What a game week we just had! The Manchester City juggernaut rolled on with a clinical demolition of Huddersfield featuring a Sergio Aguero hat trick and the first assist by a goalkeeper in City’s history. Harry Kane broke his August curse in the victory over Fulham. Chelsea defeated Arsenal to keep the Blues undefeated and the Gunners winless. And David brought down Goliath when lowly Brighton put Manchester United to the sword at Falmer Stadium.
What drama will unfold this week? Who knows. But at least we know what fixtures are on the menu:
- Wolverhampton vs Manchester City
- Arsenal vs West Ham
- Bournemouth vs Everton
- Huddersfield vs Cardiff
- Southampton vs Leicester
- Liverpool vs Brighton
Alisson (LIV, $7.88): Two games, two victories, two clean sheets. Yes, Brighton just beat Manchester United. But Liverpool is no Manchester United.
Ederson (MCI, $8.90): Manchester City will beat Wolverhampton. The only question is whether Ederson can keep a clean sheet. Plus, it now seems City’s sweeper-keeper even offers attacking potential — check out this ridiculous goal-kick assist to Sergio Aguero on Sunday:
Marcos Alonso (CHE, $12.85): He proved yet again his value as an attacking asset by scoring and assisting against Arsenal over the weekend. And he’ll add clean sheet potential to his offensive threat when he visits Newcastle this weekend. His price may give you pause, but it’s actually not unreasonable for the #2 defender in Fantrax.
Joel Ward (CRY, $3.63): Aaron Wan-Bissaka was shown red against Liverpool for illegally denying a goal-scoring chance, so he is suspended for one match. Ward is set to deputize in his place this weekend. The 28 year-old holds Palace’s record for most club appearances and was the first-choice right back last year, when he averaged 6.21 ppg. He’s a great one-week play if you’re looking to free up space in your budget.
Joe Bryan (FUL, $5.91): He’s a prolific crosser, and this week there’ll be clean sheet potential too: Burnley have scored just one goal this season.
Michael Keane (EVE, $8.79): Double-digit Fantrax returns in both games so far, despite clean sheets in neither.
Virgil van Dijk (LIV, $8.52): Brighton will stay tight away from home, and although Liverpool’s offense is fearsome, it may take a set-piece goal from VVD to break the Seagulls down. He could very well walk away with a clean sheet too — his presence has added substantial stability to Liverpool’s defense.
Benjamin Mendy (MCI, $14.43): All he’s done since the season started is announce himself as the best left back in the English Premier League. To be honest, he should already be in your team (at a significant discount). But even though he’s now the most expensive defender in the game, don’t let his price deter you: He’s averaging 20.5 ppg.
Kieran Trippier (TOT, $7.33): Trips was reinstalled in Spurs’ starting-XI for the visit of Fulham and picked up right where he left off in Russia, whipping in 4 accurate crosses and scoring a sumptuous free-kick goal (skip to the 2 minute mark):
Note: Alonso and Trippier have dual-classification in Fantrax and can be played as either defenders or midfielders
Henrikh Mkhitaryan (ARS, $12.15): Mickey got off to a slow start in a forgettable season opener against Manchester City. But he elevated his game for the trip to Stamford Bridge, scoring Arsenal’s first goal and assisting the second on his way to an 18 point Fantrax harvest. His price has now jumped accordingly, but this week he’s at home to the Hammers, who have conceded 6 goals in the first two games.
Matteo Guendouzi (ARS, $7.85): His name hasn’t made your radar yet? Well, that’s why NMA is here. In his first two games he has quietly collected 9 points against Manchester City and 15 against Chelsea, all without a single goal or assist. This week Doozey’s opponent isn’t a team contending for Europe, so his steady production could even see an uptick.
Ryan Fraser (BOU, $11.80): A goal in Week 1 and an assist in Week 2. Averaging 14.5 ppg, Fraser appears to be an integral part of Bournemouth’s attack and should continue to reward investment when the Cherries host Everton this weekend.
Mateo Kovacic (CHE, $3.86): He made his debut in a thirty-minute cameo against Arsenal that could signal his readiness to start this weekend. If he does look set to make the S11, Kovacic represents terrific value for the trip to St. James Park. Heck, at his price he makes a great enabler even if he comes off the bench.
