It may have been a small victory in the grand scheme of the Official Fantasy Bundesliga battle between us ‘experts’, but it was nice to knock Flo ‘The Scout’ down a small peg last weekend - I’ll forgive Matt ‘The Expert’ for a two-point winning margin!

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I said my players had to deliver after the Fantasy Upgrade and, with the exception of Manuel Neuer, Vincenzo Grifo, Kerem Demirbay and Robert Lewandowski they certainly did. The key now is to maintain that momentum in the lead-up to the winter break and I reckon these three fixtures could help me do just that on Matchday 8.

Bayer 04 Leverkusen vs TSG 1899 Hoffenheim

Despite suffering a last time out, Leverkusen still had three players register double digits in terms of fantasy points. Back on home soil, where they are yet to lose this season, die Werkself could be the ones to end Hoffenheim’s unbeaten start to the campaign. Leverkusen lead the league in challenges made (1,452) and that’s unlikely to change in what I’m expecting to be an entertaining affair between two high-octane sides.

Sandro Wagner (l.) is starting to find his form in the current campaign and could be a force to be reckoned with in the Official Fantasy Bundesliga.

Player recommendations

  • Benjamin Henrichs (MF, 5.6M, 57pts): Won 21 challenges against Bremen and is not dependant on clean sheets for points.
  • Sandro Wagner (FW, 13.6M, 59pts): Has scored two goals in his last two games and wins an average of 13 challenges a game.

RB Leipzig vs SV Werder Bremen

Werder have enjoyed a remarkable upswing in form under new head coach Alexander Nouri, but I think a trip to Leipzig may be a step too far. This weekend’s visitors are yet to win on foreign soil and have conceded 12 times in their three away games so far this season. Leipzig, meanwhile, are still unbeaten thanks to a stellar defensive record – just five goals conceded all season - and they have proven themselves to be much more than just a counter-attacking side.

Yussuf Poulsen was a great pick for me on Matchday 6 and I'll be drafting him back in this weekend.

Player recommendations

  • Yussuf Poulsen (FW, 11.7M, 61pts): Has never scored less than 7pts when in the starting line-up and has amassed 26pts in his last two games.
  • Marcel Halstenberg (DF, 9.2M, 47pts): An attacking left-back with set-pieces in his locker who has picked up at least 6pts in his last six games.

SC Freiburg vs FC Augsburg

Freiburg have been a hit-and-miss team this season. Away from home they are without a point to their name, but in front of a friendly crowd they’ve collected maximum points in all three of their outings courtesy of wins over Gladbach, Hamburg and Frankfurt. There’s no doubt that Augsburg aren’t going to make life easy for them in what promises to be a hard-fought battle, but I’d back the hosts to bounce back from the disappointing last time out.

Dong-Won Ji is a cheap striker consideration if you'd like to plump for more expensive players elsewhere in your team.

Player recommendations

  • Vincenzo Grifo (MF, 11.5M, 55pts): The loss to Hoffenheim was only the second time Grifo has scored 5pts or less. I’m going to keep faith.
  • Dong-Won Ji (FW, 5.4M, 41pts): He may not be prolific, but his endeavour has seen him become the highest-scoring fantasy forward under 7M.

I hope the Fantasy Upgrade was as successful for you guys as it was for me. The tinkering continues so good look on Matchday 8.

Never tactics bored,

JT

About James: When it comes to tactics and formations, you’ll struggle to find anyone as keen or as knowledgeable as James 'The Coach' Thorogood. James is Bundesliga obsessed, with Sascha Mölders, Juan Arango and Jay-Jay Okocha making up his top 3 all-time favourite players. He is regularly spotted discussing tactics with Carlo Ancelotti over a plate of pasta, and has also been seen animatedly moving salt and pepper shakers across the table while out dining with Thomas Tuchel.

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