24 November

Covered in the IPO analysis last week, he was always going to be pumped but the start and goal has sent it even higher to £1.80.

Justified? Absolutely no chance.

He scored but that’s not something you can expect very often.

Worse, it doesn’t count for much when he does because he doesn’t have the baseline numbers to support big performance scores. 

Created 2 chances which is decent but again, he needs to do so much more to get close to big scores.

A pure hype price not unlike when Wan-Bissaka was up at £2.30. He’s 1.75 now and that was very predictable.

Another reminder vs Chelsea of just how strong Mahrez is when playing. Everytime he starts I expect him to be up there competing because his stats are so much better than most forwards.

He has the goal threat of a leading striker with the baseline of a good midfielder, and he’s a forward.

Rotation is the issue but he’s so strong he can overcome that. With a busy Christmas schedule and EPL players getting a boost this month as they are immune from a winter break, this has to be one of the best times to punt on Mahrez. £2.28 is fair.

Decent from De Bruyne with a goal although not a brilliant performance score.

It could have been better because involvement was good, but passing was unusually sloppy and he gave points away. This can be forgiven as a one off but passing accuracy has been poor in 3 of the last 4 games by his standards.

Great FI player, but another example of how players who get overhyped/pumped inevitably exit their hot streak and go back to normal (but still very solid levels). 

People get frustrated because the higher the price the higher the expectations and the less patient people are.

Time to do an in depth Arsenal review as they are struggling and prices are tumbling.

Long term members will know I’ve never been a huge believer in Arsenal performance prospects.

It’s been worse than even I thought though and in the first team it’s difficult to find anyone to recommend. There is one strong prospect I’ll cover at the end though.

Tierney would have a bit of interest if this new wing back position continued but, as I reported back when he was moving clubs, he was already way overvalued at £2.20. 

He still is having slid to £1.85. Did have some nice stats at wing back for crosses and chances created this weekend, and even managed a shot, so if he continued in this vein you could put him around 3 out of 5 stars maybe 3.5 out of 5 stars at a stretch.

That’s good, but as always, when a player gets so overpumped, even when they show a bit of ability, it’s not enough. 

Aubameyang and Lacazette whilst strong players in reality are reduced to IPD potential and an occasional performance win prospect. 

As per pre-season Scouting I thought there was value in picking them up cheap just because people would likely buy such well known names, but they weren’t ones I recommended holding for performance returns and so far that is right. 

Pepé is flopping but to be honest, even if he was doing well in reality, I am not sure he would do well at Arsenal for FI purposes, the numbers for consistent success even playing 90 minutes every week are not there.

It’s surprising he has held his value at around £3 really. 

He was much lower in price before his 2 goals vs minnows Vitoria Guimaraes in October sent him soaring again. This was a poor decision by buyers in my opinion who put too much weight on boosted European performance scores and hope that goals against soft teams will mean he will do better vs good opponents.

I can’t see him being any different to any other Arsenal player. Last season I was one of the first to highlight Pepé’s talent and buy him extremely early carrying him to a massive profit – but you can’t get attached to a player. 

It was clear he needed to go somewhere like Bayern to realise his superb potential. Buying in September last season and selling in May at £2.70 or so, avoiding 6 months of dead weight, now feels like the perfect trade.

As for the prospects, Martinelli looks solid but is around 80p more than I would want to pay given his stage of development and involvement. 

As a goalscorer he looks strong but he doesn’t have the baselines to consistently compete in midfield – he’ll probably need to be reclassified as a forward to see success and that is not likely anytime soon.

Ceballos, another I said would likely struggle after his hype spell in August, doesn’t look close to a win even playing 90 minutes and has dropped from £2.60 to £1.81 now which is pretty eye watering.

I think the best long term value prospect is now Reiss Nelson. Scoring when given the chance for Arsenal or England U21. Consistent threat, great involvement for a forward. If given the chance he could succeed. But lack of pitch time has knocked him down from £2.47 to £1.88, a hefty discount.

It may take a while for him to make an impact given his rotation but I think he will at some point. 

He’s returning from injury now so may see more pitch time.

Given his trend fit and ability, I think he looks very solid and a potential 3.5 out of 5 stars minimum, probably 4 out of 5 stars if I thought he’d play regularly for a good club. May need long term patience though.

Leicester are flying and getting all the plaudits so why isn’t it turning into good FI scores?

It has to be said that this real life strong performance is leading to trader over optimism.

It’s not going to transfer to FI very often, they are not particularly strong for performance scoring as a team. 

Whilst it’s not fun to be negative it is profitable. It’s essential to be aware of this so you can avoid any price declines associated with players not living up to the excitement/hype particularly as prices get high – this is as important as knowing who the good players are.

Maddison and Chilwell look the most likely, although as per previous reviews, they are going to struggle to challenge anything like often enough to warrant the prices paid.

This was a good game for Maddison at the weekend and he could have hit 250-260 or so with a goal although that’s not quite enough to win most gold days or this one. He’s consistent and will get wins at some stage but a lot has to go right and at £4.90 I do not think it will happen often enough. 

The hype factors are there but outside of the initial media, I think he would actually get worse for performance at the current version of Manchester United (or any we have seen in the last 3 years). 

Chilwell is about the same, solid player who is going to get his wins but not often enough to warrant £2.88. His 300+ score in the 9-1 Southampton game that sparked his hype amid the TAA rise was exactly what it looked like – a freak result – and his numbers are now back to normal levels. At £1.70 (a high price for a defender) or so you could find a justification but beyond that is over optimistic in my view.

Tielemans has an occasional chance for a big score but again £2.53 is off putting. 

Barnes is doing well on the market recently although is very far from any kind of performance impact. Doesn’t see anywhere near enough of the ball for a reliable performance challenge as a midfielder.

Job done vs West Ham and there’s no doubt that Mourinho’s presence is sparking trader optimism in their assets which have traditionally been fairly underwhelming for FI purposes under Pochettino. 

With some tasty fixtures up next, Olympiacos, Bournemouth, Man United (trickier) and Burnley up next they will have chances to win. 

The “park the bus” stuff is overstated. Mourinho teams don’t have a problem scoring when he’s got the players who can (Madrid certainly didn’t). 

What we need to look for specifically for FI in these coming soft fixtures is some dominance in possession to build those baseline scores. Then we’ll be able to see whether we can really expect an improvement.

Alli was nominated as the clear and obvious winner by traders, storming from £1.72 to £2.53 in just 6 days. He was another if flicking back to pre-season Scouting from August I liked because with his trend fit, it was clear it would not take much to get his price pushing.

It’s been a wait but it’s now a nice reward for holders after a great performance where he looked rejuvenated.

However, in pure FI terms, nothing really changed in this game vs West Ham – the stats that matter like threat, involvement, assists are average and not enough for consistent challenges.

Given he is still relatively cheap, I think it’s worth giving him the 2-3 soft games ahead to see whether there is any possession dominance that can help him.

Unfortunately it’s a bit late to find out if he is back in Southgate’s plans but if he plays like he did consistently it’s got a strong chance. That would pump the price for sure.

Overall, I’d expect Kane just to keep being Kane. A dependable hold for this season but not spectacular.

If anyone else might improve it would likely be Son or Moura. Neither was much different vs West Ham. But if Moura was a consistent starter under Mourinho he’d look solid value at £1.45.

Lo Celso, if starting, is of interest too. And Eriksen if he decides to say (or if he gets a good transfer rumour). 

Aurier might also be worth watching as he’s got reasonable baselines and assist potential and is fairly cheap at 54p.

11 November

11 Nov

I covered Angelino in the fullbacks analysis in State of the Market midweek.

I was surprised to see him starting vs Liverpool with Mendy fit, it’s a big vote of confidence to start him in such a big game. 

He had a tough game and had slips defensively. But going forward he did exactly what was expected – huge long pass and crossing numbers and more touches and passes than any other City player by some distance. Assisted B Silva’s late goal.

These are the sorts of numbers that make Trent Alexander-Arnold so strong right now and in FI terms at least Angelino is vastly superior to Mendy.

Lots to like and it’s encouraging given his budget price tag. 

But whether he wins that battle for the left back spot long term in reality is less certain.

Playing every game I’d predict 4 out of 5 stars which is very strong. With the expected significant rotation,  2.5 out of 5 stars currently.

11 Nov

Very strong goal threat in the last 5 from Rashford but it’s not turning into big scores often enough for the price.

Shows flashes of potential. For England vs Bulgaria. Vs Norwich in October. Vs Partizan midweek. All games where if he replicated those stats consistently I’d back him to do much better.

But for every 1 of those games there are 2 that are weak and won’t result in big scores even if he gets a matchwinner.

It’s good that he shows glimpses and it suggests that one day, in the right team with the right play style, he could come good.

But really, for £4+ we are shopping in a premium end here and when paying that (ok I rarely pay that but if I did!) I’d want to be buying real substance not hope.

On the positives – goals look like coming regularly even if the big performance scores are touch and go.

And may be worth watching with interest for England because he did well last time vs Bulgaria.

28 Oct

Rashford’s best game for some time and his best score on FI ever by a long way.

Not a surprise that it came with him playing on the wing and Martial in the middle.

Ever since pre-season Scouting the winger has always done better than the forward so I expected an improvement when Martial came back as per the Manchester United entry below.

I did not quite expect an improvement this big, though.

This was a particulaly good day for Rashford and seeing more than 1 goal (either with an assist or 2nd goal on top) is probably not something we can expect every week here.

Played here consistently though he becomes one of the few at United who could realistically challenge for a performance win. 

I also noted that he looked good for England vs Bulgaria in Euro Scouting recently so that’s another positive.

Reasons to be optimistic? Hm. He has come down from £5 to £3.90 and now back up to £4.

So it’s better. But you still can’t say it’s incredible value when players with similar stats can be purchased for £1.50 or less with ease, even factoring in the media potential.

Martial has been my favoured option in the past but mainly when played out wide. Centrally, his numbers are not that impressive so I’d manage my expectations on how often I’d expect big scores here.

Media and a role for France could be the better prospects if he does perform well as he did at the weekend.

I don’t think either are bad picks although there is rarely value in such well known players.

10 Nov

Two solid performances from Lo Celso in the Champions League midweek and vs Sheffield this weekend.

Excellent all round game, and encouragingly, he had goal threat in both matches. 

He’s a player I have reviewed positively for a long time, years even, at PSG and when he first moved to Betis.

It wasn’t a done deal that he’d be brilliant at Tottenham though and it has been a slow start.

We are starting to see the potential though and if the position/style of the last two games becomes consistent I’d back him to do well.

Because he was good at Betis, it’s not a secret, so you aren’t exactly picking up an emerging talent here at £2.11 it’s not extremely cheap.

But, we know he has historic quality, and the last two games suggest he can show it at Spurs too. 

So, I think £2.11 is a fair price with room to grow if he performs well in the coming weeks.

Will battle Eriksen though so his place is far from guaranteed. Unless Poch finds a way of accommodating all 3. 

10 Nov

A nice win for Deulofeu all be it on a soft day with 210 fairly unremarkable most of the time.

I like him and he has a potential of 3.5 out of 5 stars in my ratings, which is high for a forward. 

But he has just a 2 out of 5 stars for his current rating because it’s going to be tough for any player to dominate when playing for a mid table or below side.

He’s got ability though, particularly when played on the wing.

He’s usually involved in transfer rumours and has been clear he wants a move to a bigger club.

If he did go somewhere performance suitable in the big 5 leagues I’d be interested. 

I think it’s probably a touch too early to be holding him but the very patient traders could be happy with this come the Summer.

10 Nov

Good performance from Maddison after a good spell of form in general.

Didn’t win but didn’t do any harm to his price which has risen from £4.30 to £4.90, helped probably as well by being included in the England squad.

This was just about Maddison’s best all round FI performance. So, would I be disappointed it was only a 228 score?

A little bit. But it’s a touch unlucky because his goal wasn’t matchwinning which would have added polish.

Overall it’s good but I get much harsher on players the higher price they reach and at £4.90 now, I think he needs to improve a lot to justify that price.

He could because he’s young but it’s a speculative bet that as a general rule I only make if the price is value, I don’t bet on a big price hoping that the ability catches up.

England games are coming up though and if he scores there the hype could build again. 

If he doesn’t though you might get people worrying whether he will start at Euro 2020  which is another likely assumption behind the big price.

4 Nov

A purple patch of form for Maddison.

This can actually be viewed in glass half full or half empty ways.

Across the last 6, very solid midfield level goal threat – excellent. Some evidence of strong involvement but it’s patchy, with some relatively poor games where he is decent but not quite good enough for the really big scores.

And the chance creation is there but it is inconsistent, with 5 at the weekend and just 4 over the previous 5 matches.

This is why in a good spell of form he is hovering around 200-230 which in midfield is about 50-20 points short of competitive. 

So if you wanted to, you could say he’s in good form, got a win recently and deserves the recent bump from £4 to £4.35.

You could also say that for £4.43, he needs to be better than this.

Neither view is outrageous, he’s got talent, has a good trend fit, and potential to get better.

The lack of England time is a problem. As is the transfer destination because people hope for Old Trafford for short term media. But then you also know that without huge changes, Old Trafford traditionally kills his performance prospects. 

I liked him in pre-season in the £2.75 to £3 range, although he showed mixed stats back then I didn’t think that too unreasonable. As the price heads over £4 though? 

I’m not personally convinced but it’s one of those where there are far worse holds and I don’t think having him is a mistake if people fancy it.

Whether he gets England time soon could be important.

27 Oct

Hm, a glass half full of half empty scenario.

A win is a win. But with a huge scoreline like this, with a goal, and huge game involvement (100+ passes with over 90% accuracy), we need a truly elite midfielder to be doing much better than 226 on a very soft day.

Limited opportunities outside of the free kick did not help, and for all his excellent middle of the park passing, no real chances created.

The price didn’t move on the win which shows market nervousness at the price tag and probably his England team stumbles too.

He’s good, but as I have been saying for months now, the price tag puts him under a lot of pressure to deliver and on a gift of a day he needed to be pushing close to or over 300 to really convince.

3 out of 5 stars with potential 4 out of 5 stars still feels right. He’ll challenge a few times this season most likely, but he will need a move to a favourable performance club and England involvement to justify this price.

Manchester United are not a favourable performance club, by the way. But the short term media hype could be important.

Feels like a risky hold to me at this price.

20 Oct

No goal but a better game overall in FI terms for Maddison. Maybe he should hang out in casinos more often.

He did get chances to score despite not getting a goal, and his overall involvement was excellent this time.

It’s the first time in a while I can say that.

If he performed like this every week (and scored some) you’d be able to build a case for that £4 price tag. 

Unfortunately for holders, looking at the last 6 games overall (despite goals) he’s not going to be capable of delivering big scores regularly enough with these numbers.

Missing the qualifiers again was a blow too.

7 Oct

Another goal for Maddison although at Leicester and in a now very competitive midfield category it is not delivering the big scores needed to support a £4 price tag.

I said this below back in 22 Sept. If he starts the qualifiers though that could be a chance to recover.

Overall, whilst he has potential particularly at a bigger club, he won’t score often enough and Leicester won’t win enough for him to put up big scores that often. Certainly not often enough for £4. 

We also have to consider that Media dividends themselves are becoming less important, due to the increasing numbers of performance days constraining triple media, and the opening up of media to the top 200 (I’ll do a State of the Market on this this week). 

That means the price ceilings of big transfer/media players should come down overall and I think that puts highly priced players like Maddison at risk of drops over the long term.

A good qualifiers performance may restore interest short term, however. 

22 Sept

Maddison is a decent player so when he gets the matchwinner I expect better than the 214 he put up here. 

On a double or treble day a midfielder will generally need to be pushing 250 to 300 to have a chance these days, it’s a high bar. 

The goal at least steadied the ship for holders. 

Overall though, his numbers have been down in recent games and I think he will not reach his full potential until he gets a big club move or faces weak opponents. His 3 out of 5 stars with potential 4 out of 5 stars therefore feels about right. 

Whilst he is quality, he is not at a big club and expectations have to be managed whilst that remains true. 

This is why I’ve been a bit nervous for him at the price. 

But, if he starts the next qualifiers and hits transfer rumours next Summer things could turn around for him. 

But I would not expect huge scores for him too often on this form at Leicester. 

16 Sept

A very mixed bag for Maddison lately. Being left out of the England starting line up hurt him. Holders will definitely want to see him start one of the next qualifiers in October or people could get even more twitchy.

In the last 2 his involvement stats have been poor, particularly his passing which has reduced in frequency. And his usually solid passing accuracy has been poor across the last 5 matches. 

Against that, he is getting chances and it feels like a goal is coming (even if it won’t deliver a big score unless he improves) which may be enough to rekindle interest in him on it’s own. 

Overall, it’s a fairly disappointing start for all Leicester players given that many people including myself thought they could have a good season punching above their weight for performance given how strongly they finished last season.

Holders may want to see if the goal comes or if he starts the next qualifiers. 

At the price though, I would want to see an improvement in the coming games to keep faith.

More long term, he is probably nailed on for a decent transfer and he has the quality to be a strong FI player. So those with lots of patience may be fine to ride this dip out. 

26 Aug

I rate Maddison and his headline numbers of threat and assist potential have been decent.

But, his overall involvement and passing accuracy have been very disappointing in the last two games compared to what he is capable of.

I’m being a bit picky but he is a £3.88 player now and the higher the price the more you have to prove.

The goals and assists do look likely to come though so I’d back him to keep doing well.

He will need to get back to 50/60 passes per game rather than 30/35 though.

A good test for that is home vs Bournemouth in the next game.

10 Nov

A couple of poor games for Mount and it’s really starting to drag on the price now.

This is something I have been discussing for months with Mount and a few others because it’s so hard for these big priced youngsters to really live up to the hype.

A consistent run of games is almost the worst thing for the price because it becomes clear they are not superhuman.

That said I do think he has potential and a big score is possible, but I do not realistically expect him to challenge consistently.

If a win does happen the price could spike so there is always that hope for holders.

This is why players like this should be bought in July and August at £2-£2.50 tops, not piled into at £3.50+ after a big price spike.

4 Nov

A better game from Mount this weekend. No goal but he had decent chances and had plenty of involvement. 

In fact, across the last 4 he looks much better overall despite the middling performance scores.

Certainly looks much better at £3.28 than he did at over £4 and I think for those interested it may be worth another look now the hype has faded as he does have potential.

Personally, I’d wait and see if we can get him closer to £3 if the drop continues but there is a risk that on these numbers he pops up with a big score soon.

27 Oct

A little bit better from Mount this week, but it’s another weak score and as I have been saying for some time now (see below) I continue to worry for him at this price.

The last entry below is 23 Sept although I think I said this even before then.

Since, he has slipped from £4 to £3.37 now. I think it’s likely he could slip towards £3 unless he hits a real streak of form.

His numbers are good enough to get a decent score at some point but not enough to deliver consistent good scores. 

And with prices this high, the expectation to deliver goes up too. 

Regularly game time kills an overpriced youngster almost every time because the shine comes off when demonstrating they are not going to be winning every week.

Long term, I think he’s got solid prospects but he needs another season or two before being worth anything like this price tag.

20 Oct

Another weak FI display for Mount. The highlight is one decent attempt to score although straight at the keeper, but it was on the turn and a tough chance.

Outside of that, he didn’t do enough to put up a decent total even if he had scored.

Big price tags need big scores like we need oxygen, more so the more important dividends become (57% more important). 

On the evidence of the last 5-6 games, holders should be worried about a continued slide.

7 Oct

A goal for Mount although it has not arrested the declining price tag. 

The last two games have been better since the last review on the 29th Sept. Goal threat across both games and created 4 chances too. 

It’s not bad but it’s not world beating and as we are seeing, even when scoring it’s not delivering huge scores.

It’s another example of regular minutes killing a young hype players price tag. It exposes them as the unfinished products they are unless they are on a major hot streak or extremely regular high performance scorers.

I’ve long discussed Mount’s potential and I still believe he has it, he’s got a lot of positives in his game.

But he could never do enough to support a £4 price tag and I think the plunge will continue unless he plays in the qualifiers and has a really strong game. 

29 Sept

After a bright start Mount is looking seriously off the boil in FI terms.

No real threat to speak of in the last 3 games (one of those was just as a sub mind). A bit of assist potential and average involvement.

If he didn’t have the trend fit he does, we would not be interested in these numbers at all.

Whilst he has recovered a bit with the bonus after a fall, at nearly £3.85 now I think that is just not good enough. 

Starting the qualifiers may save him but he needs to improve big time to make a dent in this price tag.

23 Sept

It’s been a struggle of late for Mount and this game was no different. The game was tough, though.

