2015-16 Fantasy Preview: Western Sydney Wanderers

New signings

Andrew Redmayne (Melbourne City), Scott Jamieson (Perth Glory), Scott Neville (Newcastle Jets), Jacob Pepper (Newcastle Jets), Andreu Guerao Mayoral (Racing Santander), Mitch Nichols (Cerezo Osaka), Federico Piovaccari (Sampdoria), Dimas Delgado (Recreativo), Alberto Aguilar (free), Dario Vidosic (FC Sion)

Overview

Tony Popovic hates Fantasy A-League managers. Despite enjoying an enormous amount of success in their first three chapters in the A-League, seldom has a Wanderers player staked serious claim for Fantasy consideration.

A large part of this redundancy is due to Popovic’s tendency to rotate – at times more heavily than Fantasy managers would prefer. It’s always difficult to predict what Popovic’s side will look like on a weekly basis, meaning that selecting Wanderers players comes with an inherent risk.

Goals – and lack thereof – are another significant drawback. The Wanderers don’t score many goals, and they developed a nasty habit last season of letting too many in.

Fortunately, a massive influx of new players has given Popovic several shiny new attacking threats to arrest their Fantasy malaise. The likes of new boys Federico Piovacarri ($250k) and Dario Vidosic ($250k) will offer many managers new hope – but it’s best to wait and see how they settle in to what is effectively a completely new team undergoing a period of transformation.

Pre-season results

The Wanderers have enjoyed a largely positive pre-season, winning five from eight games. They were recently knocked out of the FFA Cup quarter-finals by Perth, who outlasted them on penalties.

Predicted Round 1 side
(Click to enlarge)

predicted lineup

You should consider…

Federico Piovaccari. The Italian marquee arrived down under to shoulder the goal scoring responsibility, and whilst he’s struggled during pre-season, you’d have to think he’s going to turn it around with match fitness and more time.

Because the Wanderers play with the sole forward up front, Piovaccari is, even by Wanderers standards, guaranteed a lot of game time – enough to surely break at least the 10 goal mark.. He’s the only genuine number nine in the squad and if he gets off the mark early, he’s worth monitoring. I think he’ll be a very influential part of the team in providing both goals and assists.

Romeo Castelen ($250k) is also one to consider. The Dutchman has scored three times during pre-season and is getting himself into promising attacking positions. If he can stay fit he could turn into an interesting prospect.

Jacob Pepper ($125k) is classified as a defender, but could be afforded starts in a deep-lying midfield duo. He’s started the last two games in this position having spent most of pre season at right back. He doesn’t offer much more of a an attacking threat in this position but he’s playing well and therefore an interesting out of position prospect.

You should avoid…

Almost everyone else.

Only kidding – as previously outlined, there are huge risks with building your Fantasy team around Wanderers players. This includes a defence that was once the envy of the league – especially in season’s one and two. Wanderers defenders are far cheaper this year, but it would be difficult to argue for their inclusion until we see how their defence fares up in the opening weeks.

Although the team do boast a fair range of attacking midfield players – Dario Vidosic ($250k) and Mitch Nichols ($275k) for example, it remains to be seen how they are integrated into what is a new-look system.


2 thoughts on “2015-16 Fantasy Preview: Western Sydney Wanderers

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