2016-17 Season Review - Relentlessly thrilling


Relentless, headache-inducing, but thrilling – my view on the 2016/17 Fantasy Premier League (FPL) season.

At the start of the season we agonised over whether Zlatan was worth the extra outlay over Rooney. We wondered whether Andre Gray was the new Charlie Austin, and deliberated between Gaston Ramirez and Victor Fischer in midfield.

How things quickly changed.

It was a season that required constant attention – switch off and you were punished. Nothing came easy but get it right and the rewards felt even sweeter.

Captaincy was particularly punishing. Gone were the days of sticking the armband on Aguero without a care in the world.

Most weeks we had three or more serious contenders, and I cannot remember waking up so many times on Saturday morning and not knowing who would carry my armband.

Every season has its highs and lows – its moments of ecstasy and despair – and this one was no different in the extreme.

Highs

Romelu Lukaku delivered some golden touches – his Gameweek 4 hat-trick against Sunderland signalled the start of a goal frenzy campaign, culminating in a four goal rampage against Bournemouth in Gameweek 24.

It was a Saturday afternoon to savour, especially for those who captained him!

Talking of hat-tricks, Josh King’s three goals against West Ham (Gameweek 28) lives in the memory.

Having signed King that week, I was cursing my luck when the Norwegian missed an early penalty. But he soon redeemed himself with a triple strike, sparking wild celebration amongst King owners.

Marcos Alonso was also a star of mine. Having signed him in Gameweek 13 for an underperforming Ashley Williams, the Spaniard never left my team.

Alonso’s Gameweek 21 brace against Leicester was the pinnacle.

My team had performed badly on Saturday afternoon, before Alonso stepped up with 21 points in the late kick-off. Cue wild celebrations in the Clements household.

I also look back fondly on Jose Holebas’s 15 pointer against Boro in Gameweek 8, and Christian Benteke’s brace at Anfield in the first game of Double Gameweek 34.

Lows

Sadly, not everything was rosy.

Missing out on Alexis Sanchez’s 23 points against West Ham is without doubt my most painful memory. My heart sank once I realised he’d plundered a hat-trick and assist against a hapless Hammers.

It took me and my team a little while to recover from that blow!

Choosing Diego Costa over Jamie Vardy in Gameweek 29 is still a decision that irks me.

Vardy was showing promise in the wake of Claudio Ranieri’s departure, but I chose the ‘safe’ Costa.

Vardy went on to rack up 41 points in his next five, whereas Costa managed a meagre 13.

I wish I hadn’t researched that now!

Finally, Matt Phillips is someone who won’t be on my pre-season shopping list.

Having started the season with him, I kicked him out in Gameweek 6 after just one assist.

Phillips then embarked on a glorious run, and when I brought him back in Gameweek 20, the Scot immediately lost form before succumbing to injury.

Never again Matty!

Do share your own tales of success and woe.

Brundish reigns supreme

Moving onto the FPL Dugout league, and congratulations to David Brundish, who won the league by a whopping 76 points.

David finished number 8 in the world, and fully deserved his victory.

A big well done to FPL Dugout regulars Ignado, Shiva and Taha, who finished second, seventh and eleventh respectively.

So that’s it for another season. Have a fantastic summer and see you again soon.