This week is tough for the Letdowns. There are many players coming up against each other and for those that don’t they have tricky fixtures. I needed my transfer this week to stand out, it needed to be someone who was a differential to 1st place to continue my push upwards, albeit a small push. It needed to be someone who is reliable, the key man for the team and somebody with a relatively attractive fixture. No, I haven’t jumped on the Gabriel Jesus band wagon, mainly because 1st place already has him and it wouldn’t help me at this stage of the season to pick players who they have. I need differentials and there are a few who stand out…

The Defence

Ben Foster starts in goal this week and is coming up against Winston Reid as West Brom vs West Ham. Again, I’ve opted against choosing Aldin Jakupovic in goal this week, but surely, Hull can’t keep another clean sheet against one of the top 6? They’re away at Arsenal for christ sake.

The other half of my 4 man defence also face off against each other as Marcos Alonso of Chelsea travels to face Stephen Ward and his group of merry man at Burnley. Burnley have been immense at home this season, parking 22,556 (Stadium capacity + 10 players) behind the ball and hitting the ball long to their one solitary player up front to capitalise on any mistake made by the opposition defence. This absolutely won’t change against Chelsea so this game could easily be 0-0, 0-5 or the most likely and the most frustrating 1-2, ruining any clean sheet for either side and no doubt Costa and Hazard scoring for Chelsea.

2 matches covers all of my defence and my only alternatives are Fabio who is at home to an inform Lukaku or Donald Love who has stopped playing. Brilliant. I’m not expecting anything from anyone.. Prediction: 8 points.

The Midfield

Alexis Sanchez keeps his spot due to some favourable fixtures in the second stage of the season with only Liverpool, City, United and Spurs left to play of the current top 6. I’m hoping my faith pays off this game week as he comes up against Hull who are a completely different team under Marco Silva. To quote a hilarious fan from a certain Fan TV youtube channel “come on Arsenal! Do not let me down”.

We have Dele Alli away at Liverpool. Liverpool have been gash this year and are still looking for their first win in 2017 where as Spurs have struggled to score in the last few matches. Alli will hopefully run rings around a terrible Pools defence that has conceded 9 goals in the last 5 matches, with 7 of those goals coming against Sunderland, Swansea and hull.

The Bellend of the Week from GW24 is again chosen in the starting 11, Mr Wilfred Zaha. He is getting into some good positions and has been a little unfortunate not to see any rewards for the decent deliveries he puts in the box, eventually Benteke will get on the end of one of them… and where better to start then against Stoke.

And the final player in midfield this week is the returning Icelander, Gylfi Siggurdson. Paul Clement has worked miracles at Swansea and has them scoring for fun and big Siggy has returned 35 points over his last 5 matches! Matt Phillips made way for him as I didn’t see any reward for having him in the Letdowns.

Sanchez needs to drag Arsenal back into form rather than continue to get frustrated, if he starts blanking against teams outside of the top 6 then I’ll have to start thinking about whether or not it’s worth having him in the team compared to other cheaper alternatives. Each player in the midfield has decent fixtures to either spring board themselves into form or to continue their current form. I need a couple of goals here this week to start picking up the pace as we look to push on upwards. Prediction: 18 points.

The Strikers

This is where it’s make or break for the Letdowns this week. My team is full of differentials to 1st place now, and nowhere more so than in the strikeforce.

Zlatan Ibrahimovich kept his place in the team, mainly because of his next set of fixtures and also because he has a match against Man City that will be rescheduled to fix into one of the game weeks. What that means though, is that he doesn’t play on GW26… which is a problem. Still, this week he is at home against Watford and I’m hoping for a few goals.

We have the hero of GW24Romelu Lukaku, who travels to the beautiful north east town of Middlesbrough. I’m frightened at what havoc he could cause a Boro defence, that hasn’t been great against powerful strikers this season, but also excited at what it could mean for the Letdowns!

And finally, we have a surprise second transfer of the week. It’s Harry Kane who departs, and Jermaine Defoe who comes into the fold. A first appearance in the Letdowns and crucially another differential. With Kane up against Liverpool, and the assumption that 1st place wouldn’t change him, I felt it there was potential to make up some ground. It does rely on Kane not scoring against a shite Liverpool and Defoe to score against Southampton, but it was an opportunity I couldn’t afford to miss.

I need my strike force to really kick on and to come out on top when compared to the strike force of 1st place, Costa, Kane and Jesus who are big names but have trickier fixtures this week. Prediction: 18 points.

Summary

The Letdowns now has 8 differentials on first place which is massive. It’s absolutely make or break this week, especially after transferring Kane out for Defoe. I have enough flexibility to bring him back in if needed or Costa or Jesus, but ideally, I’d like for my current team to just smash in the goals and for Aguero to play a few matches to mess up 1st place who has Jesus in his team. Come on Pep, don’t be an arsehole and force one of the Premier Leagues greatest ever players abroad, we want to see the best of the best in this league.

It’s only Wednesday but I’m absolutely shitting a brick at how this weekend could turn out. It could be awful. The Letdowns could find themselves even further behind 1st place and the hopes of the current champion defending his title for a second season running will be dashed. Or, it could be a huge strive forward and the Letdowns could make up more points on 1st place. Come 10pm on Monday we will find out.

The Letdowns.