Updated: Jan 10
We ain’t afraid of no ghosts. In fact, we seek them – ghost points, that is. Ghost points are fantasy points that do not come from attacking returns or clean sheets. These can come in the form of key passes, successful dribbles, interceptions, accurate crosses, and aerials, among others. Identifying these points is essential for your Fantasy EPL prospects, and our Gameweek 19 Ghost Point Hunters article is here to help!
Gameweek 19 Ghost Point Hunters
GPH is back from the grey-skied motherland and ready for the greatest holiday of the year, Boxing Day. To make up for lost time, this edition will include some players that ghosted this past gameweek, which had only 4 games, as well as the previous gameweek. Here are your ghostly stocking stuffers: Gabriel Martinelli, Arthur Masuaku, & James Milner. Meanwhile, the honorable mention crowd includes: Martin Odegaard (yes, again), Dele Alli, & Romain Saiss. And the second to last Dr. Peter Venkman award of 2021 goes to Spurs' record signing, Tanguay Ndombele. I don't make the rules.
Ghost Points Per 90: 8.6
Ghost Points This GW: 19
Prospects: Should be nailed on in that LW spot (for now) and is in red hot form. And a date with Norwich up next. Merry Christmas.
Verdict: Hopefully you were able to pick him up weeks ago when GPH advised. If not, probably not able to right now, given his recent exploits. Wait for a down game vs Man City in 2 gameweeks and test the waters.
Just when you think no one could have another December like El Messi, this Brazilian Kris Kringle comes down the chimney with ghosties, goals, and assists for everyone on the list. GPH does not take El Messi blasphemy lightly, but in this case, it's entirely appropriate. Here are Gabigoal's past 3 scores: 18, 17, 37 - still some distance from El Messi's record but not far off. Now folks are starting to understand what Arsenal supporters have been banging on about for the past few years. Martinelli is special - he's young, he's hungry, he's dynamic, he's pacey, and he's a finisher. The only knock on him is his ability to stay fit - if he can do that, sky's the limit.
Martinelli had a horrific injury last season that kept him out for a long time, and Arteta has been very careful with his integration this season, much to the frustration of supporters who want to see him get more minutes now that he's back fit. With ESR out with a knock, he's finally gotten his chance this season and has thoroughly impressed. Fantasy-wise, he is now adding ghosties to his game. The onset of set piece duty (he is now taking almost all right-sided corners) has helped but he has been ghosting from all angles (e.g. he is averaging 2 tackles won per game in this 3 game stretch).
Against Leeds, he was the highest ghoster of the gameweek with 19 scary scores - from 5 Key Passes, 2 Shots on Target, 1 Tackle Won, 3 Interceptions, 2 Successful Dribbles, and 1 Aerial. Yes, Leeds is abysmal & very kind to the opposition. But, again, Martinelli isn't a one gameweek wonder. The kid is killing it, and has Norwich up next. Rotation and injury are constant concerns - he is competing with Smith Rowe, who is back fit and has also been in fine form, for that starting LW spot - but he has the ability to keep this up. Keep playing this hot hand.
Team: West Ham United
Ghost Points Per 90: N/A; not enough starts
Ghost Points This Past GW (GW 17): 14
Prospects: Played at LB in Cresswell's continued absence. If Cresswell is still out, he could keep his spot. And he almost always scores well - a tasty matchup vs sputtering Southampton on Boxing Day beckons.
Verdict: Pick him up!
King Arthur's reign has almost always been short-lived. He rides in on a majestic steed, ghosts out, and then seeks refuge back on the pine pony. His marauding runs and tasty crosses make you yearn for more. But managers are always left wanting. Masuaku is a hall of fame streamer, you see, and has to be dealt with ever-so delicately. He is now fit and has seen more playing time, starting the past two fixtures. And he reverted back to his ghostly ways in GW17 vs Arsenal (GPH was there in the flesh on a scouting trip and can attest). Masuaku seemingly did very little yet somehow ended up with 10 fantasy points despite 2 goals conceded - like the true ghost point warrior that he is.
