IKTS Week 17: At home to West Ham.

First of all, I would like to invite all of you to participate in the first ever World Cup IKTS competition on The Short Fuse. Not an easy task, as games are scheduled daily, but I will try my best.

Arsenal comprehensively dominated Wolverhampton but could not score in the first half. The second half saw a much more convincing display and Captain Odegaard scored twice for a final score of 0-2 to the visiting Gunners. Odegaard, the front line, Vieira, White, and Gabriel were in good form, but the rest of the team did well too.

The early game on Saturday saw Brentford win at Manchester City with an early goal by Toney, an equalizer by Foden, but Toney settled the game deep in added time, assisted by ex Gunner Josh Da Silva, condemning Manchester City to a 1-2 loss, their first at home since the Neolithic era. Bournemouth, having already dispatched Everton from the EFL (Carabao) Cup, tormented the visiting Toffees again, winning 3-0, and Lampard has to now contemplate being axed. Liverpool beat Southampton 3-1 with goals from Frimino and a Nunez brace, with Che Adams scoring what was an early and temporary equalizer for the visitors. Nottingham Forest went one nil at home to Crystal Palace in a win that could help them avoid relegation, but Zaha missed a penalty for the visitors. Another topsy-turvy game for Leeds who led thrice at the noisy neighbors but ended up losing as the home team came from behind thrice before scoring a fourth (and winning) goal. West Ham lost at home, failing to score, and shipped two goals, and it could have been worse as Tielemans missed a penalty. Newcastle went one nil at home to Chelsea, with the lone goal scored by ex Gunner Willock. Sunday saw Brighton losing 1-2 to visiting Aston Villa despite scoring first. Finally, Fulham suffered heartbreak for the second weekend in a row against another Mancunian opponent, with Garnacho scoring deep in extra time for a 1-2 Manchester United win.

Overall, the 14 active participants combined for 112 points, for an average of exactly 8 points per active participant, and we had 14 correct IKTS predictions. A total of 29 goals were scored over 10 games, for an average of 2.9 goals per game. There were five wins for home teams versus five losses and there were no draws.

Scores for the week:

luismamontes 13 (1)
Geaux_HR 12 (2)
hansdampf 9 (2)
skinnejay 9 (2)
billvacation 9 (1)
Ray from Norfolk 9 (1)
Mulz 8 (1)
Purple & Proud 8 (1)
rswansont 8 (1)
AsemBuckets 6 (1)
Seidman 6 (1)
ben from portsmouth 5 (0)
ClevelandJames 5 (0)
Sonny from Suffolk 5 (0)

Stars of the week: luismamontes is first on 13 points (and one correct IKTS prediction) with Geaux_HR in second on 12 points (and two correct IKTS predictions) while hansdampf and skinnejay are in third place on 9 points (and two correct IKTS predictions each) but billvacation and Ray from Norfolk are also on 9 points, albeit with only a single correct IKTS prediction each.

Clever pick of the week: Only luismamontes had the exact score for Nottingham Forest versus Crystal Palace while only rswansont had the correct score for West Ham versus Leicester. There were also three correct predictions for Wolverhampton versus Arsenal and another three for Liverpool versus Southampton. Finally there were six (!) exact scores for Fulham versus Manchester United.

Crisis pick of the week: Only billvacation failed to score any points due to a ludicrous prediction for a 1-1 tie while all the other participants scored 1, 2, or even 3 points as The Arsenal won. Also, a collective crisis as nobody predicted a loss for Manchester City at home to Brentford, with the West London team pulling a huge upset while both of their neighbors (Chelsea and Fulham) lost.

Standings after week 16:

Ray from Norfolk 130 (13)
skinnejay 128 (21)
Geaux_HR 125 (20)
luismamontes 122 (14)
Sonny from Suffolk 118 (15)
hansdampf 113 (16)
Mulz 113 (16)
Purple & Proud 112 (15)
rswansont 112 (12)
ClevelandJames 108 (10)
ben from portsmouth 107 (10)
AsemBuckets 104 (8)
billvacation 98 (11)
Seidman 96 (11)
DustyGooner 9 (2)

After week 16, Ray from Norfolk leads skinnejay by two points and Geaux_HR by five points.

Upcoming schedule: Monday December 26, Tuesday December 27, and Wednesday December 28:

Brentford - Tottenham
Crystal Palace - Fulham
Everton - Wolverhampton
Leicester - Newcastle
Southampton - Brighton
Aston Villa - Liverpool
Arsenal - West Ham
Chelsea - Bournemouth
Manchester United - Nottingham Forest
Leeds - Manchester City