If you missed Part One, you can find that here. Part One starts with a strategic look ahead and discusses the importance of Euro 2020 to the story of the coming season. This reflects the early preparation I set out as part of the site Key Strategy.
But for Part Two and beyond, let’s get straight to the players!
Defenders: Vertonghen, Alderweirald, Denayer, Meunier,
Midfielders: Tielemans, Kevin De Bruyne, Carrasco,
Forwards: Lukaku, Mertens, E Hazard, T Hazard
Market and Player Assessment
A lot of talent here and they should enter the tournament as one of the favourites.
Vertonghen looks very solid performance wise for Belgium but it’s hard to make a case for holding 32 year old’s into late season unless they are still cheap and exceptionally strong and I wouldn’t say Vertonghen is.
Alderweirald looks much more attractive as covered in Scouting this week. Solid overall numbers and had goal threat a striker would be happy with. 5 shots across both games and 1 goal. Possible transfer in him and could stay in the EPL so there is more of a case to hold him, he’s excellent value for his ability and would be my punt from defence.
Denayer is the the best trend fit, the most expensive and probably the weakest of the 3 centre backs. Played 1 of the 2 matches and did actually get a chance to score. I think he’s ok but he lacks the overall fit I look for.
I don’t like the Lyon defence in the mean time whilst holding him for the internationals. Just realised he is not in my ratings and he goes in at a at the next update.
Meunier looks a good short term punt for the qualifiers and maybe the tournament. He isn’t starting for PSG but he does look strong for Belgium and is a reasonable price at 71p. On balance I quite like the hold since he has had recent EPL transfer rumours that may resurface at the right time and people should be optimistic enough on him pre-Euros to buy at this price and possibly up towards £1.
Tielemans looks solid and quite similar to his club form except he can do even better when playing weak opponents like San Marino. Fairly expensive though as I’ve said in Scouting for a while even after the drop. But if that drop continues and Leicester hit form he could be worth revisiting. Lack of goal threat in the internationals is a bit of a turn off he’s very deep.
Not sure I need to say much about De Bruyne, superb this season after an improvement and the scoring matrix combining to lift him up. Can dominate especially against soft opponents like San Marino (and Scotland. Sorry Scotland fans but this was a bad game!). Doesn’t everyone know it though and I am not a fan of holding players at these sorts of prices. But for those who like a premium hold he looks great.
Carrasco looks strong for Belgium. Managed an assist but could easily have scored too. Only started 1 of the games, though. I like him at 96p and like Meunier he could pick up transfer rumours at the right time to get momentum.
Typical from Lukaku. Looks deadly for Belgium although it will rarely net him big performance scores. As I said a few weeks ago, it was hard to fathom why people were thinking paying £2.40 essentially for an IPD player was a good idea when you can buy similar goal threat for under £1. But there we are, he’s coming down towards £2 now. If that continued more towards £1.75 then maybe.
Mertens looks fantastic value at £1.17 as covered in Scouting. When considering a hold for the Euros though you have to sweat because there is a good chance he is China bound come the end of the season. For the next month or two though I like him.
Both Hazard brothers were sidelined by injury. Eden will obviously return and I fully expect him to do extremely well in performance scoring this season once he settles. Expensive but I think it’s a decent year for him given the optimism he will carry into the Euros.
Thorgan should return to the line up provided he gets more minutes at Dortmund where it is currently a struggle as covered in Scouting. He’s struggling but often value can emerge when the market is down on a player and now back at £1.60 he looks pretty good. There is no way he gets benched forever and he has ability.
Defenders: de Ligt, Van Dijk, Blind,
Midfielders: F de Jong, Wijnaldum, Propper,
Forwards: Babel, Depay, Bergwijn, Malen,
Market and Player Assessment
de Ligt is a bang average defender for performance purposes at a silly price. I’ve been saying that for a while and he has slipped from £3.20 to just over £2. No sympathy for holders there at all, that’s just lazy player research.
Van Dijk is a very good defender at a bit of silly price. For Holland he had 4 shots and looks capable of a goal which is the sort of thing you are looking for in a tournament defender. Not my sort of hold and he is slipping in price a bit lately. But, he is a solid player who I’d expect to do well over the season so there are worse holds.
Blind is my pick of the defenders at an absolute bargain 34p. Played both matches with around 100 passes in both, creating 5 chances and an assist. Good for Ajax too and the CL is coming up. Cheeky but I like it and he is capable of a win and a price rise when people switch onto this.
F. De Jong scored vs Germany but it was his only chance across both games and given his usual goal threat, I’m unconvinced. Decent-ish baselines, though not quite strong enough to punch through in a tough midfield category. Not keen at the price as covered in Scouting.
Wijnaldum has an outside shot and recently his goal threat has crept up, particularly for Holland but also a bit for Liverpool. He scored 2 and got 1 assist over the qualifiers which is great. Didn’t deliver big scores, though and he lacks a few underlying stats to give him the edge. Still, at 61p… it’s not a bad punt for the next qualifiers.
Propper as covered in Scouting played vs Holland and got a decent 175 without a goal or assist. Has some nice numbers and I liked him as a cheap punt at 29p. Checking since I covered him in Scouting he is now 39p! I hope that’s not entirely my fault I try to avoid that but it’s tough with very cheap players.
Veteran Babel started both games delivering 2 goals and 1 assist and that can be consistent. It’s hard to argue with that at 29p (again) for the next qualifiers if he starts next time. I would not be surprised if he lost his place to a youngster though.
Depay smashed it for his second win of the season and I’m delighted since he was one of my biggest picks from pre-season Scouting. 1 goal and 3 assists across both games and he should be a consistent challenger in this form. In a non-Euros year I’d likely be taking profits now but I think he is capable of winning again and the Euros trend may push him even higher.
Malen has absolutely flown this week after scoring against Germany and then hitting 5 (5!) against Vitesse for PSV. £2 now. Is he that good!? Nah. But he’s not bad either.
Weak league goal stats should be taken with a pinch of salt and he mainly lacks the supporting stats to deliver big scores. Could be a decent IPD striker though so you can follow the career and work out if he will hit world class level or not.
Bergwijn worth a mention although did not figure this time. Back down to £1.27 and with a transfer on the cards and in the squad at least you can see him doing well come 2020 or a good Europa performance, he’s not bad at all.