I worry for him at the price as I have said for some time. 

Holders need him to really improve his numbers across the board for threat, overall involvement and chances created. And they need him on the pitch for the next qualifiers.

Without that, the slide from £4.07 down to £3.65 could get worse.

Mount is a good potential player and I like him but the price just ran too far ahead of itself and we are seeing the natural consequence of that now. 

10 Nov

158 is a pretty grim score with a win and a goal, all be it not the matchwinner.

But even with it he doesn’t make 200, and for a midfielder, that’s poor.

In recent reviews I’ve been down on him for this reason. As a forward he could compete but it is very difficult for him to win as a midfielder. 

He would need to have a really explosive day.

If he doesn’t pull one of those out, I can see a further slide for Pulisic coming.

4 Nov

Better from Pulisic although you can see how a 206 with the matchwinner isn’t that brilliant especially in midfield.

Threat has been consistently good across the last 6.

Involvement has been questionable but was a better in the last game.

Overall, some positive signs but even after the price drop, from £3 down to £2, it feels like the optimism has run a bit away with itself after that hatrick vs Burnley.

Back at £2.70 now I’d be a bit wary of going in too hard on this. 

He is capable of a big score but he has a lot to do to win in midfield and he lacks external factors like Euro 2020 or a possible transfer.

10 Nov

Close to a big score from Willian. He hit 198 with an assist and had good chances to score on top, it could be been very competitive.

Solid player and I would not be surprised to see him competing for a win sometime soon.

Obviously you have age/transfer worries to deal with at 31 but I think we have a bit longer in the season to make the most of elite veterans. 

4 November

4 Nov

Eriksen is in an odd place at the moment.

He looks nowhere in the performance stats that matter. He can be excellent but across the last 10 it’s pretty poor overall and you can see it in the FI scores themselves which are a fair reflection in this case.

Transfer rumours remain although they are very uncertain.

I suspect people are holding him in the hope of gossip in January, which is not unreasonable, and that’s why his price is holding up at £2.30 despite being very much off the boil for a long period.

So plenty of short term uncertainty. I’d probably say overall though, thinking ahead, £2.30 isn’t a bad price for the patient trader.

Either he stays, and if you therefore assumed he broke out of his slump, Eriksen at Tottenham can make £2.30 worth it if playing well. 

He’d also go into Euro 2020 with optimism because he’s strong for Denmark and the main man.

If he moves, it could be somewhere in the EPL which is good for media. And if he goes abroad, you’d think it would be somewhere like Real (Although that has faded) where he could get even better.

So, overall, a pretty solid hold.

4 Nov

I’ve watched Alli’s comeback carefully because at his price with his trend fit, he could so easily catch fire if he posted a big score.

He’s been doing ok, certainly playing well in reality. On FI, the 2 goals are nice, and involvement is just about good enough to put him in contention on a good day.

Ultimately, he’s in that awkward not quite midfielder not quite striker spot. He’s just lacking that extra bit of involvement that would make him a real contender.

This could too often put him in the 200-230 range when scoring.

All that said, the price is right and particularly if he gets into the England setup again and keeps performing well, I think he could get some interest going forward. 

20 Oct

Decent performance from Alli as he starts his apparent fightback. 

Scored a much needed goal at the death so that’s going to help the cause.

Involvement was good, although as usual, let down a bit by some weak passing accuracy into dangerous areas. 

Overall, this type of performance could have him into the 200 range which, for a midfielder, isn’t quite good enough.

If you back him to make a come back though, there are reasons it’s not a bad bet.

He’s still only 23 despite having been around so long. Still has a good chance of working back into the England side. 

And, has a lot of talent and could improve.

He’s years ahead of some England kids pushing far higher price tags and really not much older.

So, I can see how some good performances, even if the scores don’t often push up towards 250+, might see people interested.

He is also capable of improving although he may need to move on from Spurs to do so.

4 Nov

A nice defender win for Leicester man Soyuncu who has shot up to £1.14. 

He’s not a player I’ve been particularly interested in but he does have his supporters because he has risen steadily over the last few months.

He started falling but then the goal and win restored him to £1.14.

He looks decent, good passing game which is popular amongst big clubs, so you could say a future big transfer is possible, probably not this Summer though.

This sort of ball playing defender has suffered under the new scoring system, they do need that goal to get their head above water. 

He’s got reasonable threat for a centre back, maybe enough for 3-4 in a good season and if they come on good days you can see the occasional big score.

It’s really hard to see regular wins with numbers like these though, even harder to see them coming so you have to go for the long hold to catch the big days.

Not bad. Not all that great either.

Added to ratings at 2 out of 5 stars with potential 3 out of 5 stars but that’s if he moved to a very performance suitable club in future.

4 Nov

Still on the sidelines and remains a headache given his undoubted performance strength and value price. 

The irony of it all being he is probably Chelsea and England’s best performance player, certainly one of them.

Another England squad is coming up and that will be a big moment for him. I do wonder how long he can keep an England spot with Alli coming back and limited pitch time.

Fact remains he should get starts at some point and he has a very good chance of putting up a challenge for a win when he does. 

Price is holding up quite well at £1.36 and I think overall the upsides still outweigh the down provided you have the patience.

If he does get benched for England though that could be a downer.

4 Nov

An impressive 244 and midfield win for Kovacic given he didn’t score or assist.

Domination in the middle of the park was the reason, with an incredible number of passes and high involvement in general.

This feels like something of a one off, perhaps something that could be repeated 2 maybe 3 times per season.

He has almost no goal threat and poor assist potential so it’s difficult to see consistent wins. 

£1 isn’t bad but it’s got 30p on it since the win and the most likely outcome is those impulse buyers will be disappointed.

At 70p or so you could make a case for holding in case he happens to get a big score again which is a low percentage chance in my view.

But I’d want to sell when he spiked in value like this.

4 Nov

Abraham breaks his duck and even adds an unexpected assist but it doesn’t do much for him in the performance scoring.

The price fall continues and players like this really get found out over a run of games. Particularly when they have a good game and still score poorly on FI. 

27 Oct 

Another hugely overpriced player that I have been warning about and he is dropping like a stone in the last month, from £3.73 to £3.42. 

This was bound to happen because he just does not have what it takes to succeed on FI. The relentless poor performance scores will turn people off over time.

Particularly when they go on a barren run which he has for 4 games. He’s only really had 1 maybe 2 good chances in those 4 so at the moment even the goal threat isn’t there.

Even if it returns, it almost doesn’t matter! I’d rate it 50/50 whether he gets a competitive score even with a matchwinning hat-trick. 

These prices are not supported by IPD returns when they come. And the hope for “future leading striker and media” is just that – a vague hope.

A lot of nonsense is talked on social media to pump these players up but over time, poor FI players always get found out especially with consistent pitch time.

20 Oct

Some decent chances not taken, but overall, an absolutely dire FI display.

I’m not quite sure how long it will take for traders to realise just how poor a player Abraham is for FI purposes.

But I am sure they will. Player’s can’t exist on pure hope forever especially when playing regular minutes. 

Some value in IPD and (possibly?!) regular media but that’s a long long way off and a high risk hope at this price.

7 Oct

2 more goals recently for Abraham and 2 more awful performance scores.

It’s hard to see Abraham ever delivering a big score outside of a hat-trick. Even with a hat-trick (as we have already seen) he still may not breach 200. 

The underlying numbers are bleak.

Even worse, media dividends are being devalued (I’ll discuss that more this week) so it’s hard to see how you can ever really see value out of this trade. 

A goal during the qualifiers if he appears could spike the price again but long term I think the price is doomed to fall.

His pumpers will keep pumping but eventually consistent poor scores become indefensible and the longer that goes on the worse it gets. 

23 Sept

Had opportunities again but blazed chances he should have finished wide. 

Should keep scoring vs weak opponents. Lots of goals against Norwich, Sheffield and Wolves but has struggled against most good quality opposition. 

High threat and should keep scoring particularly versus weak sides however his underlying numbers for FI are dire.

Despite the hype I think his price is eventually doomed because the best case scenario is he is an IPD player. And you just can’t support £3.39 with that.

15 Sept

Is the glass half full or half empty?

He scored a hat-trick! (ok and an own goal).

This should be cause for celebration, especially building on braces in both of the last games. 

On the other hand, as I’ve been saying for a long time, he is just a bad performance player for FI purposes.

It doesn’t get better than his last 3 and he has scored 193, 142, 168 on his very best days. 

That is a serious problem because to my mind if you are bad at the actual game you are eventually doomed to failure. 

You can probably ride the hype in this trade for some time to come and in the best case scenario he may get some media but eventually when the shine wears off and traders realise how hard it is for Abraham to win what happens?

In my view, we can and should stray a bit from the rules of the game to account for sentiment and the fact that traders do crazy things. And I frequently do. 

But to pretend the performance side of Football Index doesn’t matter at all and plow in at this price? It’s pretty wreckless in my opinion.

4 Nov

Getting some consistent starts and has had decent chances to score in both of the last two games.

Improving and if he kept his place I’d be happy to change my mind on him as when everything goes right he is capable of a very big score.

What has put me off is piling into a rapidly rising player whose pitch time is in doubt, so there is that.

Rodri is back probably late November and then it might get dicey.

27 Oct

Another +200 for Gundogan but this time I don’t think people fell for it.

In that last review I said that he was decent but not to expect his 300+ heroics often (See Euro 2020 Scouting recently for the full review). 

He’s had a staggering rise off the back of that freak score for Germany plus some decent baseline scores since.

That turned a sub £1 solid value pick into £1.60+ disappointment waiting to happen.

These sellers clearly expect him to be hitting 300+ every time he scores and he won’t as shown this weekend.

With rotation an issue and age becoming a concern you’d want assurance of regular minutes or better goal threat than he consistently has for this money.

I think he’s decent but I would not have followed him in after his price spike and it would take a drop down towards £1.30 or so to get me interested. 

4 Nov

A much better game for De Bruyne this time out, with credible threat and much better involvement.

This comes after a weak (by his standards) 3 games in October.

This was a warning shot and if he repeats these numbers in the coming games you can see him snagging a win.

The real question is about value and I tend not to hold such highly priced players myself because the % gains on offer aren’t usually brilliant.

Some people like this though and they are very solid choices.

As per Key Strategy I think the most important thing here is to make sure that as a total % of your portfolio you aren’t allocating too much to premium players if you want optimal results overall.

27 Oct

De Bruyne went on the rampage in early season in what I called a hot streak.

I think traders saw the new scoring system and saw those scores and thought “he’s a God in this new system!”. That powered him from £2.50 to well over £5.

He’s good but not a God in my opinion.

My view at the time was that this would not last and he has certainly faded in the scores and in the real stats over the last 4.

Don’t get me wrong, he’s a very solid player and I put him on 4 out of 5 stars which I only give out to some of the best players on FI.

But, as I’ve said, over £5 for a player with very limited media appeal is very difficult to justify.

I think we’ll see more good scores before long and the price should be quite sticky because he’s a popular player people will just “want” to hold.

But, I can see him stagnating at this price because there is a limit to what people will pay, even factoring in things like Euro 2020. We can hold those players to high prices but only to a point.

He will need to hit another streak of early season form to rise higher, and even then, in % terms it will not be a huge amount gained.

Holding players like this at these prices too long is the quiet death of a traders total ROI because much of the rise has already gone and it usually occupies a large % of a portfolio. 

Realistically, you’d have to believe that traders are willing to buy him up towards £6+ and then be happy with a 10-20% return in the best case.

Price is everything.

4 Nov

This is really interesting!

I’ve always rated TAA highly at 4 out of 5 stars but I have questioned his value even at around £4.

The weight of consistent wins has pushed that to £6. Was I wrong on this one?

Yes. And no. 

In early season he got some good results, though he got something of the rub of the green and probably over performed vs his usual levels. Had that continued, he could have been expected to stay around 4 out of 5 stars with £4 being ok but not brilliant value.

But as I reported last week, his October numbers were through the roof, demonstrating a massive improvement worthy of his now revised 5 out of 5 stars rating.

So if £4 was questionable value before, it definitely isn’t now after these changes. Long passes, chances created, crosses, all massively improved.

But of course, the price has now balooned to match that improvement so arguably we are probably in about the same position where £6 is a decent hold although unlikely to deliver stellar % returns. 

And this time there really isn’t scope for much further improvement unless he develops super powers. His numbers are incredible and possibly unique.

28 Oct

Showing incredible consistency and in the last few games his crossing/long pass stats have been through the roof over October.

So this could either be a temporary tactical instruction or the new normal we will have to wait and see.

Either way he is extremely good and proving to be the most consistent defender of the season so far across all 5 leagues.

That’s important in the new dividend structure (although note that defenders are going to struggle to bag the really lucrative Star Player).

The only question is can he win often enough to support this kind of price tag?

If his October numbers hold up he might but that is a big ask.

Him being English is overstated as a factor – media is not a big deal for defenders outside of very specific stories.

He needs to support this price tag on performance wins alone and I think buying at this price it’s one for the passive investor rather than the ambitious one. 

30 Sept

Superb again from TAA. His involvement in particular is great generally but this was his best game for a while on that front.

He has assist potential and goal threat too so he can challenge regularly and is capable of winning.

At £3.83 though it’s near impossible for him to return enough to warrant the price, though.

15 Sept

Oof. Liverpool absolutely dominated this game with 75% possession. 

Sometimes we really can expect Liverpool defenders particularly to dominate when facing soft opposition and TAA is the most likely to profit. 

Robertson isn’t too far behind though which is worth noting given the better value. 

Both players did extremely well and either one could have scored and flown past a 300+. 

They look really strong especially when you spot a mismatch on the way.

TAA is clearly a very solid hold this season for those who like a steady premium pick.

26 Aug

Real stand out performance from Alexander-Arnold. He got 217 but this could easily have been a 250-270 given the number of chances created and decent quality chances to score.

As per pre-season scouting we know he is quality the only issue is you pay through the nose for it.

Incidentally Robertson on the opposite wing isn’t too far behind TAA in terms of performance scoring and offers far better value. 

The “young English” trend is there for TAA and it does count for something but I think this applies much less to defenders who only usually get media during very specific events.

4 Nov

A solid season from Mané with decent 190-210 scores that aren’t translating into the 230-240 needed to really challenge.

He has probably been a shade unlucky and had he hit more match winners he probably deserves a win or two by now.

Over a season this may balance out and we may see a couple of wins. He can also pick up a bit of media.

He can do enough for a forward win although it would require a big day to hit a Gold Day star man I think.

Overall, £3.15 is a solid choice although possibly unspectacular. With no external factors like Euro 2020 or a good transfer prospect it feels a bit unambitious.

4 Nov

The bubble very much burst after that early season hat-trick pushed the price to silly levels.

I was sceptical in Scouting given outside of a hatrick or similar it’s very difficult for him to win given his overall involvement levels.

He’s a good IPD shout when on a streak (And despite the goal drought for Norwich he is getting chances and could score any time). 

But he’s not a regular performance contender and £2 was silly. 

£1.61 now and maybe £1.40 in a good fixture run would look IPD value again.

4 Nov

In another management crisis. Ever since pre-season they have not been a favourite in my Scouting for performance suitability, they are historically fairly weak and continue to be so outside of a few long range picks.

Lacazette and Aubameyang are good players but not in a way that will often translate to big FI scores. There was good profit in Scouting in the Summer in buying up cheap big names like this down at around £1.30-£1.50 in hope of them being carried up to £2 by new traders wanting to own names they know.

That happened but as I said back in August, by £2 at the season start that was the time to take profits. And I see no reason to go back in.

Pepé has been dropped twice although I’d expect him to return before long. He was improving but as per his personal review below I think £3+ is a lot to be paying for Pepé at Arsenal, he needs a club like Bayern to shine.

Ozil in his prime would have been a fantastic FI player but he’s really declined, with inconsistent minutes and no real goal threat. Does have high baseline numbers and creates chances, so he is capable of a very big score but it’s hard to recommend him given the inconsistency. 

Willock has taken a beating in price but actually has a bit of potential so this sort of player might be one that is worth picking up a few weeks from now if the youth player bonfire continues. 

In some games he shows some nice stats but we do have to be aware that youngsters are often given a run out in soft games like lower league cups or obscure Europa teams and it can make their numbers look better than they would be usually.

Martinelli made a big impact with his (boosted) 350 in the Europa but his dire scores since are more of a reflection of his consistent level. Very strong goal threat but his overall involvement is awful and I think buyers remorse will kick in for those buying him up to £2.67. £1.50 is probably the right price.

And finally it’s been a fairly tough start for Reiss Nelson who is a very promising FI player as per the previous Scouting. He has taken a real dive from £2.48 to £1.93 and if that continues I think he looks good long term value at anything £1.75 and under. I rate him at potential 3.5 out of 5 stars which is strong.

4 Nov

Nobody needs me to them they were poor this week.

Can we salvage anything FI suitable out of it?

Not really. As I’ve been saying for months now it’s a real struggle to find anyone that looks like winning at United.

Rashford looks the best of the bunch at the moment and when played on the wing he does improve overall, though the threat in this game was limited as he stayed too wide.

Norwich was a better game as described in his personal entry so there are reasons to believe he might pull out a win at some point. 

Not often enough to warrant £4.30 though. 

Ligue 1

24 November

Nice score and win for De Preville.

He’s one of those that can pull out a performance win, but it will likely be occasional.

For that reason he’s 2.5 out of 5 stars in my ratings which is better than most but not a regular contender and that’s about right.

For the money (£1.27 now) that’s a pretty good deal, because you’ll get some IPD whilst waiting at least in the first 30 days, and refreshing him isn’t too expensive.

It’s obviously better to be holding these “occasional win” players before the win rather than charging in after it, mind!

Some will want to take profits after they do and the price spikes (and that’s good strategy). 

For that reason, you may see a small drop if he doesn’t win again soon. But overall I think he’s worth the £1.27 and can hold around that.

Some nice stuff here from Ounas who is a good potential player. 

23 year old Forward, currently at Nice, may return to Napoli after his loan.

This was his best game of the season and the first time he has played the full match this campaign. 

Elite level involvement for a forward in this game. It’s not always this good but he has shown the potential. Certainly got better involvement than most even on a bad day.

Goal threat is not top level but it’s good enough and he can nick a win even at Nice.

I think he is more of a potential player than a here and now thing but for just 88p we don’t need to tick every box in our selection criteria.

Looks a very nice long term choice.


A start in the absence of the injured Depay (unknown return date).

Terrier is a young player I have liked for a long time but it’s not going well for him this season, with rotation, a lack of goals and some mediocre underlying stats when on the pitch.

In 3 months’ he has fallen from £1.18 to 88p now which is a hefty drop.

He’s struggling for form in general, but the new scoring system and his classification as a midfielder when he is more of a forward are also a drag on him.

Tricky. If he was floating at £1.50+ like many players his age at the same sort of level it would be an easy call to sell. 

But at 88p given his potential ability and general regard as a future France talent it’s also difficult to say that he is not currently  priced very reasonably for a good talent with a way to go.

That’s better than many of the potential talents at £2+ who have even further to go. 

Certainly worth monitoring because he is one people will be quick to buy if he turns up with a good score one day. 

The decision to hold or sell is made a bit easier by the very small spread, he’s not expensive to sell at this point. But there is a risk you miss the first big score if he improves and have to accept a slightly higher price to get back in.



Always one to watch for a sign of improvement as he’s quite well known and not far off being a solid performance player with more consistent goals.

2 assists in 2, decent baselines, and he’s had good chances to score in both of those games so he wasn’t far off a 220-230 score. 

I note he’s been far from prolific so I wouldn’t get too excited just over 2 decent games.

Bu worth monitoring to see if this improvement continues because at just 98p, I think if he showed improvement he is one people might be quick to buy.


Just a few points short of a win on a limited game Friday.

He is capable of sneaking a couple of wins because his scoring is so consistent.

He can also win on explosive days, though will likely need 2+ goals minimum.

Looking likely to score every game so one of the best IPD players there is.

A decent hold at £1.75 if you can find good moments to keep refreshing your 30 day window.

11 November

11 Nov

Gold Star win for Payet and it shouldn’t be a total surprise, we know he has quality. I had him pegged at 3 out of 5 stars with 4 out of 5 stars for potential in a rich vein of form.

He’s not had a great season to date, with just 1 goal prior to this. Threat hasn’t really been that good so it’s been hard to specifically  recommend him lately.

He’ll be 33 heading into next season but he does have a contract until 2021 so this may not be his last.

He is capable of hitting these huge scores, and I’d say he can do much better than his 288 at the weekend and can hit 350 on a good day.

