Spot the Differential – Lacazette can match Aubameyang output

The Gameweek 1 deadline is now upon us which gives us a chance to have a look at some differential options for the start of the season.

We’ve pulled out three players currently under five percent ownership who represent viable alternatives to some of the more popular assets out there.

Alexandre Lacazette (£9.5m)

Ownership: 4.3 percent

There is reason to believe that Alexandre Lacazette (£9.5m) could match Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£11.0m) in FPL this season, which could help Fantasy managers looking to save money.

The two strikers have scored the same number of goals in Arsenal’s public pre-season friendlies, with six apiece and Aubamayang just one ahead on assists (three to two).

As Lacazette’s involvements have come from slightly less time on the pitch, his minutes-per-goal involvement is remarkably similar to his Gabonese colleague. The Frenchman has averaged one every 31.37 minutes, with Aubameyang involving himself in a public pre-season strike every 32.22 minutes.

As for his position within the team, Lacazette looks likely to start as the central striker, with Aubameyang operating from an inside-left position, as has been the case this summer.

It must also be noted that Lacazette actually finished the end of last season in sensational form, as he began to develop a great relationship with Aubameyang. In his final six appearances of 2017/18 he found the net five times and produced one assist. By comparison, Aubameyang also scored the same number of goals in his last six outings of the campaign, edging the Frenchman only on assists (three to one).

In the last six Gameweeks, Lacazette also bettered Aubameyang for minutes-per-goal (90.3 to 103.6) and was close behind when it came to minutes-per-shot too (33.9 to 30.1).

Having one of the two Arsenal attackers looks to be a smart move for the beginning of the season. Their opening fixture against Manchester City has the makings of a high-scoring game and Gameweek 2 pits the Gunners against a new-look Chelsea side that look defensively vulnerable in the Community Shield final.

After those two fixtures, there are home meeting with West Ham, Everton, Watford and Leicester mixed with trips to Cardiff, Newcastle, Fulham and Crystal Palace before Liverpool come to the Emirates in Gameweek 11. That is certainly a run of matches where there are goals on offer.

In both the climax of last term and in friendlies this summer, Lacazette has demonstrated the ability to match his more esteemed colleague. This could prove hugely important for Fantasy managers as it gives them the potential to save £1.5m to use elsewhere in their squad if they were to opt for Lacazette over Aubameyang, while still investing in an attack with potential for goals.


Ownership: 2.6 percent

Andros Townsend (£6.0m) could prove to be a steady supplier of assists for Crystal Palace this season and offer a differential route into their attack, with just 2.6 percent ownership. The Englishman has impressed both in the back-end of last term and during pre-season, so considering the strength of the Eagles’ fixtures, there’s every reason to believe he is worth investing in.

In the final 10 Gameweeks of 2017/18, no midfielder in the league created more big chances than Townsend’s five. Furthermore, no midfielder from a club outside the top six managed more passes received in the final third between Gameweek 29 and 38, while only one (Riyad Mahrez) registered more touches in that area of the pitch. In that time-frame he laid on three assists, but more ruthless finishing from colleague Wilfried Zaha (£7.0m) at the start of this campaign could help improve on that.

In fact, that has largely been the case in pre-season with no Palace player involved in more goals than Townsend. He provided six assists during the summer months, which is actually more than any other Premier League player managed to accrue during their respective off-seasons.

The Eagles also have the fixtures to get the best out of Townsend. No team ranks higher for attack than them on our Season Ticker in the first six Gameweeks of 2018/19, with trips to Fulham, Watford and Huddersfield alongside home meetings with Liverpool, Southampton and Newcastle.


Ownership: 1.1 percent

Bournemouth midfielder Ryan Fraser (£5.5m) could prove a shrewd investment at the start of the season as an alternative route into the Cherries’ attack.

Eddie Howe’s men have some appealing fixtures in the early part of the season which has led to 7.2 percent of managers looking to Josh King (£6.5m) for their forward lines. They host newly-promoted Cardiff on the opening day of the season before Everton and Leicester come to the Vitality Stadium. Trips to West Ham, Chelsea and Burnley are a little tougher but could still offer goals for this particularly attacking side.

Fraser can provde a cheaper alternative to King while still being central to the Bournemouth attacking output.

In the last six Gameweeks of 2017/18, only four midfielders created more chances than Fraser. Across the course of the season, he was Bournemouth’s most creative player, with 38 key passes played, at a rate of 1.6 per game. He also topped the Cherries’ charts for touches in the final third (23.5m), passes received there (14.7), successful crosses (0.7) and successful passes in the attacking third (10.5).

There is also the potential for finding the net to go alongside his assist credentials. No Bournemouth player had a higher goal conversion rate. He scored 16.9 percent of the 30 opportunities that fell his way, with King behind him on 15.7 and Wilson on 15.1.

Fraser’s strength does largely lie in his ability to create goals, though. In pre-season he was the provider of four assists, adding one of his own strikes to take his goal involvement tally of five – the same as King.

The form of the Norwegian striker also heightens Fraser’s appeal. He found the net four times over the summer and looks set for a good spell now that the Premier League is back. If he does take his chances at the beginning of the campaign, there’s a good chance he’ll be helping Fraser register assist points.

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3,776 Comments Post a Comment
  1. TheJoker
      11 days, 3 hours ago

      Please RMT:



      1. nichodinho
        • 1 Year
        11 days, 1 hour ago

        Like it, nice and balanced 🙂

    • Gentle_Turks
        11 days, 3 hours ago

        Best 4.5 mid?

