After the chaos of the blank and double gameweeks, it’s back to bread and butter stuff in the Fantasy Premier League as a straightforward single gameweek is upon us.
Double gameweek 19 saw the highest average score in the FPL this season for obvious reasons but it could have been even higher if the highly owned big guns not faltered. The likes of Kevin de Bruyne, Mohamed Salah and Bruno Fernandes failed to score a single goal between them during the two games they played. Jamie Vardy also fired blanks.
There was more bad news on the premium player front as De Bruyne and Vardy are facing spells on the sidelines due to injuries. With their high price, FPL managers would be forced to remove these players as they are simply too expensive to be benched for several weeks.
Finding the perfect replacement for these players will be the biggest challenge for FPL managers who will now look to slowly dismantle their squad set up to perform in double gameweek 19.
Fixture-wise, look no further than the top of the table. Manchester City, Leicester and Manchester United have the best fixtures in the coming three weeks. Aston Villa is another team that have good games on the horizon. West Brom, Newcastle and Fulham also have a favourable run of matches, but it won’t be too smart investing in these teams given their form this season.
Burnley, Arsenal and Tottenham are teams to avoid in the next few weeks as the fixture difficulty level is slightly high. Same goes for West Ham, Wolves and Southampton.
|Team||*Combined Difficulty rating for GW 20-22||GW19 opponent (Jan 16)||GW20 opponent||GW21 opponent|
|Arsenal||10 (3, 4, 3)||SOU(A)||MUN(H)||WOL(A)|
|Aston Villa||8 (2, 3, 3)||BUR(A)||SOU(A)||WHU(H)|
|Brighton||9 (2, 4, 5)||FUL(H)||TOT(H)||LIV(A)|
|Burnley||11 (3, 4, 4)||AVL(H)||CHE(A)||MCI(H)|
|Chelsea||9 (3, 2, 4)||WOL(H)||BUR(H)||TOT(A)|
|Crystal Palace||9 (3, 3, 3)||WHU(H)||WOL(H)||NEW(A)|
|Everton||9 (4, 2, 3)||LEI(H)||NEW(H)||LEE(A)|
|Fulham||8 (2, 2, 4)||BHA(A)||WBA(A)||LEI(H)|
|Leeds||10 (3, 4, 3)||NEW(A)||LEI(A)||EVE(A)|
|Leicester||7 (3, 2, 2)||EVE(A)||LEE(H)||FUL(A)|
|Liverpool||9 (4, 3, 2)||TOT(A)||WHU(A)||BHA(H)|
|Man City||6 (2, 2, 2)||WBA(A)||SHU(H)||BUR(A)|
|Man Utd||8 (2, 3, 3)||SHU(H)||ARS(A)||SOU(H)|
|Newcastle||8 (2, 3, 3)||LEE(H)||EVE(A)||CRY(H)|
|Sheffield Utd||11 (4, 5, 2)||MUN(A)||MCI(A)||WBA(H)|
|Southampton||10 (3, 3, 4)||ARS(H)||AVL(H)||MUN(A)|
|Spurs||10 (4, 2, 4)||LIV(H)||BHA(A)||CHE(H)|
|West Brom||8 (4, 2, 2)||MCI(H)||FUL(H)||SHU(A)|
|West Ham||10 (3, 4, 3)||CRY(A)||LIV(H)||AVL(A)|
|Wolves||10 (4, 3, 3)||CHE(A)||CRY(A)||ARS(H)|
The big ins and outs
FPL managers are basing a lot of their purchases on GW 19 performances as John Stones leads the way. Manchester City have kept five clean sheets in the last six matches and there’s every reason to be bringing in City defenders.
James Maddison is a form player in the Premier League and with Leicester’s run of games, he is a top buy at this point. Ilkay Gundogan, Michail Antonio and Harry Kane complete the top five transferred players.
Most transferred (in) players ahead of GW 20
Three big guns in the list of most transferred players. De Bruyne and Vardy are obvious ones considering their injuries, but those removing Mohamed Salah must do so at their own peril especially after his brace against Manchester United in the FA Cup.
Kurt Zouma and Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s extremely high ownership number is now correcting itself after poor recent runs.
Most transferred (out) players ahead of GW 20
Top picks for Gameweek 20
Whether you bring them in through transfers or (luckily enough) have them in your squad already, these are the five hottest selections for GW 20:
Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United): The Manchester United talisman makes the list almost every week and for good reason. He is simply the best player in the league at this moment and it’s hard to think of a game where he won’t contribute. High-flying United are huge favourites against Sheffield United at Old Trafford thus making Fernandes a must-have.
Michail Antonio (West Ham): The Hammers may not have the best run of games but they are a team in form. Antonio has scored in back-to-back matches and looks like is back to his best. Palace defence has been leaky this season and clean sheets have been a rarity. Antonio had four shots from inside the box in the last games and two big chances that he put away. He is not to be missed out with the form he is in.
Son Heung-min (Tottenham Hotspur): It wasn’t long ago when I’d hesitate to recommend any player playing against Liverpool but how the times have changed. Son has been in flying form this season and could have had more goals in the reverse game against Liverpool. The Reds were vulnerable to pacy forwards in the game against Manchester United and Son could greatly profit against Jurgen Klopp’s team especially playing at home.
Luke Shaw (Manchester United): The United left-back has been a player transformed. Up against Sheffield United, who have scored just four goals on their travels all season, United would be a good bet for a clean sheet. Shaw also has the potential of an attacking return given he takes the set-pieces sometimes. He has also been a bonus magnet in recent weeks earning six bonus points in as many games.
Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City): The German has flourished in a new attacking role for the club and has scored five goals in the last seven games. Pretty much an assured starter, Gundogan is also likely to be on penalty duties in De Bruyne’s absence. At just £5.5 million, he is an absolute steal.
Top differential picks for GW 20:
Edinson Cavani (Manchester United): The Uruguayan has settled in nicely at Old Trafford and has looked a real goal threat in recent matches, also scoring in United’s 2-1 win at Fulham. He was unlucky not to score another in that game and also unfortunate to hit the post against Liverpool in the FA Cup. With Marcus Rashford injured, Cavani could play the next few matches for United. With just 3.8% ownership, he had huge differential potential.
Danny Ings (Southampton): Ings is back after recovering from Covid-19 and almost scored against Arsenal in the FA Cup. Despite missing many matches, Ings has scored seven goals this season. facing an inconsistent Arsenal side, Ings could be a good buy. Owned by just 7.1% of managers, it’s a good time to get the Englishman before he gets on a spree.
Neal Maupay (Brighton): Maupay has quietly gone about his business in recent weeks and scored twice in the last three Premier League games for Brighton. Up against Fulham, he could be the player that makes a difference for your team especially with not many good striking options around.
Manchester City and Manchester United assets dominate this week’s favourites for the armband thanks to the fixtures that they have got. But De Bruyne’s absence and a lack of a regular goal contributor in the City side, Fernandes becomes the top captaincy pick this week.
Gundogan and Raheem Sterling are alternatives but it would take a brave man to hand them the armband ahead of Fernandes. Son is also a good differential pick if you are ready to risk it a bit with Cavani being another player that falls in that category.
With defenders racking up the points in the last few weeks, handing the armband to someone like Stones or Ruben Dias or Joao Cancelo might not be that bad an idea. Against goal-shy Sheffield United who concede a lot of goals on set-pieces, Harry Maguire or Shaw could also be decent bets.
FPL Deadline for GW20: 10.00 pm IST, Tuesday, January 26, 2021.