Two weeks into the College Cup and it should now be pretty obvious whether your fantasy football team is the high-flying Halifax firsts or long-suffering Goodricke thirds of the Nouse league.
At the time of writing, top spot is shared between Conor Brennan’s ‘MK DOM PETSCZKAK’ and Ben Smith’s ‘Cambridge University Netball Team’. with ‘renegades’, ‘I Need to Recuperate FC’ and ‘Goodricke WAG’s FC’, in hot pursuit. The latter’s position is particularly impressive, being one of the few teams in the top half of the league that does not contain Mark Johnson.
To say that Johnson has been a wise pick is a bit of an understatement. With four goals and two consecutive Man-of-the-Match performances, Johnson is arguably the star performer of the tournament so far and a definite Start ‘em. Expect a mad rush to sign him in the upcoming transfer window.
Yes, the transfer window. The opportunity of redemption for your current disaster. Nearly three weeks away, there’s still some time to go until the reshuffle but it would be useful to start to consider which teams are likely to go furthest in the Cup’s knock-out stages.
Halifax certainly look a pretty safe bet to still be standing in the final weeks. They had their doubters before the tournament but these critics have been comprehensively silenced with 14 goals in two games without conceding. Quite the start then.
Unsurprisingly ‘Fax firsts players dominate the ‘Top Players’ charts with both Brennans, Ash Daly, Mark Lund, Alex Tringham and Tom Ragan all in the top twelve positions. Tringham is a definite Start ‘em, scoring two goals from defence already and Ragan is my cheeky tip for the Golden Boot – he’s already bagged four and, with Conor Brennan playing out wide, is Halifax’s principle goal threat.
The best keeper picks are James’s Dom McMahon and Goodricke’s Ed Foster, who are both yet to concede. Both teams have relatively easy groups so expect all of their players to continue racking up points for the remainder of the group stages.
There are also the cheaper Start ‘ems, those golden picks that only the sharpest scouts were perceptive enough to notice. You would have been forgiven for not rushing towards the Wentworth seconds players when originally picking, yet a hat-trick for Dave Worsley in his side’s 3-1 victory over Vanbrugh thirds has catapulted him to top of the table. Goodricke seconds lynchpin Nick Dheir is also racking up the points and might be able to guide his side towards that second Group D spot.
And the Sit ‘ems? There was a mad rush to sign last year’s player of the tournament Parris Williams, but after two games many might be regretting their choice. Williams is yet to score and is struggling even to get a full game in an Alcuin team where there is strong competition for the striker position.
Dom Henney, former Derwent captain and college football stalwart, currently sits on -1 points after scoring an own goal in his side’s only game so far.
Like many of us, he will take solace in the fact that there is still a long way to go and ample opportunity to save face.