Mid-price forwards are the focus as our position-by-position analysis of Fantasy Premier League assets nears its conclusion.
We’re looking at strikers priced between £6.0m and £7.5m in this piece, having focused on the assets costing £5.8m or less in our budget forwards article.
A rundown of the heavy hitters costing more than £8.0m will follow.
Only 19 players fall into the mid-price category, four of whom are red-flagged either because of injury or having moved elsewhere.
The rest we’ll pick through in our feature below, while you can access the other price brackets and positions via these links:
READ MORE: The best budget goalkeepers
READ MORE: The best mid-price and premium goalkeepers
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READ MORE: The best mid-price and premium defenders
READ MORE: The best budget midfielders
READ MORE: The best mid-price midfielders
READ MORE: The best premium midfielders
READ MORE: The best budget forwards
- Price: £7.5m
- Ownership: 15.1%
- Next four matches: avl | MCI | whu | WAT
The priciest forward in the sub-£8.0m bracket, Tammy Abraham (£7.5m) looks set to return from a niggling ankle problem that plagued him shortly before the mid-March suspension of play.
Olivier Giroud (£6.6m) had deputised fairly impressively in his absence and there is certainly an argument to suggest that the Blues were better all round for the World Cup winner’s presence, such is his ability to bring others into play.
Abraham has been Frank Lampard’s go-to guy for much of the season, however, starting every single match he was available for between Gameweeks 3 and 25 before that troublesome injury curtailed his involvement.
Third and joint-third among FPL forwards for shots in the box and big chances, Abraham has certainly been popping up in some excellent positions in 2019/20 and his off-the-ball movement is impressive.
Putting the ball past the goalkeeper is another thing though and he is still perhaps dining out on that purple patch in Gameweeks 3-5, a three-match period in which over half of his season’s goals (seven in 13) arrived in one fell swoop.
From Gameweek 6 onwards, Abraham’s goal conversion rate stands at a poor 10.3%.
But, with leaky defences in Aston Villa and West Ham coming up and some decent fixtures to follow, the volume of chances that should come his way may offset any wastefulness.
- Price: £6.5m
- Ownership: 12.9%
- Next four fixtures: SOU | EVE | ars | BHA
Another forward whose early-season form proved to be unsustainable, Teemu Pukki (£6.5m) scored more goals in Gameweeks 1-5 (six) than he has managed in 23 subsequent appearances (five).
We’ll no doubt come to appreciate secure starters over the next month and Pukki is certainly one of those, with the Finn’s talismanic status likely to ensure that he starts all of Norwich’s remaining games – at least while the Canaries still have a mathematical chance of survival.
Pukki hasn’t missed a single match this season when he has been fit and available for selection, completing at least 80 minutes on every single occasion.
While home advantage in a deserted stadium may not provide the edge it once did, the Canaries’ next five matches at Carrow Road, against Southampton, Everton, Brighton, West Ham and Burnley, are arguably the best of any team’s remaining games on their own turf.
Like Abraham, that autumnal hot streak has disguised some worrying figures: Pukki’s goal conversion rate of 8.8% from Gameweek 6 onwards is one of the worst among FPL forwards.
No side has scored fewer Premier League goals than Norwich in 2020, either.
Still, with a new mini-season comes renewed hope – and many FPL bosses will likely disregard much of what has gone before given the three-month chasm that has rendered ‘form’ almost meaningless.
- Price: £6.4m
- Ownership: 9.1%
- Next four fixtures: whu | BOU | avl | ARS
Wolverhampton Wanderers arguably have the most attractive set of games over the next three Gameweeks, as they prepare to face three of the bottom five.
West Ham United, Bournemouth and Aston Villa have one solitary clean sheet between them in 2020 and unsurprisingly are the three clubs who have conceded the highest number of goals this calendar year.
Bournemouth and Villa are also in the bottom two for form over their last ten games, for what that’s worth now.
Diogo Jota (£6.4m) had been hitting his stride before coronavirus stopped play, registering double-digit hauls in Gameweeks 27 and 28.
That more than doubled his total number of attacking returns in 2019/20 and in truth it’s been a bit of an underwhelming campaign from the Portugal international following his exploits last season.
Tactics may have something to do with it, given that much of Jota’s success as an FPL asset last season (and in Gameweek 27) came centrally in a 3-5-2, a formation Nuno Espirito Santo temporarily moved away from largely to accommodate Adama Traore (£5.7m).
Saying that, Jota hauled against Spurs in Gameweek 28 when playing off the left in 3-4-3, so confidence could be as crucial as positioning.
Some of the division’s most obliging defences will certainly give him the chance to hit the ground running in Gameweeks 30+ to 32+.
- Price: £6.5m
- Ownership: 15.6%
- Next four fixtures: LIV | nor | LEI | tot
Dominic Calvert-Lewin (£6.5m) has been a man reborn since Carlo Ancelotti was appointed head coach of Everton in December.
No Premier League player has scored as many goals as Calvert-Lewin (eight) since the Italian first took charge of the Toffees in Gameweek 19.
No FPL asset has registered more shots in the box or big chances than Calvert-Lewin in that time, either.
Add that to the fact that he has been an ever-present starter under Ancelotti, at a time of the season when we are looking for players who will get plenty of pitch-time, and there is lots to like about the in-form Everton striker.
