We are doubling on the Liverpool midfield in the Blank Gameweek 31 Scout Picks.
Much has been made of how to triple-up on the Reds’ options as they travel to face Fulham this weekend, and we’ve settled on the attacking side of the debate.
Meanwhile, we’ve selected two options from Chelsea, Bournemouth and West Ham in our 3-4-3 formation, which came in £0.9m under budget.
Three of our Scout Squad pundits selected Lukasz Fabianski (£4.8m) as the best goalkeeper option for Blank Gameweek 31, and it’s not hard to see why. Huddersfield come to the London Stadium with just eight goals in 14 away matches this season, the worst in the league. While West Ham’s defence has struggled with clean sheets this season, the Terriers are in a league of their own for troubles in front of goal. In the last four matches, they are bottom of the league for goal attempts inside the box, shots on target, big chances and goal conversion rate.
David Luiz (£5.9m) is our chosen representative from the Chelsea defence that may have had its own struggles recently, but it does face an appealing attack in Blank Gameweek 31. Over the last four home matches, Everton have had the lowest number of overall efforts on goal and big chances. Meanwhile, Luiz himself has had more shots inside the penalty box than any other Chelsea defender since Gameweek 26.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (£5.5m) looks like the best Liverpool defender to own for Blank Gameweek 31. For his price and involvement in the attacking phase, there is not much to dislike about the Reds’ right-back. In the last four matches, he has created more chances than Virgil van Dijk and Andrew Robertson, shooting more often than the Scottish international in that time too. Crucial to Alexander-Arnold’s appeal is the fact that he is a big part of the corners and direct free-kick pecking order. Meanwhile, Fulham
As we are not a fan of Huddersfield’s attack, it should be no surprise to see us double-up on the West Ham defence for Blank Gameweek 31. Declan Rice (£4.7m) was the most popular representative among the Scout Squad submissions, with three of our pundits picking him out. The youngster offers more than his cheaper colleagues Angelo Ogbonna and Issa Diop given his role in central midfield and threat from set pieces. No West Ham defender has more shots in the box than Rice in the last four home matches.
Mohamed Salah (£13.4m) may have struggled to live up to his potential in recent weeks but a trip to Fulham looks like the perfect opportunity for the Egyptian to dispel the misfortune of recent Premier League outings. No side has allowed more shots inside the box in the last four home matches as Fulham, which should afford Liverpool plenty of opportunities on Sunday afternoon. Salah himself may look out of sorts but out of active Blank Gameweek 31 midfielders, nobody has more shots on target in the last four away matches as him.
The case for Eden Hazard (£10.9m) this weekend certainly looks decent, hence why all of our Scout Squad pundits included him in their selections. In the last four away matches, he has created three times as many chances as Salah and recorded more goal attempts in the box than him too. Meanwhile, Everton’s defence is not looking too sharp. Only Fulham have conceded more shots in the box over the last four home matches as the Toffees, who have allowed more big chances than the Cottagers in that sample of games too.
Sadio Mané (£9.9m) is the final component of our Liverpool triple-up after he was selected as the second-best midfield option for Blank Gameweek 31 by all four of our Scout Squad pundits. Obviously, he’ll face that same awful Fulham defence that Salah will, but over the last seven Gameweeks, Mané has outscored his Egyptian colleague by a score of 58 points to 26. While he has only scored one away Premier League goal since Gameweek 4, the Senegalese international was capable of netting a brace in a high-pressure Champions League tie at Bayern Munich on Wednesday night, and will have much less in his way at Craven Cottage this weekend.
We are backing Ryan Fraser (£6.2m) to keep his place in the Bournemouth team despite missing some training this week. Eddie Howe says “he should be okay” to replicate his double-figure score from Gameweek 30 when Newcastle come to the Vitality. While Fraser has offered little over the last four Gameweeks, the return of Callum Wilson supercharged him at the John Smith’s Stadium, and in his last four with the striker, he has been recording better minutes per chance and minutes per chance created than his last four without him. Meanwhile, Newcastle come to Dorset in the bottom six for both goal attempts conceded in the box and big chances allowed in the last four away matches.
With five goals in as many Premier League games for Jamie Vardy (£9.0m), it’s no wonder he was so popular among the Scout Squad panel this weekend. All but one of them selected him as the second-best option among the forwards as he prepares to travel to Burnley. The underlying statistics don’t hugely stand out for Vardy but then never normally do, this is a man who regularly needs just one shot per game to get himself a goal. The forward has always had a high conversion rate, flying in the face of his underlying data. After going on a decent unbeaten run after Christmas, Burnley
Callum Wilson (£6.4m) was tipped as the best Blank Gameweek 31 forward by every single member of the Scout Squad panel. Of forwards playing this weekend, nobody has more shots on target in their last four matches as the Bournemouth man, who made an electric return from injury in a 2-0 win at Huddersfield last week. As already mentioned, the Newcastle defence, which will be without Fabian Schär through suspension and Jamaal Lascelles because of an injury, looks like it could concede a couple of goals at Bournemouth.
Ashley Barnes (£5.7m) has been providing excellent value for the last eight Gameweeks, scoring five times in that run at a fantastic price. Despite his owners experiencing steady returns on their investment, the Burnley man is still only in 3.8% of overall teams making him an incredible differential option. We fancy him to continue his Fantasy appeal this week as he faces a Leicester side without a clean sheet on the road since Gameweek 21, having found himself inside the top five for expected goals over the last four matches among players with a fixture this weekend.
Issa Diop (£4.4m) looks like a great budget option to help Fantasy managers either double-up or triple-up on the West Ham defence this week as they prepare to host a misfiring Huddersfield attack.
James Maddison (£6.8m) could continue his run of two assists in the last three Gameweeks when Leicester travel to Burnley. Only two sides have conceded more attempts from set plays than the Clarets in home matches this season, in which Maddison has a big role for the Foxes.
Salomón Rondón (£5.9m) came close to inclusion in the Scout Picks XI for Blank Gameweek 31 as he has shown excellent form over the last four matches. In that time, no player with a fixture this weekend has more shots in the box or on target as the Newcastle man.
Representing the community against the Scout Picks in Blank Gameweek 31 is Trigg. They have opted for a 4-3-3 formation
The community member who beats our picks by the biggest margin over the campaign will win a £100 Amazon Voucher and a place in our Contributors and Moderators League for the following season.
fclackless‘s winning margin of 33 points (77-44) in Gameweek 10 is still the current target to beat.
Become a Member and access our data
Memberships for the 2018/19 campaign are now available for the price of just £10.
Join now to get the following:
- Plot your transfer strategies using the fully interactive Season Ticker.
- Get projections for every Premier League player provided by the Rate My Team statistical model.
- Use Rate My Team throughout the season to guide your selections and transfers.
- Get access to over 130+ exclusive members articles over the season.
- Analyse our OPTA-powered statistic tables specifically tailored for Fantasy Football Managers.
- Use our exclusive tool to build custom stats tables from over 100 OPTA player and team stats.
- View heatmaps and expected goals data for every player.
- Use our powerful comparison tool to analyse players head-to-head.