Championship Amateur Conjecture – Free Hit Freedom

Man Utd at home to possibly the worst away defence in the league and the knowledge that both of their superstar premium attackers play.

Leeds with their dream attack for the first time, away to a team that is foolishly choosing to attack them. Leeds thumped Fulham in similar circumstances last season and they are green, so all their first teamers play.

With this knowledge in the bank and these two juiciest of juicy fixtures, there won’t be a better time all season to go all out and own the four premium attackers from these clubs – Henrik Larsson, Mark Viduka, Juan Sebastian Veron and Ruud Van Nistelrooy.

Therefore, for those who like to use their free hit to attack, is there a better opportunity?

Man Utd are averaging around three goals, Leeds are averaging slightly more – I’m fully expecting seven goals from these two clubs. I wouldn’t be surprised if this premium quartet get around 50 points between them. Captain the right one and this number gets silly.

And because of the other leaks we have, it’s still possible to get a decent XI this week that allows the Larsson, Viduka, Veron, Van Nistelrooy dream team. Here’s one option:

Ipswich are the only team with playing £4m GKs and they are at home, which boosts the chances of a clean sheet. It’s a good time to own both keepers so you guarantee owning the one who plays home to Derby.

The double up with Gary Doherty is fine too, as if he play up front, that opens up avenues to big points. 

Ricardo Gardner could be Gareth Southgate, Jonathan Woodgate or another £5.5m defender. Just pick the one you believe gets the most points this week, then Ivan Hurtado is good for bonus and his chances of a clean sheet must be enhanced by Sunderland being orange.

In midfield, Luke Chadwick is a starting risk, but his upside is strong if he does start. Again, we can pretty much guarantee a playing bench to come on should Chadwick miss out. It’s worth the risk on a free hit.

Milen Petkov, like Gardner, could be any £7m mid. Petkov has Newcastle at home, who are not always the best aerially defensively and he is on set pieces. This potentially boosts his prospects of an assist. If not, Miguel Zepeda has a bigger goal threat and faces Everton at home.

Gareth Whalley is a solid final midfield pick as he starts and Arsenal will attack away. This can mean high-scoring games. Middlesbrough beat Arsenal 3-0 on the opening day of the season under similar circumstances.

Then you could still have this bench below:

Dean Holden probably plays in the Chelsea red and although they are clearly depleted, that won’t stop Aston Villa playing super defensive against them. A clean sheet is still more than possible.

Filippo Galli stepped off many benches last week for eight points and a repeat is possible vs Newcastle, who are also without Alan Shearer.

Finally, Neil Maddison is the ideal third sub as he always plays and Newcastle are green. He’ll only get two points, but that’s fine in these circumstances.

You wouldn’t want this squad every week, but given the knowledge we have of starters and the huge upside of going big on Man Utd and Leeds attack this week, I think this team will break 100 points. 

Whether that justifies a free hit over your current squads is a decision for you, but it’s got me thinking too. 

It ultimately hinges on what sort of free hit player you are. Food for thought.

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