May not be his last big win of the season so £1.12 remains reasonable if you can stomach the older player risk.

Decent punt for now, would probably not still be holding by the end of January though.


11 Nov

Raphinha is a cheap prospect I liked the look of in pre-season at Rennes. He hasn’t really set the world alight though.

His first goal at the weekend, a penalty, and he may have snagged penalty duties off Niang since Niang missed the last one and he was on the pitch when Raphinha scored. That’s speculation though.

Overall he’s been decent but unspectacular. Penalties would be a help but he needs to stand on his own feet more, he is capable.

Goal threat suggests he should have scored more than he has this season. Involvement has been just enough for a forward. And he’s made plenty of chances that haven’t been converted by team mates.

Capable of an occasional performance challenge, so for 82p it isn’t bad.

I can’t see a major reason to hold him right now but I think he’s worth keeping an eye on as a decent potential player.


23 Sept

Good again from Raphinha vs Lille, his best game for Rennes so far. 

He is consistently creating chances and whilst he did not score this time, he had 3 attempts and went close. For a forward, involvement numbers were very good and resemble his time at Sporting.

Encouraging and still value at 89p. 

16 Sept

I’ve always liked Raphinha’s stats from Sporting CP where he showed strong goal threat and a decent all round game.

Rennes is not the huge transfer I may have hoped for. But it’s not terrible either and we saw his first game for them this weekend. Not spectacular but not bad either with a couple of shots and chances created.

At 89p, I think this is a good shout for a potentially good young prospect with some FI suitability. May require some patience, though. 

Could be worth just getting on now or else seeing how he goes for the next few games as there is always uncertainty at a new club. 

Added at 2.5 out of 5 stars potential 3 out of 5 stars.

11 Nov

A brace for Strasbourg for the 23 year old South African.

Quiet start to the season but actually, over the last 3 games, that brace does not look a fluke the threat has been strong and he made 3 chances vs Nice on 26th Oct too with 1 assist. 9 league goals last season so he’s got some form for this.

Not likely to be a brilliant performance player but at 48p he looks an IPD punt in strong form who could get a reasonable price increase if this level of threat continues.

Obviously does not play until after the international break so worth waiting a week or so if interested to catch some decent fixtures ahead starting on 23 Nov.

11 Nov

Hmm. In early/mid 2019 I liked the idea of Martins at Monaco following some excellent stats in January when he first moved there.

Since, he had a stuttering start this season including being switched to a right wing back which I was initially not keen on.

There are a few encouraging signs though, particularly this weekend where he had strong involvement, created 3 chances and had 1 decent opportunity to score himself.

Were this to continue, he is capable of a competitive score and at 79p some may like the punt for a good potential player.

Will likely need patience though but at the price you’d expect that.

11 Nov

It’s fair to say Bamba has disappointed this season after some big optimism as he might step into Pepé’s shoes.

I reviewed him as “decent but not great” in pre-season, he probably hasn’t even hit that after a poor season so far.

Lately it’s been particularly bad with rotation and not fitting into a new system easily.

Not many reasons to believe he will improve anytime soon.

And yet, he is capable of a reasonable score if he did have a good game. But that’s more hope than expectation.

21 Oct

A rough patch for Lille and for Bamba. 

He’s largely flatlined of late. 

Baseline stats are down with Lille struggling in the last 5 games. He is maintaining some threat in some games and the assist potential is excellent.

Capable of doing better particularly if Lille return to form. 

But, he has been hyped in the past and the stats are average to reasonable. 

Is £1.61 value? A month ago definitely not, now, it looks a bit better but only because a lot of other players have become more expensive.

A borderline trade, I would not be surprised if he popped up with a big score but neither would I be surprised if he did nothing for 5 games. 

I tend to avoid these 50/50’s but there are far worse trades out there.

11 Nov

Osimhen has played out pretty much as I expected from the early season reviews.

Potential good goal scorer, poor performance player. 

He’s certainly looking the part as a good young goalscorer. 

Only 1 goal since mid-October but he’s getting chances and I don’t judge a youngster too harshly for a barren spell provided the opportunities are there. It’s likely the goals will come.

The big performance scores almost certainly won’t though.

He’s suffering for that as some of the buyers who expected big scores exit, and probably in the general downturn on youth.

If that drop continued and you could pick him up for £1.60 or so I think he’d look good, for IPD and then a potential good transfer later.

He will need to come out of his barren spell in the next 3-4 games though – he needs to finish the season with a big goals tally that tempts transfer speculation to get that reason to hold him in late season.

28 Oct

As well documented in Scouting in recent months, Osimhen looks a strong breakout goalscorer and a weak performance player.

That means he needs to be hitting a level where Champions League clubs want him to lead their line in future to get that big transfer.

That’s not totally unreasonable but it is a long way off, he will need to keep going for the rest of this season at least at his excellent goal scoring rate.

I think he could – despite a barren run of 4 games without a goal, he looks a danger throughout and I expect to see him back on the score sheet soon.

He also has decent IPD appeal which can support a price of around £1.30-£1.40 on it’s own.

So, not all bad. But as with many players who get a buying frenzy he has been a touch expensive.

He is dropping though and down from £2.25 to £2 after his barren run. 

At £1.50 I’d say this was a solid value prospect. We may be able to get a further drop and at £1.75 I think this looks reasonable.

Given the stats I would expect a goal soon and people may buy for that although then be disappointed by the poor scores.

So if interested it’s a gamble whether you want to see if he drops further or just buy at £2 hoping the goal which should come sees him push up again.

No real right answer there it’s a 50/50. I’d personally wait because there are no shortage of good targets and we can be picky.

11 Nov

Draxler’s best performance of the season.

Hampered by rotation and some weak goal threat so far this campaign. 

But this weekend he had some good chances, involvement was good and he managed an assist (although assist potential generally is not brilliant).

Worth monitoring for continued improvement because at £1.01 I think he would have no shortage of buyers if he did manage a big score.

11 Nov

Looks a struggle for Sarabia at the moment. 

Limited minutes, no threat at the weekend, involvement numbers not brilliant either.

He has shown some good flashes in pre-season and early season so he is far from a no hoper.

£1.29 is a fairly kind price too so if there was an improvement I could get interested.

But there are no signs at the moment that an improvement is imminent and not one I would be rushing to buy. 

Dropped to 2 out of 5 stars from 3 out of 5 stars because of rotation and poor performances. But retains 3.5 out of 5 stars for potential.

11 Nov

Showing superb consistency. 

This weekend, had a lovely chipped finish, high threat throughout and created 6 chances which is elite level.

A 198 score, without the matchwinner. Had he got it he would have been up there challenging again.

Worries about pitch time when Neymar come back are there but the price is more than kind enough to be worth it for a player that can challenge for wins this consistently.

4 Nov

Despite the surprise loss another all action high threat high creativity display from Di Maria.

A constant challenger and in this form he can win again soon.

28 Oct

Di Maria up there again competing again this weekend showing his strength and consistency.

2 assists this time which makes 5 in 2. That’s crazy. Even crazier is that he has been creating enough chances for those kind of stats to be sustainable. 

Goal threat was not great this game but over the season so far, he does get consistent chances and he scores them.

No reason to think he will be anything other than a consistent challenger for dividends.

20 Oct

Another superb display and nobody can say it wasn’t coming. 

Whilst he hasn’t scored in a while he was getting close as reported here and he delivered this time.

He will keep doing this and the only problem for holders was that this 338 was on a single day because it could have won on most trebles (I’ll start calling them Gold soon!).

Up from £1 to £1.35 in just a week but I’d still say there is value there given his ability to win on a Gold day which are huge pay outs now. 

Would be wary of holding too far into 2020 but right now it’s a solid choice.

30 Sept

No big score this time for Di Maria but don’t be fooled, he was close again and looks extremely strong.

No chances created in the last 2, which is a dip off. But I would expect him to keep posting good scores.

I’ve been banging on about this for months now and he’s risen from 65p to £1.02 (another example of why older players not being good for capital appreciation is nonsense, at least in early season). 

But given his strength £1.02 remains value provided you aren’t holding too long and probably not beyond 2019.

23 Sept

As mentioned below he has been looking very strong. Has been since too and these big scores should continue. 

Will be very unlucky not to win before long if he keeps this up. 

1 Sept

Last week I said he looked dangerous and he duly delivered a performance win off the back of a penalty and strong all round display.

He’s had a huge rise in the week but then dropped back after the win.

I think this reflects people fearing that in a fully fit squad he will lose penalties. That’s almost definitely true.

However, he does not need penalties to win and I back him to be a consistent challenger through his natural goal threat, overall involvement and assist potential. 

A strong early season veteran pick and it would be a surprise if we didn’t see him putting up further big scores.

10 Nov

Decent score of 182 for Otavio at Bordeaux given his team didn’t win and he did not score or assist.

He’s a strong baseline player but has weak goal threat and assist potential.

But, he probably has just enough goal threat for 1 to 3 goals to ping in all season, and when they do, it could result in a very strong 250+ score quite easily.

That would not normally be of interest since it would test even my patience, except he is just 32p.

Anyone who likes a long odds punt and has the patience might quite like it – if he did put up a big score people could look at his baselines and confuse him for a strong performance player and buy him up to 50p or so.

And a dividend win at this price would give a very strong % return.

10 Nov

A nice midfield win for Golovin.

He’s a solid player that in pre-season scouting I thought much better than his (now incredible) 60p August price tag would suggest.

He’s an incredible £2.51 now.

I pegged him at 3 out of 5 stars and I’m not sure he is quite that good to warrant that price.

He has however undoubtedly improved this season with more consistent goal threat and better involvement than he showed last season.

So I’ll bump him to 3.5 out of 5 stars as a result. 

As always I like the trend fit with Euro 2020 ahead and I think he is one people remember as a hype man from the last World Cup in Russia, which does, I think, have an impact on whether people will buy.

That is probably why he may be at least 30-50p more expensive than he really should be.

I think he is a solid player to be holding but I’d be reluctant to chase this rise personally.

4 November

4 Nov

Cyprien smashed in a long range match winner (keeper will still be having nightmares about this as he touched it onto the post). 

Coupled with his usual decent baseline that’s propelled him to a very healthy 289 and the win yesterday.

As per the below review I was not keen to pile into this after a spree of 3 penalties sent the price soaring from £1 to over £1.65. But he is £2.19 now!

Since then, he’s had a quiet couple of months until this big score spike. 

I think the last 10 games as a whole give a fair idea about him – he’ll mostly be hitting the 90-140 range with an occasional big score like this either when there is a penalty or one of his long range efforts goes in. 

Which is about right for the 3 out of 5 stars that I give him in the ratings.

To do better than that, he’d need goal threat outside of the penalties beyond just the speculative ranged efforts.

For example, if he were to move to a bigger club as many hope where he is not the main man and doesn’t get those penalties, it doesn’t leave you with much it’s quite brittle.

For now though, it’s possible he gets a hot streak of penalties etc and gains momentum but the most likely outcome is an occasional big score every 10 matches or so. 

A player like that would really be priced around £1.50-£1.75 in a rational world. 

Oct 20

Since the last review below, it’s been a barren run for Cyprien. 

He’s got a following amongst some traders and despite the poor displays he’s risen to £1.66.

He’s not worth that.

This sort of player is often mistaken for a top performance player by traders who rely too heavily on historic performance scores or averages.

He’s capable of a win but not too often and the streak of big scores due to a raft of penalties was a hot streak as I said below in August.

The 3 out of 5 stars I give him is fair. Possibly even slightly generous.

Aug 29

Consistent solid numbers from Cyprien in the opening 3 games.

He is flattered a bit by getting 2 penalties in a row and that’s probably not the best moment to buy given it spikes the price. 

It may be better to wait for another couple of games without a goal and hope people get bored.

His overall game is solid and whilst he is very deep he is consistently creating chances to add some shine to his scores. 

He bagged a goal and assist yet only a 157 on 17 Aug. Generally, on those days he would do better, his baseline stats were about half what you might normally expect that day which is a bit unfortunate.

On a normal day when he scores and assists a 250 or so could be acheived. Won’t be every week though.

It’s a touch expensive now (£1.40) after two penalties in a row draws too much attention to it.

The £1.20 mark would be good value for this and if people drift away if he stops getting a penalty each game it might look good again.

4 Nov

A decent player for a small club, he’s been way overhyped in some quarters.

We’ve now seen 3 (almost) full appearances and he’s performing around about where I would expect so far.

That is to say he’ll post decent baselines often, with occasional spikes of big/competitive scores and it is possible he can snag a 300+ and maybe even nick a Gold Day.

But lots has to happen, chiefly Montpellier winning (they don’t have the best win percentage) and then his good days need to line up with that.

Should happen a few times per season and £1.50 or maybe even up to £1.75 would not be totally unreasonable. 

I think his high of £2.73 was though and after the drop to £2.15 his price may be sticky at around £2 because he has a big social media fan club.

If he does pull a win out soon enthusiasm could easily be rejuvenated but I would expect to see a good score perhaps every 7-8 games and at that rate I would expect the price to dip under £2. 

4 Nov

As I said last week he’s looking unstoppable at the moment, possibly shaping up to be his best season.

Even at prices that are getting high, the consistent winners can keep rising if they keep showing their strength.

Despite missing out on being the first Gold Day winner to an exceptional Werner performance, the close second was enough to drive the price up another healthy 21p.

It’s possibly the sort of form which could attract a bigger club so at the moment it is getting better and better.

You do have to keep an eye on this though. It’s hard to sustain this sort of form forever, and Depay has been known to blow hot and cold.

So a classic case of “brilliant but need to monitor and can’t take this for granted” which is an important part of Key Strategy from here until the end of January.

27 Oct

Another win for Depay as he shows his consistent quality. No real need to write about that again, I think members know by now since I’ve been banging on about him for a long time. 

Suffice it to say that this should continue and even when a player like this has short 3-4 game dry spells as he did in September, you don’t need to panic when dealing with a quality player with a strong trend fit.

It’s also a great example of why quality players can rise higher – but if at high prices already they will need to demonstrate consistent quality to do so.

That’s when people say “I just can’t ignore this anymore” and follow into them. 

7 Oct

A decent midweek score for Depay and not far off a win but not much at the weekend. And it comes over a fairly dry spell of 5 games after a fantastic season start.

This has often reflected poor results for Lyon as much as anything.

This weekend’s game vs St Etienne was particularly poor.

Overall though, his trend fit is strong and he is very likely to come back with a big score before long. And the qualifiers is a good platform for him to shine too. 

29 Sept

A quiet few games for Depay after his heroics and win mid month. 

Goal threat was subdued vs PSG as you may expect, and he was a sub vs Brest. This time vs Nantes he was better, although Lyon lost the game.

Overall the numbers are holding up though and he isn’t far away from continued big scores.

After another price surge you’ve always got to look carefully at the value the higher the price runs.

The higher the performance strength and the closer to my Key Strategy criteria, the higher price I am generally willing to hold at.

With Depay and players like him, the consistency of his scores and the trend fit of CL/Euro 2020 involvement can keep funnelling traders towards him. 

So in a case like this I see myself holding a “core” of elite players probably into early 2020 at least until they hit a really silly price or they decline in performance output.

2 Sept

Another goal for Depay but overall one of his weaker games with 10 man Lyon struggling (2nd game in a row they have had a man sent off).

Another goal keeps confidence going though and he looks consistently very solid so far this season. 

Lyon themselves will need to stop getting men sent off though, they looked like cruising to a win at the weekend before the red card but could only draw.

Aug 29

For a game with 10 men Depay held up his strong numbers from recent games. 6 shots and some decent chances amongst them. His price rose ahead of his single match day and then fall back afterwards which is fairly standard as flipping players with single game days is very common. 

But nothing in Depay’s performance that should trouble holders he looks consistently good in recent games.

4 Nov

Diallo at Metz was covered back on 23 Sept here, and I liked him at 76p. he’s up to £1 now and it’s important to be on the lookout for these value opportunites as that is a solid 25% in a short space of time.

He is not the world’s best performance player so cashing out after a value spike isn’t a bad move.

Alternatively, he’s got enough IPD value to hold £1 so keeping him a little longer is no bad thing either.

23 Sept

Looks decent at Metz as an IPD player, probably not a performance player. 4 goals this season already and threat looks consistent, particularly in the last 2.

Scored at the weekend. 76p after a drop form 91p, looks a decent IPD punt and he’s young and could pick up later transfer rumours if he keeps scoring at this rate.

4 Nov

Lots of debate about whether Icardi is worth it and a big price movement in the last week, heading up to £2.35 and down to £2 again. 

Both the rise and then subsequent drops were overreactions.

I’ve been a fan when transferring to PSG at £1.50 where he looked a bargain to me as per the below.

He’s got strong IPD appeal and whilst he is a poor textbook performance player, he can be so explosive and bag 2/3 goals and challenge, and that’s why I rate him 2.5 out of 5 stars which means I expect at least a win or two over a season.

With the IPD, a chance of a performance win and slim potential transfer come season end (he’s on a loan deal with option to buy) I thought him well worth the £1.50.

£2 is probably fair value especially during a streak of good fixtures for IPD (For PSG, most of them are!). There aren’t too many reasons to hold him late into the season which is a issue.

For now I think it’s fine but I would not be chasing him up towards £2.30 or higher as people have been recently. 

28 Oct

2 goals for Icardi and he gets a 20p price rise out of it.

Doesn’t do a great deal for his performance scores though, and the goals should not be a surprise to anyone who has been paying attention!

This kind of “buy on the goal” mentality just costs you so much money when you could have done some basic research and seen this coming weeks ago.

Ever since he moved to PSG his goal threat has been strong ine very game and I can see him continuing to score.

It’s good for consistent IPD although not much else. 

Probably still offers some decent value but really 3 months ago at £1.35 or so was the time to buy.

20 Oct

Icardi is in lethal form with 3 in 3, and he has the threat to be smashing them in week in, week out.

This is about what you’d expect from a great goalscorer. So are the awful performance scores, since he does next to nothing but put the ball in the net.

However, he could win a brace or hatrick occasionally and for his £1.57 he’ll be pulling in plenty of IPD. 


4 Nov

Another good game for Mbappé despite the loss.

Definitely improving and if his numbers from the last 3 became consistent I can see him bagging a win and starting to justify some of the insane price (but that is very hard to do given how high it is). 

This could be because when playing with Icardi, especially with Neymar out, he is expected to shoulder more of the build up play.

So it’s a glimpse at his potential depending on playing position and we’ll have to see if it stays consistent in a fully fit side.

28 Oct

Mbappé was back last week scoring and assisting, then making an instant impact in his first start with 2 goals.

This was one of his better displays and had he got the match winner and finished the full 90 he would have been competitive. So a little unlucky.

He’s decent but I can never see him winning enough to warrant the price tag which is something I have said for a long time.

He’s really stagnated over six months in a market this favourable and this sort of player can be the “silent killer” of a traders total ROI which is something I’ll talk about more this week.

20 Oct

Mbappé returned and managed a goal and an assist in just 12 minutes.

So, some will have said “wow look at the score and only 12 minutes on the clock” and he did get a bit of buying but this doesn’t really change the price of fish.

He’s just decent but nowhere near decent enough for the money in FI terms.

Serie A

24 November

Domination vs Brescia, which will tend to show Roma players in their best light.

Smalling stole the show with a sensational goal and assist easily sweeping up a gold Star Man. 

Is this likely to happen again anytime soon? Well, no. He does have better goal threat recently than most centre backs, but generally has average baselines and is not one to create many chances despite what we saw at the weekend.

However, for 60p, with a media angle about leaving Old Trafford and Roma/Juventus battling over the signature, it’s actually not a bad pick that might get a reasonable % rise.

Kolarov, excellent again, 219 without goal or assist but he was close, with 5 attempts and could easily have been on the scoresheet. Another veteran from pre-season scouting that has powered from 65p to £1.13 now and he’s worth that but you have to keep an eye on transfer developments particularly later in the season.

Pellegrini gained some traction after an assist and a 178 score (hooked off 20 mins early so that can be better). He’s got a social media following but I am not quite that convinced. Baselines are not quite there to compete in midfield. 

Assist potential solid, we’d need to see more goal threat, at the moment you can expect perhaps 1 every 5-6 games.

He’s decent but I peg him at 3 out of 5 stars for potential which is more solid than great. Now that he seems a regular I’ll move his current rating from 2 out of 5 stars to 3 out of 5 stars

A decent choice but I would want to be paying around £1.60 really.

Poor game from Zaniolo with minimal involvement and no threat at all. He’s a player people want to like as he seems a good trend fit but as a midfielder the FI performance strength isn’t really there. Has put up 2 decent scores but one was a boosted Europa league score and the other a 9-1 demolition of Armenia. Would do better as a forward but a switch feels unlikely.

