Fantasy Premier League – Analysis – Mkhitaryan vs Pogba, Brady vs Mooy

H17 2017-09-06 Others

In part 2 of dilemmas, I attempt to solve more of the popular midfield dilemmas. This edition, it's a Man Utd tussle between Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Paul Pogba, followed by a budget conundrum in Robbie Brady vs Aaron Mooy.

1. Henrikh Mkhitaryan vs Paul Pogba
Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Paul Pogba have become one of the most popular dilemmas in Fantasy Premier League. This dilemma comes after Man Utd's stunning start to the season, having scored 10 goals in 3 games without reply. Both Mkhitaryan and Pogba have been immense contributors to this. With 26 points each, both sit atop the overall point rankings, tied with Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino.
While Mkhitaryan has earned his points through 5 assists, Pogba has 2 apiece of goals and assists. Both have turned around a corner since last season. With United in free-scoring mode, their easy run still to come, both seem like excellent options.

Cost - Mkhitaryan costs £8.3m, while as of now, Pogba costs £8.2m. A very minor point in favor of Pogba.
Security of Starts -
This is where it gets tricky. Pogba started every single one of United's Europa League and Premier League games last season, in a marathon season. This was with the exception of games where he was injured, was just coming back from injury, and was on compassionate leave. The same cannot be said about Mkhitaryan. When he finally broke into the side, he was usually rested for the Europa League games. Having become a key part of their Europa run, he did not start two successive games after GW25. He was usually given a start, and rested the next game.

However, this does not necessarily mean this will occur again this season. It's not as if Mkhitaryan is someone who gets very easily burnt out either. In 2015/16, the maestro started every game before and after a Europa League game for Dortmund. The only one exception was after their semi-final second leg defeat to Liverpool. This was when their season was over on both fronts.

It's well known how his Portuguese boss indulges in psychological warfare by benching his key players at times, to signify he's given up on a competition. And perhaps Pogba might have been benched too, but we don't know, since he was injured, then went on compassionate leave, during the periods the games started to really pile up. United will be looking to put on a challenge on both fronts this season. With how key both have been, as a United fan, I can't see Mourinho rest either.Though Mkhitaryan does tend to get subbed off earlier, another point in Pogba's favor.
Statistical Comparison (Mkhitaryan has played 26 minutes lesser than Pogba) -

Goals - Mkhitaryan 0-2 Pogba
Shots (Inside Box) - Mkhitaryan 7(2)-12(5) Pogba
Shot Accuracy - Mkhitaryan 25%-33% Pogba (more failed shots result in a worse BPS score, leading to lesser bonus points).

Big Chances Missed - Mkhitaryan 0-2 Pogba (more big chances missed also result in a worse BPS score).
Assists - Mkhitaryan 5-2 Pogba
Chances Created - Mkhitaryan 14-6 Pogba
Touches - Mkhitaryan 214-314 Pogba
Successful Passes - Mkhitaryan 51-69 Pogba
Crosses - Mkhitaryan 8-9 Pogba
Bonus - Mkhitaryan 3-2 Pogba
Bonus Points System - Mkhitaryan 106-78 Pogba
Teams Selected by % - Mkhitaryan 21.4%-36.4% Pogba

Conclusions -
There is very, very little in this one. Pogba is the goalscorer, Mkhitaryan the assister. Mkhitaryan needs 2 assists to beat a Pogba goal usually, but he's a bonus point magnet, which makes up for it. His BPS score at 106 is the league highest thus far, while Pogba's score will always be considerably less, due to his habit of taking hopeful longshots. Even though the Armenian playmaker has a worse shot accuracy, Pogba's magnitude of shots will have him worse off in the BPS. Another thing Mkhitaryan has over the Frenchman is corners. Though he has only taken one corner so far, he did assist off it, which means he may take more in the future. Free-kicks are shared by both.
Pogba has been playing slightly deeper than the ex-Dortmund man. Another thing worth noting is how most of Pogba's points have come once the game is over. Out of his 2 goals and 2 assists, only 1 assist has come before the 80th minute. The others have come late on with United in a favorable position. He may not always get this opportunity, as was the case with his blank against Leicester. Perhaps it'll all come down to whether you want a differential or want to play it safe. Pogba is the most owned midfielder at 36.4%. Mkhitaryan is 15% behind, at 21.4%, and is the differential out of the two.

Verdict -
All things considered, this one is very, very, close. But if I was pressed to choose one, I'd go for Mkhitaryan. But very narrowly. Both will probably get a similar number of points throughout the season. There's a lot of variables to consider. Provided you have the extra £0.1m, go for Mkhi. In case you can't you can't spare it at all, go for Pogba. If you want a differential, go for Mkhi. If you want to play it safe, go for Pogba.

2. Robbie Brady vs Aaron Mooy
In the second comparison for today, I compare and contrast three of the popular sub-£6m options. With several big money options up front and in midfield firing up big, and some returning, some compromises need to be done somewhere. To enable this, a ~£6.0m midfield option is an attractive proposition.

Fixtures (up to GW10) -
Brady - CRY (H), LIV (A), HUD (H), EVE (A), WHU (H), MCI (A), NEW (H)
Mooy - WHU (A), LEI (H), BUR (A), TOT (H), SWA (A), MUN (H), LIV (A)
I would say Brady has the edge here, with 4 plum home fixtures in the next 7 games. Both Brady and Mooy have 3 fixtures each against the top 6, but the Irish winger has the easier ones at home.
Cost - Brady costs £5.5m, while Mooy is now up to £5.7m. Another point in favor of the Burnley man.
Security of Starts - I don't think this is an issue for either. Both are/were their club's record signings, and are integral to their club's success. Brady and Mooy have started all of their first 3 games.

Statistical Comparison -
Goals - Brady 0-1 Mooy
Shots (Inside Box) - Brady 7(3)-3(2) Mooy
Shot Accuracy - Brady 20%-100% Mooy
Assists - Brady 1-1 Mooy
Chances Created - Brady 10-4 Mooy
Touches - Brady 151-234 Mooy
Successful Passes - Brady 52-134 Mooy
Crosses - Brady 29-20 Mooy
Bonus - Brady 3-2 Mooy
Bonus Points System - Brady 48-73 Mooy
Teams Selected by % - Brady 1.0%-11.4% Mooy

Conclusions -
Mooy only has 3 shots in the 3 games, which may mean that his goal against Newcastle was a bit of a rarity. Brady's assist underlying stats are incredibly good. 29 crosses, league highest, 10 chances created, despite two very difficult fixtures to open. The Clarets winger is also only in 1.0% of the teams. I love myself a good differential, and 1.0% is as differential as it gets.
Verdict - I'm going with Brady on this one.
Original Article (with heat maps and average positions) -…/
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