Scout Notes

Saves and bonus for Pope highlight advantage over Burnley defensive colleagues

West Brom 0-0 Burnley

  • Goals: None
  • Assists: None
  • Bonus points: Nick Pope x3 (£5.5m), Sam Johnstone x2 (£4.5m), Darnell Furlong x1 (£4.5m), Conor Townsend x1 (£4.5m), Kevin Long x1 (£4.5m)

In the Nick of time

Nick Pope (£5.5m) finally got off the mark for the 2020/21 season as he secured a textbook double-figure haul in Burnley’s 0-0 draw at West Bromwich Albion.

While many were expecting this Monday-night clash to be a dull affair, the fact that the Clarets got their first clean sheet of the season is still relevant from a Fantasy perspective.

The Baggies have hardly been one of the worst attacking outfits so far this season, their total of five goals level with Wolves and more than Burnley, Sheffield United and Fulham.

As a result of West Brom winning shot count (13 to nine), Pope was able to tack six saves onto his clean sheet, earning him an additional two points as well as maximum bonus.

“The start point for us was to get back to a performance more like ourselves, in both boxes, defending one well and looking a threat in the other, and I thought we did, so that was pleasing. We kept them quite quiet, Popey had some saves where he smothered it far side, so I was pleased with the defensive side of things.” – Sean Dyche

Crucially, Pope’s Gameweek 5 score of 11 points was at least four more than any colleague on Monday night. With his solitary bonus point, Kevin Long (£4.5m) finished second to the goalkeeper on seven, James Tarkowski (£5.4m) and Erik Pieters (£4.4m) managed six, while the booked Charlie Taylor (£4.5m) could only manage a five-point score.

While those assets offer a cheaper route into the Burnley defence it is still worth noting that, despite this season’s price hike, Pope has the best points per million spent among his colleagues after the first five Gameweeks (2.7).

Home meetings with Spurs and Chelsea in Gameweeks 6 and 7 respectively hardly appeal from a clean sheet perspective but, against so-called big-six sides last season, Pope was inside the top four goalkeepers for saves (48). Of those shot-stoppers, Mat Ryan (£4.5m) is the only one other than Pope who remains in the division, Tim Krul (53) and Ben Foster (50) suffering relegation.

Keeping clean

Owners of Burnley defensive assets had probably been losing patience ahead of Gameweek 5 but following the 0-0 draw, there is certainly reason to believe that Dyche has improved his back-line over the international break.

The Clarets had conceded seven goals in the two away games before Monday night but they restricted their hosts at the Hawthorns and looked much more like the Burnley defence we have come to know and love in recent years.

Taylor was particularly impressive in the way he kept on top of West Brom’s chief creator Matheus Pereira (£6.0m), save for the Brazilian getting free on the back post late on, only for Pope to produce a decent save.

With Burnley’s defence, it is important to remember the mitigating circumstances behind their struggles thus far. They have had to deal with injuries to Ben Mee (£4.9m) and Tarkowski, as well as Matt Lowton (£4.4m).

“We’re coming through an awkward period with injuries, off the field situations that have needed managing, and pleased we looked more like what we’re about. The injuries have to be factored in, but, within all that, we get on with the challenge, as we have done over many years here.” – Sean Dyche

Furthermore, three of Burnley’s first four matches have been on the road so far this season. In 2019/20, they shipped 27 goals on the road and kept seven clean sheets, compared to conceded 23 and registering eight shut-outs at Turf Moor. 

While the Clarets host Spurs and Chelsea next, the following three opponents to visit the Lancashire side are Crystal Palace (Gameweek 9), Everton (Gameweek 11) and Wolves (Gameweek 14) – two of which are currently inside the Premier League’s bottom six for goals scored.

“We’ve had three out of four away games, although it is an awkward time in stadiums of course, the feel of it, but statistically it is difficult to win away games in the Premier League.” – Sean Dyche

Blast from the past

Cult FPL hero Branislav Ivanovic (£4.5m) made his eagerly anticipated Premier League debut for West Brom on Monday night and, unsurprisingly, already looks to be one of their most important players.

Operating as a centre-back, the former Chelsea man added much-needed organisation and leadership to the Baggies’ defence and it should be seen as no coincidence that his first league outing produced a first clean sheet of the campaign.

Admittedly, Burnley’s attack has hardly been inspiring this season but it will be worth keeping an eye on whether or not Ivanovic can make West Brom’s defence harder to beat, especially against some more formidable front-lines.