A bit better from Kluivert, who is really getting a chance and a run in the side. Not really taking it. Decent involvment numbers for a forward but his threat needs to improve. Had chances last game but did not take them. At £1.20 as a forward he’s now looking a lot better than when up at £1.50 2 months ago. But he does need to improve.

Dzeko his usual threat, scoring 1, could have been 2. Had a goal drought but that looks a bit unlucky, he has been getting chances. Having dropped to 92p now he’s a good IPD punt.

Under on from the bench as he makes his way back from injury. Nothing special shown this time. 

A good potential player but he’s really struggled so far with injury this season. Pre-season numbers were very good so there is hope if he starts getting regular minutes.


Alberto had a decent game and has risen a lot in price.

He was one I definitely liked in pre-season scouting if I look back, but he was £1.16 back then!

At the end of September scouting, I said I was starting to question the value at £2.22 (pre dividend increase mind). And he’s now a whopping £3.14!

It must be these consistent 180-200 scores that people are latching onto but this is something people often get muddled up over. 

180-200 scores particularly in midfield count for very little, apart from an occasional win on a soft day.

It’s the number of really big peak scores that matters most and Alberto only has 1, arguably 2 if you count 244 which is ok in midfield but easily beatable.

This isn’t bad luck or a fluke – it’s clear to see why this will be a consistent thing from looking at the match stats, which is why I was cool on him at £2.22.

So unsurprisingly, £3.14 does feel a bit much, despite the fact Alberto will definitely rack up some big scores over a season and could even nick a Gold Day.

The market has risen since the dividend increase when I last discussed his £2.22 value and dividends are now worth more. 

So, following the dividend increase, I’d now say about £2.50 was about fair value for Alberto as a 3.5 out of 5 stars level player without strong other factors like Spain 1st team or a transfer rumour.


Another goal for the relentless Immobile, 11 goals in 10.

Not the best performance player but certainly one of the strongest IPD returners out there.

Is capable of an occasional performance win too, particularly on limited game days like Europa league or the Euros.

Leading for Italy and still 29, I think he is a bit unfairly lumped in with the “old” striker crowd.

Looking back to pre-season scouting, he was an astonishing 69p and I thought him a bargain then. £1.93 now… it’s far from a bargain but it is fair value particularly with a good fixture streak ideally including a Europa league game or two.


19 year old midfielder at Parma (on loan from Atalanta, attracting transfer gossip to Inter, Juventus, and even Man Utd and Arsenal.

Also made his Sweden debut recently.

Looks decent so far although he is very new to first team action. Decent midfield goal threat, and creates chances too. 

Baselines are a bit low to truly compete in midfield and that’s something that would need to improve at a bigger club.

At a cheap price, £1.20 and under it would be an easy yes.

But a good spell of form in October plus those very shaky EPL rumours have pumped him to £2.13 already. If you believe the EPL rumours are real, maybe you’d want to go for it.

But it seems unlikely. Transfer speculation to any none EPL club won’t count for much in media terms, and he’s already at the price you might expect to pay for a decent Inter or Juventus player. 

Good prospect, but pumped too hard too early in my opinion given the slim odds of an outcome that warrants the price.

Perhaps one to revisit if it falls again later.

A nice run of form again from Orsolini, 2 goals and 2 assists over the last 3 games for club and country.

That’s delivered a 192, 160, 153 which doesn’t look great, but it’s actually encouraging if you look.

In two of those games Bologna didn’t win, and for Italy, he only played 1 half. So actually, those are some solid midfield scores that can turn into competitive scores very easily.

This weekends game was a bit of an outlier, with him showing huge crossing and dribbling numbers (15 of each!). He’s normally decent for this but he stepped it up another level here and it could be read as a sign of greater potential.

I’ve been positive about him here since he was under £1, though I became sceptical as he rose so fast to £1.80.

But when he came back down to £1.49 as per the 11 November article below, I thought it had come back into value range.

That was well timed with his latest good run and he’s back to £1.64 now. 

I think that’s a fair price for a good young player who has now shown consistent spells of good form, performance suitability and is making inroads into the Italy team.

The one downer is that having only just moved to Bologna, it might be a bit much to expect a big club move again next Summer, but that’s uncertain.


First full game back after injury for a while, and he scored.

Very solid player and I’d expect him to put up some performance challenges this season.

Decent baselines, goals, assists. 

30 is older but not too old. Could be considered as a long shot for the Italy side too if he shows form.

Contract ends at the end of the season but he may get an extension now he is back.

The long term injury has kept the price down to a bargain 54p. 

Could be a very shrewd pick for a player I rate as 3.5 out of 5 stars for potential.

Brought more central for this game vs Milan and I don’t love that for him if it continues.

It might just have been an off game vs reasonable opponents, and he only played 65 so no major panic but it did reduce his involvement in the game.

His key advantage comes from having far superior involvement in build up play than other forwards, which often comes from the wing. 

Threat was good and had plenty of chances hitting the bar but in this game his baseline would not have been good enough for it to count for much anyway.

No major panic for holders but worth keeping an eye on how he is used in the coming games.


Nice win for Higuain, and one of his best all round games for a while.

Threat was huge with 7 shots, and even his involvement was decent.

Been very unlucky not to score recently, he’s got the chances to find the net regularly despite a dry run until now. 

So a solid IPD shout at 72p and he will have an occasional performance win in him too.

Maybe with Ronaldo out, Higuain and other Juventus assets get a bit more oxygen. 

Not actually that old at 31 and is contracted beyond this season so I think he’s fine to hold for the rest of 2019 at least for those who fancy a punt. 

Dybala wasn’t too far away from a good score, with a nicely taken goal and 2 other opportunities.

Consistently in the mix for dividends when playing the full 90. It’s getting a lot better but he is still getting rotation looking at the last 6 games. 

He seems much happier at Juventus so a transfer is looking less likely.

He can be a regular contender for wins but he does need to be a 90 minute regular and he is not just yet.

That’s a bit frustrating for holders who need him to peak sooner rather than later. 

He’s cheap versus his ability however I would say with no Euro 2020 involvement and no transfer rumour he may struggle to find many buyers from Feb/March onwards.

For the latest Key Strategy having those reasons to hold in later season are becoming important now.

Not brilliant from Gomez over the last 5-6. 

Underlying stats are there, and he is creating chances, but his usual goal threat has dropped off a cliff. 

A quality player who can spark back to life at any time but on recent evidence it’s tough and the barren spell is starting to drag on a bit. 

With no other reason to hold him other than his performance strength when in form, he’ll need to start performing sooner rather than later because he’s not a player I’d hold come end of January latest.

11 November

11 Nov

In the below reviews from October and the ones previous, I was talking about Pjanic being on a hot streak at the time.

We couldn’t expect him to maintain that level where he scored 5 in 7 games, it’s just not realistic.

He’s gone 5 without a goal since then and that’s not unusual, probably 1 goal in 5 games might be the level to expect and that may be optimistic.

That’s why I was sceptical about holding too much longer at £3.

He’s held that price quite well but that’s in a month of massive growth. And, people do cling onto players with high historic scores and don’t pay enough attention to the real match stats.

He’s capable of a big score any game, but I think closer to £2.50 is probably more rational because that September/October form was a hot streak.

21 Oct

Another goal for Pjanic and he is on a great run at exactly the right time where people are looking for consistent big scores and buying heavily.

We have to bear in mind though that is what it is, a great run. It’s not something we should reasonably expect every week.

He’s a very solid player but I wouldn’t get too carried away, he will likely go on a barren goal run and be left in that awkward 200-220 range where he’ll score big but probably not score big as often as he has in the last 6.

23 Sept

A second consecutive big score and narrowly missed out on the win.

I rate him at 3 out of 5 stars which is a good rating but not the 4 out of 5 stars which I give to the real consistent quality. That may feel a touch low but I think it’s right.

Whilst his big baselines will be consistent, his goal threat is not. 

Whilst he has scored 2 on the bounce, he does not have the threat to make that sustainable. It feels more like a hot streak.

Bear in mind he hasn’t scored since March previous to this run and to find a run of goals you have to go back to 2017.

So, I’d be looking to make the most of this rise if holding to cash in rather than buying on the back of the scores because it is unlikely this hot streak continues too much longer.

11 Nov

Dybala holders seem to get more than the share of bad luck sometimes!

Benched, he came on to put in a great display, scoring the match winner. 184 in just 40 minutes on a day where the Forward dividend was there for the taking, just 202 to beat.

So it goes. He did get his win in the Champions League recently. But some of these recent 180 scores could have been a lot higher with a bit more luck.

But over time, quality shows and it almost certainly will for Dybala if he gets consistent games.

1 Nov

A 183 for Dybala but this could have easily have been a competitive score, with 7 shots and good chances amongst them. He’s looking very strong and if these numbers continue big scores are on the way.

Superb and I whilst he lacks my “full season fit” with no Euro 2020 and transfer hopes fading, I think he has the outright quality to justify a £3.20 price tag and he’d form a solid part of a portfolio at least until late January when it may be best to move him on.

28 Oct

It feels safe to say that Dybala is now a fixture in this Juventus side.

He’s putting up some superb stats worthy of 4 out of 5 stars

Just a 162 this time but it was a draw. The goal was from a penalty with Ronaldo off the pitch but he had plenty of good chances outside of that and could have had 2-3 easily.

For the forward category he’s an elite level player. I have him as potential 4.5 out of 5 stars and eventually there is no reason he can’t be one of FI’s very best.

Superb and I expect more big scores in the coming games.

At £3.10 for that level of player you can’t complain, it’s solid value for what you get.

One concern is that for those hoping for that big EPL transfer like we had rumours of last Summer, that door is closing as he settles in at Juventus. He obviously wants to stay and it’s looking more and more likely.

On the other hand, he’s looking closer than ever to realising his potential and Juventus is a good club.

As a long term hold there are fewer better options right now.

The lack of Euro 2020 will hurt players like this this year a bit. 

But, if he keeps posting the solid performance scores I expect to see, he should do well in the coming months.

8 Oct

Finally getting regular starts and he is making them count with some superb performances.

We aren’t seeing it yet on the performance scoring, though. A tendency to still be subbed off early is taking the edge off. 

You can see on the 28 Sept vs SPAL he got a 196 with just the 1 assist, and given he is capable of goals and assists, it’s a demonstration of what he is capable of.

He’s a potentially superb performance player given the chance, and if he keeps playing his way back into the team, the big scores should be on the way.

But is he value at £2.77? It’s arguable either way to be honest.

Part of the reason for Dybala’s big price is the expectation that he would come to the EPL. If he improves at Juventus, he’ll likely stay because he has shown his desire to do so many times. Arguably, what you really want is him frozen out and nailed on to move.

Also, he doesn’t play for a European team which goes against my season strategy. 

On the other hand, he has real quality and repeated wins could spike the price. 

Overall, I think there could be better times to buy him, maybe in 2020. Unless he explodes anytime soon, which is also possible. 

A 50/50. 

30 Sept

Dybala is having a better time of late, with 3 consecutive starts and it’s a while since we can say that.

This was his best game yet overall and not just because he got the assist.

This could have easily been a winning total and he had lots of good chances, big involvement and assist potential.

Despite all his problems in recent seasons he has always maintained a fairly high price which is a sign of a loyal following amongst traders.

And if the right rumour comes along he can really spike as he did towards £4 in Summer.

There is a reason for the faith traders have because he is a superb FI player if given the chance and if he keeps starting I expect a win before too long. 

I have him at a potential 4.5 out of 5 stars if so which is not something I give out cheaply.

I would say however that for this season, it’s not the most incredible trend fit without Euros involvement which I generally want if paying these prices. 

And the more settled he gets at Juventus that is not necessarily a good thing for transfer rumours.

So, it’s a balanced call at the price.

11 Nov

A soft win for Immobile with just 202 which he is lucky to get away with on a Gold Day!

But y’know, there is some value to some high baseline consistency, it does sneak some wins.

Alone, it’s generally not enough because you usually need the spikes of big scores. But I’ve been a long time advocate of Immobile especially in pre-season when he was a now embarassing 80p or so.

£1.73 now and given his IPD returns, the Italy involvement, and the occasional performance win, it’s a solid package.

For some reason he gets wrongly lumped in with the old veteran strikers. He’s 29. Not quite there yet. 

He’s getting closer to fairly priced but I think £2 would not be unreasonable and he could yet go higher if he keeps up this form.

11 Nov

As per the previous reviews his form was improving and he’s knocked in 2 this weekend. Much better.

But as I say, he’s an out and out Forward classified as a midfielder and it hurts him. I’d expect reclassification at some point and that could well boost the price.

Until then performance wins look out of reach but he’s cheap, young, and in this form has IPD value.

4 Nov

Another goal making 3 in 4 (+1 assist) and yet it’s not really doing him any favours on the scoring.

He should really be a forward as I said last week and he probably will be reclassified at some stage.

It’s tough to win from midfield for Correa.

I can see him being bought up to £1.50 if he gets reclassified as a forward and I expect him to at some point.

28 Oct

Better. Another goal and that’s 2 in 3, his barren run definitely at an end.

As I mentioned last time out though this is as much a bet on him being reclassified as anything.

In midfield, he won’t compete, because he is definitely a forward. 

As a forward, he should start to compete in this kind of form.

I can’t think of a reason to keep him in midfield so he should get moved to Forward and at that point I think people will think £1.11 looks pretty damn cheap.

21 Oct

Correa finally breaks his drought with a wonderful strike.

This has been coming because the threat over the last 5-6 has been solid as mentioned below on 8th Oct.

Hopefully for holders his confidence increases and he can start to put a few away because he has FI potential.

For a forward he would have solid numbers but he is a midfielder despite playing centre forward pretty much the whole of 2019. 

If anyone is getting reclassified he should be too and at that point particularly I think he’d look very solid value at the £1 mark.

IPD’s alone at that price could be decent too if he goes on a run.

Decent pick.

8 Oct

Correa showed tons of promise in pre-season but it’s been a really barren run, not scoring since August.

He missed a penalty at the weekend and he is getting so many chances over the last 5 matches it’s amazing one has not gone in.

He’s got ability and if one of these goes in he is capable of going on a run and getting attention and it’s still a decent bet at £1.01.

However, holders will need this barren run to end before he gets dropped.

2 Sept

A wonder Correa did not score for Lazio, he had fantastic chances. Extremely strong goal threat and assist potential across the last 4 games.

And still just under £1, 25 years old, looking a solid choice after a great pre-season and a promising 2 opening games. 

11 Nov

Quiet few games for Gomez. 

I’m not particularly worried for holders because the underlying stats are holding up, all he needs is a goal and he can score big.

Threat has been disappointing recently but he has quality and it’s hard to believe he won’t return to his usual ways given his record.

28 Oct

Oof. Close to a huge score here for Gomez.

2 assists and strong overall involvement. Just missing that goal and he had 4 decent shots, particularly surprising he did not finish a 1-1 with the keeper.

Looks due another big score soon and he’s added to Explosion Imminent this week.

A long time Scouting favourite, he’s risen 80p in a month which is a lot. 

But, it’s hard to say he isn’t worth it as he is the group of Gold Day Star Player contenders and the first players to win those could fly.

I’d be a bit warier of him come 2020 but for now he is solid.

21 Oct

Another goal for Gomez, he’s looking in fantastic form.

Ever since the new scoring matrix was announced I was pointing to him as a key beneficiary and I expect that to continue to be the case.

There was no immediate impact but that’s just luck sometimes, I think he has the numbers to be a regular contender throughout the season.

It’s strange to be seeing older veterans now up at £2 comfortably and really at this stage of the season I think that’s just fine, he is one who can bring home a Gold Day win on his day.

I’d just be a bit more nervous about older players come 2020.

8 Oct

Gomez smashed it with a 313 and a star player. And this should be no surprise to readers here.

As per the review below on the 23 Sept, and the new scoring matrix analysis before that, Gomez is a huge beneficiary of the new scoring system.

With quality players, you can afford to have a bit of patience. 

This was an outstanding game at the weekend but his stats over the last 3 games are impressive and it would be a surprise if he did not keep delivering big scores. 

He’s a 4 out of 5 stars in my ratings and I don’t give out many of those.

It’s not all plain sailing. He’s not exactly a perfect trend fit being 31 and not involved in the Euros. But, he is still in the CL (For now!) and we are still in early season.

The Key Strategy point of making the most of elite veterans in early season has been paying off handsomely, and I expect that to continue at least until late November. 

23 Sept

A rare rest on the bench for Gomez though he came on to get an assist and put in a solid display.

One who had some high expectations at the season start and has not yet delivered.

But the underlying numbers are good and I think Gomez will see better days and deliver on his promise. 

A big beneficiary of the new scoring system and he was good anyway. 

11 Nov

Napoli are a club in mini-crisis. Does this matter to us? Yes and no.

The chatter about poor performances, Insigne’s in particular, can drag on prices but it is possible to pay too much attention to “real football” when in reality we are playing a game based on football.

Insigne won the forward dividend in midweek despite Napoli drawing the game and him not scoring or assisting. He’s just so far ahead of other forwards because he’s essentially a winger and he doesn’t have to do much special to win.

With 9 shots vs Salzburg it is a minor wonder he did not score, and if he had, it is probable he would have beaten Hakimi to star man too.

Contrast that to this weekend vs Genoa where he was extremely poor, probably his worst FI game of the season.

But, when a player has to do so little to post a huge score, he doesn’t even need to be in particularly good form to challenge for wins. And when he does hit form.. look out.

A run of games like the weekend might worry me but just one can be discounted.

Rumours of him falling out with the coach just whip up transfer rumours so I’m happy with this as long as he isn’t frozen out.

10 Nov

Plenty to say about Inter players so I’ll group them.

Big threat continues for both Lukaku and Martinez despite the weekend blanks. They’ll score often but as covered here frequently, it’s never going to help them on FI scoring unless they fundamentally change style. 

Atrocious stats and you will need hype reasons to sustain them anywhere above £1.60 or so as IPD is the only other appeal.

Martinez particularly looking risky at £2.78 and he will need to hit that long shot Man U transfer or this price is going to drop like a sack of anvils.

I said the same of Lukaku up at £2.39, he’s down to £1.89 now and it’s more reasonable with strong IPD and in a Euros year. Really I’d want him at £1.65 or so though to say really it’s good value.

Barella got the match winner so 193 is well below what I would expect. With a match winner I’d expect a big score, my concern with him has been that those goals will not come very often.

I suspect from his stats he is capable of a bigger score than this on a matchwinning day – the problem for this sort of player is that when that goal comes everything else has to go right too and this time it didn’t. Touch unlucky for holders but wins are such a longshot he is not one I would be holding.

Sensi‘s price has held nicely through injury and it shows how injury is not a bad thing on FI anymore. The assumption of buying on return keeps people in and even sees more buying, especially when the injury is only a month or so. He should be back soon. He’s good, not quite as good as social media might lead you to think, and £2.98 looks a bit much to me. 

Price has just run away in the hype and I think £2.25 might be more fair.

Brozovic is a player I like although last review on 28 Oct below I said I was a little sceptical at £2.40. 

Issue is he had hit a bit of a hot streak and when that happens the hype gets a bit out of control. That’s why you have to know which players with the big scores are on hot streaks and which are the truly consistent.

Back down at £2.14 now, given the rest of the market in solid performance players has risen a lot during that period, I think Brozovic looks much better value.

10 Nov

Close but no cigar for Belotti. 

I spoke a lot about him in pre-season as he looked a steal to me around the 95p mark back in July.

£1.36 now which looks a fair price.

I give him a 2.5 out of 5 stars because he’s a fairly poor performance player but he does have that capability of exploding which earns him the extra half star.

That did happen this time with 2 goals but unfortunately, he was beaten to it by Messi. So it goes.

His IPD appeal is solid though, and you can expect occasional performance challenges.

His showings for Italy are also important and are helping the price along in a Euro 2020 year.

I think he can achieve and hold around £1.50 quite reasonably whilst being good for consistent IPD returns.

10 Nov

A few soft scores in a row for Berardi and he’s dropping as a result.

But not much to worry about for holders, he’s still showing the overall stats that will be exceptionally strong in the forward category when he hits form and ideally when he moves to a bigger club.

Goal threat has dropped off but I personally tend not to fuss around buying and selling just for that, I’d be more worried if his underlying involvement numbers were falling but they are decent.

27 Oct

No win for Berardi or even a goal but when forwards are putting up 175’s without scoring but they are getting chances it’s time to sit up and pay attention.

