Pro Pundit Teams

The best FPL players to buy ahead of Blank Gameweek 31

Six-time top 5k finisher Utkarsh Dalmia – aka Zophar –  highlights some of the leading Fantasy Premier League candidates for a Free Hit squad.


Fantasy Premier League managers are just picking up the pieces from what was supposed to be a Double Gameweek 29 but we can waste no time brooding, with the season-defining run-in approaching and Blank Gameweek 31 looming large.

I’m not going into chip strategy too much in this piece, with that topic having already been discussed in a recent article.

Instead, I’m focusing on players who I believe are good picks for a Free Hit squad in Gameweek 31 or for you to acquire now.

Most of you will know this by now but the Premier League fixtures going ahead in Gameweek 31 are:

Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Bournemouth
Liverpool vs Crystal Palace
Burnley vs Watford
Tottenham Hotspur vs West Ham

First off, let’s have a look at the xGOT (expected goals on target) non-penalty data from the last four Gameweeks to see which of these teams are showing form in attack:



In terms of my own team, Ayoze Pérez (£6.2m) is likely to make way for Sarr ahead of Saturday’s deadline.

I’m unsure if I’m going to use the Free Hit chip in Gameweek 31 as I only have four active players right now (Alexander-Arnold, Salah, Doherty and Jimenez) but with the Sarr transfer this week, I can get to seven by subsequently transferring in Jota and Mané for a hit.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£11.1m) and Harvey Barnes (£6.1m) are the candidates to drop out.

The only players I would likely miss out on would be Pope, Antonio, Wood and another defender, so that’s a decision I’ll be making closer to the date.

Hope you enjoyed reading and good luck with whatever strategy you decide.


An FPL veteran of 10 seasons, Utkarsh Dalmia has been a member of the site right since 2009 and has finished in the top 5k in six of those campaigns, with a best finish of 17th in 2010. A Chelsea fan based in India, he relies heavily on statistics for his FPL decision-making process.

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1,044 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Slitherene
    • 2 Years
    2 months, 15 days ago

    Play which one?

    A) Lascelles (SHU)
    B) Saiss (whu)
    C) Egan (new)

    1. Holmes
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 15 days ago

      A or C, probably C now that Dubravka is out.

      1. Slitherene
        • 2 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Saiss probably concedes?

    2. B.D.
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 15 days ago

      A

  2. olidooley
    • 7 Years
    2 months, 15 days ago

    How many ppl on here know that John Egan’s late father was one of the greatest Gaelic footballers of all time? His name was also John Egan and won 8 All-Ireland medals with Kerry in the 70s and 80s

    1. circusmonkey
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 months, 15 days ago

      One - you.

      1. olidooley
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Well....glad to share the knowledge then. His father was a forward and prolific goal scorer which leads me to believe Egan has a few goals in him before season is done. Buy, buy, buy!

    2. GreennRed
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      2 months, 15 days ago

      Saw them beat us in Croker in '81. Not sure if Egan played but the rest of them were fairly handy 🙂

    3. L.U.H.G.
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 15 days ago

      Seen his dad play against Galway.

  3. llmja
    • 2 Years
    2 months, 15 days ago

    Maddison to

    A.Barn
    B.Willian

    1. circusmonkey
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      2 months, 15 days ago

      B if short term. I.E. next game.

    2. B.D.
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 15 days ago

      A

    3. Hakim Ziyech
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 15 days ago

      Harvey

  4. fcsaltyballs
    • 4 Years
    2 months, 15 days ago

    Play which two:

    1. Soyuncu (wat)
    2. Grealish (CHE)
    3. Traore (whu)
    4. Lundstram (new)

    Thanks

    1. Holmes
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 15 days ago

      14

    2. BNMC
        2 months, 15 days ago

        2 and 4 - Can't see a Lei clean sheet.

      • B.D.
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 15 days ago

        12

    3. BNMC
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Any updates from Arsenal's players - have they been tested yet?

        1. Holmes
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          Probably won't be tested since test results of Olymp players were negative.

          1. DOG GOD IT - KEANE 15
            • 6 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            They were in contact with the Olympiacos owner who tested positive ... hence they will be tested

            1. mox81
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Tests are only done if symptoms present, which isn't the case for Arsenal players

      • Hakim Ziyech
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Now I fully understand why Simeone is the current top paid manager worldwide

        1. BNMC
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Here's a cool stat - he has never lost a UCL knockout tie to a team that does not contain CR7.

            1. Hakim Ziyech
              • 1 Year
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Here is another one. He has never lost a CL game at home whether group phase or KO. The Man is a Legend

          • J ⚒ Gimme your Mané…
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            It’s a shame he plays that style of football to achieve those stats though.

