GW 11 – Review

‘International weeks’ on TUG mean many different things to our players here. For some, it’s a chance to use those helpful nuggets of information about non-league football that can give them an edge over the competition, for others…. well it can be a lottery, where the ‘random selection’ button becomes a tempting way of choosing your teams. But for all players it can be a weekend of unpredictable madness!

As is customary, we’ll start with our top scorer for this gameweek; congratulations go to Stephen Cruise! His astute  x8 choice of Tonbridge Angels hit 5 against Braintree Town (whose single consolation goal also contributed another 5 points) to give him more than half of his points total (45) in just one fixture! He was one of just two players to select Tonbridge. Crawley Town, Dulwich Hamlet and Partick Thistle each scored 2 goals apiece (at x3, x6 and x7 respectively) to secure the high score, with 3 goal Bradford PA starting Stephen off at x2 and 1 goal Salford City at x4 to keep the ball rolling to the higher multipliers, and a great total of 87 points.

That’s right folks, for the second week running we’ve not had a single player rack up enough points to convince the bouncers at Club 100 to let them in! That’s not to say there weren’t a few high scores however, Jamie Cole’s savvy picks of 3 goal Inverness CT and Raith Rovers, along with 4 goal Wrexham at x8 left him just a point off top spot on 86. Lee Tidy and Owen French each bagged very respectable scores of 78 while Tam Bruce secured 75 points in 5th place this week, on what was a disappointing weekend for many players. With few ‘safe bets’ to choose from this week, there was a wide variety of selections across all our leagues, whether it was Hereford (28 picks) of National League North, Barrow (24) of the National League or Bristol Rovers (21) in League One. However, there were some notable popular choices among our players this week, taking the shape of Wrexham (55), Coventry City (49) and Dorking Wanderers (an extraordinary 70 picks!), while in the Scottish Challenge Cup, Inverness CT (61) and Raith Rovers (47) stole the show.

The most notable scores of the weekend included Crewe Alexandra (6) and AFC Wilmbledon (3) each scoring 4 at Carlisle and Southend Utd respectively, as Mansfield Town (11) smashed Oldham 6-1 at Field Mill. Popular Inverness CT and Raith Rovers each found the back of the net 3 times in The Scottish Challenge Cup Quarter Finals.

But now it’s time for that dreaded bad news – and I’m sorry to report its worse than ever! I don’t think anyone thought that the average score could get any lower than last week’s unfortunate 9 – but it has. This week’s average score was just 7 points, but it gets worse! We had a whopping 42 minus scores this weekend and our first 2 minus 80s and a minus 100! John Richardson will be kicking himself that he didn’t put his safer bets of Raith Rovers or Inverness CT at the x2 position as Portsmouth (32 picks), Abroath (27), Airdieonians (36), Eastleigh (27) and Coventry (49) failed to provide him with any goals to stop the flood of 100 lost points! The bulk of minus scores were made up of 28 less gut-wrenching (yet still painful) minus 20s, with 10 minus 40s and a single minus 60.

So October has got off to a less than ideal start for many of you, but for some its been a productive couple of weeks where points have been recouped and minus scores avoided in very surprising circumstances! Don’t forget to get those selections in early – next Saturday’s early kick offs include West Ham travelling to Goodison Park to face Everton, while in the Championship Blackburn host relegation candidates Huddersfield who haven’t lost in their last 3. Good luck for gameweek 12 and happy scoring!

– Samuel Wilkinson