Is it worth paying extra for Wilson over King in FPL?

Callum Wilson (£8.0m) has been handed a significant price rise in Fantasy Premier League ahead of 2019/20 and is now the second-most-expensive FPL forward who doesn’t represent a ‘big six’ club.

The price hike was inevitable after his fine 2018/19 in which he banked 26 attacking returns, more than in his previous three seasons combined.

Wilson’s points-per-match average of 5.6 was beaten by only three other FPL forwards (the £11.0m+ trio) and better than any of his Bournemouth teammates.

While Wilson has been handed a £2.0m price rise, Joshua King (£6.5m) costs exactly what he did 12 months ago.

There’ll be many Fantasy managers, then, who will be seriously considering the cheaper King as their Bournemouth coverage from Gameweek 1 onwards.

Investment in the Cherries’ FPL assets certainly looks appealing from the off, as they face all three promoted clubs and only one of last season’s top four in the opening ten Gameweeks – although matches against Everton and Leicester may prove tricky.

With that in mind, we will run a comparison of the two Bournemouth forwards in this article.

This piece would usually only be available to Members but we are temporarily unlocking it to give non-subscribers an idea of the type of analysis we produce behind the paywall.

The ‘King v Wilson’ idea was proposed by The FPL Physio, FPLFoxy and Man Getting Hit By Football on Twitter and on our site.

2018/19 FPL Data


PlayerAppsGoalsAssistsPoints per matchDouble-digit haulsBlanks
Wilson29 starts, 1 sub app14125.66/30 (20%)15/30 (50%)
King34 starts, 1 sub app1234.04/35 (11.4%)25/35 (71.4%)

Wilson was, quite simply, a more reliable option than King last season.

Wilson has a reputation for streakiness (six blanks and three double-digit hauls in the last nine Gameweeks an example of that) but banked more returns of ten or more points and blanked on fewer occasions, too.

King’s points-per-match average was some way short of Wilson’s, meanwhile.


PlayerAppsGoalsAssistsPoints per matchDouble-digit haulsBlanks
Wilson15 starts564.81/15 (6.7%)7/15 (46.7%)
King18 starts935.33/18 (16.7%)10/18 (55.6%)

Interestingly, King was more than a match for Wilson at the Vitality Stadium.

The Norway international averaged more points per match than his strike partner and racked up more double-digit hauls.

The difference essentially came down to penalties: four of the five spot-kicks that King scored last season were in home games.

Again, though, Wilson was more consistent, returning in a higher percentage of his home fixtures.


PlayerAppsGoalsAssistsPoints per matchDouble-digit haulsBlanks
Wilson14 starts, 1 sub app966.45/15 (33.3%)8/15 (53.3%)
King16 starts, 1 sub app302.71/17 (5.9%)15/17 (88.2%)

There was no contest between the pair on the road, with King blanking in all but two of his 17 appearances.

Wilson was a rarity among Premier League players in that he was more productive on his travels than on his own patch.

2018/19 broke the trend of recent seasons: King had actually scored more goals away than at home in his previous two campaigns, while the opposite was true of Wilson.

v Non-‘Big Six’ Sides

PlayerAppsGoalsAssistsPoints per matchDouble-digit haulsBlanks
Wilson22 starts, 1 sub app12126.4
6/23 (26.1%)10/23 (43.5%)
King24 starts924.33/24 (12.5%)16/24 (66.7%)

Given that Bournemouth play only one of the ‘big six’ in the first seven Gameweeks, it may pay dividends to analyse their strikers’ form against the also-rans of the Premier League in 2018/19.

Wilson again comes out on top: all bar two of his 26 attacking returns were against sides ranked seventh or below.

The England international registered more double-digit hauls and fewer blanks than King against these opponents.

Wilson v King: Heatmaps

Touch heatmaps for Callum Wilson (left) and Josh King (right) in 2018/19

The heatmaps above underline what we know already about the Bournemouth strike pair in that Wilson tends to be the more advanced of the two (see the average position charts in any number of the Cherries’ games last season).

While Wilson remains fairly central, King has a tendency to drift wide – note the mass of red down each flank and the left in particular.

Wilson v King: Goal Threat

Underlying goal threat statistics for Callum Wilson (left) and Josh King (right) in 2018/19. Most figures given are averages per appearance.

While Wilson has a definite edge, there isn’t a great deal to separate the pair in terms of goal threat.