Jean Michael Seri (FUL, $6.52): The Ivorian is averaging 8.5 ppg and faces Burnley at home this week. That makes him an excellent value for GW-3.
Aaron Mooy (HUD, $8.09): Excused from the match at the Etihad for the birth of his son, he should plug straight back into the starting lineup for Cardiff’s visit this weekend. Mooy put up 11 points against Chelsea in GW 1, and there’s no reason he can’t do even better in GW-3.
James Maddison (LEI, $8.04): My sneak pick for GW 2 rewarded his owners with a 16 point return against Wolves. He’s on the road this week, but the opponent is Southampton, so he’s still a good bet.
Bernardo Silva (MCI, $9.78): He’s currently City’s top Fantrax midfielder, and with Kevin De Bruyne facing a long-term absence, his place in the S11 should be safe.
James Milner (LIV, $8.04): Over the weekend he was subbed off for Jordan Henderson in the 67th minute, illustrating the vulnerability of Liverpool’s Fantrax midfielders to the risk of rest and rotation. Nevertheless, Milner was able to post 17 points in just over an hour of work. I think Jurgen Klopp may again prefer Milner’s attacking instincts over Henderson’s stability for the home fixture against Brighton this weekend. Fantasy managers should also note that Milner took (and buried) a PK on Monday despite the fact that Sadio Mané was on the pitch, suggesting that the Englishman may be first in the pecking order for spot-kicks.
Note: Milner can be played as either a defender or midfielder, and B. Silva can be played as either a midfielder or forward.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (ARS, $13.18): It would be a disaster for Unai Emery to slip to 0-3 in front of the home fans, so he’ll go for the jugular this weekend. That strategy should reap rewards for PEA. So far the Gabonese has failed to fire, but he’s still the most dangerous player in Emery’s side. I expect him to open his 2018-19 scoring account when the Hammers visit the Emirates this weekend.
Callum Wilson (BOU, $11.34): With a goal in each of his first two games, Wilson’s form is undeniable. Can he stretch his streak to a third game when Everton come to call?
Wilifried Zaha (CRY, $14.18): By far Palace’s most dangerous asset, he put up 10 points even against Liverpool despite the fact that the Reds enjoyed 72% of the possession. His prospects look brighter for the trip to Watford this weekend.
Cenk Tosun (EVE, $7.22): No goals yet, but he’s a consistent value performer who has collected 23 points despite blanking so far.
Aleksandar Mitrovic (FUL, $8.30): He had 3 shots-on-target in GW-1 before finally notching to spoil Tottenham’s clean sheet in GW-2. This week Burnley visit Craven Cottage, and Mitrovic should see plenty of chances.
Kelechi Iheanacho (LEI, $3.74): Jamie Vardy’s suspension means Nacho will get the start against Southampton. He’s a bargain-bin gem for GW 3.
Sadio Mané (LIV, $15.11): He trails his Egyptian teammate by only one point in Fantrax, yet is available for two-thirds the cost. Although we are used to seeing it the other way around, right now it is the Senegalese who can’t stop scoring.
Mo Salah (LIV $22.76): No goals last week, but the Egyptian Magician still racked up 18 points. That saw his price tick back up a bit, and he’s again beginning to approach territory that is too rich for me. But he’s not quite there yet, especially for a home match against Brighton.
Troy Deeney (WAT, $7.65): Deeney was a beast at Burnley, where he registered a goal, an assist and 3 SOTs. This week he’ll relish the chance to bully Palace’s defense when the Eagles visit Vicarage Road.
Sergio Aguero (MCI, $19.84): Anyone who saw his performance against Huddersfield must be terrified at the thought of going without him this week. It was Sergio Aguero at his sharpest, and the Wolves are not equipped to deal with a talent like that (who is, for that matter?). If Kun carries that same form with him into Molineux Stadium, it’s going to be a rough day to be a Wolverhampton fan.
Those are the players on my mind for GW 3. Whom are you thinking about? Share your thoughts (and the latest team news and rumors!) in the comments below.
Who is your top Fantrax pick for GW 3?
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