Leafy Dragon’s Half Dozen: Gameweek 1 Picks
By Matthew Milton aka @LeafyDragon_FPL
If you’re still reading this, then you are one of the 3 people who have continued reading my article. I thank you deeply for your kindness (or stupidity). Just you wait to see what is in store this week!
GW1 Half Dozen Recap
6 Mohamed Salah – 20pts ✅
5 Michail Antonio – 2pts ❌
4 Pierre – Emerick Aubameyang – 7pts ✅
3 Hakim Ziyech – 🚑
2 Time Werner – 5pts ✅
1 Jamie Vardy – 13pts ✅
It wasn’t a bad start was it? If Newcastle United hadn’t turned into peak 2004/5 Chelsea and Isaac Hayden hadn’t channeled his inner Claude Makelele, then Antonio may have grabbed some goals. I perhaps slightly misjudged Mo Salah playing against a promoted side…
Gameweek 2 Half Dozen
So, on the week that I have hit the wildcard button slightly earlier than expected (plan, what plan?) I have used the final 6 GWs of 2019/20 and the data from GW1 to gain seven gameweeks of shot data. The “shots in the box – ometer” has spat out some interesting choices but nothing captaincy worthy: nothing close to 10 (sigh)…Let’s have it…
Six: Danny Ings (£8.5m) v TOT (h)
With the overdramatic sensationalism that comes with every early season loss or early cup exit, it looks clear that this fixture is a relegation six-pointer. Expect to see Ings in my picks quite a lot this season. He’s the exact sort of player who thrives on shots in the box. Ings managed 3 shots in the box in Southampton’s 1-0 loss to Crystal Palace and has 16 shots in the box in his last 7 Premier League fixtures. If you’ve seen All or Nothing you will know that Jose likes a clean sheet. It’s a shame his team have only kept 3 clean sheets in their last 7 PL games. They have also allowed 64 shots in the box in that time. Ings could do very well in a game that will be very open as teams try or grab their first 3 points and out to bed any early season doubts. Ings’ aSITB:PvO score is 5.71.
Five: Leandro Trossard (£6m) v NEW (a)
I am aware at how wayward this is as a pick but the shot count doesn’t lie. Trossard has quietly been going about his business and could be seen as very unlucky not to have scored more. He has had 13 shots in the box in 7 games. He bagged a goal too in Brighton’s loss to Chelsea. Hopefully Lallana’s injury means that he doesn’t need to drop too deep. Brighton face a Newcastle team, who looked f*cking unbelievable against West Ham. Now time will tell if this was simply new signings improving Newcastle’s mentality or West Ham being laughable. Newcastle still allowed West Ham to have 10 shots in the box. That’s a total of 74 shots in the box conceded in their last 7 games. His aSITB:PvO score is 6.21.
Four: Jamie Vardy (£10m) v BUR (h)
Those who consider Jamie Vardy to have been a jammy pick need to remember he’s a striker of a top 6 PL club who takes penalties. It’s his job. He has had 21 shots in the box in his last 7 games. He plays against a Burnley side that is quite inviting of the odd shot in the box but have the enigma of FPL, Nick Pope, in goal. They’ve conceded 62 shots in the box in there last 6 PL games. A clinical, statbusting striker like Vardy could find joy if Pope has an off day. He has a aSITB:PvO score of 6.92.
Three: Callum Wilson (£6.5m) v BHA (h)
I promised myself that I wouldn’t proclaim my love for this man in this article. Its been one GW and… I BLOODY LOVE CALLUM WILSON. Newcastle United have been crying out for a striker, who can do striker things (like move around in the box). The guy could, COULD be truly talismanic for Newcastle this season. Wilson has shot in the box 13 times in his last 7 Premier League games. When you compare that Trossard has done this an equal number of times, it’s not as appealing. Then, you look at Brighton. I mentioned Brighton in my last article as being a big target for fox in the box prey. Brighton conceded 7 shots in the box in their loss against Chelsea. This brings their total shots in the box conceded for the last 7 games to 84. Wilson’s aSITB:PvO score is 6.93.
Two: Richarlison (£8m) v WBA (h)
A big rule of this article is emerging and its three words long. Target West Brom. They have allowed so many shots at goal in their last 7 competitive league fixtures. They allowed 102 shots at goal. One hundred and two. In terms of shots in the box, Leicester peppered West Broms goal. Sam Johnstone had a 6 minute spell where he was forced to make 4 saves (officially 3 as Vardy’s final shot was declared offside). West Brom allowed Leicester a whopping 11 shots in the box. It was obvious that Richarlison will get chances in this new look Everton side. He had 5 shots in the box v Tottenham. After watching West Brom, I cant help feeling he will get plenty more shits in the box. His aSITB:PvO score 7.79.
One: Dominic Calvert-Lewin (£7m) v WBA (h)
He trolled me so much last year. I refused to believe the hype when he decided to start scoring last season and it hurt. Then I thought I’d be a smart arse and buy DCL during his horrific dry spell after the restart because his fixtures looked good (spoiler alert: it went badly). But, this season, he’s playing in a front 3 with a Brazilian international and a two-time Champions League winner. He’s managed 11 shots in the box in his last 7 PL games. If Richarlison wasn’t a total knob head and squared it to him, he would have scored a brace against Spurs, rather than just one goal. I can see a 3-0 scoreline in Everton’s favour on Saturday with DCL being central to the goals. His aSITB:PvO score is 7.93.
Thanks for reading through. As always, hit me with your feedback and share the fun. I’ve wildcarded this week in true knee jerk style but those juicy Everton, Man Utd and Man City assets just couldn’t be left alone.
Until next time,
Matt 🌿🐲 @LeafyDragon_FPL