If someone had said to me in the beginning of the season that Leicester would be on top of the Premier League table after 15 Gameweeks I would’ve laughed with arrogance and called him a lunatic. But here we are and surprisingly enough, the Foxes are proudly sitting on top of the Premier League Table 2 points above Arsenal. Although their fantastic run will most probably come to an end at some point, they deserve the credit and recognition for their performances. Sticking to their attacking style of football for another week, Leicester managed to bag the 3 points away against Swansea, with Mahrez on the hattrick and the 130,000 managers who benched him left to tears, myself included. Even though Jamie Vardy’s record came to a halt this week after his Guinness record, the Leicester frontman was again amongst the points handing the assist for the Mahrez hattrick.
In other news, Man United and Spurs were held to a draw for yet another week against West Ham and West Brom respectively, while Man City and Liverpool tasted their fourth defeat of the season. Chelsea didn’t manage to earn a single point against Bournemouth to the great disappointment of their fans, who are starting to wonder if their team is even capable of earning a European spot by the end of what has been a dreadful season so far. Arsenal was able to earn the 3 points despite their team injuries, with Giroud scoring on both ends, Ozil registering another assist and Aaron Ramsey back to the starting lineup with a goal and an assist to his name. Once more, Lukaku was on the scoresheet in Everton’s Monday night draw against Crystal Palace, while Watford’s Ighalo improved his scoring record in the top flight with his 9th goal of the season, helping his team earn the 3 points against Norwich.
Four Star Performers:
Riyad Mahrez (21 points)
We can’t help but start with Riyad Mahrez(6.8), who became the first Algerian to score a hattrick in the Premier League, scoring the first two goals of his treble in the opening 22 minutes for an incredible return of 21 fantasy points. Although I have been tweeting “never bench Mahrez” hashtags throughout the season, i went against my own advice in the end which proved to be a huge mistake, having me wishing for a surprise last minute Lukaku omittance from Everton’s 18th squad for mysterious reasons. Mahrez registered his 10th goal of the season for his incredible 7th double figure point return in 15 games. He is currently owned by 61.4% of Fpl managers, while apparently the rest who belong in the 38.6% are playing a different game. Are you still not sure?
Marko Arnautovic (16 points)
For those who haven’t watched the Stoke game or even the highlights against City, the crazy Austrian could’ve easily scored one or two more goals had he been more decisive, capitalizing on his two shots on target with two goals that saw him earn 3 bonus points for a total of 16 Fpl points. With Shaqiri providing the ball in his best performance of the season up to this point, Arnautovic was terrorizing City’s backline and had numerous chances to claim his hat trick. Although he is not known for his consistency, on his day he can be unstoppable and at the friendly price of 6.1m and 1.9% ownership he seems like a really decent punt.
Aaron Ramsey (13 points)
The Welshman brought back memories of his 2013/2014 incredible season where he managed 10 goals and 9 assists. Returning to Arsenal’s starting line up for his first game at the Emirates after his 4 game absence, Ramsey was handed a central role after Santi Cazorla’s injury in the game against Norwich, with the Spaniard facing 3 months on the sidelines. After being pushed to the wings for most of Arsenal’s games to accommodate Coquelin and Santi in central midfield, the Welshman finally got the opportunity to show what he can do in his natural position. Ramsey is evidently best suited in central midfield where he can orchestrate Arsenal’s game and be in charge of distributing the ball along with Ozil, without being shy of taking shots and getting in the box. At the the price of 8.0m and a 2.7% ownership that will certainly go up as we progress, the Welsh International should provide a massive differential option for teams who haven’t gotten their hands on Ozil yet.
The Dutchman was undoubtedly the difference maker in the game against Liverpool, as his 69th minute shot deflected on Martin Skrtel resulting in an unfortunate own goal for the Serbian. The winning goal came in the 93rd minute with a clever chip from the Dutch International after a Sissoko cross, handing Newcastle a crucial win that will help them escape the relegation battle. However, the Magpies need to start putting together a good run of results as they still have a long way to go in order to feel safe and avoid the relegation battle. Wijnaldum(6.9) has proved that he is talented enough to carry the team on his shoulders for the rest of the season as long as he can build consistency in his game with the help of his teammates who need to step up as well. This was his first goal after his 4 goal haul against Norwich a few weeks back for a total of 7 goals and 3 assists so far;numbers that prove how important he is for Newcastle going forward.