Reality-averse London Town FC manager Don Lonno has plunged deeper into delusion for Covid-crocked Fantasy Premier League Gameweek 19 by imagining that counterparts the world over might not have raided the cream of the capital’s squads in order to augment line-ups deprived by postponement of expensive and high-scoring Liverpool stars.
In pre-kick off remarks that will intensify speculation about his festive season sobriety, Lonno brushed aside suggestions that millions of others will use their bonus “free hit” option to sign Tottenham’s Son Heung-min as a short-term fill-in for Liverpool’s out-of-action Mo Salah, much as he has stuck with Harry Kane to replacing West Ham’s out-of-form Michail Antonio, who will now almost certainly score a hat trick against Southampton.
“It is important in fantasy football to always remember that no one else has displayed my foresight in selecting only players from London clubs,” Lonno remarked blearily between mouthfuls of bubble and squeak and gulps of one day-old Bucks Fizz. “At this special time of year I expect such virtues to receive their due rewards,” he insisted. “Also, I fully expect Leicester City to perform a Christmas miracle at Manchester City.”
As well as dumping Antonio, Lonno has temporarily offloaded his Hammers team mates Tomáš Souček and the injured Aaron Cresswell along with Brentford’s Bryan Mbeumo and Rico Henry, another an injury doubt, and Crystal Palace’s Christian Benteke. Into the one-week-only squad along with Kane come Son, West Ham’s Manuel Lanzini and Issa Diop and Brentford striker Ivan Toney, who starts on the bench along with Crystal Palace pair Conor Gallagher and Marc Guéhi.
Lonno is praying that Arsenal’s Emile Smith Rowe and Alexandre Lacazette start, along with his trusty Chelsea trio of Mason Mount, Reece James and Eduard Mendy, and hopes to maintain Town’s recent run of – by their rather average standards – decent form against self-imposed odds. In a possible triumph of faith over reason, Kane retains the sacred armband.
Lorcan O’Dolles is a composite fictional construct partly of Irish descent. Follow Lorcan on Twitter.
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