Every week, we at Daily Fantasy Focus analyse the big hitters and wide misses of the weekend’s Premier League action.
Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal)
GW7 PlayON Points: 4,500
PlayON Price: £14.3
It’s taken a surprisingly long time for many of the Premier League’s marquee names to wake up this season and kick into gear. Until Gameweek 7, Alexis Sanchez was a primary offender in a group of suspects that includes Eden Hazard, Wayne Rooney and Sergio Aguero.
Across the opening six Gameweeks of the Premier League season, the Chilean was a shadow of the tenacious performer that had been so thrilling over the course of last season.
Prior to a Gameweek 7 fixture against early season bottle rockets Leicester City, Sanchez had registered zero goals from a league topping yet scatter-gun 31 attempts on goal, while he manufactured just six goalscoring chances for his teammates in that same timeframe.
Speculation arose – mine included – that this was the probable exhaustion of a player who’d endured two full years of football without proper rest.
It’s safe to say that that original prognosis has been firmly hurled out the window as he fired Arsenal to 5-2 victory at the King Power Stadium.
Some brave fantasy managers stuck with him through the lean weeks but a selection surge will almost certainly soon emerge following his comprehensive man of the match display.
In this case, the hat-trick very much maketh the man.
Romelu Lukaku (Everton)
GW7 PlayON Points: 3,595
PlayON Price: £11.1
Monday night saw Everton claw it back from a two goal deficit against what was up until that point, one of the most consistent defences in the league. West Brom had gone two goals ahead at the Hawthorns through Saido Berahino and Craig Dawson but Everton and their Belgian battering ram hit back with a counter immediately.
The ex-Baggies loanee put his old side to the sword with two goals and likewise provided a delicate assist for Arouna Kone’s deft finish. Lukaku’s start to the season however, has been very much like his Everton career to date – a stop start affair.
A fine early showing and brace in a 3-0 victory away to Southampton saw his fantasy stock shoot up considerably but the Belgian international had largely trailed off until Monday night’s reawakening.
With the Merseyside derby on the horizon, Lukaku may be a risky choice given his middling record against the Reds but that’s unlikely to stop the many fantasy managers who were won over by his dominant 3,595 point display.
Robbie Brady (Norwich City)
GW7 PlayON Points: 2,400
PlayON Price: £7.2
Despite a solid and often exciting start to the campaign, Norwich have so far struggled to keep any clean sheets in the top flight.
That in itself may be reason enough to err on the side of caution when selecting any of their backline in your line-ups but it’s also worth noting that the Canaries posses two of the most attack minded defenders in the league so far, in Russell Martin and Robbie Brady.
Brady was admittedly moved up to a left wing role where he excelled against West Ham. Pouncing on a Mark Noble error to open the scoring at Upton Park on Saturday, the Ireland international generally wet his beak in every positive phase for the visitors.
A left-footed specialist on free-kicks and corners, Brady trails only Dusan Tadic (14) and Jefferson Montero (12) this season for completed crosses from open play, with 7 in total.
Facing two teams of similar stature in Leicester and Newcastle over the coming two weeks, the Irishman could work his way into daily fantasy popularity.
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
GW7 PlayON Points: 730
PlayON Price: £14.9
Many commentators were expecting Aguero to run riot at White Hart Lane on Saturday much as he’d continually done against Spurs throughout his Premier League career – putting a total of ten past them since 2011/12.
This time, it wasn’t to be.
The Argentine missed a couple of huge chances that could’ve ended the game after Kevin De Bruyne had put the Sky-Blues ahead early on. This profligacy in front of goal is a recurring theme this season and to be honest, it’s difficult to pinpoint any significant cause other that a lack of confidence and anticipation on his part.
Just one goal in seven games and six major chances missed tells the story in its own right.
Boaz Myhill (West Brom)
GW7 PlayON Points: -75
PlayON Price: £6.9m
Boaz Myhill went into last night’s game against Everton as arguably the goalkeeper of the season so far, having trailed only Joe Hart for clean sheets with a total of four in the preceding six games.
Myhill however struggled to lay a hand on the ball, managing a save on just one of the four shots on target that Everton fired his way.
The home team threw away a two goal lead to a thirty minute burst from the Toffees as the aforementioned Lukaku turned the game on its head.
The Baggies were victims of Pulis’ own conservatism in the end, as the home side retreated into themselves. As a result, Myhill was the biggest casualty of the night.
Wes Morgan (Leicester City)
GW7 PlayON Points: -525
PlayON Price: £6.7m
Leicester City’s breathtaking start to the season was firmly brought back down to earth in Gameweek 7 but not before the Foxes contributed to another rollercoaster game with Arsenal, as the visitors ran out as 5-2 winners at the King Power Stadium.
Defending hasn’t been a strong point in Claudio Ranieri’s set-up this season with his side preferring to outscore their rivals more often than not. The centre-back pairing of Morgan and Huth were particularly culpable on Saturday with the former eventually claiming the lowest PlayON score of the week with a total of -525 points.
The Leicester captain and Jamaica international was at pains to deal with the pace and movement of the likes of Theo Walcott and particularly Alexis Sanchez who demolished the Foxes’ defence.
You’d have to feel that this performance could bring about a sea change for Leicester who’ve perhaps rode their luck at times this season.