It is common footballing knowledge that the final section of the season is one where form seemingly goes out of the window. Teams that look certain for relegation will suddenly become possessed by the spirits of 1950’s Hungary, whilst Champions League teams (a term used loosely this season) will begin to blame ‘tiredness’ for inexcusable slip-ups.
With this narrative a certainty, it can be wise to look at particular fixtures a little more apprehensively than usual, and no more so is this the case in Gameweek 32 than a fixture that will come during Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football, and it’s trickier to decipher than Jamie Carragher’s scouse analysis.
Luckily for you lovely readers, I’ve been playing around with FPL Statistics tables and have uncovered some hidden truths about the home and away forms of the two teams in question.
Benteke and Zaha: An Unhappy Home Life
If Crystal Palace were a man, he’d be a white guy with dreadlocks, as the eagles simply love to travel this season, but have been laughable in their home town. Two of the guiltiest victims of this have been Palace poster boys Wilfried Zaha and Christian Benteke. The home/away form indicator tells me that despite being in good immediate form, you shouldn’t be mistaken into thinking that they’ve been lighting up Selhurst park all year, if at all.
Amazingly, both Wilf and Chris have scored over DOUBLE the amount of points on the road (81 & 71) as they have at home (40 & 33). The Ivorian winger – who rose in price Thursday night – has scored just one of his 6 goals this campaign in South London, along with a poultry 2 of 9 assists. Former Liverpool striker Benteke boasts an even stranger record with just 2 of his 11 goals being celebrated by a home crowd, and those all came in one match.
Whatever voodoo surrounds Selhurst park (my money’s on the eagle that flies around pre-match – that or the cheerleaders), keep it in mind when bringing in one of the boys in blue and red.
Mesut Ozil: How to Deal With Agoraphobia
With 19 points in 2 games since returning from illness, Mesut Ozil has been grabbing the attention of many, but don’t be fooled by the Germans recent HOME performances of the past week, as Mesut’s high scoring away games are about as far apart as his big buggy eyes.
The home/away form indicator tells me that Ozil is Arsenal’s second most productive scorer at the Emirates with 78 points (just 9 behind Sanchez), but away from home the play maker sits in 5th on 44 points behind 3 players considerably cheaper than him, Giroud, Walcott and Koscielny.
In Arsenal’s 14 away games this year, Ozil has only managed to eclipse the 6 point mark twice, a fact that personally makes spending £9.4 mil on him a big no-no for me.
The three players mentioned are all being brought in by the thousands, and if you already have them by all means play them, but I would recommend some classic listening material for after the game, The Boomtown Rats and their 1979 hit, ‘I don’t like Mondays’.