As per the below reviews, he’s been a regular on Scouting as I think he has exceptional quality.

With a goal he could have been pushing 250 or even higher which for a forward is superb, especially playing at a small club.

You do have to manage expecations a bit at a small club, which is why I had him as a 2.5 out of 5 stars with a 4 out of 5 stars for potential.

However, he looks so strong that even at a smaller club he deserves a 3 out of 5 stars and I’ll upgrade him. I think we’ll see him posting good scores regularly.

It’s not a huge secret by now at £1.93 and people are catching on. But he’s got lots going for him and I think it is a fair price given his quality with room to grow yet.

But if you do like him, I would sign him up sooner rather than later.

30 Sept

I gave Berardi a good review last week off the back of a few good performances.

He has blanked in the last 2, however.

No need to be glum for holders, though. There are some good underlying numbers here that puts him well above the majority of forwards. 

He hasn’t scored in 3 but the threat is there, with 7 shots at the weekend (many from long range but a couple of decent chances in there). 

Consistently good stats and looks to be a solid long term investment, even after a price surge towards £1.62. 

23 Sept

Good game for Berardi with 223 with just 1 assist. For a forward that’s good. Especially when he has strong goal threat of his own. 

A cut above other forwards and he could be excellent particularly if he gets a big move, and had minutes in the nations league for Italy so may be on the fringes and get a call with good performances. 

He’s excellent. I put him at 2.5 out of 5 stars in my ratings but 4 out of 5 stars for potential which I don’t think is too optimistic.

If he replicated these numbers at a bigger club he could be very strong. 

£1.43 decent value but patience may be needed at a smaller club. He is capable of winning from here, though. 

10 Nov

I first introduced Orsolini here (see below) in September at under £1 where I thought him a high potential kindly priced youth pick.

By late October many were agreeing and he was up over £1.80 which I started to say was getting a bit silly.

He’s got talent but at Bologna it’s always going to be a bit of a struggle.

He’s come way back down to £1.49 now which is much more reasonable.

So for a patient trader it’s a better time to pick him up. 

His current stats look a bit off the boil though so I would be tempted to hang in and see if a few more average scores beat the price down towards £1.30 which would look good value again.

Risk being that if he did pull out a big score, which is possible, he will be one people will be quick to pile into.

28 Oct

Good performance from Orsolini with decent threat and some solid involvement for just 40 minutes, although it was let down here by low passing accuracy.

That can be an issue for Orsolini although I tend to forgive a player for that at smaller clubs because they are usually under a lot more pressure. Even still, that’s the area of his game that needs to improve.

Solid prospect. 

But in the first review (below) 1st September when I said “interesting youth prospect at £1” that was before he pushed up to a high of £1.83 and then down to £1.70.

As the price goes up I have to be more critical and £1.70 or above seems a bit of a stretch.

£1.40-£1.50 might be more reasonable value.

We can’t be expecting huge scores every week at Bologna and we may see a bit of buyers remorse for the latecomers here.

16 Sept

Orsolini was covered earlier this month in Scouting as a good potential youth prospect as you can read below.

Great to see him replicate his strong numbers from vs SPAL against Brescia, hitting a goal and an assist.

A 234 isn’t world beating in a tough midfield category but he is young, can improve and at a small club so we have to manage expectations a bit.

He has had a nice price bump since the 1 Sept entry below after this performance, heading up towards £1.28 now.

In this market, he could keep rising further if he keeps performing like this. His numbers are consistent so there is no reason he can’t.

1 Sept

Interesting youth prospect.

Italy Under 21 regular, was sold by Juventus to Bologna just this Summer after spending last season there on loan.

Showing very strong goal threat over the last few games (incredible he did not score at the weekend with 7 efforts actually) and also created 5 chances.

This is a bit of an over performance but he does have both goals and assists in the locker, as well as a solid all round game that can build a decent baseline.

Looks a very good prospect for a patient holder who may find that he pops up with a few big scores this season and could be hitting decent transfer speculation by the season end.

With the move so fresh it may be that he stays for another season so that would have to be kept an eye on. 

But at £1 in a market where finding young talent that hasn’t been over bought is tough, I like this. 

4 November

4 Nov

Big teams with a new coach always get the spotlight in Scouting!

Starting from the front with the key players:

Piatek continues to toil. He’s an awful performance player who needs goals and he isn’t getting any. Worse he’s not really getting too many chances. I’ve had a downer on him for a while and rightly so – he has dropped significantly.

If this continued and he hit form you can see him being value again but he looks a way off.

Calhanoglu is the pick of the bunch since being moved forward under the new coach. Decent threat over the last 4 with assist potential and a good all round game. Capable of wins and solid value even at his now higher price of £1.49. 

I did a detailed Suso review last week below and wanted to give him a few more games. This week he was benched, then came off to score in midweek, then this weekend he got a minor injury and was left out. Inconclusive and basically in the same position as last week.

Paqueta is getting his chance in the side and frustrates. Some very mixed stats here. I think given 90 minutes regularly we might see some good things – however – I am not sure he is doing enough to keep his place and keeps being hooked off early. 

For £1.07 though there are some decent threat and involvement numbers there, it’s just not coming together in the same game yet. A potential punt who could turn up with a big score one day but I’d want a bit of assurance that he’s in the coaches longer term plan.

Leao has shown a mixed bag lately. He had a particularly eye catching performance late November vs Fiorientina getting a goal but more importantly showing he can get a strong involvement level too. Since, that hasn’t really materialised and he is being rotated as well. Has had chances and could have scored more. A bit like Paqueta – decent value and could come good but there is a risk they never get going.

4 Nov

A welcome goal to break De Paul’s drought.

He’s been doing a lot of the right things however his goal threat this season has not been what it can be. 

That aside he’s got an excellent game for FI and could develop nicely. I have him potential 3.5 out of 5 stars which is realistic although at a good club it may be more like 4 out of 5 stars in favourable conditions. 

With Inter and AC Milan rumours, ideally AC, and Napoli also there, he’s got some good transfer destinations ahead and at a bigger club could become a strong player.

A 237 without the matchwinner this weekend, and actually, this wasn’t even his best game, he can push higher. 

Solid pick and one I have been postively reviewing in Scouting for a long time. Strong rise since pre-season from £1.20 or so to £1.97. 

In the current market I would expect him to rise further should the transfer rumours hold up.

21 Oct

A quiet start to the season for De Paul but he was very close to a big score this weekend.

187 without a goal or assist, and wasn’t far off getting both with good threat and creativity throughout.

On another day this could have been 250+ and to be able to do that at Udinese is impressive.

I’ve long talked about his quality here and he has had a very slow and steady rise over 6 months from 80p to £1.79 now. 

Lacks the “full season” fit without Euro 2020 or European Competition but he at least has a decent transfer rumour and that’s not a bad alternative.

Not quite as good as 6 months ago in value terms! But still reasonable.

4 Nov

Interesting to see Chiesa deployed on the wing this time out and it really improved his all round contribution. 

I think this is his best position and it’s an indicator that depending on where he plays he can do very well at a bigger club as is rumoured.

Solid long term transfer choice with Euro 2020 interest as well. I expect such “combo” players (as mentioned in the Key Strategy) to be in high demand during early 2020 and he’s a prime example.

So ideally he would have been picked up as I banged on about him all Summer at around £1.70 but at £2.27 I still think he has a way to go.

30 Sept

Another strong display from Chiesa, adding another assist. He missed a penalty and had a lot of chances outside of that but could not put one away.

Make no mistake though he was a whisker away from 2 wins on the bounce having won midweek vs Sampdoria.

As a young Italy starter with a very likely big transfer come end of season where he can get even better, and wins in the locker even at a smaller club, it’s tough to find a better fit for this season.

I’ve been saying that for many months. He was just under £1.70 in pre-season and £2.16 now. I think he can still go further. 

4 Nov

Lukaku is smashing it at Inter but as long documented here it was never really going to help him on FI scoring.

This was a particularly good day with 2 including the matchwinner, and just over 200 isn’t going to be enough on all but the softest match days.

I think people have stopped falling for it as the goals did not move the price.

He’s a decent £1.50-£1.75 IPD pick in this form, but the performance wins are going to be few and far between.

£2.40 was crazy as I said at the time. And it’s rightly dropped. 

£1.95 is becoming acceptable but still needs to drop another 20-30p before I’d be interested.

8 Oct

Continued good displays from Savic since the last review.

Put some decent scores up, unlucky to be subbed off or play just 1 half in these 2 games where he both scored and assisted.

Had a few opportunities to score this weekend too.

Poor season last time out but this looking much better. Spiked up sharply from £1.50 to £1.75 as a result. 

But, with his improved performance, Euro 2020 chances and frequent EPL transfer links, he’s a good overall package. 

30 Sept

Another good score for Savic. Unlucky to  get subbed off early or this would certainly have been a win and likely star player. 

Showing the sort of form I’ve long said he is capable of and it couldn’t be at a better time than in bonus week where he has got a nice rise.

He can replicate these scores consistently in this form, he looks good right now and has a great trend fit given he starts for Serbia and probably gets EPL transfer rumours come the Summer. 

23 Sept

Possibly one of the most stop start players on FI. 

This was his best game in a long time and had one of his good chances gone in he would have been up there challenging Alberto for the win.

As it is, 238 with just an assist shows what he is capable of. 

Last two games much better and he isn’t far off a goal. 

I’ve liked this trade for a while and the £1.40 mark offers good value for a player who can break out and win plus often attracts EPL transfer rumours for big money. And plays for Serbia as a bonus. 

4 Nov

Veretout is a solid baseline player but generally lacks goal threat.

Interesting to see him step up to take the penalty then, after Kolarov the usual taker missed one in the same game.

Kolarov is the long standing taker so it would probably seem a bit much if he was dropped forever. So it may prove a single game thing after the pressure of missing the 1st.

If not, it puts Veretout in contention for some big scores over the season and he would be well worth the 90p. 

But it would be a little dangerous to assume he will get them, it may be worth waiting and buying if you see him taking the next. Or buying, and selling if Kolarov takes it.

Without penalties there isn’t much FI interest beyond the very occasional goal.

4 Nov

Note that Under made his first sub appearance after injury since early September.

I rate him as a strong potential player and definitely the best of the young Roma crop. 

In the ratings I pegged him at 3 out of 5 stars with potential 3.5 out of 5 stars

Pre-season was excellent, the season itself blighted by injury so far. But he has the ability to put up some decent scores given a run of games.

I’ll be watching him closely. 

Despite not doing a great deal on the pitch he’s had a steady rise from £1.30 to £1.74 over the past few months. 

I think that’s still decent value for a good prospect.

4 Nov

Yet another goal for Zaniolo for 4 in 4. But as reported last week, it’s not doing much for him on FI with a succession of average scores.

The goals give people something to talk about but because the rest of his game is so poor (even for a forward let alone a midfielder) it’s hard to see the goals leading to improvement and better scores.

A run of goals can revive interest but after a while, when they don’t turn into good scores, weak players get found out and I’d expect that to be the case here.

1 Nov

3 goals in 3 for Zaniolo is on a good run.

I’ve never rated him strongly despite the hype he has had at times because he’s not a brilliant performance player, particularly in midfield.

This isn’t bad luck, both of the last 2 are match winners yet resulted in 136 and 175 respectively.

It’s not enough and it’s hard to see it really improving anytime soon. He has a 2 out of 5 stars in my ratings for that reason with a potential 3 out of 5 stars but I think that is a long way off.

He’s starting to dip now and I think those poor scores are starting to kill the hype. 

I think that will continue unless a big score comes from nowhere (He had a 300+ but that was a fortunate day vs extremely soft opponents). 

A month ago below I said he looked close to goals but it wouldn’t deliver big scores (which was right) and that might see people buy (which was wrong). 

Maybe people are getting a bit more savvy that goals alone aren’t enough – and I think when you see goals without a good score it’s starting to be a red flag to many as it (usually) should be.

8 Oct

Zaniolo hasn’t delivered anything recently but he is getting close. 

Strong goal threat in the last 2 matches, he really should have scored. Also created 8 chances in the last 3. So he’s simmering and should get something soon.

Whether that will deliver a big performance score is another matter. For a midfielder, his baseline numbers are fairly low so I suspect he will probably end up making the top 5 on a good day but not winning.

He’s at 2 out of 5 stars as a result in my ratings, and for a midfielder, that’s not quite enough.

He has decent factors in his favour though like Italy fringes, youth, talent, and a possible big transfer later although it may be a season early. 

At £2 he is about 50p more than I would want to pay because of the hype. Though, if holding it may be worth hanging on because with these numbers I’d be surprised if a goal or an assist wasn’t on the way in the coming games.

4 Nov

More of the same but without the goal this time, a bit like Zaniolo, he’s got some pretty awful numbers. At least he’s a forward and a lot cheaper at £1.23.

Goal threat has been better in the last 3, but even when they go in, as per the below review, it’s hard to see where a win can come from here.

1 Nov

Kluivert continues to look weak as an FI prospect, despite a goal at the weekend.

At least he is a forward unlike Zaniolo so the bar he needs to hit is lower. 

But he still looks some distance from a competitive score with his stats, even if in good goalscoring form.

The price has tanked to £1.21 and it’s hard to recommend him even at that price on the basis of recent numbers.

30 Sept

Kluivert is still struggling. I wasn’t convinced after his price rise after 2 goals on the bounce as below because the underlying numbers did not support good scores even with the goals.

No real threat in the last 2 games, and underlying numbers are still weak.

The more minutes a young player gets without really delivering the worse it can get for them. 

16 Sept

A goal for Kluivert which is a bit more cheer than any holders have had of late. 

That’s about as good as it gets though because really the rest of the numbers are dire. Weak involvement, very few strong underlying stats to speak of. 

And that’s consistent across the last 3. 

It’s positive he is getting pitch time and the goal may breed confidence but apart from that, it looks bleak for FI purposes. 

That hasn’t stopped people buying for the goal though and it is no joke that people do favour players with famous fathers! 

So he would be easy to sell if he did start performing but unless something dramatic changes though we won’t be seeing big scores from him anytime soon. 

Also in Roma news rare rotations for Zaniolo and Under. Hopefully this does not become a theme because they are both interesting to keep an eye on. 

*Correction – Under was actually injured not rotated which I knew but managed to forget late last night when scouting! Thanks for the email pointing that out you know who you are*. 

4 Nov

Another disappointing performance. 

Had some threat but in the last 2 games his passing volume and accuracy is down which is normally his strength as a forward.

They were quite tough games so they will likely reset to his usual levels.

A barren and frustrating run continues but he is the sort who can score big any given week and I’m not over worried about his prospects. 

Maybe if the run extended a few more games and he didn’t make the Italy team this month it might cause concern.

1 Nov

Better game for Insigne and he was close to a big score, with decent chances, his usual solid involvement and 2 chances created as well.

Not far away from a big score despite a few medicore results recently.

28 Oct

Another quiet game for Insigne at the weekend.

He did get the goal in the Europa in midweek, but he only came off the bench so he had a 160 which is solid for him playing 30 minutes.

Overall a quiet period with his last big score coming in late September.

On the market he’s fared a bit better, going up during that period reflecting some positive feeling on him being a strong performance player.

I think he’s worth the £2.28 and he is capable of smashing the forward category at any time, he’s just so much better than the vast majority of forwards and 1 goal can be enough.

When he gets more than 1 which he can you are in potential Star Player territory and those first Gold Day wins will be big.

21 Oct

A quiet spell for Insigne of late, but he’s doing ok.

An assist at the weekend, with 3 chances created in total. 

Over the last 4-5 games his overall numbers are holding up well, and he is still getting some good chances although has had a couple of games without a good opportunity to score.

Overall, he remains solid and is never far away from demolishing the forward category which is handy.

I’ve been discussing him positively for a long time, since well before pre-season. He was a stone cold slap around the face bargain even 3 months ago at £1.20.

£2.33 now. He’s getting more towards a fair price for a player of his ability and prospects but I think he has further to go this season.

23 Sept

Strong again from Insigne and looked like taking the win and star man until Neymar beat him at the death. 

Players who can win with just 1 goal, particularly forwards, are golden.

His rise continues and £1.88 is still value given his strength, certainly compared to some of the rubbish that is peddled at £2+. 

4 Nov

I’ve not checked in on De Ligt for a while being largely a forgotten player since the season started.

He got a match winner at the weekend (Goal threat is very rare do not expect this regularly) and yet still posted 207 which is not competitive most days.

When a player struggles on their best days, it’s a red flag.

In pre-season I was very clear that his £3.28 price tag was one of the most crazy things I have seen in the crazy world of FI. 

£1.98 now and really, if you showed me the raw stats and asked me to fairly value the player (with no external factors) I’d probably feel generous saying £1. 

With those outside factors back in, hype for a young future star, the big price tag, the possibility of improving. You might be able to say £1.30 to £1.50. 

But what does any of that really mean if he is going to win so few dividends either performance or media? (being a defender).

Without credible returns all that real world hype means very little at all at the end of the day and it’s a useful lesson for any of the newer traders. 

1 Nov

Close again, and one of his best games for a while with a couple of decent chances (from in the box not long range efforts which is something I always look for with Ruiz)

Looking the real deal and has so many positive factors including a big transfer, increasing Spain involvement and his performance strength.

Could end up as one of my best picks of the season having held him since under £1. 

As a “combo” player with multiple positive factors he can rise further if he keeps up this level of performance, particularly if he keeps playing for Spain in the coming qualifiers.

21 Oct

Showing superb consistency across the last 5-6 games.

Those elite level baselines that were possible have become reality and his new normal.

And the assist potential remains strong.

As usual though, he is mainly limited to long range goal efforts which is why we can’t expect him to win every week.

He does get forward just enough though and he looks capable of 8-10 goals in a good season.

On his goal scoring days he’ll often be tough to beat, and an assist alone could put him in contention.

Really solid. 

But unlike 6 months ago when I was saying similar things, most people know about it now at £2.89. 

The weight of his consistent scores combined with a possible transfer and Spain involvement can keep him moving forward though.

1 Nov

As per pre-season Scouting, I thought Lozano might struggle to make an impact on FI and that has proven true.

However, he was £1.62 and has now fallen to £1.42. And he’s not that bad, he’s being subbed on 60 minutes and getting some decent threat, with involvement just about good enough for a striker to win on a good day if he was playing the full 90.

I have him as a 2 out of 5 stars with a potential 3 out of 5 stars although potential 2.5 out of 5 stars is probably more accurate and I may change it once we see more games.

I think if he kept falling to £1.20 or £1.30 he might start looking like a decent pick who could improve later and get some interest.

1 Nov

What to do with Ronaldo is an interesting and difficult question.

He’s been very consistently putting up 150-180 scores but that’s not quite enough.

There is a touch of bad luck here, sometimes the match winners aren’t lining up with his best days.

If he maintains this consistency, the stars will align and he’ll put up big scores.

And, we all know he can be explosive and on those days he can pop up with a very strong score for a forward.

He’ll be a big draw in Euro 2020 too so there is that reason to hold him.

Retirement will always be a risk although it would be a surprise if this was his last season.

My policy on him in the last 6 months was to steer clear because he’s a bit of a headache, but said that the brave buyers had a big potential upside.

Months later he has gone from £2.20 up to £3.35 and you can’t say he doesn’t deserve the price.

I think I’m broadly of the same view as then – I think he will probably keep rising.

But the reason I stay out is that just one bad bit of luck like a big injury or similar can see you in real trouble with a player at this age.

22 Sept

Second win of the month for Ronaldo. 

Just the 1 goal too and his 10 shots in total helped here and bumped up his reasonable but not spectacular baselines.

This ability to explode is why he gets a 4 out of 5 stars rather than a 3 out of 5 stars

He should keep doing it off and on all season.

As I said in the internationals review, it’s a seriously tempting trade in a Euros year. 

I’m sure the performance wins will keep coming and so will the hype for Euro 2020, and some traders might really find value here.

However, with that retirement risk, however unlikely, it’s enough to keep me out of it because I generally find that staying out of players that are likely to stress me out keeps me in a better mindset overall.

But I might slightly regret that and be a bit jealous come the build up to Euro 2020.  

La Liga

24 November

Something of a forgotten hype kid, he’s fallen from £1.84 in May to £1.64 now, and that in a market that has risen a lot.

I was always a bit sceptical of the value back when he was being hyped, but I did like his potential.

Now, at a much reduced price literally and relatively, I think he looks much better as a transfer speculation pick with decent performance potential at a bigger club.

Scored 2 in the last 2, decent enough involvement and creating chances. 

Looks better than it has all year.

Banega came very close and could have chased down Gaston Martinez for the win on Saturday had he not been subbed off early. A touch unfortunate.