Their rate of shots is pretty similar, although the better quality of Wilson’s chances (shots in the box, big chances etc) is notable.

Wilson had 15 shots from inside the six-yard box last season (only two players had more), while King had seven.

As we have discussed, Wilson and King were well matched at home in terms of FPL returns.

Wilson was head and shoulders above his strike partner for goals on the road but, looking at the underlying stats only in away matches, King fares well:

Underlying goal threat statistics for Callum Wilson (left) and Josh King (right) in 2018/19 away matches. Most figures given are averages per appearance.

King actually averaged more penalty box touches, shots on goal and efforts from inside the opposition area on the road last season, although Wilson again had a significant advantage when it came to ‘big chances’.

Only five players had more shots from inside the six-yard box than King (five) on the road, one of whom was Wilson (ten).

Wilson v King: Creativity

Underlying distribution statistics for Callum Wilson (left) and Josh King (right) in 2018/19. Most figures given are averages per appearance.

Again, there was little to separate the pair when it comes to creativity.

Their minutes-per-chance created averages were similar, with Wilson having a slight edge when it came to big chances created.

Isolating only away games, King bettered Wilson for almost every underlying distribution statistic apart from the one that matters, of course: actual assists:

Underlying distribution statistics for Callum Wilson (left) and Josh King (right) in 2018/19 away matches. Most figures given are averages per appearance.

Wilson v King: Expected Goal Data

Home Matches
Expected goal involvement data for Callum Wilson and Josh King in 2018/19 home matches.

King’s better FPL record at home last season is played out in his expected goal involvement data above, with both Bournemouth strikers slightly exceeding expectation (xGI deltas of +2.00 and+1.37).

Away Matches
Expected goal involvement data for Callum Wilson and Josh King in 2018/19 away matches.

This is the really interesting one.

Wilson’s xGI on the road was indeed higher than King’s but only by a similar margin that the Norwegian had at the Vitality.

What’s notable is their respective xGI deltas: only Wilfried Zaha (£7.0m) ‘overachieved’ more than Wilson (+5.34) in away games last season, while not a single Premier League player underperformed to the same extent as King (-3.39).

That would suggest the gap between their respective FPL returns on their travels (Wilson 15, King three) ought to have been closer.

Wilson’s record with Fraser

Half of Callum Wilson’s goals were set up by Ryan Fraser in 2018/19.

Wilson and Ryan Fraser (£7.5m) made Premier League history last season.

The pair combined for 12 goals in total, with Fraser assisting Wilson on seven occasions and Wilson returning the favour five times.

No other two players have combined for as many goals in a 38-match Premier League season.

Not one of King’s goals was assisted by Fraser.

It would stand to reason that King wouldn’t benefit from the Scotland international’s creativity as much, given that the Norwegian has a tendency to drift over to the same side of the pitch that the left-winger operates from (see the heatmaps).

Fraser’s crosses and passes, then, will generally be of greater benefit to the striker who is more prominent in the centre of the box, i.e. Wilson.

Being supplied by a player who created a staggering 28 big chances last season (nine more than any other Fantasy asset) and fired over more crosses (271) than any other midfielder is obviously an advantage that Wilson has.

Final Thoughts

Joshua King is Bournemouth’s first-choice penalty taker as the Premier League gets ready to roll out VAR for the first time.

A price rise was justified for Wilson after his exploits in 2018/19 but the data suggests he and King aren’t too mismatched in terms of overall attacking potential.

Wilson being the more advanced of the two means he will likely continue to get more ‘big chances’, while his telepathic partnership with Fraser is also a boon.

The fact that he blanked on fewer occasions than King and delivered more double-digit hauls is significant, too.

If the pair were to repeat their points-per-match averages of last season at the prices they are now, Wilson would still win out on the value-for-money metric (points per match divided by price):

PlayerPricePoints Per Match (PPM)PPM/Price

King’s misfortune in having the worst xGI delta of all Premier League players in away games is worth noting, though, and a player of his quality surely won’t ‘underachieve’ to the same extent again.

The Norwegian is also (presumably still) the first choice for penalties at Bournemouth, which could partially compensate for Wilson’s superior threat from open play.

It’s right that Wilson now costs more in FPL but £1.5m is quite the difference this season when we Fantasy managers have to make savings to accommodate the premium options elsewhere.

