armband material. Arsenal are next to make the visit to England’s stomping ground and have only managed to keep three clean sheets away from home all season (Chelsea, Burnley and West Ham), conceding 2+ on six occasions. The Lilywhites did fail to score against both sides earlier in the season though.

As for Spurs defenders, their home ties do not bring much promise. United have only blanked twice on the road (Liverpool and Chelsea) and have scored 2+ in 7/12. After blanks in their first three away games, Arsenal have only failed to score against West Ham on their travels (scoring a frustrating single goal six times).

Sandwiched in between is a trip up north to Liverpool. As noted above, Spurs have only failed to score on the road in two matches (United and Arsenal), scoring 2+ on six occasions. Liverpool’s notorious defensive home record cannot be ignored though, having conceded just seven in 12, and three of those came against City last week!

Huddersfield – Liverpool (H), Manchester United (A), Bournemouth (H)
If anyone still has their defenders, it is probably time to ship them. After conceding nine in their last three matches (against Leicester (3), West Ham (4) and Stoke (2)), a visit from Wagner’s old ally is the last thing they need. No one has any of their attackers, do they?

West Brom – Manchester City (A), Southampton (H), Chelsea (A) & then (HUD, wat, LEI, bou, BUR)
If you are clinging on to WBA defenders because you remember ‘the good ol’ times’ (I guess you are also a Liverpool fan), now might be the time, for once, to take a leaf out of Arsene Wenger’s book and hand them some plastic bin bags to get packing with. The Baggies have kept just one clean sheet away from home since beating Burnley 1-0 back in August, although it was notably against Liverpool in GW17. Away trips to Manchester City and Chelsea in their next three do not read too kindly for Pardew’s boys, with City having scored 3+ in 9/12 home matches (with 18 in four against those occupying the 12-20 spots) and Chelsea netting 2+ in 6/12. Then again, if Morata is playing for them again by that point, Evans and co. will probably get a clean sheet! If you have three defenders with promising fixtures for GW25 though, it might be worth benching your West Brom assets for the City tie as Southampton visit the Hawthorns for GW26 with just nine goals in 11 away matches this season, blanking on four occasions. West Brom have five clean sheets at home in 12.

If you can weather this storm (or just bring them in for GW28), Pardew has a bit of respite in the form of four ‘easy’ fixtures in their following five games.

Thanks for reading Fantasy Football Fixture Analysis Gameweek 25. This article was written by AT.


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Fantasy Football Fixture Analysis Gameweek 6

Welcome to Fantasy Football Fixture Analysis Gameweek 6. It was pointed out to me last week that I have a habit of answering questions that I pose to myself. Do I care? I do not. I’m just kidding – I promise you will not find me answering my own questions in the meaty part of the article this week. And it’s not because I feel that I shouldn’t be answering my own questions – I just feel that given my performance thus far this season, those answers I provide would probably be wrong.

This game is breaking me this season, and it’s making me question everything I know about being an analyst and sports fan in general. This past week, after point hit adjustment, I scored 57 points. That was as close as I’ve come to hitting the average score for a round all year. Part of me wonders if this is part of some curse for leaving the MLS behind for good. If that’s the cost I have to pay to not watch a football team play in a baseball stadium, then so be it. But it sure would be nice to get back to some winning ways in FPL. So in an attempt to build my own slump buster, here’s what I’m thinking for favourable fixtures this coming round. If I’m wrong, please tell me so – I have no pride left. I just want to score higher than the average.

The Fixture Tracker…

Gameweek Tracker GW6-11

Top 3 Best Bets
Manchester City – CRY (H), CHE (A), STO (H)

It’s quite possible that City are the most reviled team in all of England this morning – at least in terms of viewing them through an FPL lens. How long have we heard now that City are going to rotate the squad? How long have we bought into the myth that KDB is essentially going to be converted into a third centre back? And just so you know, you can’t trust that either Kun or Jesus will start any given match – and if they do start, they most certainly won’t play well together. Whether you hear this stuff from paid pundits, weekend bloggers or even your mate down the way at the office, we can all agree that we’ve at least heard these rumblings in one form or another.

Ladies and gentleman, we’ve been duped. For his own nefarious purposes of winning his home mini league, Pep Guardiola has spread disinformation about his squad in an attempt to throw everybody off of his true plans. Just look at the stats, and you’ll see that the great impending demise of City for FPL viability has been nothing more than a hoax. City, along with United, are averaging just north of 3 goals scored per game. The also mirror United in that they’ve only allowed a pair of goals against them over five matches. Aguero and Jesus have combined for 9 goals already – no other pairing in the league even comes close to that number. And KDB, the man that was supposedly not going to provide assists this year due to positioning and rotation, now has 3 assists on the year (which puts him only two off the league lead in that stat). Now, we could all continue to listen to the rumo(u)rs, or we can just take the facts at face value – and those facts back City 100%.

Even if we look to the match away to Chelsea as a stumbling block in this scenario, you can’t deny that the two home matches against Palace and Stoke aren’t just a couple of ripe apples, waiting to be picked. Palace have yet to score a goal this year, and City are as stingy as any defence in the league – there is no amount of analytical shuffling that can give Palace any chance in that game. Chelsea are good, but they’re not playing to the level that City are. If Hazard comes back full time, they might ask a couple of questions of Guardiola’s side, but we can worry about that if/when it happens. And as for Stoke, they’re decently decent…? It’s hard to find a phrase that encapsulate them better than decently decent, but they don’t have enough firepower to handle City at the moment.

