This weekly series puts the spotlight on three players who all have an ownership of 5% or under in Fantasy Premier League.
As we enter the business end of the season, a considered differential pick could provide a welcome boost for those Fantasy managers chasing a mini-league deficit or striving to improve their overall rank.
All three of our selections have home fixtures this weekend, with two of them also having matches in Blank Gameweeks 31 and 33.
Gonzalo Higuain (£9.6m)
FPL ownership: 4.3%
Chelsea’s Argentinean striker is still in differential territory despite the Blues enjoying fixtures in Blank Gameweeks 31 and 33 and, potentially but far from confirmed, a possible Double Gameweek 32.
Higuain looks a particularly enticing premium forward option for those without one or more of their chips and looking for a way to navigate through the choppy waters of the blanks and doubles ahead.
Even for FPL bosses with a full complement of chips, Higuain is an appealing candidate for their front-lines.
Higuain has scored three goals in his last four league matches and has recorded more shots in that quartet of games than any other FPL forward when they are filtered by the same criteria.
No player in his position recorded more attempts on goal or shots in the box in Gameweek 29, either.
The former Juventus forward, along with Eden Hazard (£10.8m), was rested on Thursday night as Chelsea saw off Dynamo Kyiv in the UEFA Europa League.
This weekend’s opponents, Wolves, haven’t kept a clean sheet away from home since Gameweek 8.
Michy Batshuayi (£6.5m)
FPL ownership: 1.6%
Not really an option for those Fantasy managers building a team for Blank Gameweek 31 given that Palace are in FA Cup action that weekend, Batshuayi is nevertheless a noteworthy differential for FPL bosses who are adopting a different approach – such as using the Free Hit chip in Gameweek 31.
Batshuayi enjoys home fixtures against Brighton & Hove Albion and Huddersfield Town either side of that blank, while the Eagles could very well enjoy a Double Gameweek 32 depending on what happens in their FA Cup quarter-final tie against Watford.
The downside to any Palace assets, whatever the chip strategy, is that they could very well blank in Gameweek 33, too. That, unfortunately, is something we won’t know until a week on Saturday.
In isolation and as a short-term punt, Batshuayi is an intriguing option.
Batshuayi’s minutes-per-chance average is the same as Sergio Aguero‘s (£11.8m) over the last six Gameweeks.
The on-loan Chelsea forward has three attacking returns in his five appearances for Palace (two of which were as a substitute), including a goal in the 3-1 win over Burnley last weekend.
The Eagles have also scored more goals over the last eight Gameweeks than all Premier League teams bar Manchester City, while Roy Hodgson’s side haven’t failed to find the net in any of their league fixtures this calendar year.
Brighton, Palace’s opponents on Saturday, have conceded two or more goals in each of their last five away league matches.
Ben Chilwell (£5.0m)
FPL ownership: 2.5%
Our championing of Leicester’s full-backs over the past few weeks has sounded like a broken record, particularly when it flies in the face of the Foxes’ defensive form: it is now nine Gameweeks since City registered a clean sheet in the Premier League.
Nevertheless, Brendan Rodgers’ side sit top of our Season Ticker for defence from Gameweeks 30-34 as they enjoy five fixtures against sides in the bottom half of the table.
The Foxes also have unaffected matches in Blank Gameweeks 31 and 33.
Despite their lack of shut-outs, Leicester are comfortably in the top half of the table for fewest goal attempts, shots in the box and big chances conceded over the last six Gameweeks – despite facing Liverpool, Spurs, Manchester United and free-scoring Crystal Palace in that time.
While those stats are to be taken with a pinch of salt due to the management change, only Manchester City allowed fewer goal attempts than Leicester in Rodgers’ first Gameweek in charge.
Much uncertainty surrounds which formation Rodgers will adopt going forward, but the hope from a Chilwell owner’s perspective is that the ex-Celtic boss continues with the wing-back system he used at Vicarage Road.
Chilwell, owned by 700,000 fewer FPL managers than Ricardo Pereira (£5.4m), ranked fifth among defenders for touches in the final third last weekend.
The Leicester left-back is joint-second among defenders for that statistic over the course of the season and fifth for chances created.
Fulham, Leicester’s opponents this weekend, have the second-worst record among Premier League sides for chances conceded from their right flank in 2018/19, meanwhile.