View from the BaDMaN Boot Room – GW 5Friday, September 14 2018
Don’t call it a comeback. But the Premier League returns this weekend.
Note: I don’t suppose LL Cool J ever dreamed he would be quoted in BaDMan Boot Room. Twice would be something like a phenomenon.
But if James is going to make any headway up the 80s/90s Hip Hop FPL Table, below are the players he needs to get into his team. (He is currently 14th btw, one place above Eric B and just below Sir Mix-a-lot). Fact.
Here’s this Team of the Season so far…
Goalkeeper Pts GW 4
Neil Etheridge (CAR) 31pts 3pts
Marcos Alonso (CHE) 44pts 9pts
Jose Holebas (WAT) 34pts 10pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV) 32pts 5pts
Benjamin Mendy (MC) 32pts 5pts
Sadio Mane (LIV) 39pts 10pts
Lucas Moura (TOT) 24pts 15pts
Roberto Pereyra (WAT) 26pts 8pts
Eden Hazard (CHE) 27pts 11pts
Mo Salah (LIV) 25pts 8pts
Sergio Aguero (MC) 30pts 6pts
I know what you’re thinking… ‘Five midfielders…?! You’re mad. MAD, I tells ya!!!’
I’ll get to that in a second, but let’s deal with the curiosity in goal first. Yes, it’s still Cardiff’s Neil Etheridge. Worst team in the league, probably. Down by Christmas, possibly. Nine points ahead of Liverpool’s £zillion Alisson, shit yeah.
But before you cash in on the £4.6m bargain… Cardiff are at Chelsea this weekend, so Neil could have a bad case of net-rash by 5pm on Saturday.
Patricio (WOL) and Pickford (EVE) might be better choices this weekend (at home to Burnley and West Ham).
The Fab back-four keep their places…
A 10pt weekend from Holebas (WAT) prompted a little shuffle in the pecking order. Scotland’s second best left-back Robertson (LIV) and Man City’s third best left-winger Mendy could only muster 10pts between them. But Alonso (CHE) added a goal (that’s two from four) to his standard assist (that’s five from four) so remains top dog.
So far it is the best defensive performance since Johnny Cochrane in the OJ case.
Tripper (TOT) and Cook (BOU) are bubbling under, but I’m inclined to keep a closer eye on the Liverpool pairing of van Dijk and Gomez. The latter is £1m cheaper that the former.
I got five on it…
I’ve gone from three to four to five since the start of the season. And suggest you do the same. Number nines are a thing of the past. Post-Ronaldo and Messi, it’s all about the goal-scoring wide players now.
Like Salah (LIV) and Hazard (CHE). But they are only the fourth and fifth best on offer. Sadio (LIV) remains the Mane man with another tidy 10pts last week and is joined in the engine room by this season’s surprise packages Pereyra (WAT) and Moura (TOT).
Neither are as easy on the eye as the three previously mentioned but there is plenty of end product – and they are significantly easier on the virtual wallet.
Pedro (CHE) at a thrifty £6.8m and Serri (FUL) at a trifling £5.4m are also worthy of your attention.
And then there was one…
If you could only pick one, then Aguro (MC) is probably the pick. Over 52% agree probably, but precisely 52% consider Sergio worth the £11.3m investment. Mitrovic (FUL) is only lagging by 1pt – and about the half the bunce (£6.7m) – but long-term only Lukaku (MU) and Kane (TOT) offer a realistic alternative route to 25+ goals. And there are similarly priced.
Honourable mentions to Wilson (BOU) and Deeney (WAT) too. Their faces might not fit with the FA – both must’ve been a tad miffed at missing out last weekend – but they are hot right now.
More from the BaDMaN Boot Room next week. But you better leave now – I think I hear Roy Keane coming…
PL Previews GW 5 - 2018/19Thursday, September 13 2018
PL Preview Game Week 5
Guess who's back in the mutha lovin' Hizouse...
No. It's me. But I've got ten delicious homemade Premier League Previews for you, including Forecasts, Scorecasts and no borecasts.
If you've been paying attention, you'll know that we are taking a slightly more Fantasy-friendly view on PL matters this season. So I'll be delivering three - yes, three. count 'em - FPL MVP recommendations with every preview.
So they will look very much like this...
