Hello to you and welcome to this week’s FPL preview. Last week I shot myself square in the foot and bottled captaining Aguero due to the rumours of him being rested. The lesson is…never listen to anybody. So why are you here? Well, despite that blunder, I still scored 68 points and beat the average of 60, which is a small victory. Red arrows all round for me as my overall ranking plunged to 348,129th, so how can we get those arrows green?
There’s another big clash this week but we have to wait until Monday for it as Man Utd host Spurs. Crikey, what is going on at Man Utd? They weren’t exactly fluent last season but at least they could defend, even that seems out of the window so far. It is, of course, early days but you couldn’t make an argument for many Man Utd players from an FPL perspective.
Tottenham though have won two from two and now we don’t even have to contend with the Harry Kane August myth which was finally debunked last week. There are probably more enticing options than Spurs players this week for the prices they command and the ongoing uncertainty about their permanent home may yet have an effect on their season, but I can’t really sit here and tell you to not buy Kane/Eriksen/Alli/whoever as they will obviously accrue you plenty of points over the season. I just think you could spend that money elsewhere this week.
Liverpool have started the season in good form, their attacking merits have been there for all to see but that’s two clean sheets out of two so far and the visit of Brighton on Saturday tea time should but further cause for optimism. Brighton were excellent last weekend against Man Utd but typically Brighton’s best form has come at home and Anfield is not a happy hunting ground for many.
It’s hardly a tip to say you should be thinking of including at least one and probably two Liverpool players, Salah and Mane being midfielders adds to their pull with more points available whilst Firmino has looked a little off the pace so far. Andy Robertson has been typically dynamic from left back so if you can afford £6m on a defender, I’d look no further than Robertson.
Chelsea have won both of their opening games and will travel to Newcastle on Sunday confident of maintaining their 100% record. Eden Hazard must be ready to start by now whilst fears that Marcos Alonso wouldn’t be as attacking in a back four seem to have been put to bed by his performance against Arsenal. N’golo Kante is an interesting one – at just £5m, Kante is typically not a good FPL pick but Sarri seems to have unleashed him to play more of a box to box role. He could be the bargain of the season if that continues.
All we’ve learned from the first two games of Unai Emery’s Arsenal career is that they aren’t as good as Man City or Chelsea. Saturday should be a real indication of what they are all about as they host struggling West Ham. Under normal circumstances, Aubameyang would have opened his account for the season last weekend but instead missed a sitter. Given his record since coming to the Premier League is incredible, if you own him or want a good bet this weekend, I’d say he’s your man. A possible downside is that he may play from the left if Lacazette starts but that doesn’t usually stop him.
That just leaves Man City, who get the weekend underway at Wolves on Saturday lunchtime. What can I say? Their attacking talent can and will be rotated, but David Silva should be nailed on especially as De Bruyne is out for a while whilst Benjamin Mendy is a walking assist at left back. I’d love to say I’ve learned my lesson about Aguero, I am sure he will be rotated at some point but it won’t be this weekend. Drop him at your peril.
Are Burnley feeling the burn of playing Thursday-Sunday? Or was their defeat at Watford a one-off? They head into Sunday’s game with Fulham fresh from a trip to Greece and Craven Cottage will be hoping for another slapdash performance from Dyche’s men. Mitrovic and Sessegnon combined for their goal last week and those two seem the most likely to provide points.
Meanwhile, Watford were excellent last Sunday in defeating Burnley and will hope to carry that form into a home game with Palace. It might not be bad for a one week gamble but their upcoming fixtures would suggest they are one to avoid.
Salah or Mane? I have Salah so my decision is made but Mane has looked the more impressive of the two so far. If you don’t want to go down the Liverpool route I’d say Aubameyang based purely on the fixture and the cliche of form being temporary!
I’ve made my transfer already – Mendy for Bednarek. I had the money lying around after doing Sanchez to Bernardo Silva last week. It’s possibly over indulgent but Mendy seems less of a rotation risk and I’ll probably shift Bernardo for somebody else in the coming weeks.
Begovic, Mendy, Alexander-Arnold, Shaw, Salah, Bernardo, Richarlison, Fraser, Aguero, Firmino, Zaha. Subs: Neves, Keane, Wan-Bissaka, Fabianski
Wan-Bissaka is banned whilst Shaw appears doubtful, but Michael Keane is ready to come on.
It’s a Saturday 11.30am deadline so all that is left for me to do is to wish you good luck and may all your arrows be green. Keep an eye on the press conferences on Thursday and Friday – I have had to write this a smidge earlier than normal this week before many of the managers have spoken.