We all hate the International Break don’t we? Once again there we no shocks for anyone, all the main teams won including England labouring to a 2-0 win over Lithuania. You want to know someone who definitely doesn’t like the International Break? Seamus Coleman. He got his leg broke. Shit. As much as I’m massively pissed off that the only Premier League player to get injured in the Internationals was a member of the Letdowns (Seriously, the amount of bad luck lately is just ridiculous, what have I done wrong!?), a guy broke his leg. Let’s hope he recovers quickly and gets back up to the form he’s been producing lately. So I obviously had to swap out Coleman from the team this week and I had already made my transfer, so the Letdowns line up as follows:

The Defence

The team picks itself this week, which is why I don’t care that GSL might be reading this for “tactics”. In goal, I’m opting for Eldin Jakupovic at home to West Ham. Hopefully we’ll see a strong Hull showing that in GW29 in a must win game for both teams really. West Ham also look set to be within a number of key players, Winston Reid being one  (More on that later) and also Michail Antonio is out for a month! Probably the best time to play West Ham.

Seamus Coleman was in here but he’s now been swapped out for Fabio of Boro, who are away at Swansea. They were much improved against Manchester United (The scoreline suggests otherwise…) and when the score was 2-1 it looked all but certain that they would find an equaliser at some point (Victor Valdes then goes Utd a favour…). Fabio was bursting forward and whipping in crosses constantly. Let’s hope there is more of that this weekend!

We have Marcos Alonso at home to Crystal Palace. Chelsea will dominate this match as Palace look to secure a point by having 10 men behind the ball for 90 minutes.

And finally, we have this weeks transfer, Ryan Bertrand, at home to Bournemouth in the South Coast derby (that nobody cares about because it’s not Southampton vs Portsmouth). Southampton may not be keeping clean sheets at the moment, but he’s got 4 assists in 5 games… for a defender! This game will be end to end and very open which will give Bertrand lots of opportunity to get forward. Southampton are also one of three teams that have 11 matches to left to play, the most in the league, which means double game weeks…

So because I made my transfer before the International break, I will have Coleman on the bench but when I do transfer him out, it’ll release a lot of funds to spread throughout the team! My only other defensive alternative this week was bringing in Stephen Ward but Burnley are at home against Spurs… and like fuck will they get another clean sheet. I can see two clean sheets and assist this week, I don’t know where this optimism has come from… maybe it’s because I’m currently unemployed and I need some hope to cling on to? Maybe. Still, prediction: 19 points.

The Midfield

I honestly look at my team now, compare it with the others in the league and say to myself “how the fuck am I not in a better position?”. And then I remember Gareth McAuley and I go drink another beer to forget about him again. God I hate him.

Anyway, my midfield consists of Sadio Mane who is at home to Everton. Without Coleman, Everton will lose a lot of attacking threat, which can only be good for Liverpool / Mane. It needs to be good for Mane because I’m starting to get fed up by him. Everton are the start of an incredible fun of fixtures so I’m hopeful of some points…

Dele Alli, one of the main men of the Letdowns at the moment, is away at Burnley. And I need him to continue to deliver here to justify my decision to leave Ward on the bench again. 3 goals in his last 3 and an assist for good measure in there as well does bold well for a Spurs goal.

We have Glyfi Siggurdson  at home to Middlesbrough this week and although his run of assists came to a crashing end in GW29 against Bournemouth, if Swansea do anything in this game then it’s likely to be orchestrated by Siggy. Though the real life Middlesbrough fan in me would take a 6-1 Boro win, with a Siggy assist to Llorente

And finally, we have GW29’s heroManuel Lanzini. Where non West Ham fans think that Antonio is there key player, actual West Ham fans know that it’s Lanzini that is the biggest influence. And this is where my strange obsession with watching Fan Channels on YouTube is coming in handy. As I mentioned earlier West Ham are away at Hull in a must win game for both sides. It’ll be up to Lanzini to pull something out of the bag.

Again, I had no other options this week barring Tom Davies. And yes, leaving him on the bench last week cost me a few points but fuck off. He’s away at Liverpool this week and all the other midfielders seem a better option. I need a big performance this week from the midfield and I’m hoping if I pray hard enough for 2 goals and 2 assists then it’ll happen. Prediction: 24 points.

The Strikers

What a strike force I have now, just saying, but the fixtures aren’t greatFirstly, we have Sergio Aguero away at Arsenal. He missed a few chances against Liverpool before finally getting goal and Arsenal were awful in their 3-1 defeat to West Brom. On paper it’s a tough game at least, but I’m hoping the Arsenal players down tools again and Sergio can run riot.

Fernando Llorente is still present in the Letdowns but for how much longer I don’t know. He hasn’t scored in his last two games and although that doesn’t sound like many, they were against Hull and Bournemouth… two teams that haven’t kept many clean sheets this season at all. It’s almost last chance saloon and this week he’s up against Middlesbrough who are AWFUL at defending big strong strikers. It could be a field day… could be. It could be. It probably won’t. I’m hoping it won’t be. Maybe 1 goal… as long as Middlesbrough win I’ll be happy.

And finally we have the other main man, Romelu Lukaku, who is away at Liverpool. It’ll be a tough game for Everton as I can’t see them having much of the ball and they’ll be pressured high up the pitch, especially without Coleman for Liverpool to worry about. Though we’ve seen before what Everton can do on the counter attack, you just have to look at the Arsenal and Man City games for that.

I really don’t know how the strikers will perform this week, which is why it’s imperative for other parts of the team to perform just in case. We could see goals galore given how awful Arsenal are, how Middlesbrough can’t defend against big strikers, and how Everton can play counter attacking football but I just don’t know. I’ll say 2 goals but naturally I’d like more: Prediction: 16 points.

I have no idea who to choose as Captain this week. I could go with someone who has easier fixtures but who isn’t in great form, or for someone who is in incredible form but has a tougher fixture… It’s a decision I’m going to use this week to think on.

Just as a side note to all this FPL shit, I think Seamus Coleman’s injury, as awful as it is, strangely puts perspective on how we should approach life in general. No matter how well things are going, how easily we are tackling problems, something could go wrong at any moment and change everything. Don’t take for granted anything, don’t think you’re better than anyone and certainly don’t think that awful things like this won’t happen to you because they will. In some way they will. But it’s how to prepare ourselves for that bad situation that ultimately helps us get through it as quickly as possible. It’s a lessen I learned almost 10 years ago, one that completely changed my attitude towards life and this injury made me think on that again. #deep

Leopard’s Letdowns.