Michail Antonio’s (£7.0m) 26 points in Gameweek 35+ may be one of the best Fantasy Premier League differential hauls ever.
We first alerted readers of this column to his ‘out of position’ potential back in February, when he was owned by just 0.7% of FPL managers, and again last week.
If you missed Saturday’s haul, it isn’t too late to invest either – he’s still owned by just 3.0% of squads, with a schedule that suggests further attacking returns may be on the way.
However, it wasn’t just Antonio who delivered in Gameweek 35+.
Recent column favourites Gabriel Jesus (£9.8m), Oliver McBurnie (£5.5m) and Ismaïla Sarr (£6.0m) all registered attacking returns at the weekend, confirming there is still time to find some effective differentials for the run-in.
This time, we focus on three low-owned picks who we like the look of for Gameweek 36+ and beyond, all of whom have an ownership of 5% or less.
- FPL ownership: 0.6%
- Price: £5.7m
- GW36+ – 38+ fixtures: WOL | nor | BHA
Jay Rodriguez (£5.7m) now has nine goal contributions in 14 starts in 2020.
The Burnley-born forward has deputised brilliantly for the injured Ashley Barnes (£6.1m), and is a major reason why the Clarets sit an impressive 19 points above the relegation zone and just nine off of fourth place.
One of Rodriguez’s best attributes is his clever movement and ability to drop off the front, but whilst his average position tends to be a bit deeper than that of his strike partner, his goal threat since the restart can’t be matched at Turf Moor.
Amongst teammates, Rodriguez leads the way for shots and shots in the box, and although he isn’t a huge creator, his two assists this year, against Tottenham Hotspur and Sheffield United, have helped earn valuable points.
During the 30-year-old’s run of starts, Burnley have only lost once, to Manchester City, winning six and drawing five.
In fact, they’ve lost just one of their last 13 Premier League games and are now unbeaten in five. Only Manchester United (11) are on a longer current unbeaten run.
With games against Norwich City and Brighton and Hove Albion, who rank 18th and 19th respectively for expected goals conceded since the restart, to see out the season, Rodriguez has an opportunity to finish strongly and stake a claim for a regular starting spot ahead of the next campaign.
- FPL ownership: 4.8%
- Price: £7.3m
- GW36+ – 38+ fixtures: BOU | wat | NOR
David Silva (£7.3m) will depart Manchester at the end of the season as a club and Premier League legend.
Despite this, the 34-year-old shows no sign of slowing down, having produced a midfield masterclass in Manchester City’s recent 5-0 home win over Newcastle United, where he registered his biggest points haul (17) of the season so far.
Since the restart, and bearing in mind he’s been limited to just four starts, Silva has had more opposition half touches than any other teammate. He also sits top for successful passes in the final third, and second for chances created and big chances created behind you know who.
Minutes is always a concern for City’s outfield players, but having logged less than half an hour off the bench in his last outing at Brighton, the Spanish playmaker’s chances of a start against Bournemouth on Wednesday night look good.
He also looks certain to make the starting XI in Gameweek 38+, in what will be his final match at the Etihad Stadium.
A key figure in City’s recent success, and arguably their greatest player of all time, Silva is one of the most creative, technically gifted midfielders the Premier League has ever seen, and could be a potent differential for those looking to make a late surge up the rankings.
- FPL ownership: 1.6%
- Price: £5.7m
- GW36+ – 38+ fixtures: BHA | bou | SHU
Saints’ new skipper, James Ward-Prowse (£5.7m), has been one of the heroes of their season so far.
The 25-year-old has started every league game this term, highlighting his importance to the side, and scored his fifth goal of the season against Watford in Gameweek 32+, beating Ben Foster (£4.9m) with one of his trademark free-kicks that curled into the top corner.
His ability from dead-ball situations is key to his FPL appeal.
Since the restart, he’s taken 26 of Southampton’s 27 corners, whilst no player has scored more than his five direct free-kick goals since the start of the 2017-18 season.
He may also be on penalties too, despite missing from the spot in last week’s 1-1 draw at Goodison Park.
In his six appearances since Gameweek 30+, Ward-Prowse ranks first amongst teammates for opposition half touches, successful passes in the opponents’ half and crosses.
He’s created nine chances and has now registered 14 shots. That’s just one behind Danny Ings (£7.5m), whilst they’re tied on big chances, with three apiece.
Ward-Prowse is one of Southampton’s most important players, and now settled in a central role where he can dictate play and have a bigger influence on games, could be an effective mid-price differential for the run-in.
FPL LESSONS LEARNED FROM GAMEWEEK 35+
- Norwich City 0-4 West Ham United
- Watford 2-1 Newcastle United
- Liverpool 1-1 Burnley
- Sheffield United 3-0 Chelsea
- Brighton and Hove Albion 0-5 Manchester City
- Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-0 Everton
- Aston Villa 2-0 Crystal Palace
- Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 Arsenal
- Bournemouth 4-1 Leicester City
- Manchester United 2-2 Southampton
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