Fantasy Football Blog

Foreign view: Resurgent Ronaldinho

Fantasy Football Blog

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ITALY

Milan have scored 17 goals in their last six league matches as they marched up the Serie A table. Key to that form has been a resurgent Ronaldinho (27.41). His hat-trick against Siena means he has now scored nine and created eight goals this season, making him the most lethal player in the league. Will he bring that form into Sunday's derby against stuttering leaders Inter? With Pato (18.42) ruled out of that match, David Beckham (8.29) is set to keep his place.

Joaquin Larrivey (9.30) more than doubled his price after scoring his second and third goals of the season against Livorno. Next up for the Sardinians is a trip to bottom side Siena.

Chievo defender Gennaro Sardo (9.27) also saw his price leap after scoring the winner against Juventus, plus helping his side to a clean sheet.

Speaking of Juve, the struggling Bianconeri host Roma this weekend, who saw new striker Luca Toni (12.40) bag his first two goals for the club against Genoa. Juve have lost five of their last seven matches and, with Fabio Cannavaro (5.13) and Zdenek Grygera (5.59) both wearing protective face masks, will be even more questionable in defence. After that game, Roma face Siena, so this might be a good time to get on board as Italy's forgotten man finds a new lease of life after his Bayern Munich nightmare.

Just for fun, The Fantasist will put forward new Napoli defender Andrea Dossena (4.13) as an option for this weekend's trip to Livorno, the league's worst scorers with just 13 goals to their name so far.

SPAIN

If Barcelona go on to retain their league crown this season, one man will be heralded as the one who did so much to make it so. No, not Lionel Messi (41.51), but Gorka Iraizoz (8.81). The Athletic Bilbao goalkeeper made an incredible 11 saves (in his 17 previous games this season, he'd made a total of 60) as the Basque side clung on to their 1-0 lead over Real Madrid for dear life.

The upshot of that result is that the value of Cristiano Ronaldo (28.29) did not rise at an alarming rate for once, and the Armani spokesman is sure to be in vengeful fashion when Malaga arrive at the Bernabeu on Sunday evening.

He's been struggling for a long time after moving from Argentina, but finally Ever Banega (6.07) has found some form at Valencia, and his first goal for the club in the 4-1 drubbing of Villarreal may set him on his way. A good, cut-price option if you don't fancy forking out on David Villa (31.88), David Silva (17.63) or Juan Mata (16.49). Mind you, with Los Che travelling to lowly Tenerife, who shipped five without reply in their last home match against Barcelona, perhaps you should consider that.

FRANCE

Monaco's Nene (29.46) has been the star of Ligue 1 this season, and his brace against Sochaux secured a 2-0 win for the principality. The Brazilian's 12-goal haul for the campaign is almost half of his side's total league goals this season.

The only other player to reach double figures in the scoring charts so far this season is Lille's Gervinho (11.93) but, with Ivory Coast through to the next round of the African Cup of Nations, he won't be back for a little while.

With the deadline for Wednesday's matches fast approaching, time to dispense some quick advice. Leaders Bordeaux visit bottom-of-the-table Grenoble, who have shipped 19 goals at home already, so load up on Girondins players such as Yoann Gourcuff (16.43), Wendel (16.40) and Marouane Chamakh (10.41).

Equally, Marseille host lowly Le Mans (scored three, conceded 18 on the road), so it's time to wheel out Mamadou Niang (18.51), Brandao (10.50) and Steve Mandanda (8.31). Even Fernando Morientes (4.88) might get a game.

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