It is the red side of Manchester that the Fantasy Football Scout editorial team are targeting for Gameweek 2 of Fantasy Premier League.
Despite the return of both of the city’s clubs, only one of them has taken our fancy. While Manchester City face the division’s best defence since Gameweek 25 in Wolves, we have avoided their assets entirely, to facilitate a triple-up on Manchester United instead.
As ever, the best XI has been chosen using the Scout Squad submissions from earlier this week, this time lining up in a 3-4-3 formation and coming in at £81.0m, £2.0m underneath budget.
Illan Meslier (£4.5m) gets the nod in the Scout Picks XI this weekend as Leeds prepare to host Fulham. The Cottagers offered little in their Gameweek 1 meeting with Arsenal, while Leeds are likely to be boosted by the return of club captain and key centre-back Liam Cooper. The last time Fulham visited Elland Road they were seen off by a 3-0 scoreline as Marcelo Bielsa’s men kept more clean sheets against last season’s Championship opposition than any other side.
Lucas Digne’s (£6.0m) impressive display against Spurs has drastically increased the attention on him for Gameweek 2, especially with newly-promoted West Bromwich Albion coming to Goodison Park. The Baggies did not offer much threat against Leicester last time out, while Carlo Ancelotti’s signing of Allan appears to have had an instant impact on Everton’s defensive credentials. As a result, every member of our Scout Squad panel selected Digne as the best defender for Gameweek 2.
Luke Shaw (£5.0m) is the pick of the Manchester United defenders as they prepare to host Crystal Palace. The Eagles were the Premier League’s second-lowest scorers in 2019/20 while Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s men have kept nine clean sheets since Gameweek 25 last season, the joint-second-best in the division. Shaw played in a recent friendly against Aston Villa, so looks likely to retain the first-choice slot at left-back this term.
James Justin (£4.5m) rewarded his owners and the Scout Squad panel in Gameweek 1 with a nine-point haul in the win over West Bromwich Albion. With another favourable fixture coming up in Gameweek 2, a home meeting with Burnley, it’s as you were for his berth. While his colleague Timothy Castagne was more adventurous throughout the game, Justin grew into proceedings in the second-half, winning one of Jamie Vardy’s penalties.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£12.0m) was overwhelmingly the most popular midfielder in the Scout Squad selections this week, chosen as the best option in this position by all four pundits. 16 of his 27 attacking returns (59.2%) came at home last season, while 22 of them were recorded against sides outside the traditional top-six. Ever reliable at the Emirates Stadium against so-called lesser opposition, Aubameyang faces a West Ham defence that conceded 10 shots in the box against Newcastle, the joint-third-worst of any other side in Gameweek 1.
Bruno Fernandes (£10.5m) comes straight back into the Scout Picks XI at the first time of asking. After just 14 Premier League appearances, he already has 16 attacking returns to his name and averages 8.4 points per game. It was a tight contest between the Portuguese and colleague Marcus Rashford, each Manchester United asset receiving two votes each. In the end, we went with the former, on account of the fact that he comes into Gameweek 2 with greater ownership, as well as his role in penalty kicks.
James Rodriguez (£7.5m) looked impressive for Everton in their first match of Gameweek 1, creating more chances than any other midfielder on the opening round of action. West Bromwich Albion come to Goodison Park having conceded the second-highest number of shots so far this season, perhaps the perfect match-up for Rodriguez to get his first attacking returns of 2020/21.
Jack Harrison (£5.5m) is our chosen Leeds attacker for the meeting with Fulham. He caught our eye in the defeat at Anfield, registering more touches in the final third than any of his colleagues, as well as finding the back of the net. Harrison scored and assisted the last time Fulham came to Elland Road too.
Jamie Vardy (£10.0m) received three votes from our Scout Squad panel for Gameweek 2 after his double-figure haul against West Bromwich Albion. While the Leicester forward was largely quiet outside of the penalties that came his way, Gameweek 1 highlighted the benefit of owning a spot-kick taker in a team with pace and threat in wide areas. The last time Burnley visited the King Power Stadium, Vardy was on hand to find the back of the net.
Anthony Martial (£9.0m) was a big fan of home comforts last season, 11 of his 17 goals scored at Old Trafford. Throwing seven assists into the mix, it meant that 18 of his 26 attacking returns (69.2%) came in home matches. That led to three of our Scout Squad pundits handing him a place in their selections for Gameweek 2, when Crystal Palace come to town.
Callum Wilson (£6.5m) has been blessed with two of his favourite opponents at the start of his time at Newcastle. The former Bournemouth man has an admirable scoring record against West Ham, which he extended by netting at the London Stadium in Gameweek 1, in a match which could have yielded more rewards. Brighton are the perfect side for Wilson to face next. In four Premier League starts against the Seagulls he has recorded three goals and two assists.
Emiliano Martínez (£4.5m) could be an excellent addition to the ranks at Aston Villa. During Project Restart, only Tim Krul managed more saves than him, while Dean Smith’s men were in the division’s top five for fewest big chances conceded across the same period.
Luke Ayling (£4.5m) looks to be a key outlet for Leeds, which could come in handy in a game they are more likely to be on the front foot in. Against Liverpool, he received seven passes in the final third, the joint-second-most among his colleagues.
Jamal Lewis (£4.5m) impressed in Newcastle’s 2-0 win at West Ham, as the Magpies limited the quality of their opponents’ chances. They were one of just four teams not to concede a big chance in Gameweek 1.
Ryan Fraser (£6.0m) got his Newcastle career up and running by scoring a key EFL Cup goal midweek and, after coming off in the second half, looks ready to be involved against Brighton. His link-up with Wilson at Bournemouth was well-documented, and there’s no reason they cannot continue that at St. James’ Park.
The Scout Picks captain is chosen using a four-way vote between our Scout Squad pundits.
Because the use of Fantasy Football Scout data is used so heavily in this process, the skipper we choose each Gameweek is known only to those with a valid Fantasy Football Scout subscription and revealed to the public only when the deadline has passed.
Here’s how we voted for Gameweek 2:
THE COMMUNITY CHAMPION
Each week, one of the Fantasy Football Scout community takes on the Scout Picks by pitting their chosen XI against ours.
The Community Members who beats our team by the biggest margin over the course of the campaign will win a £100 Amazon Voucher and a place in our Moderators and Contributors League for the following season.
Boleyn Boy was the first to take on the Scout Picks this year, losing out by a scoreline of 66 points to 34. That means a 1-0 lead for the editorial team after Gameweek 1, but it’s AA33 up this time around.
They have gone for a 3-4-3 line-up of: Martínez; Tierney, Ayling, Dallas; Mané, Rashford (vc), Son, Willian; Lacazette (c), Jesus, Calvert-Lewin.
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