It’s almost Christmas time, but there’s still no rest for any of the twenty Premier League clubs, or indeed for any of the thousands of fantasy managers of MondoGoal.com, who are still eagerly lining up for a crack at their unique ‘season in a day’ make-up; winning cash, beating friends, and achieving absolute glory in only one match day.
Our fantasy bravery last week was partly rewarded, thanks in no small part to one David de Gea. Flying headlong at Mondogoal’s gameweek 16, Soccerlens crammed its side with Manchester United and Liverpool players, in an attempt to pre-empt the potential points haul from the titanic clash.
Turns out that Liverpool were as toothless as a gummy granny and frustratingly rudderless. We were quite upset, especially with Raheem Sterling, who cost us a whopping £9.2m, and achieved squat in his side’s dismal 3-0 defeat at Old Trafford.
Still, ever the optimists, we are once again going for the fantasy jugular and putting our eggs into Liverpool v Arsenal; a match up that has yielded 17 goals in the last five fixtures.
Remember the 4-4 back in 2009? Everyone gets a Christmas miracle, right?
GK: Wojciech Szczesny, Arsenal
The man with the unspellable/unpronounceable name rolls in as our number one this week, with Soccerlens diving right into the heart of gamweek 17’s most pivotal fixture.
Making a triumphant return to the first eleven in last week’s big win over Newcastle, the Polish shotstopper would surely have bagged a clean sheet were it not for the subtlety of Ayoze Perez up top for Alan Pardew’s side. Could play a big part in the match at Anfield; and with De Gea coming up trumps for us last time around, he could bag plenty of points (if our luck holds).
DF: Winston Reid, West Ham
Sam Allardyce’s men have been superb so far this season, climbing to fourth in the table, and proving to be a real handful. A home tie against struggling Leicester will be an enticing tie for any fantasy manager, with centreback Reid odds on to be among the points at Upton Park on Saturday.
DF: Andre Wisdom, West Brom
On-loan Liverpool man Wisdom’s performances have been one of the few highlights during what has been a generally underwhelming start for Alan Irvine’s side.
Still, with six clean sheets so far this term, the Baggies have proven to be a hard nut to crack, and a trip to QPR, themselves suffering at the bottom of the table, could yield more points for the young fullback.
DF: Kyle Bartley, Swansea
Swansea may boast the likes of Wilfried Bony and Gylfi Sigurdsson in their ranks, my Swansea fantasy choice is Kyle Bartley.
The 23-year-old former Arsenal trainee takes the last defender slot this week, with a match against the struggling Hull City a potential clean sheet affair. His small price tag also being a deciding factor.
MF: Christian Eriksen, Tottenham
Spurs’ Danish attacker is fast becoming a sure thing for fantasy managers across the land, with the former Ajax man racking up the points, despite his side’s inconsistencies this term.
Still only 22, Eriksen is on set pieces, has an eye for goal, and is possessing of a devilish through ball. A home tie against Burnley could see the youngster add to his six goals so far this term, the last of which coming late last week in the win at Swansea.
MF: Raheem Sterling, Liverpool
I know, I know. Why have we plumped for the profligate wide man once again, considering his uselessness last time out at Old Trafford?
Well, he bagged two in the 3-1 win over Bournmouth this week, and seems to have made the striker role his own in the absence of Daniel Sturridge, with Rickie Lambert and Marion Balotelli confined to the bench.
Its ‘last chance saloon’ for the England man; but if he can find his goalscoring touch, we may not come to regret our decision.
MF: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Arsenal
A much more consistent option in the midfield than perhaps his aforementioned England colleague, Arsenal’s Ox is finally getting the game time he deserves, with his intense running from wide areas playing merry hell with defences across the land.
The one downside to the youngster, fantasy wise, is his lack of an end product; but I have faith in him for the trip to Anfield, considering the vibrancy of the Gunners’ frontline in the home win over Newcastle last week. Oxlade-Chamberlain will be involved on Sunday, and I’m hoping he will have the final say.
MF: Stewart Downing, West Ham
The Hammers’ man of the hour, Stewart Downing is a must have for the visit of Burnley, with the England winger scoring points left, right and centre.
Playing just off the striker (a far cry from his days as a left back for Liverpool), Downing has scored or assisted in his last three outings; and I’m betting the 30-year-old continues that run on Saturday.
FW: Alexis Sanchez, Arsenal
Despite sporting a hefty price tag, Arsenal’s Chilean superstar just has to spearhead my side; with Liverpool’s backline there for the taking!
Nine Premier League goals so far for the 25-year-old has had Gunners fans cooing, and they will be looking to him again to provide the goods at Anfield. Speedy, ruthless, and full of trickery, he is fast becoming one of Arsene Wenger’s best ever purchases; and he could be set to show Liverpool just why that is this weekend.
FW: Jose Pozo, Manchester City
The young Spaniard has an enormous chance to make a name for himself for the visit of Crystal Palace, with 18-year-old set to start once more for the champions on the weekend.
With top scorer Sergio Aguero out until the new year, and both Stefan Jovetic and Edin Dzeko doubts, Pozo looks likely to lead the line for Manuel Pellegrini’s side; and with Palace struggling to gain momentum, City’s ‘mini-Messi’ could get himself on the scoresheet.
FW: Olivier Giroud, Arsenal
A deadly brace topped off what was a perfect return to Premier League action last weekend for the Frenchman. Up against a creaky Liverpool backline, and flanked by the likes of Alexis Sanchez and Danny Welbeck; it would be little surprise to see Giroud be among the points on Sunday, with Arsenal looking to gain a head of steam as we enter a chaotic month of festive fixtures.
What do make of our team? Reckon you can do better?
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Play the £1,000 Fantasy Football League With MondoGoal
Watching football will never be the same thanks to Mondogoal.com. Every week people are competing in their new one-day and one-week fantasy football contests with thousands of pounds being won.
This week they have a single contest, lasting just this weekend’s matches, and will pay out a £1000 prize pot. You don’t even have to come in first to win money. It costs just £5 to play and anyone who finishes in the top 50 will win cash. With only 220 total entries allowed you’ve got a great chance to win, especially since you can enter more than once if you like.
Even if the league doesn’t fill up, Mondogoal will still pay out the entire £1000 pot. Last week, over £3000 was handed out to fantasy football managers from around the world and they even have some free contests that award cash prizes.
Try it with us this weekend and have some extra spending money to get you through the holiday season.