Not only did Ivanovic offer stability at the back, but he also showed some of his trademark penalty box presence at the Hawthorns, also something to keep an eye on.

The Serbian international went close to scoring twice, each time denied by strong Pope saves.

Injury updates

Pieters at right-back as Burnley reveal Bardsley's self-isolation

Phil Bardsley (£4.5m) was the latest Premier League to test positive for coronavirus, which Burnley revealed in combination with the team sheet on Monday night.

With Lowton out injured and Bardsley self-isolating for the next 10 days, Pieters temporarily has a relatively sure route into the starting line-up, covering at right-back against West Brom and in line to do the same when Spurs come to Turf Moor.

“Erik Pieters filling in and doing a good job as he tends to do, all these signs.” – Sean Dyche

Meanwhile, Johann Berg Gudmundsson (£5.4m) was able to overcome his flag to play 68 minutes on the right of Burnley’s midfield and, despite being a doubt thanks to a lack of match fitness, Callum Robinson (£5.5m) was on the West Brom bench and came on for the last 17 minutes.

West Bromwich Albion XI (4-1-4-1): Johnstone; C Townsend, Hegazi, Ivanovic, Furlong; Livermore; Diangana, Krovinovic (Sawyers 79′), Gallagher, M Pereira (M Phillips 88′); Grant (C Robinson 73′).

Burnley XI (4-4-2): Pope; C Taylor, K Long, Tarkowski, Pieters; McNeil, Westwood, Brownhill, Gudmundsson (Brady 69′); Wood, A Barnes (Rodriguez 77′).

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441 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Garlana
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Reece James starting is interesting, surely this is tougher opposition than most of the prem team. I understand that azpi is old in football terms and maybe doesn't have the legs for back to back games but surely if you were worried about James and his defensive duties you'd have played them the other way around?

    1. Right In The Stanchion
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Azpi plays v United 100%

        1. Garlana
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Fair enough, could probably do with a little more pace against United as well and I'd assume James has that over azpi. I'm a James owner so somewhat of a biased view.

      • THFC4LIFE
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        I’m a James owner and I think it’s time to get rid

        1. Baines on Toast...
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          I think there’s more important things to sort than defence for most people right now...I can see him getting maybe 1500 minutes the season so there’s a chance he still provides good value over the next few.

      • Klaren
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        It’s just rotation. I have James but he will be last on my bench as he was vs Southampton. Pretty sure he won’t start on the weekend unless plays extremely well today.

      • My Name Is Prince
        • 7 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Definitely will sell him, I don’t need a 5.0m defender in my team who doesn’t start every game... The question is who to sell him for?

    2. Bruce Lee
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      i don't understand the kepa hate?

      why?

      because of mistakes? at least he is consistently making the mistakes

      in football and in life, consistency is key to success

      he is the most consistent player at chelsea, how does that get him repeatedly dropped? joke.

      1. Nightcrawler
        • 1 Year
        1 month, 15 days ago

        U know its bad when youre troll attempt is worse than brosstans

        1. Brosstan
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Lol, love my fans

      2. Lindelol
        • 2 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        already read better Kepa jokes

    3. Slitherene
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      A) KdB + Justin -> Bruno + Reguilon
      B) KdB + Wilson -> Grealish + Aguero

      Which one for a hit?

    4. KAPTAIN KANE
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Do we expect Bruno to still start at the weekend?

      1. Flair
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Obviously

        1. KAPTAIN KANE
          • 3 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Ok hope so

    5. Right In The Stanchion
        1 month, 15 days ago

        I tried to warn about Ramsdale before the season.

        He’s the worst keeper and going to take Sheff Utd down too. Listen to me in future.

        1. Nightcrawler
          • 1 Year
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Said the same. Not many have him so a weird comment tbh

          But i agree he is the worst. Worse than kepa possibly

        2. Brosstan
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          There's not a single serious manager who owns Ramsdale

        3. Destroyer of teams
          • 2 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Weird comment to make

          1. Right In The Stanchion
              1 month, 15 days ago

              Saw somebody had him on the last page

        4. Buck The Trent
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Bottomed

          Who would you play?
          A KWP (EVE)
          B Justin (ars)

          1. Whiskerz
            • 7 Years
            1 month, 15 days ago

            B

        5. stu92
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          1 month, 15 days ago

          A) Mings, Son, Salah, Jimi & Soucek start, no bench cover (-4)
          B) Mings, Son, Kane, Jimi & Pereira start, Soucek first sub (-4)
          C) TAA, Son, Kane, Pereira & Soucek start, no bench cover

          1. Bruno Fernandes
              1 month, 15 days ago

              tough, leaning towards B

              1. stu92
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 1 Year
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Same. Originally wanted Salah in as already have Son for Spurs cover, but B gives me the extra sub as cover.

