Once again the differentials stole the show as three players with an ownership of 3% or less ended up among the top six points-scorers for Gameweek 6.
This demonstrates that there’s more out there than having to plod along with the standard template team. Of note, Nicolas Pépé (£9.4m) did this column proud as he took and scored a penalty for Arsenal, thus ensuring that at least one of our differentials per week has delivered a Fantasy return since the opening weekend.
Can we continue the run? Here are three low-owned players to take into account for Gameweek 7:
GW7 opponent: Bournemouth (a)
There aren’t many midfielders priced at £6.0m or less that have the pedigree to score goals on a fairly regular basis and, going by the form book, it’s becoming hard to ignore Andriy Yarmolenko (£5.9m).
Had it not been for a serious injury last October, he would have been a mainstay in West Ham’s team during the last campaign. His international acumen is also very respectable, with 36 goals in 81 senior appearances for Ukraine. He’s scored two goals in his last three Premier League games and is the Hammers’ joint-second outfield FPL points-scorer, despite not playing at all during Gameweek 1.
Barring any injuries, Yarmolenko ought to be a regular starter. The fact that he has yet to play a full match since his return is a minor concern but also unsurprising as a way of him being managed accordingly.
He’s playing in an advanced role, as you would expect, with 83 of his 160 touches from the final third. West Ham are due to face Bournemouth this weekend, who have yet to keep any clean sheets. This should bode well for Yarmolenko as both he and Sebastien Haller (£7.4m) will look to exploit the vulnerabilities in the Cherries’ backline.
Gameweek 7 opponent: Aston Villa (a)
Prior to last weekend, you would have been forgiven to think that Ashley Barnes (£6.6m) was the only striker leading the line for Burnley this season. After all, Chris Wood (£6.2m) had failed to register any attacking returns until his brace at Carrow Road.
Priced at £0.4m less than Barnes and with considerably lower ownership, Wood is an alternative option into Burnley’s attack.
Despite having 11 fewer shots on goal than Barnes this season, he boasts a better shooting accuracy than him (50% v 43%). Looking at last season, Wood only scored two fewer league goals than his strike partner and you would expect them to complement each other up top.
Like Barnes, Wood has started every league game this season so in theory shouldn’t be at risk of rotation. This is all the more apparent as Burnley don’t have any European commitments this season and were knocked out of the League Cup in August.
Between now and Gameweek 14, the Clarets have a generous fixture run during which they only face one team that finished in the top five last season. This could act as a platform for Wood to score more goals.
Of course, he’s never scored more than ten goals in a Premier League campaign but due to the reasons stated he can be a potential short-term option in the weeks ahead.
GW7 opponent: Burnley (h)
Aston Villa were unlucky not to get a positive result against Arsenal having been 2-1 up until the final ten minutes of the match.
The Villans have so far scored six Premier League goals this season and that’s in no small part due to Wesley Moraes (£6.0m).
Among strikers priced at £6.0m or under, none have had more shots on target than him (seven) and he is joint-top in that bracket for goals scored (two) since Gameweek 1. Unless Aston Villa sign someone during the January transfer window, he should be their main striker until the end of the season – which also makes him a viable option.
Despite receiving ample support from the likes of Jack Grealish (£5.9m) and John McGinn (£5.7m), the concern so far for Villa has been their lack of goals scored, which has been costly and is partly why they currently are 18th in the table.
However, it’s not all doom and gloom. If they are going to score, Wesley will be possibly involved in some shape or form. They could very easily double their goals tally in their next three league games against Burnley, Norwich and Brighton.
This could serve as a potential platform for Wesley to become the next bandwagon if more of his shots on target can be converted into goals.
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Lessons learned from Gameweek 6:
- Southampton 1-3 Bournemouth
- Leicester City 2-1 Tottenham Hotspur
- Burnley 2-0 Norwich City
- Everton 0-2 Sheffield United
- Manchester City 8-0 Watford
- Newcastle United 0-0 Brighton and Hove Albion
- Crystal Palace 1-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers
- West Ham United 2-0 Manchester United
- Arsenal 3-2 Aston Villa
- Chelsea 1-2 Liverpool