        Stephens the overwhelming favourite at the moment with 12% ownership, but will he play?

        1. Phillips
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          11 days, 3 hours ago

          I've had Gunnarsson for a while but tempted to switch to McDonald.

          Seems like it's Stephens' place to lose.

          1. Gentle_Turks
              11 days, 3 hours ago

              Cheers. Why McDonald?

        2. carococo
          • 1 Year
          11 days, 3 hours ago

          pressure's on after last year one both my leagues and really not a clue what I'm doing other than researching online!

          What do you think?

          Foster (Speroni)
          Mendy Robertson Davies (Kabasele, Peltier)
          Neves Moura Salah Fraser (Stephens)
          Aguero Lacazette Firmino

          Thanks! Cx

          1. carococo
            • 1 Year
            11 days, 3 hours ago

            *winning :/

        3. Lukaku91
          • 2 Years
          11 days, 3 hours ago

          A) Neves
          B) Cairney
          C) Hughes

        4. Lukaku91
          • 2 Years
          11 days, 3 hours ago

          is going without salah crazy? I have mane firmino and sanchez


          1. Gentle_Turks
              11 days, 3 hours ago


          2. Gentle_Turks
              11 days, 3 hours ago

              A. Peltier


              B. Cedric


            • leo123
              • 4 Years
              11 days, 3 hours ago

              Hi, first RTM this season, please help !

              McCarthy (Fabianski )
              Robertson Coleman Mendy (Dunk WanB )
              Salah B Silva Moura Fraiser (Cairney)
              Aguero Firmino King

              Also thinking about
              United def, Lowton, Richarlison, Houdson Odoi, Lacazette

              Appreciate any help

            • gullibaldurs
                11 days, 3 hours ago

                Last pick of my team.

                Sanchez or save 1m and go Mane/Eriksen?

                Can't for the life of me decide.

              • BigMeZzY
                  11 days, 2 hours ago

                  Pro League - Win cash - 3558990-930210

                • neilddd
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 2 Years
                  11 days, 2 hours ago

                  very tempted by KDB now

                  A) Mane + Aubameyang
                  B) KDB + Firmino

                • Boleyn Boy
                  • 8 Years
                  11 days, 2 hours ago

                  Afternoon All,

                  Please let me know how this looks and any changes needed. Thanks in advance:

                  Mendy - van Dijk - S.Cook
                  Salah(c) - Sanchez - Mkhitaryan - Richarlison
                  Aguero - Arnautovic - King

                  Subs - Fabianski - Wan-Bissaka - Stephens - Peltier (0.5 ITB)

                • Shifty17
                    11 days, 2 hours ago

                    Hey. New here. Please RMT, any help welcomed.

                    Option A
                    Ederson (Hamer)
                    Robertson, Tomkins, Keane (Wan-Bis, Holebas)
                    Salah, Mane, BSilva, Cairney (Hudson-Odoi)
                    Aguero, Lacazette, King

                    Option B
                    Ederson (Hamer)
                    Robertson, Mee, Wan-Bis (Bellerin, Peltier)
                    Salah, Mane, BSilva, Rich (Hudson-Odoi)
                    Aguero, Zaha, King
                    0.5 ITB

                  • Deeney-is-a-god
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 2 Years
                    11 days, 2 hours ago

                    Comes down to this

                    Rich and jota
                    Bsilva and fraser

                    Already got king and tosun

                    1. Rodgers's CHARACTER
                      • 3 Years
                      11 days, 57 mins ago

                      Rich and jota

                  • Rayz_Raymond
                    • 5 Years
                    11 days, 1 hour ago

                    Best 5.0m Defender?

                  • cheeky_ash
                    • 7 Years
                    11 days, 1 hour ago

                    Guys....need a recommendation for 6.0M or below midfielder....currently on Schurrle

                    1. CLASS OF 78
                        11 days, 35 mins ago

                        I think Townsend (6), McArthur (5) and Fraser (5.5) are all better shouts given end of season and pre-season form and also with Fulham being new and with new players, including Schurrle who wasn't that amazing last season either.

                    2. Rodgers's CHARACTER
                      • 3 Years
                      11 days, 59 mins ago

                      A) Sanchez & Cairney
                      B) Mahrez & Maddison

                    3. Badgerharri88
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      11 days, 42 mins ago

                      my sky sport team please rate

                      gk pickford

                      cb trippier
                      cb maguire
                      cb christensen

                      mf lingard
                      mf foden
                      mf fabinho
                      mf ki

                      fw aguero
                      fw mitrovic
                      fw salah

                    4. team77
                      • 4 Years
                      11 days, 35 mins ago

                      Thoughts/ suggestions?

                      My starting 11 is

                      Stones VVD Trippier Stones
                      Salah KDB Townsend Neves
                      Aguero Firmino (C)

                      Does Stones seem likely to be in the City starting 11?

                    5. Deulofail
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 2 Years
                      10 days, 23 hours ago

                      I currently have TAA (WHU) and Sakho (ful) in my XI with the following bench order:

                      1. Hughes (BHA)
                      2. Mendy (ars)
                      3. AWB (ful)

                      Is there anything you'd change here and why please? Many thanks

                    6. Down with this sort of thin…
                        10 days, 22 hours ago

                        Tosun or Mitrovic? Or other striker around that price? Thanks!

                      • Ruud000
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 1 Year
                        9 days, 20 hours ago

                        Has everyone’s FPL id changed?

                        Thought it always stayed the same!

                      • Chaste
                        • 3 Years
                        8 days, 22 hours ago

                        89 post baps,most here got a good score by the looks of it