            He’s just basically a glorified sam allardyce. I think sam allardyce would be able to grind those results out for large teams with big budgets so fit sams play style 😉

          • Shaw must go on
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 7 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            He has never won a champions league..

        2. Hakim Ziyech
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 15 days ago

          Whoelse saw the entire Psg squad do the "Haaland celebration" last night after they knocked out Dortmund?! 😆

          1. ChelseaBlues223
            • 1 Year
            2 months, 15 days ago

            What a disgrace. They are really jealous of a young talent such as Haaland, who is a far better human being than they'll ever be.

        3. Karan14 (Brazil Nuts)
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          So PL going behind closed doors as early this week.

          How much will it help though?

          Fans will still gather outside the stadium.

          1. Hakim Ziyech
            • 1 Year
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Yes, most likely

            No more home advantage with no fans

        4. Hakim Ziyech
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 15 days ago

          Great to see athletico fans wave the Everton flag at Anfield last night 😆

          1. FOO FIGHTER
              2 months, 15 days ago

              I do not know if Everton will be very happy if LFC win the League at Goodison Park.

          2. Jinswick
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Perez -> Sarr is the obvious move here right?

            Ryan
            TAA, Aurier, Soy
            Salah, Mane, Moura, Perez
            Auba, Ings, Ayew

            Button, Stephens, Williams, Dendoncker
            Bank 0.2m, 2FT, all chips left

            1. FOO FIGHTER
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Yes

              • Holmes
                • 6 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                No plans to add Wolves players?

                1. Jinswick
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 9 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Yeah will likely get 2 next week. Probably Soy/Ings -> Boly/Jota

                  Not overly sold on Sarr’s fixtures for 30/31 but feels like Perez needs to go and not much appeals in his price range for 31 starters. Any ideas?

                  1. Holmes
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Antonio and Bowen are getting some love. Mount or Pedro for one week punt.

                    Moutinho or McNeil can also work.

                    1. Jinswick
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 9 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Yeah, I like Antonio but can’t afford him or Bowen with 1FT, and it probably makes sense to roll a FT given all the uncertainty. Planning to save the FH chip till later so only getting 31 starters until then, so that rules out CHE mids.

                      I suppose I could do something like Soy/Perez -> Taylor/Antonio and bench Taylor this week for Stephens?

                      1. Holmes
                        • 6 Years
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        That can work

            2. Max City
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 3 Years
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Now as Liverpool does not have any other competition apart from PL, and with the fact that they can wrap the title with only 2 more wins, how's everyone approach to Liverpool assets:

              A) keeping all their 3 best players, including to try to have 3 Liverpool players if does not have them yet

              B) looking for their second tier (and cheaper) players and spread the fund elsewhere

              C) will only keep the players until they secure the title then looking for assets from other team

              1. FOO FIGHTER
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Keeping all 3. Cannot see Klopp benching Salah Mane etc.

                  No point is there?

                  1. Pinky and De Bruyne
                    • 7 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    They will be competing for golden boot

              2. jimmyabs1987
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 2 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Hi guys really need some help here. Was 100 ahead in my mini league and that is now 54 after terrible luck with DGW and the wrong Leicester players.

                Do I take -8 to field 9 and save FH or do I go points on the board? The whole cancellation and postponement of games do to virus makes me think better to get points on board but at same time I want my FH!

                Team is:

                McCarthy
                VVD, TAA, Pereira
                Salah, KDB, Maddison, Cantwell, Fleck
                Ings, Jimi, Auba

                I only have 4 for BGW31at moment and need to take a -12 to get to 9.

                I actually would prefer the players I bring in for a hit over next few weeks Vs FH and go back to my old team but I am torn.

                Any help really appreciated

                1. Pinky and De Bruyne
                  • 7 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  I wouldn't rely on BGW to gain points, plan your strategy over the DGWs coming up.
                  You could really damage your lead be patient

                  Even 6 key players in the BGW i would think is OK without damage your team to much.

                  Save your FH

                  1. jimmyabs1987
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 2 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Thanks mate

                    1. Pinky and De Bruyne
                      • 7 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Cantwell --> Saar, and Pick up a Wolves defender next week maybe that's about it.

                      Also look at a Taylor for BUR

                      1. jimmyabs1987
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 2 Years
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        I’m also worried rival has Bruno and they will murder spurs this weekend. When do you just look to defend or is looking over shoulder destined for trouble?

                  2. jimmyabs1987
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 2 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    I want Doherty and could swap him for Pereira. I don’t see Leicester getting a clean sheet away at Watford but think Doherty could get returns at WHU

              3. Johnny Leghorn
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 3 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Anyone know why City v Newcastle has been rescheduled in GW34?

