After an eventful gameweek 15, we have had to turn our attention to GW16 and assess the squad. Ahead of GW15, we controversially transferred out Salah and Aguero and brought in Sterling and Kane. You can read our thought process on the moves in our GW15 preview article.
Before we go into the transfers for the week, here is a reminder of our GW15 performance:
💥 GW15 Review 💥
🔸950 Overall Points
🔸16,387 Overall Rank 📈
Big green arrow for the GW 👊🏻
➡️Kane ©️ success 🔥
➡️Wolves duo returning 🐺
➡️ Richi/Fraser showing #FPL value 💰
— FPLFootballAdvice (@FootballAdvice5) December 6, 2018
A difficult week turned into a great one regarding ranks, and the importance we placed on squad depth was justified with Jimenez and Doherty coming off the bench.
Gameweek 16 Transfers
So prior to GW16, we had 1 free transfer and a few concerns in the team.
The main priority was the injury to Arnautovic and who we wanted to bring into the team to replace him. We chatted about the best similar priced replacements in our recent article, so the decision was whether to do a straight swap or fund a premium striker.
We were conscience of the Arsenal fixtures upcoming – and after opting for Kane over Aubameyang – we had no cover in the team. Due to already owning Kane and his price tag, the ownership of Aubameyang as well was out of budget, so eyes turned to Lacazette. Although Aubameyang has been getting the headlines, there is still plenty of value in the ownership of Lacazette, discussed here.
In order to own Lacazette, the sale of Hazard was required to fund the transfer. Chelsea face City this weekend and it could prove to be another tough afternoon for Chelsea and Hazard. The Belgian was on our radar for a few gameweeks, with his early season form still in our minds. However, the Arsenal fixtures are too good to ignore so we decided to make the move and transfer out Hazard and Arnautovic to fund the purchase of Lacazette.
Lacazette not only has great fixtures, but is a great captaincy option over the Christmas period. Hazard on the other hand, didn’t bring enough confidence to justify him as a regular captaincy choice, and for his price tag the player needs this option.
This left us with £9.4m ITB for a midfielder to replace Hazard. The best value choices included Sane, Sigurdsson, D. Silva, Anderson and Eriksen. Having transferred in Sterling last week, the big decision was whether to own double Man City midfield. Sane has been in amazing form recently, and with the injury to Mendy it seems that his position is cemented (as much as it can be under Pep).
Sane’s form ruled out the ownership of David Silva, especially with the imminent return of De Bruyne. Already owning Richarlison, Everton don’t provide enough value to double their midfield therefore Sigurdsson wasn’t the best use of the money.
West Ham have some great fixtures, and with the injury to Arnie the attacking threat is firmly on Anderson’s shoulders. However, in a straight shoot out between him and Sane, there is only one winner.
The final decision was between Sane and Eriksen. Eriksen has come back into form, with 4 assists in his last 3 matches. However, the stats are a reason why we couldn’t justify owning Eriksen, especially already having Spurs cover in their best FPL asset, Harry Kane. Having not scored this season, Sane provides both the goal and assist potential that Eriksen arguable lacks.
So we decided to go for the double Man City midfield, with the team looking head and shoulders above any other team in the league. The transfers were made on Wednesday evening so we were able to avoid the price falls and rises of the players involved, an example of the importance of tracking player value.
So to conclude our GW16 transfers:
Hazard to Sane
Arnautovic to Lacazette
– 4 points hit
Team arrangement was difficult, and the bench hasn’t been confirmed yet. Fraser and Wan – Bissaka are making a case for a start, especially the former. With doubts over the fitness of Robertson and the upcoming European crunch match, the bench may well be needed this weekend anyway.
Captaincy this week for some managers is a tough one with Chelsea and Man City playing against each other. We think that the best value for captaincy will be Arsenal assets, in particular Aubameyang and Lacazette. Playing at home to Huddersfield, they have conceded 16 goals in their last 7 away matches. Arsenal on the other hand have scored 16 goals in 8 home matches, suggesting it could be a big win for the Gunners.
The only risk for captaincy is the question marks over the game time for either frontman. Lacazette was benched, while Aubameyang played 90 minutes in GW16. Although there is risk, we think there is still value in captaining either player.
Outside of Arsenal, Kane faces an away match at Leicester, who are unbeaten in their last 6 league matches. Leicester have only conceded 6 goals in 7 home matches, proving to be a tough defence to crack. Spurs, like Liverpool, face a big European match on Tuesday so there is a case that Kane may not play the full 90 this weekend. Although fixture proof, we would recommend captaining an Arsenal player over Kane if you own them.
As mentioned, popular captaincy picks Sterling and Hazard both face each other in GW16. While the choice of picking them isn’t as attractive as usual, we think that Sterling is the best option of the two. Man City are averaging 3 goals per match, and Sterling has been in great form and could easily continue this against Chelsea.
Hazard on the other hand, we think is too risky of a pick for captaincy. Having not scored since GW8, we don’t think it’s the best choice to captain him against one of the best defences in the league.
The last option to discuss is Salah, who plays Bournemouth away this weekend. The Cherries have proved they can go toe to toe with any of the ‘big 6’ and we think it will be a tough match for Liverpool. Their European match will be in the back of Klopps head, and although Salah will start the match, you wouldn’t expect them to be at their very best.
Our choice for GW16 is Lacazette, as we cant ignore the home fixture against Huddersfield and happy to take the risk on gametime.
Good luck to everyone!
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out our GW15 ‘talking points’ article, discussing the Lacazette v Aubameyang debate and what to do with Chelsea assets.
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