Fixtures perhaps count against him at first, with Liverpool, Leicester and Spurs to come in the first four Gameweeks back – although Calvert-Lewin did score against Arsenal and Manchester United prior to the mid-March suspension.
Everton’s safe mid-table league position is arguably also a consideration, especially if a tilt at a European qualification spot is beyond them by the time the Toffees’ favourable fixture swing happens in Gameweek 34+.
Ancelotti could look to give Moise Kean (£6.3m) some overdue pitch-time, for example, if there are any end-of-season dead rubbers in the offing.
It’s a situation to monitor, then, but the omens look very positive based on what he has delivered so far under the new regime and how highly his manager rates him.
Danny Ings (£7.1m) has scored more goals than the four forwards profiled above this season.
Ings has actually had fewer shots in the box than Calvert-Lewin and Abraham but his goal conversion rate of 22.1% is superior to those two strikers, along with most other names mentioned in this piece.
The fixtures, both in terms of difficulty and frequency, are the most off-putting aspect when it comes to Ings.
That said, Marcus Rashford (£8.8m) is the only forward who has scored more goals against top-half teams than the Southampton striker in 2019/20.
The defences of Liverpool, Leicester, Spurs, Chelsea, Arsenal and Wolves have all been breached by Ings, who has the Gunners and both Manchester clubs to come between now and Gameweek 35+.
Chances are that we’ll see a benching or two for the mid-price FPL forward over the coming month, given what Ralph Hasenhuttl did in both Gameweeks 19 and 24 when the fixture schedule was previously congested.
Hasenhuttl’s previous comments about Ings playing three times in a week should also act as a cautionary tale, although it’s perhaps now more the physical demands put upon the front two, rather than Ings being particularly injury-prone, that is the primary reason for an occasional refresh up top.
Gameweek 36+ sees a fixture swing for the Saints, so Ings might well firmly re-enter our thoughts at that point should the south coast club be scrapping for their lives.
Callum Wilson (£7.4m) started this season and 2018/19 very quickly, which perhaps bodes well for what is effectively a new, nine-game campaign.
The Bournemouth striker, who blanked 15 times in a row from Gameweeks 8-23, had also returned to a bit of form shortly before coronavirus stopped play, with three goals in his last six appearances.
It’s not just the ‘troll’ status, substantial price tag and streaky scoring patterns that will put many off Wilson, however: the Cherries’ frontman is only one booking away from a two-game ban.
Even if Wilson gets past the Gameweek 32+ threshold without having picked up a caution, the remaining five fixtures for Eddie Howe’s side are perhaps the worst in the league.
That ominous schedule similarly counts against Joshua King (£6.1m), Bournemouth’s first-choice penalty taker who has missed large chunks of this season with hamstring injuries.
King, whose minute-per-chance average of 81.4 is the worst of any first-choice FPL forward this season, may also find himself farmed out to the left flank as he was in the autumn and in Gameweeks 27 and 28 – especially if Ryan Fraser (£6.8m) departs as expected.
Chris Wood (£6.1m) and Ashley Barnes (£6.1m) have offered FPL managers good value over the last three seasons but uncertainty surrounds their availability for the restart.
Barnes is still working his way back from hernia surgery, while Wood has picked up a fresh problem with his Achilles.
Speaking earlier in the month, Sean Dyche said:
Barnesy is still not quite right yet and Woody has a bit of a problem with his Achilles. We are waiting for more news on that.
We are a bit more hopeful on Barnesy that it’s settling down, so hopefully, he’ll get back into some form of training over the next week or so.
We’re not sure on Woody yet. He’s going to have to take his time on that and see how that settles down.
That wouldn’t be helpful if those two aren’t right but it’s an ongoing thing and we will wait on them.
Those issues could well open up a spot or two for the Clarets’ two sub-£6.0m strikers, who we mentioned in our budget forwards piece.
Sebastien Haller (£6.6m) has some appealing fixtures to come from Gameweek 33+ onwards but the FPL jury is still out on the striker, who has just three goals in his last 20 Premier League appearances.
Deployed in a 4-4-2 with Michail Antonio (£6.9m) shortly before COVID-19 brought football to a standstill, the Frenchman – who has so often seemed isolated when used as a lone frontman – looked all the better for having the busy Antonio playing off him and scored in the impressive 3-1 win over Southampton in late February.
Three tricky fixtures against Wolves, Spurs and Chelsea are first up for David Moyes’ troops and there will likely be little Fantasy interest in the Hammers until that trio of matches is over.
Those games will at least serve as an audition period for Haller and co, although Antonio’s ‘out of position’ tag and more attractive stats (five big chances to Haller’s one when they were partnered in Gameweeks 28 and 29) may give him the edge.
It looked like Troy Deeney (£6.2m) may not feature at all in the season run-in at one point but the Watford skipper has finally returned to full training, having initially stayed away for fears over his family’s wellbeing.
The Hornets expect Deeney to be fit for the restart and he is certainly a name to consider, given that he is on penalties for his club and an ever-present starter since Nigel Pearson took charge.
In fact, Calvert-Lewin is the only forward featured in this piece who has more attacking returns to his name than Deeney (eight) since Pearson assumed control.
Some appealing fixtures against Southampton, Norwich, Newcastle and West Ham fall between Gameweeks 32+ and 36+ for Watford, who are still in the thick of a relegation battle and likely to have plenty to play for deep into July.
Nominated for ‘Best in Fantasy Football – Editorial’ at the Football Content Awards 2020
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