                1. ritzyd
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 2 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  They play each other in FA Cup so one will defo progress

                  1. Johnny Leghorn
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 3 Years
                    2 months, 14 days ago

                    Thanks my man!

              4. Hotdogs for Tea
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 4 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                there is a real chance that all PL games could be postponed for the foreseeable future ... don’t bother with your transfers 😉

                “The prime minister will chair a meeting of the Cobra emergency committee at lunchtime, and is expected to rubber-stamp a decision to move to from the “contain” phase to “delay”. The change raises the prospect of measures such as home working, school closures, limits on gatherings, and a scaling back of non-urgent hospital, police and fire services.”

                1. Amey
                  • 1 Year
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  I have a feeling that the season is already over ... 🙁

                  1. Pinky and De Bruyne
                    • 7 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    NBA has now been postponed, also a player in Juve has been found with it.

                    1. Amey
                      • 1 Year
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Scary times

                  2. Hakim Ziyech
                    • 1 Year
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Lol. Imagine those who left chips for Corona Virus to feast on...

                    Hopefully the season isn't over 😆

                    1. Amey
                      • 1 Year
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Postponement hopefully.

                  3. DF
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    I reckon there are a couple of weeks left before they abandon it (no source, just me speculating!). I shall be benchboosting 30 and freehitting 31 in an attempt to be somewhere near the top of my minileagues.

                    1. DF
                      • 6 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      birds hands and bushes and whatnot

                      1. Amey
                        • 1 Year
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        Ha ha

                2. Werkself - A Whole Lawro B*…
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Yeah. There's no way this PL season makes it anywhere close to the finish line. Same for all other leagues and UEFA competitions.

                  1. Pinky and De Bruyne
                    • 7 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Money is a wonderful thing >

                    1. Werkself - A Whole Lawro B*…
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 6 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Has nothing to do with it. No amount of lost revenue will keep the season from being abandoned. Players are getting infected and football is a contact sport.

                      1. Chelsea Rangers Loyal
                        • 7 Years
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        It used to be!

                      2. Pinky and De Bruyne
                        • 7 Years
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        Liverpool 0 - 1 Coronavirus then

                      3. Dont_Win_Friends_With_Salah…
                        • 2 Years
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        2 weeks time the season will be called off. No amount of money will cover the health of the country.

                        1. Holmes
                          • 6 Years
                          2 months, 15 days ago

                          Only if they care about health of the country

                        2. Pinky and De Bruyne
                          • 7 Years
                          2 months, 15 days ago

                          Why 2 weeks where is this time frame coming from Sir?

                    2. FOO FIGHTER
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        Nail on the head

                  2. AC Yew
                    • 1 Year
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    So strategy is to go all out with chips now? : D

                    1. Pinky and De Bruyne
                      • 7 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      I think we need a COVID19 strat page tbh

                    2. Hotdogs for Tea
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 4 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      my strategy is to wait until you know games have not been cancelled then act. The league will not be cancelled and will played out in some way, even if it extends into the summer or next season with a shift of the calendar

                  3. Ian & Zen
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 3 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    They will play the games behind closed doors - games will be shown on free-to-air tv - they will postpone Euro 20 to make time for fixtures, extending season in to June

                    1. HamezMace
                      • 5 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Not sure about the free to air TV bit.
                      I understand Sky have been told to look at the costs to them of pulling the pub license deal. (£10k a season) as they don’t want ‘mass gatherings’ in pubs to watch games.

                      1. ppv
                        • 9 Years
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        Can stream every game anyway

                  4. Joburger
                    • 10 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    The way things are headed, UEFA are going to have to take some tough decisions.

                    Surely the most logical thing to do would be for them to postpone UEFA EURO 2020 for a year as this would allow the various European leagues some extra time should they need to postpone games etc and get the domestic seasons finished.

                    Especially with the way it is being hosted this year: "UEFA EURO 2020 is being held across the continent for the first time in the competition's 60-year history, with 12 host cities in all." UEFA should make the call as soon as possible before fans book their flights etc.

                3. Gunner Boy
                  • 5 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Traore + Maddison > Sare + Willian/Pedro (-4)

                  Yes or No?

                  1. Pinky and De Bruyne
                    • 7 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    nope

                4. AC Yew
                  • 1 Year
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Those that have ended up with Auba. Are you keeping or shipping?

                  1. Holmes
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Keeping this week, shipping next week or on WC

                    1. AC Yew
                      • 1 Year
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Thanks Holmes. Already played WC bring him in and that went extremely well this week!