Baselines are huge for Banega and he is better than his scores show this season – he’s just not had many penalties or goals fall his way, though he has had chances from open play. 

Very capable of a win, including Gold Day star man.

However, he is out of contract come the season end and there is a risk of a transfer to an ineligible club (Besiktas were the likely club last Summer but it never happened). 

Really, Banega needed to start the season well to gather hype but for the brave punters there might be another month or two left to try to catch a big score. 


Despite losing, it was strong again from Moreno with 6 shots and could easily have been on the scoresheet.

Good involvement for a forward as usual. 

Bumped up 8p since Euro scouting last week but he can more than justify a £1.48 price tag, he’s very solid. 

£2 would not be unfair.


Another positive step vs Real Sociedad where he had a good game. He’s definitely on an up turn, it’s just not got much attention yet because he hasn’t scored for Real recently. 

Fans are much happier with the recent performances. And he’s getting opportunities to score, playing a big role in the game (including 13 dribbles!) and created 2 chances.

No end product this time but it’s close.

I’ve said a couple of times in recent weeks that he looks the best value of the big hitters right now and I think that still looks true.


Lethal form continues as reported last time. Looks likely for performance wins and strong IPD returns right now.

Has another year on the contract and there is talk of an extension after this superb form. I don’t think he would struggle to find a club if he didn’t stay at Madrid.

Looks a great shout at £1.40 certainly for the next couple of months at least.


Exceptional performance from Modric, with a goal and 2 assists.

He’s better for Croatia than Madrid, that’s clear. They rely on him to run the game a lot more.

The risk of him leaving at the end of the season and/or retiring is real.

But there is no doubt he’s a contender for performance wins.

At 64p it’s tempting.

But it’s also a high risk punt.

I tend to stay away from players where one bad injury can cause a total price collapse as a general rule and it keeps me out of trouble and means I don’t have to sweat on it.

For those willing to take that risk I think shorter term is better. Even with the Euros in mind, depending on the contract situation, it might be quite hard to get people buying him come about Feb/March.

One for the gamblers but it can pay off.


Poor game from Griezmann and he’s looking a shadow of the player he is for France, or even for Barcelona earlier in the season.

Rumours of rifts with Messi and a transfer at the end of the season will continue if this poor run for the club continues.

If it wasn’t a Euros year I’d be worried for him but it’s hard to see him not being in demand for that tournament, so it’s an insurance policy for those willing to hold for the season.

Either he settles at Barcelona, which is good. Or he doesn’t and transfer rumours can pick up, also good.

So there aren’t too many bad outcomes if you think longer term but if the form continues you may well see the price drop steadily in the next month or so.


No goal but a good display from Dembelé in reality and on FI.

Rotation is a problem but when he gets 90, he often shows his potential.

Lively, with good involvement in the match and a couple of chances. Over a run of 90 minute games I’d back him for some decent scores. 

Has his teething problems and I’ve warned he has got overpriced in the past which is true.

But that was 6 months ago, and he’s dropped 32p since then in a market that has massively increased and dividend returns are worth much more.

One of the better prospects and £2.35 looks decent value now.

Better in the last 2 for Fekir, with goal threat in particular very strong.

Baselines are ok but not what they were – he’s still better than most forwards so if a matchwinner goes in, he can be up there competing.

I didn’t like this much in pre-season when he was £2 to £1.80. 

£1.69 now in a market that has risen a lot it looks a lot better.

There is the chance of IPD, an occasional performance win and later season transfer rumours. And fringe France involvement. 

Still only 26 as well so looking better now.


A borderline comedy performance score of 1 for Morata but actually, not that bad.

Really strong threat with 5 shots, they just didn’t go in. At £1.04 and leading for Spain he’s very solid value as covered in more detail in Euros scouting last week.


A win for the 28 year Levante midfielder.

Nice return for his budget price, but unlikely to be a regular occurence.

It can be worth having these players who can very occasionally win at cheap prices.

But, I think they generally need positive trend factors like age or a potential big transfer on top – something to give them momentum beyond just the win.

Like Rochina – if people don’t see a reason they might win again or get other hype behind them, the price won’t move after the win.

A win for Canales, it’s quite similar to Rochina above.

Canales is capable of a very big score on his day, possibly even enough to compete on a gold day for star player.

But, it will be once a twice a season tops because whilst his baselines are high, he doesn’t score too many. And when he does, Betis will have to win which is far from guaranteed.

For 71p that’s not bad.

But, you’ll likely have to a) hold a long time to catch the win, if it ever comes and b) probably only get a modest price increase if he does win because most will believe it is a one off.

I prefer to hold these cheap long shots when a one off win might cause hype, i.e when the player is young or has a transfer link.

For a veteran, I want more consistent performance challenges.

11 November

11 Nov

Here he is. The best De Jong on FI is finally turning up.

With Luuk De Jong’s incredible scoring record for PSV he looked a great IPD punt at 60-70p in early season.

He struggled.

But he scored at the weekend and he’s got some decent threat. If he keeps starting Sevilla have a decent run of fixtures after the international break and those who like an IPD punt might like it.


21 Oct

Finally, he scores!

I’ve been tracking him since pre-season given his goal scoring record in the Dutch league, he looked like a fantastic IPD punt at 70-80p.

Had hatfuls of chances but just could not score until now.

With his record, it’s possible this confidence sees him go on a run. He also scored for the Dutch in the recent qualifiers. So he’s probably feeling good.

A decent punt for IPD.

11 Nov

I can’t help myself but sigh when I see buying like this. It’s a decent long range strike by Kubo for his first Mallorca goal.

In August when he was first hitting FI at £2.33, I said how crazy and overhyped this trade was. He rightly tanked to £1.61 but has bounced back to £1.74 after a goal so there are some true believers out there.

In FI terms, if you look at his stats for Mallorca, Real, Japan or Tokyo, there is nothing special about him at all that would lead you to think he would be a particularly good FI player.

Yes, he can develop and he’s young and all of that. But c’mon. If we’re paying big prices we have to go for the players who look like they have ability on FI, not just vague guesses based on a YouTube skills video.

When a pick is that long range you don’t want to be paying more than £1.20 or so.


11 Nov

A poor run for Griezmann continues and this is about the time I start to be a bit worried even with a quality player.

The lack of goals can be forgiven if the rest of the numbers are holding up, but he looks poor in reality and his usually strong involvement numbers are down over the last 4. As is his goal threat in general, though he did get a good chance this weekend.

The price is actually holding up relatively well considering, and that probably reflects the confidence in the hold in a Euros year, plus the good early season performances.

Had he been in better form though, we could have expected a nice rise over the last month of performance player buying.

Higher spreads also make it tougher to jump out of trades just for a run of poor form too, as a general point.

Becoming a headache but he tends to look very strong for France so I think it is best to re-evaluate after the international break.


1 Nov

A quiet run for Griezmann but I don’t think holders have much to worry about, his big scores should come given his stats.

Some gossip about him not getting on with Messi but I don’t pay too much attention to this.

He looks particularly strong for France and another round of qualifiers is on the way mid November.

Risen a solid 40p despite the quiet spell. I think there is room to grow this well above £3 if he gets a big score soon, looks very solid value for a big hitter right now especially given the rises in other similar players.

21 Oct

An odd score from Griezmann because when he gets a goal and assist you’d normally expecting him to be smashing it, not down at just 183!

Limited shots doesn’t help, and uncharacteristaclly poor passing accuracy are to blame here.

Still, a good game and a reminder of his quality. 

Over the last 6 or so, particularly for France, he’s come close to more wins and he’s looking solid.

I always felt that in a Euros year Griezmann would be in hot demand, especially playing at Barcelona. 

He has had a steady rise from £2.20 in pre-season to £2.93 now and if he maintains this performance level I think he will go further.

22 Sept

2 off games for Barcelona and 2 off games for Griezmann too. 

Threat way down on his early season form. Still has decent underlying numbers though and I think once Barcelona shake off this bad patch he will start delivering again. 

16 Sept

Decent again from Greizmann with 1 assist and he could have very easily added a goal with 3 chances, 2 of them really good including hitting the post.

Showing consistently good stats which is important because at £2.68 he is hardly cheap anymore.

But I also think he is superb value given the way the trends for the season are running.

He’s capable of consistent wins to add to the one he has already and the weight of that combined with Euro 2020 hype can keep pushing him on.

I think he is one of the most solid holds for the season.

11 Nov

Only played the second half this weekend but made a good impact. Elite level involvement levels actually. Could use more shots but the one he had was a good opportunity.

I’ve long regarded him as a strong potential player, who suffered from rotation, some poor form in patches, and struggled against some huge over optimism on the part of traders as many young players do.

Should his struggles resolve at Barcelona, or he moves to City or  PSG as is now being rumoured, I would back him for success if starting consistently.

He’s long carried an over optimistic price tag. I said that all year and he is down from £3.38 in February to £2.34 now in a market that has risen significantly over that time.

Arguably, he is now coming back into value range versus a lot of young talent at a similar level. He’s just not currently flavour of the month like Rodrygo, but he’s the same sort of ability and potential.

Having been down on this throughout 2019, I think this is now looking a much much better prospect following the drop and price rises elsewhere this month, if you believe a transfer or a first team place at Barcelona will come.

8 Oct

Sending off aside, this was a good game for Dembelé in FI terms.

Decent threat and a very well taken goal. Created 2 chances, had plenty of involvement with high passing accuracy. Lots to like here.

Back in real life, it was a mixed performance and the sending off, for a player criticised for discipline problems, may not help his cause for more minutes. 

He’s good, and definitely one of the few hype kids to be demonstrating real potential.

But £2.54 doesn’t leave a great deal of value room, it’s a problem for holders of hyped young stars – even the ones who come good are no longer fantastic value. 

 11 Nov

Due to IPO this week and it’s pre-decided – he’s going to rocket based on hype alone there is little doubt there.

What we need to know is how good is he really?

Potential wise, it’s considerable. Were he to replicate his numbers over consistent 90 minutes over consistent starts, I’d have no problem suggesting a 4 out of 5 stars rating.

But back to reality, he’s 17. Seeing plenty of minutes but rarely getting the full 90. If FI had scored him in the last 10 games, you’d see mostly poor scores except vs Valencia on 14 September where he scored and assisted.

He’ll likely be rotated. As a young player he’ll probably be inconsistent and take years to develop.

And yet. People will go nuts for him amidst the hype in all likelihood.

If this can be bought relatively early, even £2.50 or so there would be value there and you can ride that to a nice quick profit.

I would not buy beyond that though if I was not one of the first in.

Nor would I be likely to hold at anything £3.50 and above for very long, because as we see so often, it’s likely that consistently weak performance scores will see people sell.

He would need to become a first team regular for big scores to be consistent and it would be a leap to say that will happen.

Classic case of one you can profit from with smart trading – but never become the true believer who thinks he has found the next Messi, it’s a mugs game.


1 Nov

Continues to get minutes and I like what I see.

The hype for this kid is going to be insane at the inevitable IPO. 

I’d pick him up probably at anything £2 and under and we may be lucky to get that.

A young player with genuine potential. I give him a 3.5 out of 5 stars in my ratings (potential is the next 3 years so being realistic). But if he develops in the right way he can be better than that, has a great game for FI purposes.

The hype may be such that he acheives a very silly price early on, and if lucky enough to buy relatively cheaply, I’d probably sell rather and exploit the over optimism.

If I was late and he was already over £3 or something silly, I’d just let it go.

He is just 17 and we have to bear that in mind amidst all the hype.

16 Sept

What price Fati if IPO’d right now? It would be crazy. 

He is a one boy website crash waiting to happen.

Every so often amongst all the overhype for young players there is one that looks to justify it and Fati is one of those rare gems who is both a trend fit and performance suitable. 

I probably wouldn’t sell a kidney to get him at IPO, but I’d certainly think about it. 

11 Nov

No denying it’s been a tough start at Real for Hazard. But further evidence that his fortunes are turning.

He’s generally considered to have had a very good game at the weekend. Though it didn’t translate into a huge score on FI, and the threat and assist potential were soft, it’s better.

His overall involvement is superior to the majority of forwards so if he does start adding goals and replicates the form we know him for, he should be a regular competitor.

He still isn’t cheap but it’s times like now you have to make a decision on a player like this.

The price is dropping at the same time his form is improving which can be an important moment.

If you wait too long for those decent underlying numbers to turn into a big score one day, it then feels a bit late to be piling in with everyone else once it happens.

It’s better to think “if he scores big this weekend, would I want in?” (or for Belgium). If the answer is yes, better to buy before it happens and the numbers do look positive.

You just have to be satisfied with the value at nearly £4 even after the drop from £5.32.

Personally I’m not big on too many premium holds but I think Hazard has a lot going for him.

For those on the fence we may want to make a decision now and stick with it either way rather than waiting to see a big score and piling in after. Because it could easily happen.


4 Nov

No breakthrough but it is getting better. 

Stats show no threat although he did score a wonderful individual effort that was ruled out by VAR. And to watch most would say he had a decent game.

The rest of his underlying numbers apart from threat are solid.

And yet those putting too much weight on some poor FI scores are selling, he’s dropped 12p in the week.

Because he looks like coming good, it’s times like this where having better information can provide an advantage.

£4.11 still isn’t cheap and still a borderline premium choice. But I think he is one of the best ones around at the moment and if he hit form could easily attract interest. 

1 Nov

Still struggling a bit at Madrid although in FI terms the stats over the last 6 are really not bad at all.

I think he will have better days once he settles and if you back him to succeed at Real longer term, £4.14 is not bad value for those looking for a long term big hitter hold.

Especially with Euro 2020 involvement, I think his season prospects are solid despite the recent gloom.

16 Sept

Just 35 minutes for Hazard, no goal or assist but he did a lot right getting one good chance.

I rate him and whilst it has been a disjointed start with injury, I think he will come good which is why he sits at 4 out of 5 stars with an even higher potential.

You do pay for the quality though so it’s not the best value but it’s a solid enough hold for traders who like a long term premium pick. 

Decent chance of a small value spike on his first big score or similar which should happen before too long. 

11 Nov

Some excellent consistency for Carvajal across the last 6. 

Baselines are big. The worry is this: “is he a nearly man who gets the high averages but not the big peaks?”

He is a little bit. Particularly in the last 2 games there has been no threat or assist potential, although over the season, it’s a more positive picture particularly for assists.

He’s probably a touch unlucky not to have won a dividend so far though, others have won with worse underlying numbers.

With his consistency, he is likely to have better days in the season to come and get a win or two at least.

£1.37 is probably about fair, neither exceptional value nor overpriced. Just a solid pick.


11 Nov

Looks in lethal form and he’s a player in the elite veteran category that I like and backed in pre-season.

Back in July/August you couldn’t sell a veteran to anyone but that’s exactly why the value was so fantastic and huge profits have been made on elite veterans in recent months.

Looking at his season as a whole, the threat is consistently high and whilst he’s scored 9 already he could have had more on top.

He’s even better than most forwards in terms of baseline and assist potential. 

IPD alone would cover his £1.30 price and occasional performance wins are likely as a bonus.

Rumour is, particularly with Jovic struggling, Benzema may be retained for next season and if so that £1.30 price may increase as the risk lowers since it is down there because of worries about him being moved on come season end.

16 Sept

The brace will come as no surprise to members as his extremely strong goal threat has been well covered here under Real Madrid.

Superb veteran IPD punt up there with Lewandowski and other elite strikers.

Perhaps not one to hold too much into 2020 but for now he looks a great source of continued IPD’s for £1. 

Capable of a performance win too on a really good day, and I rate him at 3 out of 5 stars above many goalscorers because he does have a bit more to his game than most. 

11 Nov

The fickleness of many traders on display! He drops after not starting, just by 11p. Are the sellers the smart ones?

Possibly yes. After a huge price spike and hype for a young player like this, taking profits is never a bad thing provided you do something else with them, even if you miss out on a further rise.

He’s still just 18 and was always going to get some rotation, nor can we be expecting him to win every week.

Bags of potential though and he couls do extremely well in the coming years although this success is already assumed and built into the price by now which is an issue.

No Euro 2020 fit and no transfer worth making either so he needs raw performance wins to maintain the price. And they should come but with rotation etc it’s likely to be stop and start and he would have to be very fortunate to return an acceptable yield on £3.79 at this stage of his career.

All that would stop me clicking buy and hoping for a future price drop personally.

But, as I recently saw someone say on Twitter (I’d credit them if I remembered who!) Rodrygo could be the player people thought Vinicius would be.

But if you are going to hold overpriced kids, at least hold the good ones. And Rodrygo looks the part so far.

4 Nov

Another start for Rodrygo. No real threat but his good overall involvement levels held up which is the bigger indicator of performance quality.

Playing in this position the goals should come and he has shown good threat in the previous 2.

Another good step and I like him I just don’t like the price.

Interesting that after these good performances he has been sold losing 8p.

Just shows that when young players are being sold the good get sold along with the bad and value opportunities may emerge.

I’d probably want a bigger discount than that though before diving in.

1 Nov

A very impressive display for the Real Madrid youngster.

Whilst this was a soft game, it was a good showcase of his potential and it was an excellent showing from an FI perspective.

I have him as a 3.5 out of 5 stars for potential, he could be 4 out of 5 stars if we believed he would keep his place and be a consistent fixture in the next season or two.

It’s still a bit early for that, he is still breaking through and we can expect rotation.

The problem is that in the furious buying of youth, even the ones who look decent end up overpriced and you cannot say £3 is exactly value given the patience that will likely be required with a young player.

However, for traders who can’t resist a young starlet, he’s at least one of the ones who might just live up to the price (one day).

10 Nov

Messi does Messi things and wins. The only really notable thing is that people are still buying when they see this, as if it is news or unexpected.

Messi is going to do this consistently all season if fit and if playing his normal game. It was obvious as soon as the new scoring matrix was announced and it was in my analysis back then.

Anyone on the fence should have just got it over with rather than awaiting the inevitable win to charge in!

There really is no right answer. You have to wrestle with the age thing, the lack of Euro 2020 and decide whether you think it’s worth it.

I am sure he will get consistent wins.

Personally this is not an area of the market I go big on but I’d be much happier holding him in 2019 and January than into late season where Euro 2020 and end of season sell off chat might see Messi struggle.

But for now, he looks capable of challenging almost every week.


4 Nov

Not much to say about that Barcelona performance, it was bad.

I  can say that Messi held up well though and holders have no cause for worry. He scored and had decent chances, was generally doing Messi things.

Just needs his team to turn up.

Griezmann incidentally wasn’t bad but faded in the second half. 

1 Nov

Not much more to say about this, as per the below reports and the early new scoring matrix analysis I expected him to smash performance scoring consistently. 

Slow start with injury but he’s got going now and it’s hard to see anything but this continuing.

Background fear of age is always there and the lack of Euro 2020 hurts this year. 

But overall, one of the best premium picks certainly for the rest of 2019. 

21 Oct

Similar to Griezmann, a goal and assist but a soft score by his high standards.

It’s possible Eibar were just pressing strongly because passing accuracy was way down for both players and that does hurt scores, particularly if you do make a lot of passes but misplace a lot of them.

Overall, since back, we’ve seen Messi’s quality but he hasn’t quite exploded just yet.

In this new scoring system, it’s essentially a matter of time before he goes on a great run of big scores and chalks up some wins.

The age old debate about… age… persists but very few players benefit as much as he does from a 57% dividend increase.

There’s no real right answer on this one, it’s not an area of the market I usually shop in but there are potential profits here for holders. 

I’d just say be careful as the season wears on, particularly if Barcelona struggle in the CL or similar.

8 Oct

After an injury hit start to the season, Messi has taken a while to get going.

But, as I’ve been reporting here and in the performance scoring changes articles, the win was all but inevitable once he got back to being average Messi.

He was always great in performance scoring, but after analysing the matrix changes it was clear he was going to get even better.

He’s one of the rare few who get the 5 out of 5 stars for a reason. Holders can expect consistent big scores and probably wins.

Is he value? 

It’s debatable. With the very freshly announced dividend increase, that certainly helps the cause.

But, he is an older player who, for this season at least, doesn’t fit my personal game plan of stocking up on elite Euro 2020 players. 

He should be bringing home consistent dividends but will he bring enough to warrant the huge price tag? And will that many traders be interested anyway since they will fear his age?

I think passive traders might be content with this, though, they do want to be a bit wary come February or so certainly.

For me, I feel like I can make better % gains overall in more reasonably priced areas of the market so it’s not something I go for.

4 November

4 Nov

Portu nicked a win off Kamano with 2 goals. It was a fairly soft day, 220 isn’t amazing with 2 goals plus the matchwinner. 

