After a summer full of tinkering and toiling, fantasy football is finally back. The first gameweek of fantasy football is arguably the most important of all – largely due to the mass of spoil-sport drop outs who cannot face being embarrassed in front of their mates (admit it, we all know one). On the whole, week one was very high scoring, with a team total average of 47 points across all fantasy managers. Despite a few opening weekend surprises, the Premier League table has a very familiar look to it already, with Manchester City, Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal again making up the top four.
The highest scoring Goalkeeper of week one by far and away was Hull City’s Allan McGregor. Not only did he keep a clean sheet in Hull’s 1-0 victory over QPR, but he also saved a late penalty from Charlie Austin to hand Hull the victory, and bag himself a massive 14 points. McGregor was only selected by 2% of fantasy managers, but more than rewarded each and every one of them for his £5million price tag. Hugo Lloris, Brad Guzan and Joe Hart also scored well with a clean sheet.
It came as a surprise to many that Spurs new boy Eric Dier and another Hull player James Chester finished as the top scoring players in the whole of the Premier League last weekend. The two Defenders both finished with an impressive 15 points for their respective games, having both kept a clean sheet and scoring a goal. Defenders are awarded with a handsome six points per goal scored, highlighting the importance of selecting a defender who poses an aerial threat from set pieces. Despite having their team concede, Branislav Ivanovic and Laurent Koscielny both scored in opening game victory, finishing with a solid 10 points, justifying their price tag in the process. Mentions must also go to Nathaniel Clyne, Ron Vlaar, Joey O’Brien and Andrew Robertson for delivering solid points for their relatively low fantasy value.
Swansea City’s shock 2-1 win over Manchester United put a dampener Louis Van Gaal’s competitive debut, with Swansea’s Gylfi Sigurdsson, on his second Swansea debut, becoming only the seventh player in the last 7 seasons in the Premier League to grab a goal and an assist from the visiting team at Old Trafford. As a result of his impressive 13 point haul, Sigurdsson has been the most drafted in player in the Premier League ahead of gameweek 2. Big money players like Aaron Ramsey, Cesc Fabregas and David Silva vindicated their high values with good showings, and Raheem Sterling continued his brilliant form from the back end of last season and the World Cup to guide Liverpool to victory over Southampton with a goal and an assist – scoring 13 points. Goals for cut-price Midfielders like Seb Larsson, Ki Sung-Yeung, Lee Cattermole and Aiden McGeady. Alexis Sanchez opened his Premier League assist account in his first league game too, providing the ball for Koscielny’s header.
In an unlikely turn of events, and as the only player to score more than a single goal in week one, the highest scoring Premier League Striker was Saido Berahino – a player you could have picked up for a mere £5.5m. Fellow budget options in Steven Naismith (£5m) and Andreas Wiemann (£5.5m) completed the top three, meaning you could have had a colossal 44 points (if Berahino was your captain) from a front three costing only £16m. Despite only playing 8 minutes against Newcastle, Sergio Aguero managed a goal which secured him 6 points and in turn rescue the many fantasy gaffers who forked out the £12m for him. As was expected, there were also goals for Wayne Rooney (7 points) , Daniel Sturridge (6 point)and Diego Costa (6 points)on debut.
With most results going as expected, it will be interesting to see how the marquee matches of next go, with Manchester City hosting Liverpool and Everton facing Arsenal.
Let us know how your team did in Fantasy Football this week, and will you be signing up any of this week’s top points scorers? Also, check out our twitter page @TBRFootball and Facebook page “The Boot Room” for information on joining our private Fantasy Football league.
Stats and fantasy league facts via fantasy.premierleague.com. Use code 275208-73981 to join the TBR Fantasy League, and stay tuned for our Fantasy League Preview article on Thursday ahead of Gameweek 2.