                  2. ChelseaBlues223
                    • 1 Year
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Keeping for two weeks. Don't have an reliable captain for gw 32

                5. DF
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  COVID19 - lfc18

                  1. DF
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Where are the upvotes? That's the funniest thing I've said on here since I went on that roll about my Burmese rescue dog loving Aguero and my neighbour giving me half a starbar.

                    1. Holmes
                      • 6 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      You can say lack of sense of humor 😉

                  2. Happy Chappy
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    I've given you one, because this reminded me of the time Jeb Bush said 'please clap' to an audience.

                6. Bavarian
                  • 2 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Start 1 from each group OR 2 defenders:
                  A-Fernandez
                  B-Boly
                  C-Soyuncu

                  1-Grealish
                  2-Cantwell

                  1. Happy Chappy
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Boly cantwell

                  2. Shark Team
                    • 2 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    B C

                  3. Bavarian
                    • 2 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Cheers both

                7. Sturridge Wars
                  • 5 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Thoughts on Bringing in Alonso?

                  Will be Free Hitting gw31

                  1. DF
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    I'd squeeze all the fun you can out of fpl whilst the season is still on. Bring him in, give him the armband and dance like there's no tomorrow.

                8. ChelseaBlues223
                  • 1 Year
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Play Lascelles or Saiss?

                9. Konstaapeli
                  • 3 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  This FPL thingy seems a bit pointless all of a sudden.

                  1. Happy Chappy
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Very much agree

                    1. Happy Chappy
                      • 6 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Time for NRL Supercoach!

                10. Happy Chappy
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Play VVD or Saka?

                  1. Shark Team
                    • 2 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    VVD imo

                    1. Happy Chappy
                      • 6 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Cheers

                11. Shark Team
                  • 2 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Best to keep long term?
                  A)Deeney
                  B)Jota
                  C)Wood

                  1. DF
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Long term?
                    Bit ambitious...

                12. SHOWSTOPPERRR
                  • 2 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  A fan who attended the Women's T20WorldCup Cup final between at MCG on March 8 has tested positive for novel Coronavirus : MCG Management

                  * 84,000+ people attended the match. Situation is getting out of hand.

                  * Its Better to postpone IPL & everything which attracts big crowds

                13. as33
                  • 4 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Williams keep or swap to Tanganga?

                14. Whats the Mata?
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 5 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Would you:

                  A. Get Alonso in this week (gw30) for Stephens as I'd want him anyway gw32 onwards.
                  or
                  B. Save FT and use the FT in gw31 to get an extra player for blank gw31 (Antonio) and avoid Alonso.

                  1. DF
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    I got alonso in for the villa game. Looking forward to it.

                    1. FOO FIGHTER
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        Not if Frank plays a back 4.

                  2. g40steve
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 2 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Everyone with chips still holding or time to start using them in case season stopped?

                    1. Whats the Mata?
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 5 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Just play the game normally as you would do. We have no control over coronavirus or it's impact, so you may as well just play it as you would usually.

                      Only precautions that can be taken are:
                      1. Make your transfers as late as possible
                      2. Make sure your vC is not from the same match as your Captains
                      3. Keep a close eye on news and stuff going on.

                      1. Maximus Bonimus Pointimus
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 10 Years
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        Did you see the graph of what the “delay” phase actually does?

                        It flattens out the peak of infections to keep it below the health service burst capacity line for as long as possible

                        When cases go above that capacity line - health service go bye-bye

                    2. ppv
                      • 9 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      If stopped they will probably play the last few weeks in the summer and play the Euros next summer. Just a guess. No point blowing your chips just for the sake of it imo

                  3. olidooley
                    • 7 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Hey all....Is Kiko Femenia nailed? Is he an OK option for the BGW31?

                    If Doherty rises in price, I’ll only have 4.2M to spend on a defender
                    If not, I’ll get Charlie Taylor from Burnley

                    1. FOO FIGHTER
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        Very little price changes are happening at the moment. Just keep an eye after Wolves match though.

                    2. Whats the Mata?
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 5 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Start Ings or DCL?

                    3. Strchld
                      • 3 Years
                      2 months, 15 days ago

                      Those who has cash leagues, have you decided something If they cancel rest of pl season? Refund money back for everyomw, doesnt matter are u 1.or 26.
                      I have big over 40 players cash league, having a best season ever and Im first. Doesnt feel right if everyone would just get stake refund. Or is it?

                      1. CONNERS
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 1 Year
                        2 months, 15 days ago

                        Not really though about it tbh. Our league has a manager of the month prize in addition to the end of season prizes so refunds wouldn't be possible.

                        Guess the money would have to be rolled over to next season and re-distributed.