How Spurs assets fared in their final match before Double Gameweek 26 | fpl.wiki


West Ham United 2-1 Tottenham Hotspur

  • Goals: Michail Antonio (£6.5m), Jesse Lingard (£5.9m) | Lucas Moura (£6.6m)
  • Assists: Pablo Fornals (£5.9m)| Gareth Bale (£9.3m)
  • Bonus: Lingard x3, Antonio x2, Lucas x1

DOUBLE TROUBLE

With five defeats in their last six Premier League matches, Spurs have hardly put in convincing auditions for Double Gameweek 26.

Only four goals have arrived from Gameweek 20 onwards and while their recent fixture run has been far from straightforward, only Crystal Palace have had fewer big chances and shots in the box than Spurs when clubs are filtered their last half-dozen games.

A double-header against Burnley and Fulham would ordinarily have us reaching for the Triple Captain chip but those two sides’ defensive form and Spurs’ own malaise leave doubts lingering in the mind.

It’s the respective ownerships of Son Heung-min (£9.5m) and Harry Kane (£11.1m) that may leave FPL managers fearful of going without a Spurs representative in Gameweek 26 but there was little persuasive from the former in particular at the London Stadium.

Son blanked for the eighth time in 11 matches in the 2-1 defeat at West Ham, with the closest he came to an attacking return being a freak, looping effort that struck the hosts’ woodwork late in the game.

Kane was more prominent, firing on goal at will and teeing up the impressive Gareth Bale (£9.3m) up for a second-half attempt that clipped the bar.

BALE LIFT

Arguably the pick of the Spurs players at the London Stadium didn’t even start the match.

Bale has underwhelmed since his return to north London but he produced perhaps his best league performance all season in Gameweek 25, emerging as a half-time substitute and looking sharp and, crucially, motivated.

The Welshman had also looked the part in the Europa League on Thursday and had been tipped up for a start this weekend, but his manager explained that he physically wasn’t quite at the required standard:

[Bale is] not yet ready to start two matches in three days. The same as Dele for different reasons.

For Dele, because he was injured and out of the team for more than a month, not even training.

Gareth because of his evolution. This is part of his evolution. No doubt that the performance was good and no doubt that I believe sooner rather than later he will be ready to play more than he is now.

Bale remains a massive and unnecessary gamble as a Gameweek 26 asset but a continuation of that form going into the double-header against Burnley and Fulham could be hugely beneficial to the Spurs players we Fantasy managers do own, particularly Kane.

The England striker has so often been the man to grab games by the scruff of the neck, which usually goes hand in hand with dropping deep to instigate attacks.

On Sunday, we instead saw Bale doing plenty of that – and Kane, as a result, spent a bit more time lurking in areas where we prefer to see him, topping the penalty box touch count by some distance.

EUROPA, BETTER BY DESIGN

While it’s still a bit early in the campaign for teams to be writing off their domestic commitments, it’s worth bearing in mind for the medium term that the Premier League might end up being the third priority for Jose Mourinho.

Nine points adrift of a top-four place, Mourinho’s best chance of achieving a Champions League qualification spot could end up being through winning the Europa League – something he himself admitted yesterday:

Of course, if you say nine points now, it is difficult, is very possible.

And the Europa League. We are alive, and when we are alive, knowing that many difficult opponents and everybody has the same ambition that we have, but Europa League is a window of opportunity that is open for us, and maybe we can also get to Champions League through the Europa League.

Never one to turn his nose up at any form of silverware, Mourinho and his Spurs side also have the EFL Cup final to look forward to at the end of April.

With the fixtures coming thick and fast throughout the spring, how far into the Europa League would Spurs have to progress before their head coach views the top flight as a distraction and a chance to hand his star players a breather?

It won’t be Double Gameweek 26, but it’s certainly a prospect in the run-in.

STOP HAMMER TIME?

Source: Soccerstats.com

West Ham are second in the Premier League form table over their last eight matches, with only the two Manchester clubs plundering more goals in that time.

The Hammers are offering value aplenty in Fantasy Premier League at present, from the top-scoring defender, Aaron Cresswell (£5.8m), to the asset who can – temporarily, at least – boast the best points-per-match average, Jesse Lingard (£5.9m).

Tomas Soucek (£5.4m) has also massively exceeded expectations on the goal front in 2020/21, while Michail Antonio (£6.5m), when fit, is among the pick of the mid-price forwards.

Antonio returned from injury on Sunday and opened the scoring from close range (again), while Lingard’s excellent strike just after the interval made it four attacking returns in as many games since his loan move from Manchester United.

The issue with the Hammers is not form, but fixtures.

Between now and Gameweek 33, West Ham face all four of the other clubs who currently sit in the top five of the Premier League table.

More pressingly, however, they are among just six other teams who don’t have two fixtures in Double Gameweek 26 – and their one game is against Manchester City at the Etihad.

For those FPL managers not playing their Bench Boost in the upcoming Gameweek or without a Free Hit chip, Soucek et al are at least worth keeping on board for their match against Arsenal in March – that fixture is one of just four to take place in Blank Gameweek 29.


West Ham United XI (4-2-3-1): Fabianski; Coufal, Dawson, Diop, Cresswell; Rice, Soucek; Bowen (Benrahma 65′), Lingard (Noble 90′), Fornals (Johnson 81′); Antonio.

Tottenham Hotspur XI (4-2-3-1) Lloris; Tanganga (Doherty 46′), Sanchez, Dier, Reguilon (Alli 77′); Hojbjerg, Ndombele; Lucas, Lamela (Bale 46′), Son; Kane. 

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Become a Member and get unrestricted access to our data and articles

Full-year memberships are now available for the price of £19.99. Monthly subscriptions also cost just £2.99. A FREE trial is now available during December.

Join now to get the following:

  • Plot your transfer strategies using the fully interactive Season Ticker.
  • Get projections for every Premier League player provided by the Rate My Team statistical model.
  • Use Rate My Team throughout the season to guide your selections and transfers.
  • Get access to over 150+ exclusive members articles over the season.
  • Analyse our OPTA-powered statistic tables specifically tailored for Fantasy Football Managers.
  • Use our exclusive tool to build custom stats tables from over 100 OPTA player and team stats.
  • Enjoy our brand NEW Flat-Track Bully feature which introduces an opposition filter to your tables.
  • View heatmaps and expected goals data for every player.
  • Use our powerful comparison tool to analyse players head-to-head.

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