The Waiver wire, January Transfer deadline day, and midweek fixtures- an intriguing cocktail for Draft Football, full of spills and thrills. In this guide, I will attempt to provide a summary of the late January signings, along with what they mean to your draft prospects.
Even if you are languishing at the bottom of the waiver wire and unable to pick up any of these players, their impact will still be felt on their team, and may make other players better or worse picks than they were pre-transfer window.
For reference, I play with Togga and I generally go by their time-frame with regards to waiver deadlines etc. but this applies to all draft leagues- for both this week’s waivers, and for the next round.
Many transfers in this window were completed before Transfer Deadline Day and Tuesday’s Fixtures. Players involved in these deals may have gone already, but in case they haven’t yet, or you get involved in a trade swap, here’s some of the highlights:
The guy that everybody roots for, considering his rotten luck with injuries, selections etc. He has been packed off to West Brom to try and find some form and match fitness. Good deal for both parties, but is it good in terms of fantasy?
West Brom are solid at the back and have a few creative players, but they often struggle going forward (with the exceptions of dead ball situations!). Sturridge, if fit, should be able to remedy that. It is a big IF though, and it will remain to be seen how he fits in with Rondon and Jay Rodriguez (currently in decent goal scoring form).
Similar, in many ways I think, to Sturridge. With a variety of factors combining to cause him to lose form and his place in the Arsenal starting XI, now hoping a move away from the club that he has spent most of his career at can turn things around for him.
Indeed, it already seems to be paying off, with 1 assist and 2 goals in his first couple of starts. Therefore, I would say that he is worth working into your team, especially if you already hold one of Rooney/Tosun/Sigurdsson, whom he may rotate with.
A solid signing for Southampton, he should slot straight into the Southampton starting XI when fully match fit and integrated. Could be the presence upfront that they have been lacking, and if you need a bench striker, or have a vacant spot, he could be a great pick up.
The Mkhitaryan and Sanchez swap.
This might be interesting, in case you didn’t already have ‘Mkhi’ picked up, because now he becomes a solid asset. However, if you are in a league that is like my league, in which he was still in someone’s squad, then you are out of luck. On a similar note, I cannot imagine a league that has Sanchez on the waivers and is worth actually being a part of.
This swap has other implications too- on where they fit in at their new clubs. For Arsenal, the immediate casualty appears to be Iwobi, and the immediate winner to be Lacazette. It will, however, be further complicated with the arrival of Aubameyang (discussed below).
For United, questions remain about where Sanchez will fit in. Mata seems to be the likely one losing out, but it remains to be seen if Lingard or Martial are also affected by rotation. In addition, his arrival should make United more potent in attack, and thus expect to see Lukaku and Pogba become more valuable.
Laporte (sneaked in before the Tuesday waivers)
If he hasn’t already been taken in your league, snap him up as quick as possible. He was handed a surprise start yesterday due to Stones’ illness, and proved himself to be a commanding presence at the back for City. A threat to both Otamendi + Stones, although how much game time in the league he will get this season remains to be seen- Stones seems the most likely candidate to be at risk.
Basically, read: Zappacosta and Moses. Shouldn’t get too much game time just yet, but may make Alonso, one of the highest scoring players in the entire game (regardless of scoring system), a less useful option, as Conte will look to rotate throughout the 3 cups they are still in.
Deadline Day (Wednesday) Transfers:
Almost worth not discussing him really- as the stand out transfer of this window he will basically disappear instantly to whoever stands on top of the waiver list. However, where will he fit in? Lacazette owners may need to monitor this situation closely, with the possibility of their man being benched/forced out wide.
First off, this means that Batshuayi has gone, annoyingly for those who had him to cover Morata during his recent spell on the sidelines- hopefully you can go for a straight swap! After his £18m transfer, Giroud will be providing backup to Morata, and in the short term may see some immediate first team action , owing to Morata’s continued injury and personal issues.
For all of you Willian and Pedro owners, this could definitely reduce their gametime when everyone is fit, with Conte preferring the 3-5-2, and only playing them due to his lack of faith in Batshuayi.
A great acquisition for Spurs, but how will he fit into your draft team? He’s a pacey winger, a great young prospect who picked up his fair share of assist and goals for PSG last season (spent more time on the bench this time round though).
However, questions will remain about where he fits within this Spurs team. If spurs are playing 4 at the back, then it’s a 3 of Eriksen, Ali and Son behind Kane, and then if 3 at the back, usually Son misses out. Son seems the likely one to make way, but he has been on very decent form as of late.
Therefore, I would say that if you have space on your bench or already own a Spurs midfielder, then he is a very good option indeed.
Andre or Jordan now, who to pick? The Ayew’s may be a good option to have on your bench, particularly with their recent upturn in form under their new manager.
The 27-year-old has joined Stoke, after turning down interest from Newcastle. He is expected to be in the Senegal squad for the World Cup in Russia.
Unlikely to be a great option, unless his goal output increases (just 1 so far this season) or he pulls a Kanté. Combined with the other signings that Stoke have made, however, he may prove an important part in improving their form, and thus, other Stoke prospects.
Struggled at Leicester, but as Newcastle desperately need a striker, he could do very well. If you have a spare striking spot then he may be your man.
Not sure where he fits in at Palace, but may help share the goal scoring burden Benteke, who hasn’t exactly been setting the world alight. The 22-year-old Norway international has scored 15 goals in 26 games so far this season (although with the caveat that this was in the Danish league). He’s tall and strong, and may prove a better target man than Benteke.
Those are the players, but how do you get them? Players signed on transfer deadline day should be your main focus for the Thursday/Friday waiver windows. Keep an eye out for any players mentioned from the pre-wednesday deals, they may still be available if your league rivals have any more pressing moves to make!
The key player is obviously Aubameyang, and do whatever you can to get him. Depending on your league’s rules, you may have got yourself into a position to obtain him, or you are so far down the waiver order you have no chance.
Good luck for the next few days, and hopefully you go into the weekend’s fixtures with a brand new revamped and kick-ass Starting XI.
Stay tuned for more in-depth analysis into some of these players, and their prospects for the rest of the season.
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