Tight at the back

With a number of key attacking players out injured after the international break, there are many Fantasy Football managers suffering a selection headache this weekend, and Ruining Football will be putting all its eggs in a defensive basket.

Fernando Torres, Frank Lampard, Robin Van Persie, Didier Drogba, Tim Cahill, Michael Ballack…..the list of those either out injured or highly doubtful for Gameweek 13 makes for impressive reading, but not for team selection.

Ruining Football have been hit hard up front with both Torres and Drogba sidelined. Darren Bent is the only fit striker but has been in average form as of late and that doesn’t look likely to change any time soon with a fixture away to Arsenal this week.

With such limited attacking options, I’ve decided to stack the defence and hope for clean sheets.


Jussi Jaaskelainen and Gary Cahill face Blackburn at home, and while derby games are tough to pick a result from, they could pick up a solid home win.

Ryan Shawcross, Patrice Evra and Emiliano Insua all have home games as well, though Stephen Warnock’s Aston Villa face a tricky away trip to Burnley.

The midfield has undergone two changes this week. Patience has finally been lost with Gareth Barry and he makes way for Fulham’s Clint Dempsey, while Hull City’s talisman Geovanni replaces Charles N’Zogbia.

Both Dempsey and Geovanni are playing twice this gameweek, with the latter at home for both games.

Cesc Fabregas is still an obvious choice as captain, and West Ham’s Mark Noble completes the midfield quartet.

Gameweek 12 was relatively poor with Fabregas the one real shining light as his 26 points made up more than half of the team’s total points tally.

Jasskelainen managed to bag 7 points despite conceding 5 goals, but Cahill scored -1 having come in as a sub for Torres.

Mark Noble didn’t play, though N’Zogbia and his assist came in, Drogba was off colour, and Bent missed a penalty against his former club Tottenham.

The team currently sits in 18,495th spot out of a total of 2,149,872 teams.

Team for Gameweek 13 –


The Author

Neil Sherwin

Co-editor of BackPageFootball.com. Writes mostly on Premier League and A-League with contributions to other sites including TheFootballSack, InBedWithMaradona and Bloomberg's BSports. Has featured on The Guardian's Football Weekly.

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