Alike last gameweek, GW18 was another cagey sort of gameweek, with multiple sides having matches postponed. Some fortunate managers managed to field an 11, but many had to make do with what they had.
With the reduced matches, just like last gameweek, we do have three important discussion points. Considering where the value for points was, we’ll start with the defence.
Defence is king
Gameweek 18 was one where the highly-priced defenders showed they are worth the investment.
With four forwards in the entire game returning attacking points this gameweek, GW18 seemed no better time to distribute the funds down back.
Out of all of the defenders in the game priced at £5.0m or more, 12 of the 15 defenders delivered returns. This was majorly contributed, by a 0-0 draw at the Molineux, alongside Man City keeping a cleansheet away to Newcastle.
Furthermore, the Man City defenders were involved in three of the four goals scored. This was headlined by goals from Dias and the highly-owned Joao Cancelo.
The Portuguese recorded a goal, an assist plus three bonus points, rewarding his 134,000 captainers with an almighty 18-point haul.
Salah is un-captainable
Sunday’s game at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium bought frustration upon many Salah captainers, with the Egyptian recording his first blank since GW2.
Although it was a wild 2-2 affair between Spurs and Liverpool, it was definitely not a day for Mo to remember. He did register two shots (which were both blocked) but his expected involvement numbers were relatively low.
He had an xG (expected goals) of 0.13 and an (expected assists) xA of 0.04, alongside three chances created.
However, you may want to think twice about removing him from the captaincy next gameweek. He faces Leeds in GW19, who have conceded the second most goals thus far of any team, with 36.
Salah did score a hat-trick against them in the corresponding fixture last season, dating back to GW1. In short, you’d be mad to not captain him.
Foden and Grealish left out
Man City’s victory on Sunday at Newcastle shows the effectiveness of their attacking assets can vary from game to game.
The Citizens’ game highlighted four of their goalscorers from Tuesday night, were unused subs come the Sunday (Foden, Ake, Stones and Grealish).
Most notably Phil Foden left many of his 300,000 new owners feeling a sense of angst and frustration. This was coming off his dazzling 12-point display against Leeds on Tuesday.
Having 56% ownership of managers inside the top 10k, it’s fair to say managers sitting near the summit, are at a standstill with him as we approach GW19, with City facing Leicester up next. The Foxes have conceded the fifth most in the league (27) out of all teams.