12.30pm Tottenham v Liverpool
Oof! A cracker to kick off the PL again after the disruptive frie… sorry, the exciting new Nations League tournament. And a chance for both teams to make a statement – Tottenham will be hoping theirs is more convincing than Lloris’ drunken one to the traffic police.
Spurs need a result after an unconvincing start but don’t general get much joy from Liverpool (that top four again…). Before last season (‘s 4-1 win) they managed just 2pts and a single goal from the previous four. Liverpool took 8pts and scored eight goals in that spell and have started this campaign with even better numbers than that. A win here would reverberate around the Etihad as much as Wembley.
Forecast: Draw at 5/2
Scorecast: 1-1 at 6/1
Hot Shot – Kane (TOT) looks a big leggy but can’t be overlooked.
Midfield General – No reason not to go with the Mane man (LIV).
Case for the Defence – Tripper (TOT) gets the nod after a midweek rest.
3pm Bournemouth v Leicester
Two teams on the up. Both already look to have strengthened well in the summer and should be battling it out at the top of the second tier within the PL – just below the Top Six – come May.
A fit a firing Callum Wilson has added a cutting edge to Bournemouth’s neat, incisive football (he could even be looking at the next England squad, given the shallow water at that end of the pool). Likewise, Vardy’s partial international retirement will add zip to a Leicester team who usually punch pretty much exactly their weight – just four defeats from the 20 matches v Bottom Half last term.
Forecast: Draw at 12/5
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2
Hot Shot – Wilson (BOU). Two goals, three assist so far.
Midfield General – Maddison (LEI) looks at home in the PL.
Case for the Defence – Pereira (LEI) has more assist appeal than clean sheet.
3pm Chelsea v Cardiff
This is the match Chelsea would’ve probably picked after an international break. And it could well see them sat on top of the pile at the end of the day, with fellow 100%-ers Liverpool away at Tottenham (although Watford have got an easy one v Man United).
Sarri’s Blues are full of powerful runners, with pace at the back, industry in the midfield and Hazard’s flair up top. Not sure how deliberate it is, but it looks a nice mix. None of which can be echoed about Warnock’s Blues. Their cocktail of blunt attack and scatty defence can’t be dressed with any amount of fruit or umbrellas. Another sobering day for Cardiff.
Forecast: Home Win at 2/11
Scorecast: 3-0 at 6/1
Hot Shot – Might be a day for Morata (CHE) to shine.
Midfield General – Hazard (CHE) will fancy this.
Case for the Defence – Can’t get in Spain’s team but Alonso (CHE) is top dog.
3pm Huddersfield v Crystal Palace
Bit of an early season crunch match. Perhaps even six-pointer. Huddersfield are still without a win, but 2pts from their last two is at least progress after an ugly opening Chelsea/ Man City right/ left combo. Palace at home, though, is a match that they will have circled as an opportunity for points.
Palace’s season is threatening to unravel already. A great start (2-0 at Fulham) has stumbled into a couple of gutsy defeats to Liverpool and surprise package Watford, before collapsing face-first into a home defeat to Southampton. An away win at Huddersfield will just about put things right. And I reckon they’ll get it.
Forecast: Away Win at 7/2
Scorecast: 0-1 at 11/2
Hot Shot – Even a half-fit Zaha (CP) is key to winning this.
Midfield General – Townsend (CP) could turn up here.
Case for the Defence – Wan-Bissaka (CP) is in 23% of FPL teams don’t you know.
3pm Man City v Fulham
Hmmm. City haven’t looked the slickers from last season so far. Pep’s preference for his technicians over his speedsters has caused them to labour in their last two against Newcastle (a win) and Wolves (a draw). Having the squad limp back from international duty isn’t ideal either, with a Champions League assignment on the horizon. But, let’s face it – they should have enough to win this.
Four points from their last two has kick-started Fulham’s season after stalling on the opening day, then dawdling at Tottenham. And their result here won’t define their season, so it’s pressure off.
Forecast: Home Win at 1/8
Scorecast: 2-1 at 10/1
Hot Shot – Aguero (MC) looks as sharp as ever.
Midfield General – The other Silva – Bernardo (MC) – is the pick.
Case for the Defence – Mendy (MC) is the man.
