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Weekly Picks

AM's Week 17 Player Picks

by Nik Argiropoulos
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:09 pm ET

Welcome to Week 17 of my player picks for the Yahoo Fantasy Premier League game. Firstly, you all need to visit this link to read about The 2015 Rotoworld Cup, which kicks off this weekend. You'll find details of how the competition will be structured along with details regarding how to join if you're not already in a Rotoworld PL Private League. Be quick!


Check in with Rotoworld.com for news, analysis and fantasy predictions all season

 

Week 16 was a slightly better one for AM FC as I finished on 97 points, which seemed slightly above average when checking some other scores in my own private leagues. As ever, the curse of the £1million goalkeeper struck with Gerhard Tremmel returning a negative score, but my defence of Kelly, Cresswell, Okore and Bertrand starred with 38 points between them and there were excellent contributions from Eden Hazard, Alexis Sanchez and Kevin Mirallas.

 

Week 16 Fixtures
Aston Villa v Man Utd
Hull City v Swansea
Liverpool v Arsenal
Man City v Crystal Palace
Newcastle v Sunderland
QPR v West Brom
Southampton v Everton
Stoke v Chelsea
Tottenham v Burnley
West Ham v Leicester City

 

For the first time in a while there are a number of attractive fixtures to focus on, with a clear advantage for some of the home teams.

The pick of the bunch has to be high-flying West Ham at home to rock-bottom Leicester, followed by Manchester City at home to Crystal Palace and Tottenham hosting Burnley - although the poor home league form of Spurs does concern me slightly. Newcastle will be favourites to take the three points in the Tyne-Wear derby with Sunderland and I feel confident that Charlie Austin Queens Park Rangers can defeat West Brom at Loftus Road.

 

On the road, Manchester United will be confident of making it seven wins in a row as they travel to Aston Villa, with Louis van Gaal reinstalling the "fear factor" that hadn't been seen since Sir Alex Ferguson's reign ended. Arsenal can beat slumping Liverpool at Anfield to pile more pressure on Brendan Rodgers and Chelsea have enough quality to battle past Stoke at the Britannia, but neither match is a walk-over so don't back either side too heavily.

 

That leaves Southampton v Everton and Hull v Swansea, with both matches looking like score draws, so as always you probably only want get involved if you feel you can pick a goal-scorer.

 

With that in mind please click over to the next page to view my Week 17 player recommendations.

Check in with Rotoworld.com for news, analysis and fantasy predictions all season


KEEPERS
Adrian - If you're buying a new keeper this week and have a bit of money to spend then West Ham's Adrian is your man, as rock-bottom Leicester visit Upton Park.
Hugo Lloris - Let's be honest; Tottenham's home form has been terrible but they have the quality to turn it around against Burnley in Week 17 and Lloris has been the club's best performer all season.
Jak Alnwick - For £1million you have the option of Liverpool's Brad Jones who will be filling in for the benched Mignolet, but Alnwick seems far safer bet as Newcastle host Sunderland, available for the same price.
Rob Green - If you're looking for a cheap keeper but don't fancy taking a punt on one of the £1million options then Green has been in sparkling form and QPR have a winnable home game against West Brom.

 

DEFENDERS
Aaron Cresswell - The easiest pick of the week, Cresswell provides an opportunity to cover the likely West Ham clean sheet for the home match against Leicester while also offering an attacking threat from the left flank.
Phil Jones - When Jones is fit he is one of the most productive defenders in the Yahoo fantasy game, largely down to his anticipation. The Manchester United man is averaging 11 points per game this season thanks mainly to interceptions (26 in just five matches) and has been known to provide a threat from set pieces, so he's a fine choice for the match at Villa.
Eliaquim Mangala - Still to prove he's worth anywhere near what Man City paid for him in the summer, but Mangala played a lot better at Leicester last weekend and will be needed again for the home match against Palace as Vincent Kompany remains side-lined with injury.
Ben Davies - We're finally starting to see the old Swansea form that convinced Spurs to pay £10million. Davies has usurped Danny Rose as first choice left-back and was rested in the Capital One Cup win over Newcastle, so the Welshman will be fresh to face Burnley.
Ryan Bertrand - Another double digit return in Week 16 despite Southampton being defeated (again) means Bertrand is worth holding despite the Saints' troubles. I own the full-back at £7million and change and have no plans on letting him go at this point in time.
Paul Dummett - Playing well and the cheapest way to field a guaranteed starter from the Newcastle defence if you fancy Alan Pardew's men to keep a clean sheet against Sunderland.
Neil Taylor - It's a mystery as to why Taylor's price remains below £7million despite him averaging a solid 7 points per game throughout the season, but I'm not complaining as the Swansea man offers another affordable defensive option.
Jores Okore - Team news needs to be monitored with Ron Vlaar waiting in the wings to return after recovering from injury, but Okore has been impressive enough to keep his spot for now and has been averaging 11 fantasy points per game in his last three starts.
Martin Kelly - Horrible fixture, but Kelly is guaranteed to start and he's been racking up the fantasy points despite Crystal Palace's difficult recent run of results.