Tottenham – WHU (A), HUD (A), BOU (H)

A lot of people put their armband on Kane this week – and those people will probably still be livid about his output (or lack thereof) this past weekend. But even the best strikers don’t score in every game they play, and you have to continue to play the odds when they go in your favour to find those points. It’s not like Kane was completely inept on the pitch against Swansea, he did take his chances when they arrived – but the finishing we’ve come to expect was severely lacking. It happens. From a statistical standpoint, Spurs dominated that game, and their 0-0 draw was not warranted. Consider that Spurs shot the ball 26 times on Saturday (8 of those shots on target), had 75% possession and generated 11 corners, and it should make you think that they were just unlucky on the day – but it no way do stats like those make you think that the team is fundamentally broken in some way. I hate when pundits say that a team ‘had a bad day at the office’, but in this case, it might be the best way to look at it.

And as for continuing to play the odds when they go in your favour, if you own Kane/Eriksen/Alli, then the odds are definitely going your way in this run that Spurs have coming up. West Ham are only out of the relegation zone via a slight goal differential, but they don’t have their act together enough to compete here. Huddersfield continue to surprise many people – but the biggest team they’ve played thus far is probably Leicester, so we’ll see what they’re really made of now that they have to play one of the bigger clubs. And Bournemouth would be the worst team in the league right now if Palace weren’t throwing off the curve in their bid to be the first team mathematically relegated by Christmas. All in all, this should line up nicely for those who took the plunge and brought in Spurs coverage.

Everton – BOU (H), BUR (H), BRI (A)

In looking at this pick, please remember that this is a Fixtures article, and try to forget that I’m an Everton fan – this whole thing will work out better for both of us if you can pretend I don’t have just a little bias here. Everton have had a horrible string of results; in fact, it’s been so bad that they actually find themselves in the relegation zone. And I’m not here to make a justification as to why Everton have only scored 2 goals this year, or even why they’ve got one of the worst defensive records on the league table right now. I don’t need to make any justifications because you, an intelligent FPL player, know that Everton had to play City, Chelsea, Spurs and United in consecutive matches with three of those games being away from home. As smart as you are, dear reader, you can probably surmise that most any team in the league would be battered after such a run. Undoubtedly, Everton had one of the worst schedules in modern FPL history, and they’ve got all the lumps, bumps and bruises to show for it.

But after such a brutal schedule, there inevitably has to be an easier set of fixtures waiting for them – and that’s exactly what we have here. I could’ve put United here simply based on their form, but this schedule that Everton has now is too good to gloss over. I really feel the worst for Bournemouth here. Everton are just dying to crush a lesser team to build up some confidence again, and I feel like this is a good spot for such a game to happen. Burnley could pose a problem or two based on their decent form at the moment, but Everton will be keen to build a bit of momentum in a second home game. And Brighton might be a bit more stout at home given their result of WBA, but the fanboy in me still sees Everton nab 7-9 points from this run getting capped off on their grounds regardless.

Teams To Avoid
Crystal Palace – MCI (A), MUN (A), CHE (H)

Leading up to this run, Palace have been inept, impotent and have found numerous ways to beat themselves. Now, however, they’re truly in danger. Ask Everton how they found a schedule like this to their liking, and they’ll probably say… it’s not so great. The only good news right now is that Palace may get a bit of TV time going up against the titans of the league. The bad news is that they may not actually score a goal until October at the earliest. It should be common knowledge at this point to avoid Palace at all costs, but Benteke is such a great value forward, right?

Bournemouth – EVE (A), LEI (H), TOT (A)

No surprise here considering that I’ve spent nearly an entire article bashing this team in some roundabout way. But the bashing is warranted. Bournemouth wilt whilst on the road, and a pair of away games against a better class of competition is going to do them no favours. Interesting fact: through five games, Bournemouth players have only accumulated 5 BP total. Out of 30 possible BP, these guys have taken 5. I like those little stats that paint a better picture of a team the longer you think about them.

Brighton – NEW (H), ARS (A), EVE (H)

Don’t look now, but Newcastle have somehow found their way into the Top 4, and that could pose a problem for Brighton. Nobody thinks that Newcastle will retain their post for long, but they’ve rattled off three straight wins against teams on Brighton’s level, and that kind of form should be worrying for BHA. Arsenal away is a tricky game on paper, but Arsenal might have a mental lapse and gift away a win. Or Arsenal could crush them by five goals – that’s a hard one to call. Finally, Everton ‘should’ have some momentum going into their match with Brighton, so we who call upon a higher power to heal Seamus Coleman will remain hopeful of a positive Everton outcome.

One Week Punt
Brought to you with a bit of a different slant on it again this week. We asked our FF247 League sponsor Starting 11 to give us their ‘One Week Punts’, given as this is what they do for a living basically. We shall hand over to them for their One Week Punts line-up for GW6 –

You can download Starting 11 now on iOS and Android.

Thanks for reading Fantasy Football Fixture Analysis Gameweek 5. This article was written by Guy


The main publicFF247 League , which anyone is welcome to join, can be accessed using the following code 1503-553 (auto-link below).

We are delighted to say that this has a prize pool of £300 which will be split between the top 3 and this has kindly been sponsored by STARTING ELEVEN Please take a minute to click on the link and visit their wonderful Live Daily Fantasy Football game.

Join Our League – Quick Link
League Code: 1503-553
View league standings
Our Regulars League for 2017/18 is now open and has a cash prize pool of £300 paid directly to the winners from the FF247 management team. The first 5 places are paid out in a tiered system.
To enter this one you need to be an active and recognised site member and you need to e-mail us for the league code –

*terms and conditions apply and are available upon request. Management reserve the right to review membership of this league on an ongoing basis. If you enter and win a prize you have to have commented on the site at least 10 times for 3 consecutive months between January 2018 and March 2018 or you will not be considered for a prize.

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The League Codes for FF247 for the 2017/18 season are as follows:

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