WELCOME TO THE GW15 REVIEW – LET THERE BE HAUSE
In the beginning, there was Jack, and Jack had a groove. And from this groove came the groove of all grooves. And while one day viciously throwing down on his box, Jack boldly declared “Let there be HAUSE!”.
Okay, let’s get straight to this week’s ‘Kings of the Gameweek’. The top scoring player was none other than Aston Villa’s back-up centre half Kortney Hause (15).
Let me just take a step back though. I started the gameweek with crossed fingers, hoping Hause would be dropped and that Konsa would come back into the Villa starting XI after illness. By 5pm on Saturday Konsa had come off Villa’s bench and earned me a solitary point after Mings picked up a schoolboy red card. Hause, on the other hand, had secured 15 points through his clean sheet, goal and maximum bonus haul. “Let there be HAUSE!” – the iconic and much-sampled words of house music pioneer Chuck Roberts. For this week’s review track I decided not to use the original from 1987, but instead opted for a more contemporary incarnation: Chicago by Après. Turn it up loud.
After Saturday’s six matches were done and dusted the ‘Kings of the Gameweek’ team included no less than four Villa players (two of which were still there after Sunday’s matches). Despite his undeniable groove, Jack (2) wasn’t one of them. Villa fans won’t care though, as their 3-0 victory over a disappointing Palace side means they now have a whopping 25 points after 13 games. If they win their games in hand they could go second, just one point off Liverpool at the summit. A far cry from last season’s form when they avoided relegation by the skin of their teeth.
Other players in the Kings of the ‘Gameweek’ team include Bruno Fernandes (12) who now has seven double figure hauls from 14 matches, but also a few less familiar faces like Bukayo Saka (13) and Ilkay Gundogan (11), both of whom appear to be getting plenty of starts and could turn out to be decent cut-price midfield enablers.
Saka and Arsenal both deserve more of a mention. Arsenal came into their match against Chelsea without a league win since gameweek 7. The surprisingly speedy returns of Chilwell (1) and James (1) (don’t get me started!) coupled with a trio of Brazilians missing for the home side only strengthened opinion that Arsenal’s winless run would continue. However, the Gunners were the better team throughout (well, for the first 85 minutes at least) and walked away 3-1 victors. A one-off good performance or the start of a turn-around for Arteta’s side?
The other shock result of the weekend was Liverpool’s 1-1 draw with a spirited West Brom team who are looking more solid by the week. After Mane (9) struck early most of us probably feared the worst for West Brom, but Liverpool weren’t able to turn the screw, and after Ajayi (9) equalised in the 82nd minute the champions weren’t able to grab a winner.
Most of the other results were a bit more predictable. The Blades lost yet again (gutted for them, honestly), this time 1-0 to Everton thanks to a Sigurdsson (11) goal. And City eased to victory over Newcastle with another clean sheet, but again looking far from clinical up front.
Anyway, onto more important matters… Steve Cronin (1st) maintains and in fact extends his lead in the FFUK league – his 68 points was the best in the top 10 and the guy can do no wrong at the moment. ‘Statto’ appears to have changed his strategy a bit this season and it’s certainly paying off. What’s even more impressive is that he’s not even used his first wildcard yet!! Steve is now 32 points clear of Steven Almond in 2nd and has sneaked into the world’s top 1,000.
Not too much movement below Steve in the FFUK top 10, but one FFUKer worth mentioning is our very own Chris Galloway, who’s now up to 7th after an impressive 66 points.
Top scorers in the whole league were Malek Mansour and James Simpson who both scored 71. Incredibly, James was joint top scorer last week too! Malek joins James and 39 other FFUKers in the FFUK Champions League.
Over in the Conts league it was the second of three quadruple evictions over the festive period as part of the ’12 Conts of Xmas’. All but one of the remaining Conts captained the Egyptian King, so it must have been a nervous weekend for Tom Newman. However, Tom needn’t have feared as Salah (3) blanked, meaning captain picks weren’t a factor.
Going into the final match of the week there were still plenty of Conts panicking, but whilst there were late escapes for the likes of Vinny Siracusa and Ben Carter, the four that ultimately missed the cut were Duncan Hannigan (25 points), Alex Sadlier (37 points), Jamie Davis (39 points) and Donald Macaulay (41 points). Tough luck chaps.
That’s that for now, but you’ve barely got time to blink as GW16 kicks off this afternoon with Palace vs Leicester at 3pm…
Jamie Stewart, Rice Said Fred (19th)
In the midfield, there was Jack, and Jack had a step-over. And from this step-over came the step-over of all step-overs. And while one day flamboyantly throwing himself down in the box, Jack boldly declared “Let there be HAUSE!”.