Guy’s 5 Fantasy Premier League Tips For Gameweek 6

A fantasy football hipster is somebody who is essentially a die-hard differential player. They thrive in making picks and recommending teams that nobody else is really looking at. They live for that moment when one of their selection does well so that they can gloat and say, “I told you so”. You know who these people are. You probably have such a person in your office mini-league or your friends and family league. Maybe…you…are the fantasy hipster of your group.

The fact is, when these people pick their teams, they resist as much of the meta, or the template, as possible. And that’s all well and fine as long as their strategy only affects their personal team. We only run into problems when these hipsters also try to write advice articles and send their bush league fantasy philosophies at you like it’s gospel. But what if the template is in flux? What if, by default, the lack of a true template makes us all a bit hipster-ish?

For the record, I am typically not a fantasy football hipster. But with the conditions of the game right now, we all may as well grab some suspenders and flannel shirts as we pick our teams – because things are changing faster than a hipster goes from soy milk to almond milk to hemp milk.

Guy’s 5 Fantasy Premier League Tips For Gameweek 6:

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#1) What template?

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It is possible, at least for this round, that there is no consensus on a template team. When the game started out, things were pretty clear; we had Aguero and Zlatan (and probably Hazard as the main cover in mid). But then Aguero got banned for three games. And then Man U lost their winning form. And then Hazard blanked two weeks in a row. And then, and then, and then…

And then what? The game normalized a bit, didn’t it? Alexis Sanchez showed he’s worth a shout. Kevin De Bruyne proved he’s easily one of the top 2 or 3 mids in the game today. Everton became a force behind their midfielders that exist to serve Lukaku crosses in the box.

And so can you really say that the template is still in place? Sure, Ibrahimovic is still the default pick by the masses, but people aren’t so certain about him anymore are they? You hear rumblings of people looking to drop him to accommodate Aguero and Lukaku. Or they want to drop Hazard to fit in Sanchez with Costa. Whatever pairing people are trying to make, the names included in the conversation are much more varied than they were at the start of the year.

If you’re still looking to let the herd mentality carry your team for a stretch, it’s become a messy situation.

My advice is this then. Embrace it. Maybe you already burned your wildcard – so be it. The fact of the matter is that if you lose big over the weekend, at least you’ll be losing to the best players on the day, and not losing to the template. And there is a difference. Hipsters lose to the template.

Teams are becoming increasingly varied right now, and there are some really inventive lineups out there in RMT forums. Liverpool, Watford, Everton, Man City and Arsenal are really filling out squads in different ways. Will a new template reemerge? Sure it will. But for now, you have a bit of freedom to pick the players you think will be best for a bit. Take advantage of the opportunity.

#2) -4 for Aguero?

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I’ll be honest and tell you that my first (and hopefully only) points hit of the year happened this round to bring Aguero back in. In the FPL game, I’m leery of people who freely say that you should take liberal point hits to get out of temporarily bad situations. But with Aguero….I say that the hit is worth it if…

…If you plan on having Aguero for more than just a game or two, regardless of the occasional 2-point performance, then go ahead and bring him in – take the hit.

…If you plan on not taking any further transfer hits for the foreseeable future.

…If you plan on rooting for him to get up after he’s fallen down and feigned a broken leg – even if he’s playing against your favorite club.

I’m kidding and all, but you get the point, right? Aguero is still the main man for me when it comes to fantasy picks. Zlatan and Co. have had success in spots, but Man City are the league leading goal scorers and Aguero is going to be the focal point of that offense as long as he stays healthy. Taking a -4 is sometimes inevitable if injuries really hit your squad and there are no other options. But taking a -4 to swap out healthy players…it’s a dicey proposition. And I think Aguero is the only man that’s worth a temporary hit to your overall score for a greater return later. Bring him in however you have to, but plan on carrying him for the long haul.

#3) Who play Stoke this week?

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I think this is a good talking point each week until Stoke stop making this point so necessary. Honestly, if you’re simply looking for a one-week revolving door player pick to maximize points, you have to look at the every Stoke matchup until they stop conceding major fantasy points to their opponents.

