The less said about Round Nine, the better. I went in like a mad man on Portland and Washington, looking at matchups, while avoiding WNY, despite their two match round. And I, along with many others, paid the price, as the Thorns were humiliated by the Flash at home, while Washington put in a decidedly limp performance on the road against Boston. The result was a slide close to knocking me out of the Top 200 overall. It should probably serve as a reminder as to why double game clubs are so precious and vital to success in this game. Yes, WNY was utterly disappointing against Houston, but they had already made fantasy owners very happy earlier in the round against Portland.
So basically, this round? Load up with Red Stars players. As the lone side with two games this round, they’re ripe for points, especially with the matchups they have, even on a current losing streak. That being said, it’s not as simple as that, as they, and every other squad, are going to feel the heat from being without so many players thanks to international call-ups.
It’s going to make for a very unpredictable round. Even Seattle, who you’d normally expect to walk all over Boston will be without key players like Kim Little, Jess Fishlock, and Sydney Leroux. Honestly, I’d look less at things from a pure matchup standpoint in lieu of targeting players scoring points consistently (or as close to consistently as things are going to get with so many others absent). Regardless, the spread of players being picked this round is probably going to be as wide as it gets all season. Given the sheer amount of unpredictability the past few weeks, I doubt many fantasy managers will be confident after the roster deadline on Saturday.
Round Ten – Team Rankings
Chicago – Their form has taken a downturn in recent rounds, and I’m probably a little more bearish on them with that in mind. But they’re the only club with two fixtures this round, making them very appealing. Of course, Rory Dames has the somewhat annoying habit of shuttling new attackers in at the half, which could provide a real headache for fantasy managers, even with the club having two games. TAYLOR VANCIL looks like a no-brainer in goal this week. Given all the unpredictability with the international call-ups, two starts is probably going to be good enough for her to stick in my team, especially with the matchups. I’d consider her for the armband as well. MICHELLE WENINO would normally be the defensive pick, but she went just seventy-three minutes last time out, meaning she may be at risk of not getting clean sheet credit again, especially with the team seemingly working hard to get TARYN HEMMINGS back in the lineup. LORI CHALUPNY hasn’t been great this season, but should at least get you a good shot at double digits as a surefire starter this round for the Red Stars. The other midfield options are toss-ups. EMILY VAN EGMOND has the hot hand after her goal against Seattle, but the safer options (relatively speaking) may be either ZAKIYA BYWATERS and/or VANESSA DIBERNARDO. Bywaters probably has a better chance of scoring but is also more likely to be subbed in or out at the half. Up top, JEN HOY has cooled down after a hot stretch but is basically the last woman standing thanks to international call-ups and injuries. You’ll probably want to roll with her and hope she gets the goals going again.