Season 12 - Week 9

Like a Keegan managed Newcastle United Delahunt has managed to spectacularly implode at the crucial time of the season, throwing away a big lead at the top with his third consecutive loss.  Whether he can find his own Messiah and rescue the season in Week 10 is yet to be seen, but it is frighteningly tough to halt a slide.  His loss has enabled Gould, Britcliffe and Wilkinson to all pass him, amazingly they all picked the same game (Burnley to beat Reading). 

This has to be the closest overall league we have ever had, with anyone down to Smith in 9th in with a shot of the overall title.  With some luminaries in the running (Shakespeare, Rosser and Smith all have silverware in their cupboard from previous seasons) it is literally all to play for.  It should be noted that we could well have our first Pele and Overall winner double since Gurd in Season 7 if Gould in second wins the title and also our first female winner if Michelle Hastie can pick a decent odds team.

At the other end Lloyd and Charlton (both under -£7) will be looking to find that elusive winner, to help them catch Hatchard, Dunk and Kinsella who are all in the -£6 to -£7 range.

Pele League

A hugely competitive league with 5 players above £3, although Gould is in the box seat with a £1.68 cushion over Shakespeare, he cannot afford the luxury of "going safe" and it is probably that one of Shakespeare, Rosser, Smith and Cornwall will find the big winner they need to put the pressure on.  With them all well clear of the relegation zone, they can afford to go big without the spectre of relegation hanging over them.

Dunk and Lloyd look doomed at the bottom, leaving Gurd to fight it out with Tim Lines for the last relegation spot.

Maradona League

With the top 3 clear and the remaining players all in danger of being dragged into a relegation battle, home bankers will doubtless see the top three promoted.  Kelly in 4th is only £1.32 clear of 8th and relegation and he will be forced to find a winner rather than go out for the £4+ winner he needs for promotion.  Even Gibbons in 10th will hold out hope (well I do know that I am!!!) of escaping relegation as he is only £2.04 away from safety, and with the other players closer to Noyce in 7th it will prevent any of the players from 4th to 7th going for a banker, as they could be so easily passed.  With a number of players looking for a pick in the £2-£3 region, the key could well be who gets their pick in first.

Lineker League

Britcliffe has booked his open top bus ride and can afford to think only of the overall league, with promotion and top spot all but assured.  For the others it is all about making the right choice, as 3rd to 8th is only split by £2.18, meaning that a pick aiming for promotion could find you relegated if it doesn't come in.  Expect people to change their picks depending on other people's picks as the week progresses.  Hughes and Kinsella need a miracle and the impossible respectively.

Dickov League

You could split the league down the middle, with the top half gunning for the three promotion spots and the bottom half glancing nervously over their shoulder.  Callan has probably done enough at the top, but Virdi to Baker (2nd to 5th) are only separated by £1.56 and it is too tight to call.  At the bottom Lowe, Jones, Wrigley and Elder are so close that we must expect pick and counter-pick as again we perm 2 from 4.  Ross Jones is going going.....

Lee League

Crunkhorn, Conduit and Willshire must feel confident that any winner would be enough, but Bailey in 4th will be looking for odds of around 3.00-4.00 to put the pressure on, a draw pick, although tough to find would be enough to take advantage of a sloppy banker pick or any loss.  Simms and Andrew Jones look a long way from safety, but the other four are all under pressure to avoid the last remaining relegation spot.

Dia League

Expect shenanigans from the top 5 who are well clear of relegation and can afford to go all out for promotion.  Hastie is probably secure for promotion, but with 4th and 5th afforded the luxury of what is effectively a free pick Baker and Nikuradze are anything but safe in their promotion spots.  Ben Drury and Blackley are lucky not to be in the relegation zone with -£4 returns, but can they afford to assume that Lewis, Pilkington and Charlton will keep on picking losers..... probably

Boogers League

Wilkinson will feel promotion is secure, but Emma Sh(u)t Box and MJ Blackley will feel unnerved by the proximity of Moss, Cornwell and maybe even Storey.  With Hatchard doomed, the three B's (Beech, Blackers and Bradbury) and fighting it out for the one safe spot.

Devine League

Delahunt is all but up, leaving Rasboa, Ball, Ukela, Syaba and Craig the Sheepdip (a cosmopolitan bunch if ever I saw one) to fight it out for the remaining two spots.  Commons is a long way from safety and in all probability White, Welsh and Kingsley will be looking for the one remaining safe spot.


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