I think it is fair to say the Premier League did not exactly return with a bang. Many of game week 30's 12 outings were characterised by slow build-up play, inaccuracy, and an all round lack of sharpish.
However, beggars cannot be choosers and we should be all happy that the beautiful game has shown its face again, albeit with a few pimples that need to be popped before it is looking its best once again.
Let's have a look at the top three of the Advertiser Tribal League in association with Monroe's Tavern.
1 Will Mooney - The Kouyaté Kid - 1,851
Top of the table is Will Mooney and his team, The Kouyaté Kid and all we can say at Advertiser Towers is take a bow. Yes The Bambinos scored a massive 135 points during game week 30 to rocket to the summit and open up a 14 point advantage from the chasing pack. It was a dream week for Mooney's men with every player in the squad performing brilliantly. Playing his Bench Boost chip, Mooney's subs picked up a brilliant 34 points which complemented the performances of starters Riyad Mahrez (21 ), Kevin De Bruyne (15 ), and captain Sergio Agüero (16 ). The standard for these final block of games has been set by The Kouyaté Kid; will the other contenders rise to the challenge?
2 Declan Ryan - Decs Villains - 1,837
I think it is safe to say no matter for how long Declan Ryan is a Fantasy manager, it is unlikely that he will earn 99 points again and drop places in the table. Our league leader before of game week 30 will have no doubt felt very confident of maintaining his grip on top spot thanks to a superb performance by captain Kevin De Bruyne (45 ) as well as good showings by Raheem Sterling (10 ), Sergio Agüero (8 ), Enda Stevens (7 ), and Trent Alexander-Arnold (7 ). However such is the competitiveness of the Tribal League sometimes scoring double figures is not enough.
3 Dave Doraj-Raj - The Culture - 1,816
Finding himself in the same position as the aforementioned Ryan, Dave Doraj-Raj must be wondering how he has slipped further back in the title race after scoring 98 points. Captain Kevin De Bruyne (45 ), Dean Henderson (13 ), Raúl Jiménez (8 ), and Sergio Agüero (8 ) were the main men for The Culture this week. However, David Luiz's awful showing and red card at the Etihad Stadium last Wednesday resulted in a three point deduction for the Brazilian defender. These are setbacks that no side can afford if they want to see their ribbons on the league trophy at the end of July.
With round 30 ending last night, there is no rest for Fantasy managers as round 31 commences this evening at 6pm. Who are the players who will get the business done this game week?
Dominic Calvert-Lewin (Everton - £6.5 million ) v Norwich City
With eight goals in 11 games, the 23-year-old from Sheffield was one of the most in form strikers in the Premier League before the lockdown was imposed. Dominic Calvert-Lewin may have missed a golden chance to hand his side victory in the Merseyside derby on Sunday but I am confident enough the big number nine will be back to scoring ways on Wednesday evening when Everton travel to basement side Norwich. The Canaries have the worst goal scoring record and the second leakiest defence in the league; not good if you are looking to escape relegation. It will be an Everton with Calvert-Lewin on the scoresheet.
Danny Ings (Southampton - £7.2 million ) v Arsenal
Whereas the Premier League shutdown came at the wrong time for Calvert-Lewin, it was definitely a good time for a break for Danny Ings. The Southampton striker was having a dream season before a run of seven games saw him only find the back of the net once. However, refreshed from a 100 day break, the once capped England international looked like the deadly marksman from the start of the season as he found the back of the net against hapless Norwich last Friday. On Thursday, Ings and co welcome Arsenal to the St Mary's. It is safe to say the Gunners are probably wishing the season was voided after defeats to Man City and Brighton since the league restarted. Southampton will beat Arsenal and Danny Ings will be the main man. Get him in your team.
Allan Saint-Maximin (Newcastle - £5.4 million ) v Aston Villa
It might come as a surprise but one of the form players of the league, according to statistics is Newcastle's French midfielder, Allan Saint-Maximin. Yes the 23-year-old's form is considered 10.0 by Fantasy statisticians thanks to a goal in the last game before shutdown and a goal in the 3-0 success over Sheffield United on Sunday. On Wednesday, Newcastle welcome strugglers Aston Villa to St James' Park, knowing a win will all but guarantee them another year in the top flight. Villa's return to action has seen a 0-0 against Sheffield United (thanks to a huge error in officiating ) and a one-sided 2-1 loss to Chelsea on Sunday. Dean Smith's men have the worst defensive record in the league and I believe Saint-Maximin will exploit this to hand The Magpies the three points.
Enjoy the action at home with a pint and food from Monroe's Tavern
With Government restrictions not allowing for bars with food licences to open their premises to the public until June 29, punters do not have the opportunity to watch round 31's matches in the pleasant surroundings of Monroe's Tavern. However, the next best thing is available with Monroe's Takeaway and Dial-a-Pint service. Operating Wednesday to Sunday, simply call (091 ) 583 397 to place your order for food and a pint and the team at Monroe's will deliver right to your front door.
So sit back, relax, and eat and drink the delicious food and pints from Monroe's Tavern in the comfort and safety of your own home while watching some top flight football.
Leicester City v Brighton (6pm ) SKY Sports.
Spurs v West Ham (8.15pm ) SKY Sports.
Man United v Sheffield United (6pm ) SKY Sports.
Newcastle v Aston Villa (6pm ) BT Sport.
Norwich City v Everton (6pm ) BBC.
Wolves v Bournemouth (6pm ) BT Sport.
Liverpool v Crystal Palace (8.15pm ) SKY Sports.
Burnley v Watford (6pm ) SKY Sports.
Southampton v Arsenal (6pm ) SKY Sports.
Chelsea v Man City (8.15pm ) BT Sport.
To join the League, simply add the Advertiser's Fantasy Football code: 8ly03z and join the other hundreds of managers who have already signed up to take home the prestigious championship title!