Chris O (follow on Twitter: @COakleyFtbl)
Tue 15 January 2008

We are top of the league, say we are top of the league...

I don't wish to brag, but I had a particularly good weekend where my Fantasy League team's concerned. My team is entered into the official FA Premier League competition and is one of 63 teams taking part in our very own SPAOTP.com mini-league (see right for entry details).

After a poor start which saw my team labouring in the bottom half of the table, I managed to hit a bit of form from November onwards which culminated in my tremendous score of 108 at the weekend. Like I say, I don't like to brag, but it was tough down there in the bottom half...

All of which led me to reflect on the decent players I've been lucky enough to pick just recently. Think about this for a moment: aside from Fantasy League competitions and the like, if someone asked you to pick a 'squad' of the best fifteen Premier League players, who would you pick?

Would you pick Rob Green of West Ham in goal? Martin Petrov of Man City in midfield? What about Silvain Distin of Portsmouth in defence? Perhaps not, although they are all great players in their own right, and yet they're among the best players you can buy in the FA's Fantasy Premier League competition at the moment.

Here are the highest scoring players so far:

Goalkeepers
Green (West Ham)
James (Portsmouth)

Defenders
Laursen (Aston Villa)
Ferdinand (Manchester United)
Lescott (Everton)
Vidic (Manchester United)
Distin (Portsmouth)

Midfielders
Ronaldo (Manchester United)
Fabregas (Arsenal)
Gerrard (Liverpool)
Petrov (Manchester City)
Bentley (Blackburn)

Forwards
Tevez (Manchester United)
Adebayor (Arsenal)
Berbatov (Tottenham)

Now before we carry on, we know that a Fantasy League competition isn't the most scientific way of judging who the best players are, but this is just a bit of fun, after all. So with that in mind, what can we discern from the above?

Well the first thing that springs to mind is that over half of the players aren't even from the top four in England (i.e. Man United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool). Come to think of it, where are the Chelsea players?

Using the FA's scoring system, Rob Green comes out on top as the best keeper. He's yet to convince many of his credentials as a future England player, but for David James - just behind Green on points - he's got the same problem, but in his case he's already had an England career.

In defence, we have a selection of people that can not only stop the goals going in but also score at the other end too. Just this last weekend, Rio Ferdinand, Joleon Lescott and Martin Laursen all got on the scoresheet - a good skill to have if your Fantasy League team needs that kind of thing.

In midfield, who wouldn't pick the likes of Ronaldo, Fabregas and Gerrard. Their legendary status grows bigger by the day, and though Petrov and Bentley still have some way to go before they reach similar heights in the game, they can both pick up the occasional goal too, as well as putting in regular performances of considerable quality.

And then up front we have three exciting players, each of whom are bringing much in the way of excitement to their respective teams. Tevez, Adebayor and Berbatov are rightly among the most sought-after players in Fantasy League circles, and the 31 Premier League goals they've scored between them this season prove just why.

So there it is, the FA Fantasy Premier League's best-possible squad as it currently stands. Fifteen great players, and they're all yours for a virtual sum of £120.9 million.

Shame they only give you £100 million pounds to buy some players with, really...

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