Professor M's Numbers: Week 31 Best Team

What a gameweek that was, huh? After bouncing around quite a bit, my 296 points were good enough to raise me about 78 places in the Global rankings from 531 to 453. That was not as big a move as I would have liked, but after the McGregor RC and Chester OG, I'll take what I can get. I did better than some pretty good players, but not as well as many others. If I had only known the best team, I would have made a big jump!

Best Team

I ended up producing two lists for the best team this week. The first was the best team after the first round of matches (what I call GW31a). This is what that team looked like, with either a 4-4-2 or 4-3-3 as options because Rooney and Lallana scored the same.

Week 31a
Player Pts Cost
L. Suarez (F - LIV) 44 34.53
P. Cissé (F - NEW) 23 10.34
W. Rooney (F - MAN)*/A. Lallana (M - SHN) 22 21.26
C. Eriksen (M - TOT) 35 9.92
Yaya Touré (M - MAC) 33 13.94
J. Mutch (M - CAR) 26 9.74
L. Rosenior (D - HUL) 26 8.69
M. Demichelis (D - MAC) 25 12.14
C. Davies (D - HUL) 24 15.95
M. Skrtel (D - LIV) 24 15.16
P. Cech (G - CHE) 20 15.96
Captain Points 44
total points 346 167.63
on the bench
D. Sturridge (F - LIV) 21 21.43
P. Hernández (M - SWC) 21 6.76
Top Yahoo Score N/A
* player used in calculating costs (if applicable)

It is obvious that the weekend matches produced a ton of goals, and therefore, a ton of points. Even before the double GW, 3 players above 30 points (Toure, Eriksen, and, of course, Suarez) tied the best week of the season. Having all of the Best XI at 20 points or more (plus two on the bench) was also the best so far this season. We haven't seen a set of matches like this all year, and to see it at the front end of a DGW is pretty amazing.

The second set of matches did not produce as many points, as can be seen in the final GW31 best team. In this instance, a 4-3-3 was the best choice.

Week 31
Player Pts Cost
L. Suarez (F - LIV) 54 34.53
D. Sturridge (F - LIV) 37 21.43
W. Rooney (F - MAN) 29 21.26
Yaya Touré (M - MAC) 43 13.94
C. Eriksen (M - TOT) 35 9.92
J. Mutch (M - CAR)/R. Barkley (M - EVE)*/T. Huddlestone (M - HUL) 26 5.85
M. Demichelis (D - MAC) 35 12.14
L. Baines (D - EVE) 31 18.23
M. Skrtel (D - LIV) 31 15.16
L. Rosenior (D - HUL) 27 8.69
J. Hart (G - MAC) 28 17.24
Captain Points 54
total points 430 178.39
on the bench
R. Lukaku (F - EVE) 28 14.39
W. Bony (F - SWC) 28 14.2
E. Dzeko (F - MAC) 26 12.64
P. Cissé (F - NEW) 26 10.34
Top Yahoo Score 378 87.91%
* player used in calculating costs (if applicable)

Not surprisingly, given the weekend matches, many of the players are the same here, but there were differences. Sturridge jumped from the bench to the Best XI with Cisse dropping to the bench. Lallana (with his single match) dropped out completely. C. Davies dropped out (he and Howard just missed the bench at 25 points), and Baines took his place. Hart replace the single match Cech as the best GK. Barkley and Huddlestone scored high enough to join Mtuch as MF possibilities. Finally, there was some movement on the bench, with Hernandez dropping out, and Lukaku, Bony, and Dzeko coming into the team on the bench. [Remember that the bench represents players who scored as well as at least one player in the Bext XI, but for whom there was no position slot.]

Another interesting note is that this is the first GW in which it would have been impossible to field the team, even with a big Suarez discount. This team would have gotten you an amazing 430 points, but it would have cost £178.39M using Barkley's cheap £5.85 as one of your midfield prices. You could have come close if you had other discounts, used one of the cheaper forwards instead of Rooney (only losing one point), and used Howard in goal at about £5M less than Cech (loss of two points). Still, it would have taken some creativity to get to the best team.

Despite this, the highest YFF score for the week was 378, nearly 88% of the possible from this unaffordable team. That is the highest percentage.that I can remember seeing, which tells you that there were not that many "surprising" names in the Best XI this week. These are almost all popular players from popular teams. This is why it took a 300+ score to make a big move this week.

Keats & Yeats List of Multiple Appearances

I debated what to do about the DGW with the K&Y list of multiple appearances. In the end, for simplicity, and because those with DGWs were not eligible to appear when they had a blank, I decided just to count the final scores for the week. This obviously meant a HUGE advantage for the DGW players, although Eriksen was able to overcome this.

Appearances Player
9 L. Suárez (GWs 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, 21, 23, 28, 31)
5 A. Lallana (GWs 11, 17, 21, 23, 24)
4 D. de Gea (GWs 16, 19, 27, 29)
4 D. Sturridge (GWs 23, 26, 27, 31)
4 M. Skrtel (GWs 11, 25, 28, 31)
4 S. Gerrard (GWs 23, 26, 28, 30)
4 Yaya Touré (GWs 10, 14, 27, 31)
3 Adrián (GWs 21, 23, 26)
3 C. Eriksen (GWs 18, 20, 31)
3 E. Adebayor (GWs 17, 22, 26)
3 E. Hazard (GWs 14, 18 24)
3 J. Hart (GWs 19, 30, 31)
3 J. Puncheon (GWs 20, 22, 23)
3 J. Rodriguez (GWs 14, 18, 29)
3 J. Shelvey (GWs 12, 14, 23)
3 Jose Fonte (GWs 23, 24, 26)
3 K. Nolan (GWs 19, 24, 25)
3 L. Baines (GWs 20, 21, 31)
3 P. Bardsley (GWs 11, 17, 24)
3 R. Lambert (GWs 11, 24, 30)
3 T. Walcott (GWs 16, 18, 20)
3 V. Mannone (GWs 18, 24, 30)
3 W. Rooney (GWs 13, 29, 31)
3 W. Szczesny (GWs 10, 13, 22)

You can see we have several changes here. Suarez added to his league-leading number with his 9th appearance, four more than the next closes player (Lallana). Sturridge, Skrtel, and Yaya added their fourth appearances, distancing them from the three-appearance pack. While Eriksen, Baines, and Rooney joined the list each with their third appearances in the Best XI. [Remember that I have only tracked this since GW10, so players who did well early in the season are hurt a bit. I am simply do not have enough time to go back and do all the calculations from those early weeks.]

So, that is the best team for this incredible week. I hope that you did well, and here's hoping that you can figure out the best team for GW32!

Prof. M

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