          2. fc_skrald
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 5 Years
            1 month, 15 days ago

            Is it too late to get Rodríguez? Could Brewster be played every week?

            a. Pereira + Mitrovic -> Rodríguez + Brewster
            b. Pereira + Jiménez -> Rodríguez + Maupay

            Martínez
            TAA, Saïss, Lamptey
            Son, Salah, Fernandes, Pereira
            Ings, Mitrovic, Jiménez

            Button, Burke, Mitchell, Dunne
            2 free transfer, 1.4 million in the bank

            1. The VAR Team
              • 1 Year
              1 month, 15 days ago

              B

            2. No Professionals
              • 3 Years
              1 month, 15 days ago

              It’s never too late, he’s still good value

          3. The VAR Team
            • 1 Year
            1 month, 15 days ago

            Play one?
            A) Chilwell (mun)
            B) Ayling (avl)

            Stupid question?
            1) Yes
            2) No

            1. fc_skrald
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 5 Years
              1 month, 15 days ago

              not stupid. not sure, Chilwell maybe

          4. Nightcrawler
            • 1 Year
            1 month, 15 days ago

            Already taken -20 points worth of hits

            Used wc too

            Anyone with even less patience/ team vakue chasing?

            1. The VAR Team
              • 1 Year
              1 month, 15 days ago

              This is PG 13 stuff

              1. Nightcrawler
                • 1 Year
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Tv over 103 OR 550k i think its okay all things considered

                1. Lindelol
                  • 2 Years
                  1 month, 15 days ago

                  TV is nice

            2. Joey Tribbiani
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Have taken -4, 4 weeks in a row and WC used

              • HollywoodXI
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 6 Years
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Me. Used WC in GW2 and have taken 28 points of hits so far. Sat at 2 million OR but happy with team (for now).

                1. Nightcrawler
                  • 1 Year
                  1 month, 15 days ago

                  My OR is 550k atm. Worst gw rank has been 2.8m so far so at least the points have been coming in

                  And going out

              • H.E. Pennypacker
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                1 month, 15 days ago

                -8 last week
                -4 this week

              • Lindelol
                • 2 Years
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Hits are bad - almost every time.

                1. Nightcrawler
                  • 1 Year
                  1 month, 15 days ago

                  Yes almost. Brought kane(c) son grealish for -8 last week that worked out but the one before that didnt

                  1. Harn1
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 6 Years
                    1 month, 15 days ago

                    I made the same -8 last week. I've also spent -20 in total and used wildcard but a 103.4m TV and 37k OR shows there are many ways to play the game!

                    1. HollywoodXI
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 6 Years
                      1 month, 15 days ago

                      This

                    2. Nightcrawler
                      • 1 Year
                      1 month, 15 days ago

                      Thats brilliant

                    3. jtreble
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 4 Years
                      1 month, 15 days ago

                      Chips?

                      1. Harn1
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 6 Years
                        1 month, 15 days ago

                        Yes, just bench boost GW1 which was a success

              • Brosstan
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 6 Years
                1 month, 15 days ago

                I've taken 0 hits so far. Wonder how long I can keep it up. I normally take around 10-12 hits across the season

                1. Brosstan
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 6 Years
                  1 month, 15 days ago

                  I'm trying consciously not to put myself in hit situations though. That includes not buying players like James or Podence, or even Pulisic until he shows prolonged form

            3. Erez Avni
              • 4 Years
              1 month, 15 days ago

              Need some help here please...
              I know that the obvious move is Jimenez/Ings to Kane, but I’m not going to captain him this GW and Jimenez/Ings have a decent game. so... any suggestions what to do here?
              2.4 Itb and 1 ft (willing to take a hit)

              Martinez
              TAA Robo KWP Mitchel (Justin)
              Salah Son Barnes (poveda stephens)
              Jiménez Ings DCL

              Cheers!