This week, Stoke take on West Brom, the home of the next potential ‘new Mahrez’, Nacer Chadli. Ok, so he’s not the new Mahrez, but Chadli has to at least be considered in this week’s conversation considering that he put up 21 points last week. Have West Brom been world-beaters the whole year? No. They’ve been defensively stout, but they haven’t been great scorers. But now that Chadli has had a second start under his belt, it looks like this side may have found a way to put a few things together – and Stoke are the best team to face when you’re trying to get some momentum going.

Just to refresh your memory, Stoke have a single point on the year (4 straight losses) and they’ve hit -11 GD – they’re only team with double digit negative goal differential. Would I recommend getting Chadli or Rondon over Aguero this week with your single transfer? Absolutely not. But if you already have the rest of your team in place and you need to free up funds, you could do worse than pick up Chadli v Stoke D at 6.4m.

#4) Hazard in freefall

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Eden Hazard started the year at 10.0m and rose to 10.3m as of last week. This week? He’s back down to 10.0m again because people are tossing him overboard at a monumental pace. As of the writing of this article he’s already been transferred out nearly 200K times this week, and that number looks to keep growing a bit.

Has Hazard been that bad as of late to deserve this? He started the year with scores of 10, 4 and 11 points. So he was undoubtedly one of the better picks to have from the outset. Also worth noting that his BPS scores for those three games were 33, 19 and 32 – not great marks, but enough to garner him 6 bonus points over that stretch.

His last two scores have been 1 and 2 points, and both of those came in 90 minute starts. The troubling thing about these tallies is that his BPS scores for these two efforts were just 9 and 11. For being the most important man on the pitch, those BPS scores reflect what a complete non-factor he has been recently.

So here’s the bad news, if you held onto Hazard from the outset, you’ve just lost all of your price gains from him in one fell swoop. Also, Chelsea are set to play back to back away matches against Arsenal and Hull before coming home to face Leicester and Man U. Not a great schedule, but nothing a top-notch player like Hazard shouldn’t be able to overcome.

The good news from this situation is for owners who feel like they missed out on Hazard at the base price and are thinking of taking a chance on him going forward. Those owners can now snatch him up at a relatively bargain-bin price if they feel like he’s set to recreate some of those scores from earlier in the year.

My tip would be to keep an eye on this price situation with Hazard. I would say to not pick him up this week due to the Arsenal v. Chelsea fixture not producing a ton of goals while being played at the Emirates. But wait to see if his price drops again next week. If Hazard dips below 10.0m moving into a schedule against Hull followed by a pair of home fixtures, he’d be worth another look.

#5) Etienne Capoue is more than just bench filler

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This is informal polling on my part, but I have to say, I’ve seen many teams online this week asking for advice or a rating – and so many of these teams have Capoue as their number one sub. What exactly does Capoue have to do to earn a place in your starting formation?

First off, he’s the highest scorer in the game with 44 points on the year. That fact alone should mean he’s started in 100% of the teams that he’s owned by. Secondly, he has the second highest BPS tally at 143 – only Kevin De Bruyne is higher with 160. And with all of that said, he’s still available for purchase for 5.0m.

It’s not that people aren’t buying him up, because they are; Capoue is the second most owned player at 34.3% ownership. It’s the fact that people see Capoue as a number one sub that makes them money…and only comes in for emergencies.

That’s simply the wrong approach. The problem is his price. We have a natural tendency to see a player who has a low price as a player who lacks value. But here’s the thing, if Capoue had started out the year at 7.5m (after all, his price was arbitrarily set by the game mods based on their initial projections), we would have no problem starting him in 100% of teams. Given the exact same stats and price rises, Capoue would now be worth 8.0m in the game and we’d feel more comfortable, collectively, in giving him the starts…and maybe even the armband a time or two.

Don’t let his price knock you off course. He’s the best fantasy player in the game to date. That’s not an opinion, that’s just a statistical fact. Not one single player has done more than Etienne Capoue. If you’re one of the people smart enough to have him, please be smart enough to give him a start this week.

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