For those looking at a 5-4-1/4-5-1 with a cheap-ish striker up front, then King certainly fits the bill.

It isn’t just King and Wilson who could ‘cover’ the Bournemouth attack in their opening fixtures, of course.

Fraser delivered more points than either of these two options last season and is available for half a million cheaper than Wilson.

We’ll have more on the Scottish winger over the summer, starting with a Numbers Game piece on Bournemouth next week.

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1,089 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Bakeyournoodle
    • 8 Years
    2 years, 6 months ago

    Kane or PEA (in draft)?

    Sterling, Aguero, Mane and Salah all gone.

    1. The 5% Team
      • 3 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago


      Why would you do a draft already? Or mock draft?

  2. Nikolai Volkoff
    • 5 Years
    2 years, 6 months ago

    Dendonker or Gundogan as 5th MID?

    1. el polako
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago


      1. Nikolai Volkoff
        • 5 Years
        2 years, 6 months ago

        or Noble?

        1. el polako
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          2 years, 6 months ago

          Could do, someone here pisted link to youtube video "Why Jorginho have no assists" - worth watching.

          Man can play great pass just unlucky.

    2. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago

      Donkey has far less competition and will get far more minutes

    3. G B
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago


      For a 5th mid, you want a reliable 2-3pts from the bench, and Gundogan isn't reliable to start. And Dendoncker only got 1 YC last season, which is a huge plus for a 5th mid.

    4. Party time
        2 years, 6 months ago


    5. Sid1891
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago

      Deulofeu or Maddison ?

      Thanks in advance

      Taa Robo Digne Ake Laporte
      Zaha Salah Sterling Maddison

      4.0 4.5 4.5 4.5

      0.0 itb

      1. Arn De Gothia
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        2 years, 6 months ago


      2. Ron_Swanson
        • 11 Years
        2 years, 6 months ago


      3. nisag17
        • 12 Years
        2 years, 6 months ago

        Del because if fixtures

    6. Fernando Torres
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago

      Will Joe Gomez Start?

      1. G B
        • 10 Years
        2 years, 6 months ago

        If he starts in the Community Shield after a solid pre-season, I would say yes. Impossible to say at this stage though.

      2. nisag17
        • 12 Years
        2 years, 6 months ago

        He should be first choice barring fitness issues. But he will be subject to a small amount of rotation as Matip and Lovern will be given some gamtime now and then.

    7. Arn De Gothia
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago

      I start to like this, some small tweeks only

      Ederson (4,0)

      Dunk / Taylor / Diop / Robbo / Coleman

      Salah / Sterling / Frasier / Siggy / Kante

      Murray / King / Deulofeu

      Gives ok rotation on 4,5 defs and time to see e few GW:s what needs to change. Right?

    8. New Post
    9. BooYaKasha
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago


      Sterling doing my head in, fear tactics...

      Would you go for:
      a. KDB, B.Silva, Wilson
      b. Sterling, Brooks, 7.0m Forward (can't find anyone decent)

      Also have Salah, King

    10. GgeorgeG
      • 8 Years
      2 years, 6 months ago

      Which option would you go for?

      0 ITB


      Walker | Digne | Van Dijk | Wan-Bissaka

      Salah | De Bruyne | Sigurdsson

      Aguero | King | Calvert-Lewis

      Subs: cheap/rubbish

      0.5m ITB


      Walker | Ake | Van Dijk | Wan-Bissaka

      Mane | De Bruyne | Sigurdsson | Perez

      Aguero | Calvert-Lewis

      Possible changes: Van Dijk to TAA/Robertson or Mane to Sterling and Walker to David Luiz

      0 ITB


      Walker | Ake | Van Dijk

      Mane | Salah | Sigurdsson | Perez

      Vardy | King | Calvert-Lewis

      Bench: Wan-Bissaka; rest low value

      Possible changes: downgrade Wan-Bissaka to have 1.5M ITB to: King>Wilson; Ryan>Ederson; Walker>Laporte, Van Dijk>TAA/Robertson and Mane>Sterling

      Thanks in advance!

    11. Party time
        2 years, 6 months ago

        Official: Marko Arnautovic now in China town

      • Scott S
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        2 years, 6 months ago

        Quick question: How to you find the Blanks stat?

      • taylormccormack
        • 6 Years
        2 years, 5 months ago

        This has made me switch to King - although it may change back to Wilson