With the Community TOTS just around the corner, we begin to see players ruled out and with both Gnabry and Carrasco likely to feature on Friday it rules them out of this side. Despite two strong options being ruled out we still have a very respectable TOTW 31 with the likes of Ronaldo, Haaland and Moreno all featuring.
Fraser Forster – GK - OVR 75>>84
There are two clear cut options for Southampton from their shock 1-0 win over Arsenal with Bednarek scoring the only goal of the game and thus being a strong shout however it is Forster who I feel will end up getting the nod. The English giant made a total of six saves to deny Arsenal and keep the saints clean sheet intact and was named MOTM with an impressive 9/10 from Sky. Premier League keepers often get snubbed for TOTW but I can’t see how a 9 will be ignored.
Carvajal – LB - OVR 85>>86
It’s been a quiet season for Carvajal, who has often been a stand out player for Madrid. The Spaniard provided two assists from LB this weekend in what could prove to be a crucial three points in the title race. Maintaining a 15-point lead of Barcelona, who have two games in hand. That sounds like a lot of points but if Barca wins their two in hand and Madrid dropped points, it soon closes. La Liga options were very difficult this week so two assists from defence really should be enough.
Pierre Kalulu – RB - OVR 69>>81
With the title race heating up between rivals, AC and Inter Milan. I would expect multiple IF’s from both over the coming weeks. I have both sides featuring this week with AC Milan’s addition being Kalulu. The French youngster has excelled in recent months developing into a first team regular. He was named MOTM this weekend after providing an assist and helping to keep a clean sheet during their 2-0 win over Genoa.
Leonardo Trossard – LWB - OVR 77>>81
Despite having games postponed due to the FA Cup, the Premier League was still by far the easiest league to select from this week, hence having five included from it. The second of those five is an unusual one with Trossard playing a LWB role. The Belgian scored the only goal of the match though, upsetting Tottenham with a 1-0 win.
Taremi – LM - OVR 79>>86
Porto went 30 games without a loss this season and did it in style, winning 7-0. There were a few TOTW candidates from their win but none are better than the familiar face of Taremi. It looks as though the Iranian played out wide rather than his usual ST role however that could be wrong. Either way, I am very confident that he will feature on Wednesday.
Marcelo Brozovic – CM - OVR 84>>86
I had to take a fair few punts this week with not a lot going on around the globe and thus players are getting the nod for less than they usually would. Brozovic could easily be one of those having received a 7.5 from Gazzetta. The Croatian midfielder scored the opening goal for Inter as they recorded a 3-1 away win over Spezia as they keep the upper hand in the title race.
Bruno Guimaraes – CM - OVR 79>>82
Guimaraes was the main signing for Newcastle in January which at 30 million raised a few eyebrows. The Brazilian has been a huge factor in Newcastle’s survival though and thus that price tag is fully justified. Bruno scored both his second and third goals for the club on Sunday, helping Newcastle to a 2-1 win at home to Leicester.
Gerard Moreno – RW - OVR 86>>88
Now I’m not 100% with the positioning here with contrasting team sheets being available but if Moreno did play on the wing, I am very confident that he will be included as a result. Even if he played striker, I do feel there is a chance considering how few La Liga options there are. The Spaniard was involved in both Villarreal’s goals as they recorded a 2-1 win away at Getafe.
Erling Haaland – ST - OVR 88>>89
It’s hard to believe that Haaland is still without an IF 31 weeks into the game, especially when you consider he has 18 goals from 22 matches in the Bundesliga this season. The wait is about to be over though with the Norwegian scoring twice and assisting another during Dortmund’s 6-1 demolition of Wolfsburg this weekend.
Cristiano Ronaldo – ST - OVR 91>>93
There was a lot of disagreement surrounding my recent prediction of a Ronaldo TOTS card but the same won’t be said for his SIF. The Portuguese idol scored three times for United as they recorded a very important 3-2 win over Norwich. Not only does it put Ronaldo in a brilliant position for an IF but also it massively increases his chances for a TOTS spot too with his three goals putting him on 15 for the season now.
