The Bonus Points
Cristhian Stuani’s (£4.9million) stunning opener against Sunderland, coupled with a cool finish for Middlesbrough’s decisive second goal was enough to see him soar to a 63-point BPS tally – the highest total in the Gameweek.
The Uruguayan also created a big chance and contributed four clearances, blocks and interceptions (CBI) along with six recoveries as the visitors clung to three points.
Alvaro Negredo (£6.7m) earned two bonus points. The Spaniard supplied both assists and completed two dribbles to take him to 19 FPL points for the season.
The ICT Index
Despite suffering defeat, Sunderland’s assets fared well in the ICT Index, reflecting an attacking performance to amass 18 efforts on goal.
Van Aanholt again figured highly, earning 11.5 on the Index for a display that demonstrated both encouraging Creativity (28) and Threat (38).
New loan signing Adnan Januzaj (£5.5m) was the standout performer, according to the Index.
The 21-year-old Belgian scored 11.9 overall, consisting of 53 Threat and 49 Creativity.
Often Sunderland’s most advanced player, Januzaj fired in four goal attempts, all from inside the Middlesbrough penalty area.
He also created four chances for team-mates, attempting nine crossed balls, with three arriving from open play.
Negredo was Middlesbrough’s best all-round performer in the Index. The striker earned 10.8 overall, made up of 30 Threat and 40 Creativity.
He created three chances but mustered just one attempt on goal, albeit from inside the Black Cats’ penalty area.
Negredo had seven touches in the Sunderland box with left-back George Friend (£4.5m) ranking next with just two.
The Scout Notes
Stuani’s performance will give Aitor Karanka food for thought.
The Middlesbrough head coach typically rotates in the wide attacking positions, underlined by his decision to start Stuani over Albert Adomah (£5.5m). That uncertainty is likely to temper any FPL interest in the Uruguayan.
Negredo’s starting place looks assured. The Spaniard’s form has been strong and he is already standing out as the obvious choice in the £6.5m-£7.0m price bracket up front.
Karanka will hope to have Victor Valdes (£4.5m) back in contention for their trip to West Bromwich Albion in Gameweek 3. The Spanish stopper will be expected to regain the No 1 jersey from Brad Guzan (£4.5m) who earned a start in his absence on Sunday.
As for Sunderland, left-back Van Aanholt underlined his attacking potential following six goals last season and similar returns would paper over the cracks of Sunderland’s current defensive frailty.
Fabio Borini (£5.5m) missed out on Sunday with a toe injury but may now struggle to regain a starting role.