3pm Newcastle v Arsenal
Just 1pt from four matches can be perhaps be excused if three are against Tottenham, Chelsea and Man City. But Newcastle need six or seven on the board from their next four otherwise the crisis – that is only ever just around the corner from St James – could soon be parked up out front. A win here would make back-to-back mid-table six-pointers v Palace and Leicester look much more palatable. And is by no means undoable.
Arsenal’s underbelly looks as flaccid as ever and if the ritual humiliation of Petr Cech in goal continues - with the ban on kicking long – this looks competitive.
Forecast: Draw at 27/10
Scorecast: 2-2 at 12/1
Hot Shot – Not quite clicked yet, but Aubameyang (ARS) looks the part.
Midfield General – Likewise, but Mkhitaryan (ARS) has real quality.
Case for the Defence – Monreal and Bellerin (ARS) play like wingers.
5.30pm Watford v Man United
To be honest, Man United’s summer regression has been as big a surprise as Watford’s flying start. I wondered why there was such a hoopla about signing another defender – that end of the pitch wasn’t the issue last season – but they have looked chaotic at the back. Even De Gea looks beatable, which hasn’t been the case for a season or three. Swatting the hornets will be a big result.
But won’t come easy. Watching their muscular overthrow of Tottenham’s 1-0 lead was like seeing your friend being bundled out of a nightclub. No amount of pleading or protests were going to change the outcome. Will United head for the exit as meekly?
Forecast: Home Win at 3/1
Scorecast: 2-1 at 12/1
Hot Shot – Lukaku (MU) was unplayable v Burnley.
Midfield General – Three-goal Pereyra (WAT) is the man in the middle.
Case for the Defence – Holebas (WAT) has four assists. Four!
1.30pm Wolves v Burnley
Wolves have looked better value than their 5pts so far. But that’s the harsh PL for you. A last minute winner always peps things up though and if the first away win at West Ham is matched with a first home win today, all will be well at Wolves.
Burnley have had a long, hard season already. The European adventure didn’t turn out how it looked in the brochure (D5, L1) and has probably cost them PL points (D1, L3). The next four matches give them a chance to shake the sand out of their towels and get back to business though – Bournemouth, Cardiff and Huddersfield are up next.
Forecast: Draw at 12/5
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2
Hot Shot – The movement of Jimenez (WOL) will stretch Burnley.
Midfield General – And Neves (WOL) will find the gaps.
Case for the Defence – Boly (WOL) is just a FPL point behind Neves.
4pm Everton v West Ham
A feel-good factor has returned to Everton – and not just because Big Sam has gone. But while the Goodison faithful are appreciating the open, attractive style the fact that there have been goals at both ends in all four PL matches so far might be a slight cause for concern. A chunky injury list lengthened by Seamus Coleman and Michael Keane in the last week won’t help.
But is a break for West Ham, who haven’t been at all bad in their last three – but with nothing to show for it. Like Everton, they look much happier going forward and need a confidence boosting performance ahead of a Chelsea/ Man United double bill next.
Forecast: Draw at 5/2.
Scorecast: 2-2 at 12/1
Hot Shot – A day for Arnautovic (WH) to step up.
Midfield General – Anderson (WH) looks ready to explode too.
Case for the Defence – Not many clean sheets to be had here.
8pm Southampton v Brighton
The Saints looked set for another relegation fight until snapping up Danny Ings. But after their away win at Palace – something no Bottom Half club managed last season - they look set for a return to mid-table obscurity. At best.
Brighton will be hoping to join them, but it is all about their away form. They were the PL’s worst travellers last term and have started in the same vein this season (okay, okay – they have visited joiint leaders Liverpool and Watford). The Seagulls have already been beaten by their south coast rivals in the Carabao Cup and need something here to stop that Man United win looking like nothing more than a giant-killing.
Forecast: Draw at 11/5
Scorecast: 1-1 at 11/2
Hot Shot – Get in with the Ings crowd (SOT).
Midfield General – You can’t knock Knockaert (BRI). Two assists from four.
Case for the Defence – McCarthy (SOU) has been top Saint so far.
There you go. That's your Fantasy* and punting needs taken care of for the weekend.
(* well, some of them at least. Dirty boy).