Gerard Deulofeu – ST - OVR 79>>84
We were very limited when it came to Serie A options this week with the highest match rating being a modest 7.5. One of the players receiving that rating was Deulofeu after he scored once and assisted another during Udinese’s comfortable 4-1 win over Empoli. With the result being the only one to stand out in the division I would expect an Udinese IF and the Spaniard is the only real option here.
Anthony Mandrea – GK - OVR 63>>73
I seriously struggled for a second goalkeeper this week and have instead gone for a rather out their punt as a result. Although it would be the first time, we have seen a silver player on the bench there have been numerous occasions a player under 81 rating has been given the nod and I don’t feel there is much difference between the two. Mandrea was excellent between the sticks for Angers in their 1-1 draw with Nantes, making a total of six saves to claim an 8/10 from L’equipe.
Pontus Jansson – CB - OVR 75>>81
Brentford continued their great run of form via 95th minute winner from Jansson on Saturday afternoon. It was a goal that also increases the pressure on Watford who is looking more and more likely of going back down to the Championship. Although Jansson does not have a clean sheet to his name with the Swede being named MOTM I can see him sneaking into the side.
Florian Kainz – LM - OVR 75>>81
With it being a bank holiday in Germany today I don’t have access to the official ratings which does make it a lot harder for me but I do expect a Koln IF after they managed a 3-1 away win over Gladbach. The IF will go one of two ways with Kainz scoring once and assisting another while Uth picked up two assists. It largely depends on the rating that Kicker awards but I feel that Kainz has a slight upper hand here.
Mahdi Camara – CM - OVR 75>>81
St Etienne recorded a vital three points this weekend as they continue to battle for their safety. The three points moved them one point ahead of the drop with Camara’s two goals securing them a 2-1 win over Brest. L’equipe only awarded the midfielder a 7-match rating but with him being a gold option I would expect him to be included.
Roland Sallai – RM - OVR 76>>81
Freiburg made it back-to-back wins in order to move up to 5th in the table, not many saw that coming at the beginning of the year. A comfortable 3-0 win at home to Bochum, in the end, was the result, with Sallai coming off the bench to score twice to confirm the three points.
Miroslav Orsic – ST - OVR 77>>84
We have not seen a featured TOTW away from the top leagues yet but what better player to introduce than Orsic, a fan favourite when it comes to FIFA. Here were limited players to select with more than one goal from ST, gold ones at least and thus despite Orsic being snubbed on numerous occasions previous to this I can see the Croatian sneaking in with two goals to his name.
Moussa Dembele – ST - OVR 78>>84
It’s been a poor season for Lyon who currently sit in eighth position after 32 matches. They showed the talent they obtain this weekend though, demolishing Bordeaux by six goals to one. Dembele was named MOTM after the Frenchman scored twice and assisted another in the hammering
Fernando Madrigal – CM - OVR 68>>77
EA used to be big on the three assist additions but this season has been different and thus it makes Madrigal a risk. With four hat tricks available for selection, it leaves the fifth spot open though and thus Madrigal becomes a strong option. His three assists came as Necaxa recorded a 4-2 home win over San Luis during their midtable battle.
Lachlan Wales – CAM - OVR 63>>73
With the addition of some silver promotions, most silver sides are ridiculously overpowered now but Wales looks set to be a very usable option as far as silver IF’s go. With a positional change making him central the pace becomes a bigger influence on the game and with the Aussie scoring three times during a 6-0 win it looks very likely that the IF is on the way.
Marius Bulter – CAM - OVR 70>>78
Considering just how bad Schalke really was last season their ability to bounce back in the second tier of Germany has been impressive. With Werder Bremen dropping points Schalke managed to put a two-point gap between themselves and Bremen via a 5-2 away win over Darmstadt. Bulter scored three of those five goals making him a strong candidate for TOTW 31.
Valentin Castellanos – ST - OVR 70>>78
Selections don’t come much easier than this one. NYCFC recorded a comfortable 6-0 home win over RSL this weekend with Castellanos scoring four of those six goals. Two of those four were from the spot for the Argentine but four goals are four goals at the end of the day.
Joel Tagueu – ST - OVR 72>>79
It is rare to see more than one player from a division such as Liga Port however under these circumstances I can’t see a scenario in which TOTW contains less than two Liga Port players. The second making my side is Tagueu after his hat trick helped Maritimo to a 4-0 home win over Boavista.