Goodbye, Andres Romero ($7.8m). You were interesting, you were relatively cheap, and now you're out for the rest of the season with an ACL tear. Quelle domage. It's a shame, really, since losing a decent piece of the Montreal Impact fantasy bonanza squad for no return hardly makes it worth the investment. On the flip side of the ledger, How about that Evan Bush ($5.5m)? 16 points for the goalkeeper, a team-leading 139 points on the season... and here I was thinking nobody could replace David Ousted ($5.8m). I'll gladly take the slight discount on Bush as Montreal's form heats up - their defensive woes be damned. Oh, and there's some guy named Didier Drogba ($10.8m) who tossed off a 14-point DGW without breaking a sweat. That's a 6.3 form for Drogba, by the way. The evidence is there: Drogba is a must-have on your roster as the season winds up. Admittedly, that likely leaves you with the difficult decision to drop a top toward - one of Kei Kamara ($10.0m), David Villa ($11.5m), Bradley Wright-Phillips ($11.3m) or Robbie Keane ($12.2m). Based on pure price-versus-performance, the top candidate is Keane. Whether you feel dropping Keane is wise before matches against the Portland Timbers and Sporting Kansas City is another matter. Hey, I never said it would be an easy decision...
Two of the other teams in the Round 32 transfer-palooza were FC Dallas and the New York Red Bulls. I highlight them because if you weren't using at least some of your free transfers to load up on those teams, you may be in for a bit of trouble. Both Dallas and NYRB have been playing well - New York in particular are favourites for the Supporters' Shield thanks to beating up on the weaker Eastern Conference - and taking full advantage of their DGWs would seem to be a no-brainer. If you're trying to solidify your league position in these final two rounds, a non-DGW player is points lost, simple as that. If you can't find the funds for either team (which is insane, since FC Dallas has Victor Ulloa ($6.5m), enough said), there is a potential sleeper DGW pick in Real Salt Lake. Yes, I know - traditionally, RSL has been woefully unaffordable in MLS Fantasy Manager. This year is different; the Cassar-era blow-up has torpedoed prices below the $10m mark for everyone not named Javier Morales ($12.3m). It's still not bargain-basement pricing - that's probably another year or two of misery away, if those years happen at all - but for now, you could do worse than Tony Beltran ($6.8m) as a one-off DGW defender.
Round 32 Top Score
Well, that'll teach me to get excited about a 70-point haul during a FIFA break. The Eighty Six Forever fantasy league once again humbled me with some stellar scores, including a few that broke the triple-digit barrier. The highest of the lot was a 17(?!)-transfer shuffle-tastic masterpiece by Rob of Quicksilver FC, who shimmied and shook his way towards a very nice 103-point round:
Who knew having faith in Drogba to perform as your captain would work out? Most people with a functioning fantasy football brain. Guess who I didn't captain. *sigh*
Matchups To Watch
3. Toronto FC vs. Columbus Crew SC
Two things intrigue me about this match. One, how will Toronto fare without Sebastian Giovinco ($13.6m) for one or possibly both games of the DGW? It is very likely Giovinco will be around for the second match, the one highlighted here, which is why it's one to watch. If he is and he's not gassed from international duty and travel, this could be interesting. Point two: are Columbus ready to bounce back after two consecutive losses? The signs point to "yes", considering the Crew have been held scoreless only once in their last twelve(!) games, that being a 3-0 stomping by FC Dallas. Ethan Finlay ($9.3m) and Kei Kamara ($10.0m) are still fantasy gold; will they shine against TFC?
2. New York Red Bulls vs. Philadelphia Union
File this under "squash match". The Red Bulls look good to sew up the Shield by the end of this match if they haven't already, bagging a bushel of fantasy points in the process. Poor Philly. At least there's 2016, right?