 

MIDFIELDERS
Yaya Toure - Top of the midfielders for the second week in a row. Toure failed to convert two glorious chances to score against Leicester which led to a disappointing four point return in Week 16, but the Ivorian is getting in to the right positions to suggest more goals are just around the corner. And he's on penalty duty.
Stewart Downing - Outstanding again as he came up with the equalising goal against Sunderland, Downing is thriving in his free role in the West Ham midfield, delivers a deadly set piece and will be a major threat to Leicester this weekend.
Christian Eriksen - Tottenham's star man right now, repeatedly coming up with moments of quality that have been the difference in tight matches. Eriksen is the top scoring midfield player in 2014 and has six goals for the season, an excellent return. Burnley beware.
Juan Mata - Are we seeing a Mata renaissance? The Spaniard is certainly enjoying linking up with Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie and will be aware that this form must be kept up if he's to have any chance of keeping his place in the starting XI when Angel Di Maria returns. Mata is certainly the best United midfield option for the trip to Villa.
Cesc Fabregas - Given Chelsea's tricky match against Stoke I feel Eden Hazard is too expensive, so the returning Fabregas is my pick of the midfield options. Jose Mourinho was singing his praises in midweek, and rightly so, as former Barca man put in another man-of-the-match performance.
Gylfi Sigurdsson - Not at his best against Tottenham as he perhaps tried a little bit too hard to impress and wasted some good opportunities, but Sigurdsson is still fantasy gold and his partnership with Wilfried Bony will trouble Hull in Week 17.
Frank Lampard - With Manchester City potentially striker-less (see Pozo below) they need to ensure a goal-threat from their midfielders and so I would expect Lampard to see a lot of pitch time over the next few weeks. The ex-Chelsea man has proved a vital asset already and if we can get confirmation that he'll start he's a viable alternative to Yaya.
Joey Barton - Love him or hate him, Barton is an effective Premier League player and his all-action displays often translate well in fantasy games. Set pieces, tackles, interceptions, blocks and successful crosses bring plenty of points and the midfielder can have another positive match against West Brom provided he keeps his temper in check.
Kevin Nolan - Some fantasy managers will struggle to find the money for Downing so his team-mate Nolan provides an interesting alternative at a reasonable price. The veteran midfielder has a knack of popping up in the right place at the right time and, as we know, West Ham have the best fixture of the weekend.
José Ángel Pozo - Now this is an interesting one. We know Sergio Aguero is out injured, but the Manchester Evening News are reporting that Edin Dzeko and Stevan Jovetic will also be missing this weekend. Enter 18-year-old Pozo, who made his debut against Leicester in Week 16 and is listed as a midfielder in the Yahoo game, priced under £4million. We'll confirm once the team news comes out on Friday.
Santi Cazorla - A good pick for the Liverpool match, but only if you grabbed him before his price shot up last weekend. Cazorla's current price of £17million is far too expensive.

 

STRIKERS
Robin van Persie - Boy did I miss the boat here. It now looks like van Persie is out of my price range if I want a balanced midfield, but if you can find the funds then he has to be the top striker pick given his current form, Manchester United's current run and the fact they face Aston Villa.
Diafra Sakho - The next best bet for Week 17 with West Ham up against bottom side Leicester at Upton Park. Sakho is in the running for transfer bargain of the season with six goals in nine starts and he has started to build a good understanding with strike partner Andy Carroll.
Alexis Sanchez - Outstanding again in Arsenal's win over Newcastle in Week 16, Sanchez offers pace, clever passing, trickery down and superb crossing, not to mention deadly finishing ability. The Chilean may be playing a bit wider now Giroud is back but he'll still cause the leaky Liverpool defence problems.
Charlie Austin - QPR's talisman was sorely missed for the Everton match but he's served his suspension now and will be looking to fire his side to another home win, as West Brom visit Loftus Road. The striker has eight for the season already and remember - he's the club's penalty taker.
Wilfried Bony - Another goal against Spurs made it 20 Premier League goals for the calendar year, which is more than any other player. Bony comes up a Hull side in poor form and can continue his good run.
Andy Carroll - While I rate Sakho as the slightly better pick, you can grab Carroll for a few million less and the giant striker will offer a constant threat in the air.
Olivier Giroud - A bit like the Sakho / Carroll condundrum, Sanchez remains the preferred option but Giroud can be brought in for less money and is looking extremely sharp in front of goal.
Harry Kane - Spurs have uncovered a bit of a gem by the looks of things, as Kane continues to go from strength to strength as the club's new main striker. The 21-year-old added another goal against Newcastle in the midweek Capital One Cup win and will lead the line against Burnley.
Papiss Cisse - A heavy cold kept Cisse out of the midweek clash with Spurs mentioned above, but Pardew will be hopeful of a recovery in time to spearhead the Newcastle attack against rivals Sunderland.

 

Follow the RotoWorld_PL team on Twitter: Galin | Jeremy | Neal | Nik | Steve | Ben | Rob | Aaron

 

So those are the players I'm considering for my Week 17 Yahoo team. Please make sure you check back here on Friday for Ben Dinnery's outstanding team and injury news column, where he'll run through the fall-out from the midweek League Cup matches.

 

My own team page currently looks like this ...

 

XI: Courtois, Okore, Cresswell, Bertrand, Fabregas, Downing, Toure, Eriksen, Sanchez, Costa, Sakho
Subs: Tadic, Kelly, McNair, Alnwick

 

In an ideal world I would bring in a defender with a better fixture to sit alongside Cresswell and Bertrand, but money is tight so it may not be possible. After settling on the fact I probably can't afford RvP I'm happy with everything else, especially my triple Hammer representation.

 

How's your Week 17 team looking?

Nik Argiropoulos

Nik Argiropoulos is a London-based soccer writer for NBC Sports Edge and co-founder of Never Manage Alone. You can find him on Twitter @nikarg.