Welcome to AM's Perfect XI - Week 8 player picks. This column focuses on Togga's Perfect XI game, which you can play via their IOS and Android app. Find the apps here and make sure you update regularly to take advantage of the constant enhancements: https://www.playtogga.com
In case you missed it we've set up a Rotoworld PL Private League where you can challenge myself and the rest of the RW PL team over the course of the season. To join it download the app and then click the below link from your device, or find us from the Featured Leagues tab:
Each week I provide a Perfect XI of my own for the upcoming gameweek, recommending 11 players to consider along with some honourable mentions. The players listed won't necessarily be the exact 11 selected for my own Perfect XI fantasy side. The point of this column isn't to tell you exactly who to pick; it's to present some ideas and get your brain whirring. I'll be listing a combination of the must-haves and slightly riskier options, alongside the odd hunch. Hopefully you'll find this useful whether you're playing Togga's game or looking at potential transfers for your official Fantasy Premier League team.
Week 7 seems a long time ago, but this was how my Perfect XI side lined up:
De Gea, Walker, Coleman, Koscielny, Blind, Son, Payet, Coutinho, Ozil, Ibrahimovic, Sanchez
It was a pretty good week as the team returned 173 points. Koscielny, Son, Coutinho, Payet and Sanchez were the stars of the show and helped launch me back in to the Top 50 in the PXI overall standings. Onwards and upwards!
Week 8 comes with a standard Saturday 12:30 BST (British Summer Time) kick off and it's another tasty looking match-up as Chelsea host defending Premier League champions Leicester City in the early game. It's good to have your fantasy team locked in ready for this match but remember in Perfect XI you can swap out a player right up to one minute before their match kicks off and bring in an alternative player whose match is also yet to kick off. This flexibility will allow you to prevent the pain of a surprise benching or unreported last minute injury and a big fat zero. Ensure you keep your eyes on the RW PL Twitter account for line-ups one hour prior to matches.
Here are your fixtures ...
Chelsea v Leicester City
Arsenal v Swansea City
Bournemouth v Hull City
Manchester City v Everton
Stoke City v Sunderland
West Bromwich Albion v Tottenham
Crystal Palace v West Ham United
Middlesbrough v Watford
Southampton v Burnley
Liverpool v Manchester United
And the picks ...
Petr Cech - Arsenal's defence is looking more solid by the week and they have the pick of the Week 8 home fixtures vs Swansea, so I'm feeling confident that Cech will keep a clean sheet. He'll be in net for my team, although Jordan Pickford ran him close.
Danny Rose - Spurs have the meanest defence in the Premier League (three goals conceded in seven games) and so it's always sensible to include one of their defenders in your fantasy side. That honour has usually fallen to Kyle Walker, but we're switching to the opposite flank this weekend and tipping Danny Rose, who not only has a clean sheet chance but should also get plenty of joy against West Brom's centre-back-shoehorned-in-at-right-back Craig Dawson.
Laurent Koscielny - Twice Laurent Koscielny has featured in this column this season. On both occasions the Frenchman has scored a goal (against Southampton and Burnley). Let's see if he can make it three out of three as the Gunners host Swansea.
Virgil van Dijk - Southampton had a rotten start to their campaign but have improved rapidly in recent weeks, winning two of their last three and unfortunate not to take all three points against Leicester before the international break. A home match against Burnley presents an opportunity for a comfortable home win plus a clean sheet and I'm banking on both by including classy Virgil van Dijk in my Week 8 line-up.
Curtis Davies - This is a hunch pick, with Hull struggling and travelling to Bournemouth, but it feels like the sort of match Curtis Davies could excel in. The defender's points rarely come from clean sheets, but more from interceptions, clearances and blocks and there should be plenty of opportunities to build on his impressive season stats to return another double digit fantasy score.
Dusan Tadic - To borrow from this very site, Dusan Tadic "has now got a record which boasts his skill, creativity and consistency - he has either scored or assisted all of Serbia's last 10 goals. 4 of those were finished by the 27 year old with the remaining 6 assisted. Tadic should be overflowing with confidence when he returns to the Premier League this weekend." With a home match against Burnley in Week 8 the Saints man will be taking a spot in my PXI midfield.
Christian Eriksen - Obviously Heung-Ming Son is the man most fantasy managers will flock to this week, and you can't blame them given his ludicrous run of form. However, West Brom will be doing everything in their power to prevent Spurs' attackers getting close to goal and this could lead to plenty of free kicks around the box. Enter the FK master, Mr Eriksen.
Willian - For the first few weeks of the season the noise was all about Eden Hazard, but as the Belgian winger has drifted out of form it's been left to the likes of Diego Costa and Willian to get the business done. Willian has been particularly impressive out on the opposite flank and he's my pick of the Chelsea attackers for their match-up with the Foxes.
Santi Cazorla - Quietly going about his business in the heart of midfield, Santi Cazorla is having an effective season as he links the Gunners' defence and attack together. This doesn't always feed in to huge fantasy scores but the Spaniard remains on penalty duty and this Swans defence always seem to have a penalty box misdemeanour in them. I fancy Cazorla to add to his season tally of two goals from the spot.
Alexis Sanchez - While I've gone a little outside-the-box for the midfielders, I'm afraid it's a pair of boring striker selections this week. Let's start with in-form Alexis Sanchez at home to Swansea. Why? Because I'm certain he'll score at least once against Bob Bradley's new charges. Simples.
Sergio Aguero - And we're finishing things off with Sergio Aguero at home to Everton, after the Argentine proved himself fit following a minor calf injury picked up on international duty. The Toffees have gone off the boil in the past two gameweeks and Aguero is perfectly capable of giving Phil Jagielka the run-around as Man City look to recover from their defeat at White Hart Lane. The one caveat is that the upcoming midweek clash with Barcelona could see Pep withdrawing his star man early, but it's a risk I'm willing to take. If you're not then see the alternatives below.
That's it for Week 8. Check out the Rotoworld Features page to see a whole bunch of great content to get you ready for the weekend ahead. Feel free to comment below to us know how you're getting on so far. And of course, good luck to all managers this week.