However, Portu is just 88p and that makes him a decent IPD shout. He plays most games and has consistent threat, certainly enough for 8-12 goals in a season.

Nice cheeky IPD punt and they have a good fixture vs Leganes at home up next (followed by Real madrid away, eek) then Eibar at home. 

4 Nov

If on the lookout for elite veterans this was a warning shot from Cazorla who went close.

Good chances to score here and excellent involvement, 151 in a 0-0 game where he could have scored and with assists in his game too, it’s solid.

For £1.02 for a player with a chance of winning even on a Gold Day it’s great value.

Just again with veterans I’d be unlikely to hold too far into 2020 but that’s not a problem right now. 

4 Nov

In an alternative reality where Parejo’s penalty had been the match winner, he’d have pipped Kovacic to the win.

So he’s showing some remarkable consistency and whilst he won’t win them all because you need a bit of luck as well, it’s further evidence that Parejo will be often up there competing.

Though we’ve known that for months here. It’s more about what to do with him. 

He’s a solid hold but is 30 and did not feature for Spain last time out. 

Not a hugely compelling case for holding him deep into 2020 right now, but for the next couple of months there absolutely is.


21 Oct

Another goal from Parejo. He’s not just a penalty taker, he does have free kicks and an occasional open play goal in the locker too.

232 without a win and this could have been a 300+ monster score.

As I said on the live blog, players who are capable of blowing the opposition away with 300+ are extremely valuable now as they can run away with a Gold Day Star Player which is now very valuable.

That means we are starting to see players like Parejo being rewarded on the market and that’s a really positive sign for FI as a whole, I’ll talk about that more elsewhere.

The thing with Parejo and similar players is that you can’t very easily predict their hot streaks.

They are best held patiently so you don’t miss their big days. 

That’s why they won’t often appear on my explosion imminent section. 

He does what he does, and then in that game where the penalty happens, or the free kick flies in, he’ll pull out a monster score.

But you never really know when it will be, it’s not like you can see consistent threat building like with other players.

But you can rely on him to do it consistently across the season.

8 Oct

See below.

30 Sept

I’ll probably stop reporting on this because Parejo’s excellence is boring by now.

Another big score (212) without doing anything spectacular so it’s easy to see why when he does score or even assist he will be in contention for wins on a very consistent basis.

An easy pick up in pre-season scouting when remarkably down at £1. He’s nearly £1.88 now.

Is that still value? Yes certainly given the quality. However early season is the time to make the most of it and I would probably be avoiding carrying too many older players much into 2020 without good reason.

2 Sept

Parejo does Parejo things.

In the Valencia entry below last week I said he had an average game in his first game of the season but that his big scores should be along if holders show a bit of patience.

They did not have to wait long and he pulled out a massive 349 score.

Two penalties is lucky for sure. But he only needs one because his baselines are so strong. He would have comfortably won even without the second penalty and that’s why he is so strong.

Should be a regular challenger and probably a regular winner because he is in an elite group who can blow other midfielders away, and that’s important in such a competitive category. 

4 Nov

At the £1 mark Ramos, with at least a share of penalties, is looking more attractive these days.

Definitely more so than when first getting penalties pushed him to £2. 

For a CB he’s got consistent goal threat, even outside of the penalties. 

And probably starts for Spain.

Would expect him to post a few decent scores before the season is out and he looks good value, certainly for the next few months.

Whether I’d hold him into late season I am less sure.

1 Nov

Lethal form for Suarez and looks a great IPD punt at the £1 mark.

Should be scoring pretty much every game and has a reasonable chance of a performance win too.

Expected to be his last competitive season at Barcelona but that keeps the price down for now and makes him a good short term punt.

1 Nov

Worth remembering Banega who is a dark horse for a very big score that could scoop a Gold Day Star Player.

One goal is enough for a huge score. In the past that goal has come from penalties. Sevilla haven’t had any to take but when they do he could step up.

He has a bit of goal threat outside of penalties too.

Possibly a candidate for a China move come the season end so reasons to be wary but for the next month or two that’s not so much of an issue.

If we saw him win on a big match day it should surprise nobody who is paying attention.


8 Oct

Banega is a strong performance player and capable of going toe to toe with Parejo when in a patch of form.

No big scores so far but he is putting up the kind of numbers that mean one is probably not far away when he gets a goal (he’s on penalties). 

At 94p with IPD potential and a good chance of nicking a performance win, I’d be optimistic on him.

Just, be wary of holding too long into the season because transfer to China rumours may resurface as we get into 2020. 

1 Nov

I’ve been glum on Fekir at this price at Betis for a while, as per the below.

He got the matchwinner midweek but it only delivered a 190. His numbers are not good and he is not proving the all action performance player he used to be when at Betis.

So, it doesn’t surprise me that even with a matchwinner his scores aren’t that competitive.

At a bigger club, I see him as an extremely strong player though.

If the price were to continue to tank, and we believed a bit transfer was waiting at the end of the season to a performance suitable club, he could start looking strong value in the next month or two.

I would continue to watch from afar as per the below advice though, because I think it unlikely he will put up a big score soon on this evidence.


28 Oct

As per the below review, I’ve long said I did not think Fekir could hold a £2+ price tag at Betis.

It’s just too much to expect at a smaller club, even though he has quality.

There was too much “It’s just like Lo Celso” laziness in this trade.

Lo Celso was Lo Celso because he started under £1 which made him value. If you are already pushing £2.50 when going into Betis, it looked like a struggle to me.

Recent performances have not been great. Down on some decent pre-season and early season performances.

Overall, he’s a high potential player with a possible transfer later but there is a way to go there yet. 

I’d expect some decent scores from Betis but I think I was right say £2+ was far too optimistic.

£1.75 now is more reasonable, and for admirers, it might be worth holding out for £1.60 or so.

At that point, you can make a case for good value. 

29 Sept

A bit more pain for Fekir holders as he is injured likely until mid-October and he missed the Friday game.

I’ve been saying he is overpriced for sometime and he has fallen from £2.20 to £1.90 in the last 2 weeks. 

His poor recent form (after a bright start) would have been a good indicator that he needed to be moved on.

I just don’t think he can really do enough at Betis to really make good on a £2+ price tag.

However, the long term prospects are decent and he has real FI quality.

This is a player I think best watched from afar. If the price slide continues more towards £1.60 or so he could start to look value.

22 Sept

Notably poorer from Fekir in the last two matches for Betis after a great start. 

Not getting any chances of note and involvement is way down on his early season form.

I wouldn’t panic yet if holding but this should be monitored. He carries a high price and needs to keep justifying it I feel or there could be a sell off.

2 Sept

Excellent from Fekir and a whisker away from pipping Suso to the win on Saturday. 

As per the Scouting reports, he has been looking strong and this is coming through in the performance scoring.

Should be a regular challenger although you do have to manage expectations a bit at a smaller club.

Also has future transfer potential much like Lo Celso.

The difference is when I made that very profitable Lo Celso trade he was under £1 where as Fekir is much better known and is already over £2. 

So not quite the same value. But still, continues to look a very solid pick. 


24 November

Note Kramaric making his reappearance after injury, scoring after coming on for the second half.

Didn’t count for much with Hoffenheim being thumped mind.

But he’s a strong FI player (3.5 out of 5 stars in ratings) with Croatia involvement and a possible bigger club transfer in him.

The winter break is awkwardly timed for his come back but he looks solid value at £1.55 after the injury drop.

Goal and an assist, not a brilliant score at 174 but he did come off on 64 mins, he’d have probably at least got to 200 or so in the full 90.

As mentioned over in Euro Scouting last week – very solid player and I think he’s a solid season hold at £3.10 (he was £3.10 last week, £3.24 actually now). 

He’d dominate the forward category and it would be fairer to put him as a forward, maybe he will be moved at some point.

But as a midfielder as I said last week he will often come in 3rd/4th behind some of the big hitting midfielders.

For that reason, I would not right now be chasing him much above £3.50 in the same way you might for Kroos.

Obviously, he was one I was very keen on in pre-season but he was £1.66 back then and I get tougher on players the higher price they get.

But overall a solid trend fit hold that has more wins in him and can justify the price.

It was only last week I reviewed Pavard in the Euro scouting saying I liked him at £1.24 after some promising recent stats. £1.66 already now!

He’s a bit lucky, being credited initially for dummying (or missing?!) Kimmich’s cross-cum-shot (I can never type that without laughing, sigh).

Anyway, the headline here is that he is again in the right position to miss, which is better threat than most defenders, and his chances created has massively improved in November, making 9 in the last 4 games. That’s more than he has managed previously in the whole season.

Has the baselines to make it count, with crossing and long passes in particular standing out, as well as high passing with good accuracy.

Definitely improving.

And easy to sell in advance of the Euros at just 23 and playing for France as I said last week in Euros scouting.

£1.66 now? Probably still good value but given the strength of the stats, I would buy sooner rather than later if I was going to because I probably wouldn’t be buying closer to £2. 


Last 6 games as a midfielder and to be happy holding him now I think you need to decide you are comfortable with him as a midfielder, not a defender. 

Unless he goes back to right back which seems unlikely at the moment, the long awaited reclassification surely must happen at some stage.

As a midfielder, he’s got elite level baselines in some games, usually when facing soft opposition. That’s good, Bayern will face plenty of weak opponents over a season and that’s when many many good players make their money.

Probably 60-70% of the time though, his baselines are not quite enough to win with just an assist.

And here is the issue because goals are not likely from midfield, his threat is pretty low and you can only expect 2-3 goals a season.

The assist potential is better, 1 in every 4-5 is a reasonable expectation.

So, you can see challenges vs soft opposition, and perhaps 6-8 competitive scores over a season making him around 3.5 out of 5 stars or up to 4 out of 5 stars in my rankings.

That’s really good. But can he cut it at £4.50 up against Kroos and other better performance players available in the £2-4 range?

You can see a strong pb average score which I think keeps many in but if you really look, it’s only when his scores are boosted in Europe that he is really putting up competitive midfield scores. 200-230 can cut it in defence but it isn’t that much help in midfield outside of a few wins on soft days.

Germany involvement is a big help, on limited game days like in the Euros his high baselines can see him win without a goal or assist.

And age is on his side of course. 

Overall, it’s a hold that would make me uncomfortable because it’s a bit like the middleweight boxing champion moving up to heavyweight and being expected to win. Probably not quite so often. 

In normal betting you’d probably get a longer odds price to match. But on FI in the betting odds he’s still priced as a favourite.


Finally some genuinely excellent stats from Demirbay to reward the patient holders.

He’s been improving recently as per the 11 Nov reviews below, but he still lacked major goal threat.

Until this weekend that is where he was really strong for involvement, threat and assist potential.

Unfortunate that no goals or assists actually came and Leverkusen didn’t win but he still managed 219 despite that which shows just how good it was. 

There was a possible 300+ easily on the board here had things fallen more kindly.

This was a dominant game for Leverkusen (despite the scoreline) so it will have made him look good. 

But, these are the sorts of numbers and performances that Demirbay is capable of but has not yet shown in a Leverkusen shirt until now and it shows the potential.

Promising. Possibly worth a punt now to see if this continues although worries about a winter break will probably drag on the price of Bundesliga players in a couple of weeks so that’s a risk.

Tomorrow’s Lokomotiv match is probably as good a time for a short term punt as any.


Decent performance from Diaby who scored his first goal for Leverkusen at the weekend, with a decent all round display.

After transferring from PSG and not making an instant impact he’s fallen from £1.38 to £1.12 now which is a decent drop.

Still just 20 though, playing for France U21 and has some potential.

Will continue to be rotated and whilst good, does suffer as one of the wingers classified as a midfielder who will struggle to contend with the midfield heavy hitters.

But capable of goals and assists and an occasional big score on his day.

For all that he is £1.12 which is a reasonable price to pay for a potential talent for a long term hold.

As the youth market gets saturated, we may have to get used to this longer, slower burn for young, decent potential players (which is how it should be in a more rational world anyway). 

Nice display from Upamecano who doesn’t get a lot of love in Scouting due to a) being the sort of ball playing centre back who doesn’t do that great on FI and b) already highly priced because of an expected big transfer.

Worth noting that this weekend he breached 100 passes comfortably with good accuracy for the first time this season though, that’s many more than usual. 

Solid baselines here so he could do quite well somewhere like City. 

In the last 2 games for Leipzig and France U21 he’s had good chances to score and not finished, so if he kept getting forward for corners it could cause a stir.

I don’t love players who are already expensive for their category when they aren’t that performance suitable.

However, Upamecano is one who could easily get a nice price rise if he did score, and he’s been getting close.

One from the wonderkids article and it’s nice to see him get another start, adding an assist.

Also had a couple of good shots on target and some decent underlying numbers for his 76 minutes played.

Some way to go because rotation will likely happen but for talented players at cheaper prices I can be a bit more forgiving.

Gone up a lot since he first appeared in Scouting from 90p to £1.40 but I still think it’s a reasonable price.


As per below I think Sabitzer is decent but not decent enough to warrant the recent hype that has carried him to £2.90.

This was a good game and it was one of the ones where had he scored, the goal could have counted for something and pushed him into real contention. 

Did have chances.

But there are reasons his goal sprees have not delivered big scores outside of boosted European nights as per below.

Should get a couple of wins over the season but it’s quite likely frustration will set in on him unless he pulls out a big score soon.


Ouch, unlucky for Forsberg holders as he narrowly missed out to Higuain on Saturday.

This is about as good as it gets for Forsberg and it’s just unlucky his big day was eclipsed by another, but so it goes.

He’s not a player I’ve traditionally covered all that much this season. But he’s a decent pick certainly for his £1.14.

In some games he’s got some strong underlying stats as a winger classified as a forward, so he’ll tend to see more of the ball than most forwards.

His goal threat could be better, but at least a share of penalties helps the cause.

And the Sweden appearances are an extra dimension.

I wouldn’t expect big scores every week but he is capable of nicking a couple of wins over a season and returning some IPD, so £1.14 is a reasonable price that has some room to grow.


Only came on for the second half vs Paderborn but this was better. 

Replicated across a full 90 minutes there would be some solid stats here.

Frustrating start to life at Dortmund but he’s showing enough signs recently (including 4 goals in the last 7) to keep me interested.

Good game despite the loss with a goal and assist.  Not a great score for that though at 155.

Better than average stats but not enough really to be competing consistently at the top end in midfield with the real big hitters.

No amount of hype can survive weak scores for long and it’s been an awful hold since August when he was being hyped again ahead of the season.

But as I’ve said for months he was never going to be good enough at this stage to justify the price.

I think holders are lucky the spread is so high because once you are into trades like this you feel locked in by the high cost of an Instant sell these days. That will keep many in even if they know they have made an error holding at £7+. 

Another reason not to become a true believer in hyped players – it gets you into trouble time and again and isn’t worth the few occasions you win doing it.


Played on the wing for Dortmund and whilst this remains true he’s got an excellent chance of winning the defensive category. 

If not worried about reclassification to midfield (where he’ll struggle) it can be a good punt.

May be rotated though, so could be worth waiting on the team sheet before punting on it.

A soft win for Mamba at Paderborn, with 2 goals vs Dortmund. 

Not a name many will be familiar with, but he’s doing pretty well in his first Bundesliga season, with 4 goals in 8 appearances, and not always playing the full game.

99p and a decent IPD shout when Paderborn have a kind run of fixtures (not likely to be a regular performance winner). 

But bear in mind the winter break for the Bundesliga.

11 November

11 Nov

Paulinho is something of a forgotten man at Leverkusen. He’s had his minutes limited for what seems like a long time. Although, he is just 19 so it’s not totally unusual.

He bagged his first goal of the season off the bench at the weekend so it’s possible that earns him a start at some point.

He’s got lots of potential in reality and on FI and I give him a potential 4 out of 5 stars in my ratings – and as a tough marker I do not give those out for free.

He’s one of those Insigne type forwards whose position on the wing gives him so much more of the ball than a usual striker it’s almost an unfair contest. I know that site members like myself happen to love unfair contests!

Just as likely as a start, he gets benched again, he can be a frustrating hold.

But he’s got lots of potential and at £1.37 there is a lot to like.

11 Nov

Time for the latest episode of Demirbay Watch.

Nice to see some consecutive starts, that’s a win in itself for holders. 

In the last 3, it’s pretty good overall, some nice numbers there for passing, chances created, recoveries etc. Plenty to build a decent baseline consistently.

But, he’s missing the old goal threat that gave him that cutting edge. He’ll be snagging some assists soon most likely but it won’t be quite enough alone.

I think if you’ve waited this long it’s worth seeing a few more games at this point. But I would not buy again until I saw this goal threat heating up a bit.

4 Nov

Not a bad performance. Not all that great either.

On these numbers he can put up some big baselines consistently if he settles in the side (and particularly avoids being subbed off early like this).

He created 4 chances, his best since joining Leverkusen which is a cause for hope.

So, he essentially has it all except he has yet to convince the coach fully and despite getting some long range shots, they are not good quality chances.

Just seeing him on the pitch again though has done wonders for the price and he’s at £1.55 now.

Tough decision. He’s decent and capable of pulling out a big score one day and if he does you can expect a sizable market reaction.

He’s doing enough to make that possible so I think it’s a reasonable bet.

The lack of goal threat is a worry though and the risk is that over a few games people may lose patience with him.

28 October

A wave of buying for Demirbay as he makes his way back, 26p onto his value as a reward for patient Demirbay holders.

But, even as someone who rates Demirbay’s potential, I can’t say the recent games have been brilliant.

He’s lacking goal threat here despite some solid baselines.

I am going to make a guess here that he was pushing a decent half time score and people went silly as they do for this sort of thing. But I didn’t actually see that at the time so maybe someone can tell me if I am right!

(Note – Ignore this nonsense with people buying on big half time scores, unless you are aware you are exploiting how silly this is. Do not get suckered in. The only time it can be smart is if you have your eye on the player, know he looks solid but are just waiting for that final bit of evidence to convince you).

I like him overall and if he settles he could look excellent value.

But, holders will want to watch the next few games closely and we will want to see some kind of goal threat because we will not see big scores from him without it. 

11 Nov

After demolishing Dortmund Flick looks to be getting an extended job interview and we have to take his formations more seriously! Time for an extended review of the two games so far.

He’s been quite consistent in selection over both games, which some slight differences, Coman and Gnabry pulled further back vs Dortmund which is as you’d expect vs tougher opponents.

It’s early days and Flick may develop his thinking and formations. But so far the winners seem to be Lewandowski, Coman and Gnabry who seem in line to continue as the established front 3. Not a major surprise there.

Central midfield is more difficult. Kimmich has played both as a midfielder and looks very strong in terms of baseline from there, certainly enough to push for wins in the defender category.

If reclassified as a midfielder though I’d worry a bit, as he’d need that goal or assist to compete there. He is good enough to compete in midfield but at over £4.60 now, there is no doubt that better midfielders can be had for that money and it’s a real risk we just don’t know when it might hit.

Goretzka has had a decent couple of games in reality. Not so much on FI. There are two Goretzka’s, the deep midfield version who isn’t that brilliant, and the forward running midfielder who is superb for us.

Certainly vs Dortmund he was the bad Goretzka. Though that isn’t surprising, you’d expect him to have more conservative instructions. More encouraging is vs Olympiakos where he did get forward for shots.

If he keeps his place I think £1.67 for a starting Bayern mid with potential is exceptionally cheap and there is a decent chance the knee jerk sellers of this week will regret that decision.

We will have to see how he plays in the coming games though, there is a fair amount of uncertainty. He also tends to do quite well for Germany so that’s another attraction.

Muller is also present in both teamsheets, but he’s not much interest to us and is blocking the spot of some potentially excellent FI players so, with the greatest of respect for your long and successful career, please move on Thomas 🙂 Not likely, Flick likes him.

To be fair though, he’s just 74p and there is both assist and goal IPD potential there.

He has shown early confidence in Alphonso Davies too, with him being moulded into an attacking left back it seems. That’s mixed. Game time good. Position bad. At least whilst he remains classified as a midfielder.

If reclassified as a defender to match, he might be a future contender if we see him develop more end product in assists and/or goals.

At the moment, it is hard to see him winning midfield playing as a defender realistically, despite my regard for him as a young player with real potential. 

Whilst it is early days, what we have seen so far is not good for Coutinho, Alcantara, Tolisso or Perisic

Coutinho may be blocked by Muller who Flick likes. When playing though he is fantastic and should get opportunities over the season. With no Euro 2020, we’ll need some kind of favourable transfer outcome come the end of the season like an EPL rumour.

