Crystal Palace – After a shocking performance last week against Sheffield United, Roy Hodgson’s side travelled to Manchester United as huge underdogs. Palace do have a decent away record though and just like James (@PlanetFPLPod) alluded too, it might not as be cut and dry as some expected. £80M signing Harry Maguire did not cover himself in glory either when his lack of marking let Jordan Ayew through unchallenged to score only his second league goal this calendar year to give Palace the lead.
Then after a week of Sky and pundits treating Paul Pogba’s missed penalty against Wolves as if it were one of the biggest conspiracies of the 21st century, Marcus Rashford steps up and then sees his penalty hit the post. But the reaction is totally different from pundits, it really is strange to see. A great victory looked to be denied for Palace though when *cough* serial diver Daniel James equalised in the 89th minute, but Palace quickly replied by pouncing on a loose ball which ended up with Patrick Van Aanholt beating David De Gea being beaten at his near post. Cue scenes in the Palace end and one hell of a confidence boost for a side who last week could not string three passes together.
Newcastle – Arise Sir Steve Bruce of Tyneside, purveyor of pies, slayer of steak bakes, killer of kebabs, you get the gist. Sunday saw Bruce’s Newcastle side travel to Spurs with everybody fully expecting a routine win for Tottenham and a Harry Kane haul, well that did not happen. In what was probably a bigger shock than Palace winning away at Old Trafford, Newcastle won 1-0 thanks to a first goal for record signing Joelinton. Yes, they got somewhat lucky as VAR did not award a penalty for some reason when Kane was taken down into the box, but Martin Dubravka only had to make two saves so it was not like Spurs were banging on the metaphorical door a lot. After being ripped to shreds against Norwich it is amazing how unpredictable the Premier League can be at times, even the most optimistic of Newcastle fans would not have seen this coming. Bruce will still firmly be a figure of disdain for Toon fans but this week at least he can have some respite.
People who did not sell Salah – When the official fantasy football page tweeted out that Mo Salah was the most transferred out player this gameweek I was extremely shocked. First of all he is playing Arsenal at home, one of the worse teams in the league away from home with a defence that contained David Luiz, it is Salah you have him for the whole season if fit. He blanked last week at Southampton whereas Sadio Mane hauled which probably caused a lot of trigger happy transfers which backfired spectacularly as Salah scored a brace and this week Mane blanked. One word that comes to mind is punished. I got burned doing the same last season, I sold Salah and then he scores a hat-trick away at Bournemouth so I learned the hard way that if you take him out prepare to be burned. He has been the top scorer in the game in the last two seasons for a reason….
Harry Kane – I went for Kane as captain this week and was rewarded with a fantastic four points cheers Harry…. Something is not right at Tottenham right now, a lot seems to be going on behind the scenes and with loads of rumours about the future of Christian Eriksen and the strange absence of Jan Vertonghen seem to be causing issues on the field. It is not the first time he has done this to us owners against inferior opposition at home, last season he blanked at home to Cardiff and even got a booking. The future of Danish playmaker Eriksen I think is really damaging Kane’s goal scoring chances. Until he was subbed on against Aston Villa, Spurs were struggling to find any consistent attacks and lacked a player with the vision to see the final pass.
In his last two games he has only had four touches in the penalty box, only two attempts at goal, one shot in the box and only one big chance. For an 11.1M striker you would be expecting so much better especially in that Newcastle game. Kane can explode at any moment and bag two with minimal effort but right now I am put off as without Eriksen starting, Spurs just do not play in a way to get the best out of Kane.
Ayoze Perez – It all looked so good in pre-season for Ayoze Perez. Listed as a 6.5 midfielder despite many thinking he would be a forward given his great form and position for Newcastle in the second half of last season. His 30M transfer to Leicester City made a lot of people, myself including seeing a potential bargain in FPL especially with the style of play Brendan Rodgers has his sides play. He looked to be playing upfront with Vardy in pre-season and did pretty well by all accounts. Then for the first three games of this season he has started all games on the wing…. He has not looked like doing anything at all, against Sheffield United on Saturday the Spaniard did not even register a shot! His price has already fell on FPL and at this rate another drop will be on the way.
Will Hughes – Short and sweet this one. The Watford midfielder compounded his sides awful start to the season by missing an absolute sitter in their 3-1 defeat to West Ham.