I've got the West London Blues - Laurence Griffiths
Everything you need to know about the impact that Demba Ba's move to Chelsea will have on his fantasy value and that of others.
In the real world, Demba Ba to Chelsea is a very good move for Chelsea. Let me count the ways:
- The Blues get a forward who has proven that he can score goals in the Premier League...THIS SEASON.
- They address one of their major gaps which you could either see as a starting #9 or as cover for Fernando Torres who, with Sturridge off to Liverpool, is the only #9 on the roster.
- They add a player who will be a well above average back-up at the #9 spot once Chelsea brings in whatever Galactico-type they end up with (e.g., Falcao).
- They bring in a player capable of making something out of nothing - someone capable of getting them 3 points on a day like Wednesday when the rest of the team just wasn't firing on all cylinders.
As for the fantasy implications, they aren't nearly as good. Fernando Torres, now no longer a sure starter, has next to zero value. His value was already hitting rock bottom as he continued to deliver about once every 5 or 6 matches but at least you could count on him starting and being available at a fairly reasonable price.
To make the picture even dimmer for fantasy managers, Demba Ba, who has been a stud thus far, is also now subject to rotation. Given his current price of 22+ he is unstartable for fantasy unless we learn that he'll be in the Starting XI for Chelsea virtually every week. Even then, with Mata, Hazard, et al much more important to the attack than any midfielders at Newcastle you have to wonder if there will be enough focus on Ba for him to put up numbers to justify that price even if he does start most/all matches.
The final question is whether this addition impacts any of Chelsea's other attackers like Hazard, Oscar, Mata, or Lampard and I don't think there's any reason to assume that it will either help or hurt. The only concern I'd have is whether Ba will play the ball back to these supporting players once he has it in a forward position (he's not known as much of a passer). If he is a black hole then his presence may have a minor negative impact on the rest of the Chelsea attack but until we see something like that, I'm just speculating.
So, there you have it. Great move for Chelsea in the real world but a killer for fantasy managers looking to invest in the forward position at Chelsea. We'll have the analysis from the Newcastle side of the house shortly and it will be much more optimistic, I assure you.