In his latest Pro Pundits article, Ash – aka ‘Chief’ – looks at how to reinvest the cash freed up by Sergio Aguero’s unavailability.
It can seem disappointing when your second substitute unexpectedly racks up a double-digit haul only to be inevitably lost on the bench with the completion of the Gameweek. But that’s exactly what happened to me and hundreds of thousands of FPL managers with Todd Cantwell (£4.6m) in Gameweek 13.
He hadn’t registered an attacking return since Gameweek 5 and had not been playing many full matches of late, so it almost seemed like a no-brainer in not starting him for Norwich City’s match at Goodison Park.
If anything, Cantwell’s ten points just made Diego Rico’s (£4.3m) score of zero and Mason Mount’s (£6.7m) one-point cameo stand out even more. Jamie Vardy (£9.7m) did the business again with his armband duties, but then again, it seemed that everyone on Twitter captained him, so he was hardly an out-of-the-box pick.
With hindsight, my FPL team deserved a red arrow after only four of my starting players registered Fantasy returns. Yet thanks to Frederic Guilbert’s (£4.4m) eight points on Monday night my overall rank only shifted downwards by 1,500 places, which is practically a grey arrow in my eyes.
Once again, I have two free transfers at hand to refine my team with December’s fixture rush around the corner.
In some ways, Sergio Aguero’s (£11.9m) injury is a blessing in disguise for my FPL team. Pep Guardiola confirmed that the Argentinean striker has been ruled out for at least a few matches, so I can sell Aguero without having to worry about him tormenting Newcastle United’s defence as he has done so in the past.
In truth, he was bound to be rotated with Gabriel Jesus (£9.5m) anyway – I just wanted to give him one more chance against Chelsea.
I will almost certainly make two transfers this time around, even three if I can justify it.
Along with Aguero, I will gladly sell Andriy Yarmolenko (£5.8m). He was my first substitute last weekend and, to my surprise, the Ukraine international started against Tottenham on Saturday. Unfortunately, he was subbed off before he could register a Fantasy return and his form between Gameweeks 4-7 is long gone. Put simply, I need to sell him before his value drops again.
I may not make my FPL transfers until Friday afternoon but there are a number of options that I’m thinking over at the moment.
Jesus and Dele Alli (£8.4m) for Aguero and Yarmolenko seems like one pathway ahead. However, Jesus has struggled of late even when starting matches and could there be more value in Tottenham Hotspur’s other attackers, as opposed to Alli? A hat-trick for England over the international break and three goals under his new head coach suggests that Harry Kane (£10.8m) has rediscovered his form for club and country. Spurs need to win league matches and he could be the key to their success under Jose Mourinho.
Therefore, I’m also mulling over the possibility of selling Aguero and Yarmolenko for Kane and Lucas Moura (£7.0m) for a Tottenham double-up. I have question marks over Moura, however, so Youri Tielemans (£6.7m) could be a safer choice. Getting in Kevin De Bruyne (£10.2m) and Raul Jimenez (£7.4m) has also crossed my mind.
As for the option of converting my two free transfers into a ‘mini-Wildcard’ (two free transfers and a -4 hit), I’m looking at selling Matthew Lowton (£4.5m) for a Crystal Palace defender.
This may seem odd as the Eagles have not kept many clean sheets recently but I think that may change soon, especially when considering that between Gameweeks 14 and 30, Palace only play one of last year’s top four once. This prospect seems almost too good to ignore, though I might wait one more week on it. In any case, I’m confident that Crystal Palace defensive assets may become fashionable again in the weeks ahead.
I’ve been very fortunate with two back-to-back captain hauls with Vardy. It almost makes sense for me to trust him once again with armband duties as Leicester host an Everton team lacking in form.
But with that said, Sadio Mane (£12.2m) at home to Brighton is also a good shout, as is Anthony Martial (£7.8m) against Aston Villa at Old Trafford. And let’s not forget Tammy Abraham (£8.0m) will be up against a West Ham defence that has conceded nine goals in their last three league games.
It’s actually great that we are spoilt for captaincy choices as there is not an obvious template choice for Gameweek 14. If one of the named players does immensely well and the rest flounder, it could provide opportunities for FPL managers’ overall ranks to fluctuate immensely in just one Gameweek. Let’s hope we make the right call.
Ash, known by many as Chief, recorded his best-ever FPL finish of 110th in 2011/12 and has become a hugely popular name on Twitter ever since.
Gameweek 13 – FPL Match Reports
- West Ham United 2-3 Tottenham Hotspur
- Arsenal 2-2 Southampton
- AFC Bournemouth 1-2 Wolverhampton Wanderers
- Brighton & Hove Albion 0-2 Leicester City
- Crystal Palace 1-2 Liverpool
- Everton 0-2 Norwich City
- Watford 0-3 Burnley
- Manchester City 2-1 Chelsea
- Sheffield United 3-3 Manchester United
- Aston Villa 2-0 Newcastle United
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