How did he do it? He accumulated 1 Key Pass, 4 Tackles Won, 4 Interceptions, 2 Clearances, 2 Successful Dribbles, & 2 Aerials. The lot. King Arthur is a must stream when starting. Cresswell is still nursing an injury - if he's out (and he was at the midweek) or if Moyes is forced to revert to a back 3 and Masuaku is fit, he's in the side - but those are big if's. For now, he's worth a punt to see if he starts on Boxing Day vs a goal-shy Saints side. If so, he's one of the best streamers you can find for this gameweek. And if he somehow keeps his place, albeit unlikely, you potentially have a DEF2 on the cheap with tasty matchups forthcoming. The king is dead, long live the king.
Ghost Points Per 90: N/A; not enough starts
Ghost Points This Past GW: 10
Prospects: Got a rare start in the midfield this past gameweek given illness and injuries. If this continues, he may get the nod again against a very weak Leeds United side. If he is on the teamsheet in this early fixture, stream away.
Verdict: Pick him up! (The Liverpool-Leeds game has since been postponed; hold off on picking him up after all)
Old Man Marley, aka James Milner, is no spring chicken. But he can deliver when called upon - bashing the Wet Bandits with a snow shovel in the clutch, or just posting decent ghost points for managers in a pinch. Same same. Milner is a great utility player who can do a job - whether in the midfield or at fullback. He has been known to take some set pieces in his day and can score the odd goal. He was given the call up in midfield this past gameweek vs Spuds, with Henderson ill (who was apparently suffering from a rare non-COVID sickness) and options short.
He responded with an admirable 10 ghosties - stemming from 2 Key Passes, 1 Shot on Target, 1 Tackle Won, 1 Accurate Cross Not a Corner (ACNC), 2 Interceptions, & 2 Clearances. Despite his age, Milner can still get up and down the pitch and accumulate points from all over. A rare starter but dependable when he does get the nod - in his 5 starts this season, he has averaged just over 10 points per start. Long story short, stream him if he starts, especially in this festive period where starting midfielders can be in short supply. Henderson may be back on Boxing Day and Milner could be forced back on the bench. But keep an eye out and act accordingly.
Martin Odegaard (Arsenal MID; 12 ghosts): GPH has noted that Odegaard will continue to get mentioned until he has a down game - well, he hasn't yet. Carry on.
Dele Alli (Tottenham MID; 9 ghosts): Granted an unlikely start in a tough game vs Liverpool, Dele, haircut notwithstanding, actually looked good. And 9 ghosties is nothing to shake a stick at. Worth monitoring.
Romain Saiss (Wolves DEF; 10.25 ghosts): No stranger to GPH, Saiss keeps ghosting, this time dropping 10+ scary scores to go along with a cleanie v Chelsea. The Moroccan is a great addition to any roster for these festive fixtures (although he will be leaving for Afcon soon).
Dr. Peter Venkman Award:
Tanguay Ndombele (Tottenham MID; 1 Ghost): I never knew it was possible to score less than 8 points with an assist. But Ndombele proved to be the exception to the rule. GPH has never had to adjust the "Ghosts" above to the singular "Ghost" before. Just like Neil Maupay has shown it's possible to score less than 10 points with a goal, Tanguay has gone below 8 with an assist. Bravo, you're in good company. Clearly a very talented player with tricks in the locker, Ndombele has never really gone on a nice long run of form since his arrival in the dodgy part of North London. In his first start under Conte, he did deliver that nice assist but was anonymous otherwise and subbed off in the 63rd minute. His 7 points came from the assist and then deductions for 2 dispossessions, nothing more. He has once again proven to be a sub-par fantasy asset and ghost points are his kryptonite. Ndombele is the fantasy-equivalent of the Grinch that stole Christmas.
***Click here to view the full Ghost Point Tracker table!***
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