Some people just aren’t cool. I’m not even sure if it’s still cool to use the word cool. Needless to say I stopped trying to keep up with the latest trends years ago, but that’s not always a bad thing. Times change but the golden rule of Fantasy Football remains the same: It doesn’t matter how good or how popular a player is, only points win prizes. Step forward the very uncool Lukasz Fabiański.
Remember him? Most people have a vague recollection of him being crap at Arsenal. So can you describe his time with the Gunners using just 1 word? I can. Irrelevant. If you do pick your fantasy team based on pre 2014 form then I hope you’re feeling strong cos you’ll be propping up your mini league all season.
Fabiański was at Arsenal for 7 years and started a total of 32 league games with 14 of those coming in the 2010-11 season. In his final 3 years at the Emirates he played a paltry 5 Premier League games in total. Over his whole stay in the capital he actually kept 12 PL clean sheets, which if averaged out over a 38 game season would have seen him record 14 blanks. That’s more than Petr Cech kept last year, and it’s the same amount as Fraser Forster. Even the goalkeeping superhero David De Gea only got 14 across 35 games. Maybe Fabiański wasn’t so bad after all.
Garry Monk certainly saw something in him and in search of first team football the Pole joined Swansea on a free transfer in 2014. My guess is that’s right about the time he fell off the radar to the casual fan. An Arsenal reject playing in goal for a mid table side just doesn’t make the headlines. But Fabiański has been remarkably consistent and has started exactly 37 games over each of his 3 seasons at the club. Game time should be the first box ticked when evaluating any player’s Fantasy potential.
Over this period Fabiański kept a respectable 30 clean sheets and he’s already got another 2 this campaign. If you average out his Swansea statistics into a single 38 game season he would be good for 11 shutouts and 3.3 saves per match which is enough for a bonus point using Official FPL / Draft Fantasy rules.
The Welsh outfit improved under Paul Clement last term and despite losing Gylfi Sigurdsson have made several impressive signings this summer. Up front the ageing Fernando Llorente has been replaced with the capture on loan of Tammy Abraham (26 goals for Bristol City last year) and the permanent re-signing of Wilfried Bony. Midfield options at the Liberty have had a makeover too with Sam Clucas (last season’s standout performer for Hull City), Roque Mesa from La Liga side Las Palmas and Euro 2016 winner Renato Sanches arriving from Bayern Munich. Aside from a 10 minute spell against title challengers Manchester United Swansea have performed well so far this term and will be hoping for a more comfortable year in the mid section of the Premier League.
More good news is that Swansea’s forthcoming schedule looks inviting and has the potential for several more clean sheets over the next 10 Gameweeks with 6 home games in that period.
Still not convinced? In 2016/17 Fabiański was actually the 7th highest scoring Goalkeeper in the Premier League using Official FPL / Draft Fantasy scoring systems. Bet that surprised you. (He’s currently the 7th highest scorer this year too). I’m in a 9 team draft league with 2 keepers per squad meaning 18 Goalkeepers in total have been taken, and yet somehow Fabiański is still a free agent.
There’s only one explanation I can think of. It seems that some people just aren’t cool. Sorry Lukasz.