View from the BaDMaN Boot Room - GW 4Friday, August 31 2018
One more round of matches and we break for that really exciting and important international tournament that everyone is buzzing about…
The Nations League series of matches are absolutely NOT simply friendlies by another name to try to distract fans into paying up to £70 to watch a collection of mostly unused substitutes play out a meaningless match.
Bang wrong. Uh uh. Nope. Not at all.
It’s the Nations League. Y’know, a bit like the World Cup, but better.
Anyway, the sweet FA say it’s happening so there’ll be no Premier League next week.
So savour the Team of the Season so far…
Goalkeeper Total Last week
Neil Etheridge (CAR) 28pts 2pts
Marcos Alonso (CHE) 35pts 11pts
Benjamin Mendy (MC) 27pts 4pts
Andrew Robertson (LIV) 27pts 9pts
Jose Holebas (WAT) 24pts 9pts
Sadio Mane (LIV) 29pts 3pts
Roberto Pereyra (WAT) 26pts 8pts
Mo Salah (LIV) 25pts 8pts
Lucas Moura (TOT) 24pts 15pts
Sergio Aguero (MC) 24pts 2pts
Alexsandar Mitrovic (FUL) 24pts 16pts
But who’s going to do a job wherever you put them on the park this week, gaffers?
Boots off, slippers on. We’re heading for the BaDMaN Boot Room…
How long can this Welsh drag on…
Cardiff stopper Etheridge is hanging on to the No.1 spot by the skin of his Sondicos. But with Arsenal in town there are better options around. Pickford (EVE) is a decent option with Everton entertaining goal-shy Huddersfield. They’ve managed just three shots on target so far. This season.
Gullit bullet… er… mullet
Alonso (CHE) took a bit of stick from Ruud Gullit this week. More like a midfielder, apparently. And too tall and slow. Perhaps it was just the two assists and 11pts this week. Liverpool’s left back Robertson pushed him close and is averaging 9pts a week so far – so is on schedule for a 342pts season. Get him in. Like now.
The other perma-member of our select back four, Mendy (MC) had a quiet one, but is likely to be tearing up Newcastle’s right flank on Saturday teatime. But who joins them…
Hornet Holebas (WAT) played his way back in with a goal at the weekend. But going to Tottenham on Monday night might have you thinking about drafting in a Palace or Everton replacement. Their assignments at home to Southampton and Huddersfield should keep your sheets pristine.
Schlupp (CP) is the cheapest and best option at just £4.5m. With more to come from the likes of Baines and Coleman (both EVE) for a touch more dollar.
Get your Hazards on…
Another goal from Pereyra (WAT) has taken him to shirt-tugging distance of the Mane (LIV) man. With the jet-heeled Mo (LIV) and Moura (TOT) crashing the party on the back of match-winning performances.
You’ll get no arguments from me about any of them. But I will throw in a Hazard (CHE) warning that Eden is ready to play from the start. That means trouble for Bournemouth. Wolves’ Neves is currently level on pts, but going to £5.4m less – and won’t let you down at West Ham.
And Man City might react to spilling a couple of points last week. Their midfield is a bit of a quandary at the moment though, with Pep tending to favour his technicians over his speedsters at the mo. Gundogan is the mack daddy at the minute - and a snip at £5.5. Bernardo Silva makes a case, but wants another £2.1 off you.
Looking to the middle order…
Two goals and an assist for big Alex Mitrovic (FUL) means he bundles past Aguero (MC) and is officially the greatest ever striker to play in the Premier League. Between last week and this, that is.
On the plus side, he and his West London dandies are off to Brighton this weekend. And could well come back with pts. On the negative side, he is a clumsy cunt who just as likely to drop the nut on someone. So – personally – I’ll be looking elsewhere.
In the mid-range, Arnautovic (WH), Zaha (CP) and Tosun (EVE) are worthy of your attention. In the bargain basement I like the look of Jiminez (and the sound. Ahem… hhhhhhimineth. Nice.) And Burnley have had little joy in front of goal so far, but whipping boys Man United are in town.
Wood has been mainly on PL duty.
More BaDMaN Boot Room banter next week. Now GET OUT!
Who the hell is Matt Nesbitt?
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World Cup 2010 Prediction Panel with Ruud Gullit and Sky’s Charlotte Jackson
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