              1. JoeJitzu +42
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 7 Years
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Barnes to Rodríguez/Grealish/Zaha/Pulisic

              2. stu92
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 1 Year
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Roll and get Kane next week?

                I also have TAA/Robbo, but am contemplating downgrading TAA.

            4. ivantys
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Lucky Morata captainers

              • JoeJitzu +42
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 7 Years
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Which transfer do you prefer? (It’s almost like B is optimum in terms of fixtures).

                A. Barnes to Fernandes
                B. DCL to Kane
                C. Jimenez to Kane
                D. Save

                Salah Son Grealish Foden Barnes
                DCL Jimenez (Brewster)

                Jimenez (NEW CPL)
                Barnes (ars lee)
                DCL (sou new)

                Fernandes (CHE ARS)
                Kane (bur BRI)

                1. Bruno Fernandes
                    1 month, 15 days ago

                    no, A without doubt imo

                  • stu92
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 1 Year
                    1 month, 15 days ago

                    I have the same issue where I have DCL and Jimi but no Kane, but unsure of who to ditch. I'd be tempted to say A as DCL and Jimi are more credible point scorers than Barnes I think, and Bruno is pretty central to everything Utd do.

                  • Destroyer of teams
                    • 2 Years
                    1 month, 15 days ago

                    A

                2. stu92
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 1 Year
                  1 month, 15 days ago

                  McCarthy* Nyland*
                  TAA Robbo Saiss Holding* Johnon*
                  Son Bruno JRodriguez Pereira* Soucek
                  Jimenez DCL Davis*

                  275 points, 1.9M OR. Not a terrible start, but could be better. Double 'pool defence, no Villa, no Salah and no Kane are the biggies I think. I could tweak slowly over a few weeks for a hit here or there, or could WC and make 5 or 6 transfers now that would strengthen the starting 11 and give me some real rotation options.

                  Should I WC now? Or is there a set gameweek that people are targeting for fixture runs?

                3. Blue Star
                  • 5 Years
                  1 month, 15 days ago

                  A) Grealish and Pereira
                  B) McGinn and J Rodriguez

                  Tough call but think B?

                  1. stu92
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 1 Year
                    1 month, 15 days ago

                    A I think. Not sure McGinn will get many regular points, but Pereira will likely be involved in most of West Brom's goals.

                  2. ivantys
                      1 month, 15 days ago

                      Change to trossard if A, don't fancy wba's attacks.

                  3. dbeck
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 3 Years
                    1 month, 15 days ago

                    Play two, one needs to be a def

                    1. Soucek Vs city
                    2. Brewster vs pool
                    3. Mitchell vs fulham
                    4. KWP vs Everton
                    5. Dallas Vs villa

                    1. stu92
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 1 Year
                      1 month, 15 days ago

                      Definitely 3, then either 2 or 5

                    2. ElliotJHP
                      • 8 Years
                      1 month, 15 days ago

                      15

                  4. Bruno Fernandes
                      1 month, 15 days ago

                      alex telles playing lw?!

                      1. Bruno Fernandes
                          1 month, 15 days ago

                          in ucl

                      2. amonito
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 2 Years
                        1 month, 15 days ago

                        Help guys, on WC:

                        Martinez (Button)
                        TAA Saiss Justin (Kilman) (Mitchell)
                        Salah (C) Son Grealish JRod (Bissouma)
                        Kane DCL Maupay

                        1,7 itb
                        I definitely will change Justin, but still not sure to whom.
                        TAA and Saiss believe will turn good long term. Kilman and Mitchell are enablers, will change them if/when other 4.0 options occur.

                        Concerned about the balance in MF/FW: this structure is difficult to accommodate KDB/Sterling/Bruno without losing Kane or seriously downgrading MF positions.
                        Salah and Son considering as season keepers.

                        Your thoughts?

                        1. Scholes Out Forever
                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          • 7 Years
                          1 month, 15 days ago

                          no such thing as season keepers. Dont worry about KDB Sterling Bruno now can always rejig later as forms of players drop

                      3. Giggs Boson
                        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                        • 9 Years
                        1 month, 15 days ago

                        AWB has Neymar in his pocket so far.

                      4. Right In The Stanchion
                          1 month, 15 days ago

                          Fantasy bet a victim of COVID? Looks like they’re no longer functioning.

                        • panda07
                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          • 8 Years
                          1 month, 15 days ago

                          What's going on with this zebra United kit?

