The Knee-jerk – Round 25

The star

Bernie Ibini’s 17 point cameo against Perth made him the highest scoring player of the round – a feat made even more impressive given that the likes of Berisha, Finkler and Broich had two bites at the cherry.

This season, Ibini has played second fiddle to Marc Janko in Fantasy and in the overall contribution to the team. This was demonstrated most of all during Janko’s record-breaking scoring run earlier on in the year – the Austrian averaged 14.3 points per games, Ibini was restricted to just 3.5.

However, Janko hasn’t scored for Sydney in over a month, in which Ibini has continued to table average scores of 4 and 7, before this 17 point haul against Perth. Could there be a power shift on the cusp on the finals?

Ibini has had a quiet year at his new club, but in recent weeks the former Mariner looks a much more threatening prospect – certainly overshadowing Marc Janko against Perth. Gambling on this trend to be properly established would seem far-fetched, and Janko is a far better bet to score for Sydney: but for Fantasy managers with nothing to lose, Ibini has demonstrated he is a more than viable differential option.

Sydney’s fixtures away to Newcastle and Wellington are tasty: remember the Sky Blues haven’t lost on the road all season. Ibini is priced at $242k with only 5% ownership – $31k cheaper than Janko.

Consequences

A double gameweek can make or break a Fantasy season. If you have the foresight to hit the right captaincy option, you are catapulted up the rankings. Conversely, missing out means you are left behind. As I said in last week’s post, it hasn’t been a vintage year for double gameweeks, and once again Fantasy managers who took points hits to bring in extra Victory or Roar players were duly punished.

It will be of particular annoyance to those who ushered in a Brisbane player – especially given they scored 3 away from home in their first game against Adelaide. Thomas Broich (outscored by Luke Brattan) returned a miserable 8 points combined. Brandon Borello gave his owners hope, leaving Adelaide with assist points but was injured in the warm up against Victory. Other key players like Solorzano and Kaludjerovic failed to deliver a big haul.

Owners of Victory players faired a little better – but ultimately were still huge failures given their capitulation against Newcastle. Gui Finkler captainers saw the Brazilian pick up 7 points but then miss the Brisbane game through injury, whilst Ben Khalfallah and Besart Berisha produced 10 and 13 points respectively.

It leaves managers in a tricky situation – having put several Victory and Roar eggs in one basket and suffered the consequences, what now? Cut your losses and bring back the likes of Nathan Burns, or hope that your failed double gameweek players make up for it this round?

Perth problems

Perth’s breach of the salary cap has resulted in exclusion from the 2014/2015 finals series, meaning owners of Perth players might consider searching for replacements. It’s still difficult to say how the news will affect the players performances across the next fortnight, but if the Sydney game is anything to go by, things don’t look good.

There is a possibility that Glory could galvanise their squad and aim to sign off with a bang. It’s a difficult scenario for a Fantasy manager to work with. But given that most of the top players have already parted with the likes of Andy Keogh and Nebojsa Marinkovic, the most profitable decision in the long term is to follow suit.

Horizon

With the finals fast approaching, it’s vital that the deadwood is removed from your Fantasy team. The Wanderers, Newcastle, Mariners and now Perth will not feature in the finals, so it’s important not to leave yourself in a situation where you have to take hits to make a complete squad in Round 1 of the finals.

It’s unlikely that many teams are stocked with bottom 4 players, but below is a list of players that should be made redundant fairly soon, with the best straight-swap alternatives.

 

  • Kerem Bulut ($173k) out for: Andrija Kaludjerovic ($178k), Brandon Borello ($141k), Roy Krishna ($183k)
  • Fabio Ferreira ($309k) out for: Nathan Burns ($321k), Fahid Ben Khalfallah ($264k), Milos Djimitrevic ($208k)
  • Ben Kennedy ($154k) out for: Tando Velaphi ($159k)
  • Ki-Ji Lee ($139k) out for: Jacques Faty ($138k), Jack Hingert ($135k)
  • Scott Jamieson, Dino Djulbic, Micheal Thwaite ($200-221k) out for: Paddy Kisnorbo ($237k), Nikola Petkovic ($221k), Matthieu Delpierre ($193k)
  • Nebojsa Marinkovic ($215k) out for: Milos Djmitrijevic ($208k), Roly Bonevacia ($205k)
  • Andy Keogh ($262k) out for: Bernie Ibini ($242k), Andrija Kaludjerovic ($178k)

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