It’s August and that can only mean one thing; the football is back. Except this year it’s different.
By different, I of course mean right. Villa are back in the correct league for a club of our stature and by the looks of our spending, our ambition does not stop there. It’s almost difficult to keep track of all our ins and outs, even as a Villa fan and there are 19 other teams in the league too. This becomes a problem when you are trying to win a fantasy football league; a problem that these articles will seek to address.
Every week this season, Heart of the Holte will write a preview for the fantasy football gameweek. This will give an overview of the fixtures teams have, players to look out for and the players to avoid. It will also review changes in the league in the previous week, tracking the performances of all you fans competing for glory in our private league. You will also find out about prize winners via these posts; so don’t miss them!
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So without further ado, here’s the preview of gameweek one:
Fixtures – teams of the week
In terms of fixtures, it’s a tricky job finding the teams that you want to pick more players from early on. However, Man City and Liverpool are undoubtedly going to be in the mixer again and not selecting any players from either of these teams will lose you points over the season. As a result I’d advise having at least 2/3 players from each of these teams in your starting XI.
Liverpool kick the league off on Friday night with a home game against Norwich… a fantasy football managers ideal scenario. Anybody who played the game during the Suarez era will love this fixture and remember just how rewarding it can be. In addition, Norwich have spent less than £1 million since getting promoted; realistically they are in the deep end here and Salah is the wave that could sink them. I don’t see Norwich keeping Liverpool to less than three goals, Liverpool players are therefore quintessential. Salah is definitely the pick of the bunch, he looked unplayable against City at the weekend and if he finds his shooting boots he will have a lot of fun at Anfield…
Man City play the next game, away to West Ham at 12:30 on Saturday. Whilst West Ham have made impressive signings in Haller and Fornals, City should prove too much for them. Between De Bruyne, the Silva’s, Sterling and Aguero it’s incredibly difficult to pick your man. For me it’s KDB this week but who knows whats going on inside Pep’s bald head. Either way you’ll want more than one City player…
With United lining up against Chelsea, Arsenal’s away game to Newcastle presents the next best opportunity to cash in points in my mind. We all know the managerial capability of the potato that Cashley has put in charge and therefore, Aubameyang is my number one choice striker this week. He has looked very good in pre-season and Arsenal have shown that they mean business this transfer window. I predict that they will finish third, and there defence will have nothing to do with this. It’s still looking incredibly weak so they will need to score a lot of goals to do so; their attackers and midfielders are going to be good choices.
Looking away from the ‘top clubs’, perhaps Bournemouth are a team to look at in Gameweek one. They face the newly promoted Sheffield Utd, who have spent more than Norwich, but have not dug too deep into their pockets over the summer. Whilst I rate Wilder as a coach, I have my doubts over whether they will be able to cope with Bounemouth’s attack. Remember, Villa scored 3 in ten minutes against a very similar Sheffield Utd team last season…
Whilst many fantasy players will be expecting big things from Tottenham against Aston Villa, I am a deluded member of the cult of Jack Grealish and expect just the opposite. If you want to play safe then, a Spurs player or two may be a decent idea (if you can work out who is playing). But, if like me, you think Dean Smith’s Villa are the greatest side to ever grace the land then join me and select Jack Grealish. I have no doubt that we will be rewarded with a spectacular super Jack winner before he lifts his shirt to show a photo of Daniel Levy sobbing at how ignorantly tight he was last summer.
- Liverpool vs Norwich
- West Ham vs Man City
- Newcastle vs Arsenal.
- Bournemouth vs Sheffield United.
- Villa vs Spurs
Wilson (8 million) or KIng (6.5 million) depending on the cash you have.
With all that said, here is my team for gameweek one…
Make sure to tweet your teams in to Heart of the Holte when they are locked in place and we will give you our thoughts on them.
Good luck, thanks for reading and UTV!