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22nd Nov 2013

Fantasy Football Insider – Gameweek 12: Belgian Blue blooming once again

After a slow start, Eden Hazard is finally starting to deliver the goods for Chelsea and for Fantasy Football managers alike.

Conor Heneghan

After a slow start, Eden Hazard is finally starting to deliver the goods for Chelsea and for Fantasy Football managers alike.

Gameweek 11 review

It seems like an age ago now but the last weekend of Fantasy Football was a bountiful one for the managers that played their cards right. First up in that deck should have been awarding the captaincy to Luis Suarez, who, as had been expected, went to town on the Fulham defence and scored a brace, set up another and got three bonus points for a 16-point haul in total.

That made the Uruguayan top scorer last time around and he was followed by the unlikely figure of Phil Bardsley and not so unlikely figure of Rickie Lambert, who amassed 15 points apiece thanks to a goal and a clean sheet (for Bardsley) and a goal and two assists (for Lambert) with both players also achieving maximum bonus points.

It’s unlucky for some but 13 proved to be a nice figure for Tim Krul, Martin Skrtel, Eden Hazard and Wilfried Bony after their contributions a fortnight back with Adam Lallana (12), Steven Gerrard (11) and Leandro Bacuna (11) making up a starting XI that all made it into double figures.


The top two stayed put in the J-League after Gameweek 11, but the chasing pack put a lot of heat on Barry Curran’s Gambitbeer in first place and Stuart McGoldrick’s Champions 2013/14 in second.

An impressive 82 points by John Minnock’s Mingin Winners was enough to catapult him into fifth place, with Sean O’Donoghue’s Celtic D’s and Brian Ruane’s Dukes of Hazard applying the pressure to the top dogs in third and fourth respectively.

J-League Top 5:

  1. Gambitbeer – Barry Curran: 733 points
  2. Champions 2013/14 – Stuart McGoldrick: 732 points
  3. Celtic D’s – Sean O’Donoghue: 729 points
  4. Dukes of Hazard – Brian Ruane: 723 points
  5. Mingin Wingers – John Minnock: 713 points

Belgian Blue blooming once again

If you were to ask Fantasy Football managers to name one player who was the source of most disappointment at the start of this season, Eden Hazard would be close to the top of the list.

With Chelsea having a double gameweek and a decent run of fixtures to start off with and the Belgian expected to improve upon the flashes of brilliance he delivered (he scored nine goals and provided 16 assists) in his first season, he was one of the most popular choices as captain in the opening weeks.

Instead, possibly down to Jose Mourinho’s strategy and team selection – which alienated Juan Mata and made Oscar the focal point of Chelsea’s attacking midfield trio – Hazard flattered to deceive, registering only one assist and scoring a measly 15 points in his first six games.

The tide has begun to turn since then, however and although Chelsea still aren’t firing on all cylinders, Hazard is back in form and is in the middle of a great run that started when he was left on the bench against Norwich last month and came on to score a crucial goal that earned the Blues a barely deserved win.

That goal included, Hazard has scored four goals in his last five league outings and picked up two assists and eight out of a possible 15 bonus points along the way for an average of just short of nine points a game in that period. As it stands, Hazard is the fourth-highest scoring midfielder in the league behind Adam Lallana, Yaya Toure and who else but Aaron Ramsey.

You still get the feeling that both Hazard and Chelsea have yet to reach full pitch this season but when they do, the Belgian will prove as popular as he did earlier on in the season but will no doubt start to deliver the goods this time around.

There’s every chance that won’t happen of course, but if it does and you’re left behind, don’t say we didn’t give you the Hazard warning *JOE goes to get coat*.

JOE’s Fantasy Football Picks:

Top Dollar: Eden Hazard (£9.3 million). As elaborated upon above, Hazard has scored four goals, provided two assists and scored 43 points in total in the last five games, which should boost the confidence ahead of the trip to West Ham on Saturday.

Mid-Range: Loic Remy (£7.9 million). Two goals in his last two games (against no less of teams than Chelsea and Spurs) and four in his last five; he’s flying ahead of the visit of the Canaries to St. James’ Park.

Bargain Basement: Gareth McAuley (£5.4 million). Barring the trip to Liverpool, the Baggies’ defence has been pretty tight and McAuley has been central to that as well as chipping in two goals for good measure.

Irish Pick: Jonathan Walters (£6.1 million). Scored in his last game and should be on a high after captaining Ireland this week ahead of the visit of Sunderland tomorrow. Let’s just hope there are no penalties.

Captain’s Pick: Robin van Persie (£13.9 million). As tough a choice as we can remember this week given the fixtures, but we’ve gone for RVP, who has scored in each of his last four games (and scored 40 points) and should be fresh after a nice rest during the international break.