Alcantara worries are compounded by not really looking like scoring or assisting across the last 5 appearances. If he was showing his October form where he was getting close to scoring and putting up a monster FI score, I’d be much more relaxed on him.

You can never count him out because in form and in the side he can be a monster FI player who with a bit more luck could easily be pushing £3.50+. But it’s not looking likely right now.

Perisic is probably an impact player and that was always likely to limit his returns. But as a cheap punt, he’s decent.

Tolisso I can be more relaxed on at the value £1.50 price, I always saw him as a high potential player rather than a here and now player, so rotation is expected. When he starts he is very capable of a big score.

Will be keeping a close eye on this over the coming games, as the picture may look very different a month from now.

4 Nov

All change, please.

Bayern are a huge FI club and we now need to watch the appointment of a new manager closely and then the first games like a hawk. Almost as if it is pre-season all over again.

Mourinho is the favourite and the popular narrative is that he’s a defensive manager who doesn’t trust young players. That might see an initial reaction in itself on the market.

The defensive manager thing isn’t really true, if you look at Porto, Inter, and Real they were high scoring sides.

The lack of trust in youth seems more true if you look at the history.

But it’s not necessarily going to be him and other options like Wenger, Rangnick are in the frame.

For all of Bayern’s stars, they have rotation concerns anyway and are of such quality I think they can survive a bit of uncertainty whilst we see a new coach get a few games.

It is hard to see there not being a place for the likes of Lewandowski, Coman, Gnabry, Coutinho, Alcantara, Kimmich. Players like Tolisso, Davies, Muller, Goretzka may be a bit more sensitive.

But overall, I don’t sweat on this too much at the moment, the overall result will probably be that Bayern improve although we won’t know which individuals will benefit or not until we start seeing team sheets.

We might be able to make some educated guesses once we see a coach appointed.

For now, I think doing nothing is the right call.

11 Nov

2 more goals for Werner but a 190 score given that is below what I would expect and needs looking into.

He missed out on the matchwinner, which is a bit unlucky when scoring 2.

But the main reason is some very poor passing accuracy in this game which hurts. This is an odd feature of Werner’s game where some games he is superb for this and others awful.

Hard to say why that is.

But interestingly, had he had the passing accuracy of last game and hit the match winner, he might just have nicked the win off Messi which would have sent FI into meltdown.

Shows his potential but also highlights an inconsistent area he needs to improve.

4 Nov

Werner is a player I’ve been very keen on since pre-season and recently as per the below reviews, despite his previous quiet spell in October which felt temporary.

I said last week he deserved his £2.82 and could rise further and he is incredibly now £3.67 after the gold day win.

Whilst I backed him for consistent success and good goal and assist potential, nobody can claim to see 3 goals and 3 assists coming, that is a total freak.

It looks less of a freak if you point out he scored 2 and assisted 2 in midweek in the Cup.

But still. It’s just not reasonable to expect that.

But in the forward category 1 goal and 1 assist is enough and he is capable of both, he’s more than just a goalscorer.

As I said in the review last week, he’s got performance strength, I put him at 3 out of 5 stars now with 4 out of 5 stars potential particularly at a bigger club.

3 out of 5 stars now looks a bit miserly and 4 out of 5 stars more accurate if this keeps up.

And with his external factors such as Germany and a big transfer, it’s a really strong hold and a slam dunk core pick.

Is he worth £3.56? I think yes but I do have an aversion generally to chasing rises and I am not sure I would buy straight away if I wanted him. 

That’s a rule that generally keeps a trader out of a lot of trouble.

28 Oct

No goal and a run of soft scores for Werner. Holding his price, though.

The stats are actually good and he is still getting decent chances in the last two. 

Can be expected to score before long and encouragingly, across the last 10 games he is showing the kind of involvement numbers of a really strong FI forward.

If he can do this at Leipzig, he could be frightening somewhere like Bayern. That’s a genuine improvement over last season.

I’ve tracked him a long time now since pre-season scouting at the £1.80 mark then and he’s grown a lot to £2.82.

However, even at that price, he’s got a lot going for him including his performance strength, good transfer rumours and Euro 2020 involvement. 

I think he deserves the price and can rise further.

21 Oct

Last review he was on a bit of a barren run although I was optimistic regardless (below).

Since, he’s scored 2 in 2 for club and country.

For a forward, he’s got better than average stats which suggest that he could be a real performance contender, particularly if moving to a stronger performance club. He’s got more to his game than just goals.

With Leipzig drawing the goal this weekend did not result in a huge score but he’s looking good and has lots of positives in his favour in terms of his performance strength and overall trend fit.

At £2.74 he is hardly an unknown but he has hovered around that price for a month overall which makes him (comparatively at least) better value than a month ago.

He’s just not hit a big score recently but he is capable of doing so in the coming games.

8 Oct

A dry spell for Werner and a poor run of results with 2 losses and a draw in the last 3 for Leipzig. 

However, these losses give him some poor performance scores that actually disguise some interesting numbers.

Versus Schalke, Lyon and Bremen his general involvement was almost twice what it usually is. 

It’s an indicator that he is more than just a goal scorer, he has the potential for a decent baseline for a forward, combined with good goal threat too. 

He is dropping back a bit after a big rise which is fairly normal, especially after a barren run. But as a season hold I am optimistic. 

16 Sept

Nothing in the last 3 since the hat-trick for Werner but worth noting that he is close and looks capable of scoring any game. 

6 attempts vs Bayern and 5 vs Northern Ireland (uncharactersitcally quiet vs Holland but this was a real blip compared to his averages). 

1 Sept

As per the below Scouting Werner’s threat was looking good and he came through with a hattrick.

This sort of score is repeatable provided his goal threat holds up and it has been consistently solid. 

I like him as a strong key strategy fit. Whilst this was obviously better a month or two ago, I still think he could have a way to go given the overall trend fit – European involvement and whilst people believe an EPL transfer is possible (it’s actually more likely Bayern). 

But holding a player like this through to at least December time looks sound to me.

Provided of course his on pitch numbers hold up and all the positive background factors stay true.

11 Nov

Another goal for Sabitzer yet a poor score.

His big scores come in freaks (3 assists) or in Europe where the score is heavily modified. (i.e the 320 vs Zenit with a match winner plus assist was actually a beatable 256 on what is just about his best possible day.)

Despite a better than expected season, he’s one people confuse with a very strong performance player because he has some nice headline stats and some boosted big scores. 

But if you dig deeper it’s not so brilliant, with poor passing accuracy in particular dragging him back.

Definitely an improvement this year and overall I think he is a decent FI player worthy of a 3 out of 5 stars and £1.75 or so would be fair given the improvement. 

But the social media hype taking him to £2.88 is too much and I would expect this to correct unless he gets very lucky.

Outside of performance, you’d have to bank on a move to Bayern or something to keep the price moving. Not impossible but looks a long way off.

4 Nov

Definitely a better than expected season for Sabitzer, certainly goals wise. 

Doesn’t always translate to good FI scores though and that’s because of his significant weaknesses described in the reviews below.

He’s one of a few curious players who seem to get these big fan clubs around them and I’m not sure why. (Maybe because I don’t hang out in any whatsapp groups to avoid having my head filled with rubbish!). 

They usually have a couple of big scores (often freak occurences like his 3 assists on day one of the season) and some good headline stats. But when you dig a bit deeper they are usually decent but not great.

At a lesser price around £1.50, maybe even up to £1.75 given the improvement, this would be a decent shout because you will see a few big scores a season. 

But I don’t see the value north of £2, I think people have got carried away.

21 Oct

Sabitzer is one of the band of head scratching players that get pumped as a PB God on social media because of high baselines and a handful of historic decent scores.

As I said below on the 22 Sept, it’s easy to get suckered into this because he does have some very decent stats in places.

But he lacks the whole package that makes these high baselines count very often.

He’ll get occasional big scores and he really isn’t that bad.

But when someone starts saying he’s a top performance player and buying him up to £2 is a good idea you’ve got to question it. 

£1.20 or even up to £1.50 would be fair but beyond that people are dreaming.

22 Sept

Sabitzer is easy to get suckered into if you only give a brief glance to the stats. He certainly has his social media backers.

And he can score some impressive long range goals.

However, I don’t think he’s that brilliant as a performance player especially in this tough midfield category.

If you want to sell him on social media it’s easy to point to a high number of shots and passes. But look at how many go in and how many passes make it to the right place and it’s less impressive.

Things like that matter and that’s why he’s a slightly better than average 2.5 out of 5 stars in my ratings. I can see him nicking a win or two over a season but not much more than that. 

Scored at the weekend and made 59 passes but ended up with only 199, 80-90 short of a competitive score. On a good day.

I said his opening 299 with 3 assists was a freak after the opening day, we’ve seen 7 games since and this 199 has been his best. 

11 Nov

A nice win for Max and he’s got some decent threat and assist potential from defence.

He’s not a great performance player though and we can’t expect regular wins.

If in the best case you can expect a goal every 6-7 games, then the odds of that happening and it being the match winner on any given match day are fairly small.

So I would not hold expecting wins it’s a rare event that you get lucky with or not.

However, at just 51p I think he is a good punt when Augsburg have some good fixtures line up and I would consider any performance challenge a nice bonus to that.

4 November

4 Nov

I’ve tracked Nkunku in Scouting recently (see below) as I like him as a potential talent.

He came close to showing it at the weekend with a solid display, narrowly missing out on a win. 

That was enough for holders though who saw him bounce from just under 98p in the first review here on 8 Oct to £1.33, which is very nice indeed. (He was also in my wonderkid series).

He managed a 240 with a non match winning goal and 2 assists which is decent. 

Actually, the goal threat wasn’t brilliant, he had 1 chance and hit a bit of a screamer, you can’t say it was a great opportunity that will reliably repeat every week. 

And with 2 chances created you could say in an 8-0 game you want more.

What was great though was his overall contribution and involvement – it’s a solid platform to win from.

And given his historic threat across the last 6 and in his career to date in general, you can reasonably back him to do well.

A very solid youth pick, even at his new price tag.


21 Oct

Last review (8 Oct, below) I flagged Nkunku as a talent with decent value at 98p. 

He’s £1.12 now and got a start at the weekend which is good news. The bad news is that he wasn’t very good this time out.

In just over 70 minutes he saw as much of the ball as he often does when coming on for 20-30 minutes from the bench.

These weak involvement numbers are at odds with previous form which has been encouraging, so I’m content to give him the benefit of the doubt.

He did at least get a good chance on target which is something.

I think the headline is that he started the game which is an important step as he settles in at Leipzig. 

8 Oct

Nkunku has had limited minutes at Leipzig after his move from PSG, but what I’ve seen I like. He scored this weekend vs Leverkusen and it was a nice goal too.

Per minute, he’s showing some decent numbers and with full matches he could put up some decent points totals.

Could be quite stop and start but if you back him to break into the first team I’d be optimistic on him for a patient hold.

And at 98p the value is there.

4 Nov

Is Brandt back!?


A brace in the Cup in midweek and that’s unfortunate it came in an unscored match because that would likely have been a big score indeed. He also created 4 chances on top, excellent stuff.

That was enough to bump the price 20p so it shows that there are buyers out there waiting.


At the weekend though that good form did not continue, with him back to no goal threat and minimal chances created.

I expect a bit more rotation and a few more bumps on the road but he has quality and can pop up with a big score and see a solid market reaction off the back of it. 

£1.95 is good value for him in this market, a solid hold even though some patience will be needed.


21 Oct

A start, which is positive in itself although he is generally considered to have not had a great game and to visibly lack confidence. He also may have only started due to Alcacer and Gotze being injured.

In FI terms, throughout October, he’s shown some very decent stuff for club and country. Good chances to score, particularly in the last two games, solid involvement. Hasn’t created many chances which is a weakness though.

His main problems seem to be lack of consistent starts and confidence. If he does start and get a goal then kick on, I can see him going on a good run and posting some strong FI scores.

A frustrating hold after starting the season with big expectations that have not yet been met. But I suspect he will make his comeback at some point and the gloom has kept his price reasonable at £1.76 which has barely moved in a month overall.

7 October

Tough times continue for Brandt.

He did play 75 mins at the weekend but from the bench to replace the injured Piszczek.

And he played the full match in midweek too.

But, it’s not consistent enough to really convince. 

A new player to a club being introduced gradually doesn’t stress me out. But after a while, you start to wonder whether it is a gentle introduction or the player is just not a major part of the coaches plans.

When he does play, the baseline numbers are solid but the goal threat and assist potential are way below the levels he showed for Leverkusen and for Dortmund in pre-season.

I would expect him to bounce back at some point because he has quality, but it’s a rough patch for sure and he isn’t getting enough chances to hope that it will happen soon.

He was up over £2.10 not long ago, and down to £1.81 now having rebounded a bit recently. If he did start and perform that could look a bargain but it’s not looking encouraging right now.

Whether or not he plays for Germany in the qualifiers will be important.  

30 Sept

A continued struggle for Brandt as he is limited to the bench again. Decent enough numbers for his 23 minutes. 

But, basically not good enough for holders who will have hoped for more. 

It is surprising to see him struggle for minutes although we do know Dortmund is a very competitive side.

He has been around a while but we do have to remember he is just 23, too. 

I think as long as his Germany involvement holds up he should have a good season, and he has the FI quality to pop up one day and remind people of his talent. When he gets a start, that is.

I think patient holders will be eventually rewarded and the drop may be a good time to take advantage for non-holders particularly if it continues. 

16 Sept

A disappointing off game for Brandt after getting the start he needed. 

It was an odd game as Dortmund won 4-0 but Leverkusen dominated possession suppressing Dortmund numbers across the board.

Did at least have a good opportunity to score and was unlucky with a good save from the keeper. 

The main issue is that his overall involvement was down from his usual levels. 

Given how consistently good that has been in the past, I’m happy to accept it’s a blip and just monitor it over the coming games. 

2 Sept

Dortmund had a nightmare but Brandt’s full debut was promising.

I think he will become a regular starter. Not much by way of threat or final pass this game but we know he is well capable of that.

He’s a quality player historically and I am wary of bias and a player living on reputation. He has scored 2 and assisted 1 for Dortmund already though despite limited minutes which is promising.

And historic quality does count for something as well as his decent trend fit. I think he could have a good season. 

The main thing for holders is to see that he keeps getting starts.

4 Nov

2 of the last 3 games on the wing for Dortmund, he’s playing as an out and out winger and he should be a regular contender in the Defender category that way.

For however long you think it will last. FI seem to be very cautious about changing playing positions so for those who want to risk it, he looks a great short term punt as long as he keeps playing here.

Reasons to be nervous though because if he did get recategorised the gloss really comes off when competing in a tough midfield category.

But nobody knows how FI’s new policy on this exactly works yet. It may even be done at the end of the entire season. Or it could be next week.


4 Nov

Thorgan’s improvement as noted below continues.

A goal and assist and with the matchwinner as well, I can’t help but be a bit disappointed with a score of just 216.

Involvement was ok although there is something of a lack of some secondary stats like accurate crosses, long passes and a bit of wayward passing accuracy that prevents this creeping up towards the often required 250.

On other days, he can do better there.

But, it does show the difficultly that wingers have compared to the high baseline midfielders sometimes.

Someone like Thorgan can arguably be a forward where he would have a much better chance of winning. And it’s very inconsistent between players across FI on this.

But overall, he is capable of big scores and competing in midfield and £1.89 remains reasonable for him.

Rising slowly and people are noticing the improvement so probably one to sign up sooner rather than later if you are going to.

21 Oct

Last review at the end of September (below) I said he looked to be improving. That definitely continued with no big score until now where he managed 240 and was narrowly beaten to the win.

Given that was acheived with just 1 assist (he created a whopping 6 chances), and he had chances to score himself, this could have been a real monster total.

If you take his performances over the last 5-6 games now, he looks really solid and the best he has for a long time.

Compared to players of similar ability, £1.77 even after a rise from £1.55 a month ago still feels good value. 

His poor early season form kept the price reasonable but he looks much better now.

30 Sept

Last report on 16 September Thorgan was struggling for pitch time and things looked bleak.

It looks much better now after 2 starts and 2 good displays.

2 assists delivered in that time, with some reasonable goal threat on top. His overall numbers are solid too. 

This is much better and he can win from here. After the tumble down to £1.60 admirers will want to get in before his promising numbers deliver a big score and rejuvenate interest. 

There is, like most Dortmund players, a risk of rotation that could hold him back though.

However, I don’t believe he was bought for this money to sit on the bench for too long and his displays make him hard to drop.

16 Sept

Looking a struggle for T. Hazard who is seeing limited minutes. 

Worse, when on the pitch he is looking off the boil and really hasn’t had a chance to speak of in 3 games. 

Dortmund’s abundance of quality players leading to rotation has been a real concern and I think we are seeing that bite now.

Does have quality though and you could argue that £1.62 is getting back towards value range hoping for better times. 

I’d probably wait to see if it dropped a bit more though because the latest signs aren’t encouraging. 

4 Nov

Havertz has been dropping in price for a while, which was probably deserved as despite him being one of my darling’s from last season, over £4 staying at Leverkusen always felt a bit much.

Down at £3.57 now it feels like there is scope for looking at him again given the rises for other players.

In the last review on 20 Oct he’d had a much better game vs Frankfurt despite not winning.

Since, there have been 2 decent displays but worryingly without any kind of goal threat. he did create 5 chances this weekend though which is very good.

Leverkusen are on a bad run and this isn’t helping him.

Overall, I think he has quality and lots of good outside factors – Germany involvement, a likely big transfer in Summer.

Playing somewhere like Bayern he could be fantastic. And the Liverpool links, however far fetched, are good for the price too.

Solid value for a patient holder but Leverkusen’s troubles and the lack of recent goal threat suggest patience may be needed.


20 Oct

Difficult game for Leverkusen so his usual strong baseline numbers were down.

However, he had a number of decent chances to score and that’s encouarging because as per the reports below, he was doing everything but getting chances.

If he keeps this up, he shouldn’t be too far away from a good score.

As mentioned in the Euro 2020 Scouting he’s still expensive at £3.69 but he does have lots going for him. 

I can see him creeping back towards his former £4 price tag, especially if these decent numbers turn into a big score soon which they could.

30 Sept

Last week I said Havertz wasn’t doing as badly as the scores suggested and it was a much better performance this time out. A goal and strong numbers across the board. 

No chances made this time but that is unusual, he’s normally decent here. 

Could keep putting up some decent scores although as I said below, he has far too much to do for the price tag.

If he looked like starting for Germany (at the moment he looks a sub at best) that might help the price so we can see in the next qualifiers. 

And there is a likely transfer come the season end, and he could be a very strong performance player at somewhere like Bayern.

All of that is very much priced in though and unless everything goes perfectly I think he may struggle a bit with this price tag.

22 Sept

More frustration for Havertz holders as he delivers another lukewarm score.

He’s actually doing fine though. Getting close to scoring, creating chances and decent involvement numbers.

He’s just struggling under the weight of his price and it’s something I have been warning about for months.

Bigger prices bring bigger pressure to deliver and if the player is playing every week and not winning, they get exposed as too expensive.

An overpriced player (young) is actually better off on the bench where people can keep dreaming.

Havertz is high quality though and I think he will turn things around performance wise. 

He does have a fair way to keep falling before he comes back to what I would consider great value, though. 

4 Nov

Looks an excellent IPD punt at the moment for Leverkusen, 2 goals and an assist in 3. And he has the numbers to make it consistent.

Would not expect a performance win (though there is an outside chance of a good score) but at 59p the IPD returns can be very good.

Can get some rotation but has featured in all of the last 3.

4 Nov

Skov is a player I like appearing in my ratings as a 2 out of 5 stars with a high potential of 3.5 out of 5 stars.

For a forward, he has very strong involvement in play for good baselines, and assist potential on top of his threat.

Could be an excellent FI forward with these numbers although goal threat at Hoffenheim, the last game not withstanding, has been fairly poor.

So, unless we believe in goal streaks and confidence, the numbers aren’t there to suggest this will happen again every week at a smaller club.

A bright future and a decent long term hold with a possible occasional big score in him. It may be a season too early to hope for a big transfer having just moved to Hoffenheim.

But, he has been getting minutes for Denmark which is helpful.

A solid buy even at £1.48 but given the inconsistency of goal threat and the recent win, if buying I’d be tempted to wait a few weeks, see if any who impulse bought get bored and try to pick him up a bit cheaper.


Explosion Imminent

Players by position showing exceptional performance strength in recent games

Scouting Archive

Members can see the entire scouting archive - for transparency and because old reviews might be useful, I've archived every months scouting to date right here from pre-season onwards. You can also use the Search bar to find individual players.

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