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Dublin: 2 °C Wednesday 16 January, 2019
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Diary of a Fantasy Gaffer: Welcome to Wearside, Mesut

No other player could send us searching for the umlaut quite like wee Uh-Zhil.

Image: Adam Davy/EMPICS Sport

SO, WE NEED to talk about this Uh-zhil fella.

I can’t find the button that makes the funny dots appear on the O in Ozil, so phonetic spelling is the way forward for this German god of football.

Don’t be fooled by his dinner-plate eyes or his funny looking earrings, Mesut will be an absolute nightmare to play against in the Premier League. He’s not exactly going toughen Arsenal up, but he gives them a much, much sharper edge in the final third.

That said, we’ve gone all Arsene Wenger (2012 edition). We just can’t bring ourselves – not yet, anyway  - to tear up the gameplan and splash £10 million on a guy who’s first Premier League task is a long trip to Sunderland – nobody wants that.

We love Özil (hey, there it is), so this is a decision we make with a heavy heart. And hearing David Silva being ruled out by no means eased our pain.

I’ve pulled myself together now, though. Back on the horse, back looking for fish in the sea. All that stuff. After a week of international football drudgery, like Johnny Giles we’re ready to enjoy the game again.  How could we not? Tomorrow will be jam-packed with eight Premier League games.

I’ve decided to keep Silva in reserve, he’ll hopefully be fit for the Manchester derby next Sunday, so the one minor tweak to TheScore Machine team is the addition of  Robbie Brady in place of Wayne Routledge.

Another international break?

Swansea are up against the (even tighter than me) Liverpool defence, while Brady and Hull are at home to fellow likely strugglers, Crystal Palace. A quick look ahead for the Tigers shows a decent little run of games where points can be picked up – Newcastle, West Ham and Villa – before they head away to Everton and Spurs after the international break.

Without Silva, my team is a little reliant on the big front three this weekend, but a little faith in young Brady can go a long way.

It’s kinda like he’s our little Uh-Zhil… the boy Röbbie Brädy.

Auf Wiedersehen, Fantasy Footballers.

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About the author:

Godfrey the Gaffer

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