                        • FPL-Albion
                          • 1 Year
                          1 month, 15 days ago

                          Martinez (4.0)
                          TAA Digne Dallas Lewis Mitchell
                          Bruno Son Salah Rodriguez Podence
                          Wilson Watkins Brewster
                          3.3mill itb 2ft

                          Thinking Wilson and Podence to Kane and Bissouma

                          Move today or wait until Friday? I have 0.1 spare with the above but Kane going up today

                          Any thoughts?

                        • JollyGoodYellows
                          • 1 Year
                          1 month, 15 days ago

                          Worth doing Davies + Ings > Saiss + Kane (-4)?

                          1. stu92
                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                            • 1 Year
                            1 month, 15 days ago

                            Yes.

                            1. JollyGoodYellows
                              • 1 Year
                              1 month, 15 days ago

                              It's Ings or Werner to be sacrificed.

                          2. TLF
                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                            • 4 Years
                            1 month, 15 days ago

                            I wouldn't bring Saïss in, I'm an owner and concerned. He looked really uncomfortable first half last night and struggled in his that role. Kilman playing very well and when Marcel is fully fit Saïss could find him self on the bench. I'm not certain but there is enough doubt to avoid currently IMO.

                            1. JollyGoodYellows
                              • 1 Year
                              1 month, 15 days ago

                              Good points made. Which defender would you suggest 5.1 or under?

                              1. TLF
                                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                • 4 Years
                                1 month, 15 days ago

                                There are a few decent options, who do you have in defence currently ?

                                1. JollyGoodYellows
                                  • 1 Year
                                  1 month, 15 days ago

                                  TAA, Justin, Mitchell, Holding and Davies. Yes I know its a car crash

                                  1. TLF
                                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                    • 4 Years
                                    1 month, 15 days ago

                                    Not too bad, Trent is Trent so no worries there, Justin has more time as Pereira still a way off according to Dinnery. Mitchell has a chance of holding onto his spot, I hear there may be some issues with PVA not keen on signing a new contract. Holding may be worth holding onto (excuse the pun). For a Davies replacement I'd be considering Konsa or Targett, particularly if you don't own Martinez although a defensive double up could do well. Other options Lamptey, Ayling/Dallas, Keane, Cresswell or Masuaku could be great in a couple of weeks or if you feel punty Kilman is worth a look. Be great if he becomes a regular starter at 4.0. GL.

                                    1. JollyGoodYellows
                                      • 1 Year
                                      1 month, 15 days ago

                                      Thanks mate, really appreciate the detailed response. I'm thinking of going Konsa, he seems to get chances each game and opportunity for bonus points. You're right on Holding, he could still yet play a vital role on that defence.

                        • Henrik Larsson
                            1 month, 15 days ago

                            Looks like Davies is due a price drop. Is it worth swapping him out for another DEF 5.0 and under for a hit (Bellerin, Dallas, KWP, or Lamptey). The alternative is to play Mitchell and address it next week. Think the -4 might be worth it long term.

                            Mitchell not guaranteed to start now....... Tough one!

                            1. Kroneek
                              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                              • 6 Years
                              1 month, 15 days ago

                              Take the hit. Leeds or Bellerin. Keep for weeks

                              1. Henrik Larsson
                                  1 month, 15 days ago

                                  I think your right!

                            2. stu92
                              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                              • 1 Year
                              1 month, 15 days ago

                              What makes a WC worth it?

                              1 transfer this week does nothing
                              2 transfers helps this week for a -4
                              3/4/5 transfers give much better squad depth, as currently no bench cover.

                              1. Henrik Larsson
                                  1 month, 15 days ago

                                  More than 3 transfers. I've had good weeks with -8 but it can obviously backfire.

                                  I always try to take long view on transfers. If taking a -4 I need to be confident that I'll make it back in the next 3-4 GWs.

                              2. andres
                                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                                • 9 Years
                                1 month, 15 days ago

                                Already took a hit, play this team or WC?

                                McCarthy (Nyland)
                                Taa konsa mitchell (justin, holding)
                                salah son hamez podence (stephens)
                                DCL Jimi kane
                                0.3, 0 FT

                              3. BlzE_94
                                • 6 Years
                                1 month, 15 days ago

                                Who would you play out of these defenders (Martinez in goal)

                                A) Targett vs Lee
                                B) Kilman vs New
                                C) Mitchell vs Ful