After each round of matches for MLS Fantasy players, we'll be providing our Player of the Week, the player who we think is deserving of top spot, even if they didn't finish on the most points for a week. We'll take a look at the impact the player is having on his team, as well as the MLS Fantasy returns that they are providing. Strap in, it's time to get nostalgic. All aboard.
MLS Fantasy: Gameweek 2
For us in the UK, the first game of the weekend starts at 6pm, with Columbus Crew hosting Montreal Impact. Five teams miss out on the action this weekend, and there are nine matches to be contested. You can check out the fixture list in full below.
You can also read all of our MLS Fantasy articles on our specialist page, by clicking here.
Gameweek 1: Houston Dynamo 4-0 Atlanta United
The opening day of any season is usually filled with results you did not expect, and teams you would ultimately overlook, and for our own insight into MLS, we greatly overlooked Houston Dynamo going into their home fixture with Atlanta.
Prior to the match a lot was made about the threat of Atlanta's attack, with Martinez and Almiron at the heart of considering attacking players, well ahead of the likes of Wenger, Manotas, Garcia, or Elis.
Here at Hype Train HQ we were avid spectators of all but two games (San Jose vs. Minnesota and LA Galaxy vs. Portland Timbers, the games on at 03:30am), and by an absolute mile the most entertaining fixture of the weekend if you're looking for attacking and incisive football was in the heart of Houston.
The hosts tore their opponents apart in the opening half, scoring four and leaving no prisoners behind, with Leandro Gonzalez Pirez and his Atlanta defensive unit run ragged by the speed and power of Wenger and Elis on the wings.
Goals from Wenger, Senderos, Manotas, and Darwin Ceren, highlights the danger that this Houston side could possess on a weekly basis in home matches this season, and they'll be on our radar with weeks to come, especially with Houston at home against for Gameweek 2 against Vancouver Whitecaps.
The score at half-time could have easily been 6, 7, or 8 goals. Atlanta were carved open like warm butter and made to rue a fragility defending set-pieces, with former Arsenal defender, Philippe Senderos among the goals.
Check out the tweet below to see how Houston lined up against Atlanta on opening day.
Houston Dynamo Lineup
Manager: Wilmer Cabrera
Likely Formation: 4-2-3-1
GK - Chris Seitz
LB - DaMarcus Beasley
CB - Adolfo Machado
CB - Philippe Senderos
RB - Kevin Garcia
CM/CDM - Juan David Cabezas
CM/CDM - Eric Alexander
RM - Alberth Elis
LM - Andrew Wenger
CAM - Boniek García
CF - Mauro Manotas
Gameweek 1 - Player of the Week: Alberth Elis (HOU)
Philippe Senderos may have ended Gameweek 1 as the overall top player with 19 Fantasy points, but our Player of the Week goes to right-winger Alberth Elis.
The Honduras international was a joy to watch on Houston's right, skinning Garza and Gonzalez Pirez for pace and power time and time again. Elis's raw speed led directly to Houston's first goal as he danced through a weak Atlanta defence, squaring for Andrew Wenger to open the scoring.
That pattern of play, Houston countering with devastating speed, was a lesson Atlanta didn't learn in the opening 45 minutes, with Elis finding himself one-on-one with Garza countless times, and having Atlanta's number. On another day we could have been talking about a 20 or 25 point Fantasy return for Elis, so gets highlighted as our Player of the Week for his potential in coming weeks, and his importance to Houston's squad going forward.
Elis and Houston entertain Vancouver Whitecaps for Gameweek 2, with the Canadian side more likely to provide a stern defensive test for Houston's rapid attack, something that Atlanta couldn't handle. Vancouver, who we highlighted are almost a comparison with West Brom, defend deep, look to go on the counter themselves, and in Kai Kamara have a good target man in the box who has already netted with his head this season.
We're doubtful of a repeat score when the Canadian side come to visit, but we're confident that most Fantasy players will be bringing in Houston assets on mass as they reshape their teams for MLS's second weekend of football, and what better place to start than with Elis?
The 2018 MLS Fantasy Season
MLS has returned, and you can join our very own MLS Fantasy League by clicking here, or alternatively by using the league code RDPUAHR2 whilst on the MLS Fantasy site, or checking out our pinned tweet on our @HypeTrainMLS Twitter account. We'd love to have you aboard for the ride.
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The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in the Fantasy Premier League (#FPL), providing beautiful graphics and weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb ranking tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review movies, live sport, and professional wrestling.
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