Fantasy Football Fixtures Gameweek 2
Welcome to GW2 Fixtures. This is our guide to help you navigate the next few weeks with a view to analysing which teams have potentially the best run of games and which teams may have a tough ride ahead of them. Game-week 1 saw a few of the usual suspects such as Ramsey, Rooney and Sturridge all hit the target and we saw a few surprise contenders emerge in the shape of Berahino and Sigurdsson. Sigurdsson was perhaps less of a surprise but with his opening fixture being away at Old Trafford he did break a few fantasy manager’s hearts as many bought him with the schedule ahead in mind but benched him this week. If you had him and played him though, well done! Chelsea opened up with an old fantasy favourite in Cesc Fabregas rewarding his owners with a couple of assists and frustrating those who went for Hazard in equal measure. Diego Costa hit the ground running too. He got a yellow card for his troubles in doing that but he scored on his debut as well. That little combo right there may be one his owners will have to get used to. With game-week 1 offering up mixed returns then we shall take a look at how game-week 2 is shaping up and look ahead to which teams your fantasy focus should be on for the next few weeks.
Before we get to the nuts and bolts of the fixtures this week and beyond it is worth pointing you in the direction of two relevant articles that we have featured already. Both were massive hits both on here and on twitter and go hand in hand in with this one –
Mito21 produced a great article that talked us through the best rotation pairs for the season ahead…
Rotation Analysis Home and Away and Favourable fixtures
Calvin Clyne has provided us with an interactive fixture tracker. Take the time to save your own copy and use it as you wish.
And so onto the teams and fixture themselves. Let’s begin with a very straightforward fixture tracker…
We have colour coded the fixtures in a simple fashion to allow you to judge your transfer and team selection plans accordingly:
[highlight_green]Green[/highlight_green] – We deem these to be winnable fixtures for the given team and should, in theory at least (!), harvest good fantasy points for you in the opening games. Aim to have a good nucleus of these players in your initial squad.
[highlight_yellow]Yellow[/highlight_yellow] – These are the fixtures that could go either way and do not stand out as being either particularly good or poor. If you have a player from a team in this category then do not be afraid to play them but take a considered view that it may not be an explosive week for them.
[highlight_red]Red[/highlight_red]- These are the teams that we consider to have a difficult fixture and as such may be best avoided from a fantasy perspective. Aim to minimise any players that have a run of reds in the opening games.
With just one week of game’s under our belt we have a small window of information to go on but here are the teams we feel have good fixtures ahead and those that may find it tough…
Chelsea Leicester (h), Everton (a), Swansea (h), Man City (a), Aston Villa (h), Arsenal (h)
Chelsea got their season off to a flier as we expected they might with a convincing 1-3 win at Burnley on Monday night. Truth is that despite going a goal behind they had this one in the bag by half-time and eased off the pedal considerably with new boy Costa netting and Fabregas chipping in with two assists, one of which being from a corner, the other being an exquisite pass in a packed penalty box to set up Schurrle. It’s another newly promoted side up next as Leicester visit The Bridge. We expect Chelsea will win this one comfortably. They have a couple of potentially tricky away trips to contend with soon going to both Everton and Man City but it’s those next three home games that look so enticing from a fantasy perspective – Leicester, Swansea and Villa. That’s nine points right there. Or should be… To Fab or not to Fab? We probably would.
Manchester United Sunderland (a), Burnley (a), QPR (h), Leicester (a),West Ham (h), Everton (h)
Hmmm, ok, so things didn’t quite go as planned last weekend for LVG and his new team but we were warned that this happens whenever he takes charge of a new team. His systems tend to take a while for the players to adapt to but when they do eventually then everything seems to turn rosy. We aren’t suggesting that will happen overnight but we are willing to stick with them for now and this is purely down to an attractive run of fixtures allied to them having one or two stars in the likes of Rooney and Mata who on their day should still be capable of beating the likes of Burnley, QPR and Leicester regardless of the rest of the team. Add in the prospect of RVP rejoining the group at some point during this period and we expect they’ll have enough to see them through this run nicely.
Southampton WBA (h), West Ham (a), Newcastle (h), Swansea (a), QPR (a), Spurs (a)
Given the wholesale changes at Southampton and the fact that they had to go to Anfield on the opening day it’s maybe no surprise that they lost their opener but in truth they played well and ran Liverpool very close to taking a point away with them. Tadic looked classy and he will be one to keep an eye on. James Ward-Prowse was dangerous too and along with Steven Davis both look like they may offer some future value at £5.0m. The next five fixtures all look winnable if they continue to show what they did at Anfield and they will presumably improve and gel more as they all get to know each other better.
Aston Villa Newcastle (h), Hull (h), Liverpool (a), Arsenal (h), Chelsea (a), Man City (a)
Going to Stoke and coming away with a 0-1 victory is highly commendable and suggests that Lambert and Keane are heading in the right direction with their young team. Despite them being in this section the next two fixtures actually look fairly promising , hosting Newcastle and Hull. If you fancied a quick two week dip on a Villa player then now is the time to do it but come GW4 we would suggest getting rid as that run looks nightmarish – Liverpool (a), Arsenal (h), Chelsea (a), Man City (a). You wouldn’t wish that on your dearest rivals to be fair but that’s what they have and so just be aware that any Villa player in your squad will need to ride the bench or be replaced come GW4 we feel.
Leicester Chelsea (a), Arsenal (h), Stoke (a), Man Utd (h), Crystal Palace (a), Hull (a)
New boys Leicester acquitted themselves well on their return to the top flight with a hard earned point against Everton at home. Whatever they learned from that game will have to be put into practice quite sharply over the next few weeks if they are going to add to that point as their run of fixtures isn’t great to say the least. Three of the next four are against Chelsea, Arsenal and Man Utd and whilst the other three look a tad easier being Stoke, Palace and Hull they are all away from home.
Everton Arsenal (h), Chelsea (h), WBA (a), Crystal Palace (h),Liverpool (a), Man Utd (a)
The loss of Ross Barkley on the eve of the campaign was a bitter blow to The Toffes but despair not, it meant the emergence of the ‘Ginger Messi’ playing in the hole and Naismith duly delivered with a finish that the man himself would have been proud of. Well sort of. That point at Leicester will have been a huge disappointment to Roberto Martinez as they seemed to be set to hold on for all three and it’s fair to say they needed it as there’s no guarantees where the next one is coming from. Certainly the next two look tough against Arsenal and Chelsea. It eases slightly with a trip to WBA and a home game with Palace but then two local ‘derbies’ follow that against big guns Liverpool and Man Utd and both are away from home to boot.
Just be aware that Arsenal play in a Champions League qualifier at Besiktas on Tuesday evening so check out any injury updates from that ahead of making any transfers this week.