Scout Network

How FPL managers are handling Liverpool’s latest injury crisis

Fantasy Premier League managers are having to re-evaluate everything they know about Liverpool assets heading into Gameweek 9.

Their start to the season has been plagued by a series of injury problems including the loss of a fit-again Alisson (5.9m), then long-term knee injuries to Virgil Van Dijk (6.3m), Joe Gomez (5.4m) and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (6.3m).

Trent Alexander-Arnold (7.3m) now has a calf problem, there have been muscle issues for both Fabinho (5.4m) and Jordan Henderson (5.4m) as well as a knock for Thiago Alcantara (£5.9m), and Andrew Robertson missed out on Scotland’s game over the weekend thanks to his hamstring.

Couple all of this with Mohamed Salah (12.3m) returning a positive coronavirus (COVID-19) test on international duty and Liverpool are stricken right across the board.

The most frustrating factor in all of this is the uncertainty. It is entirely possible that some of the Reds’ flagged assets could feature in Gameweek 9, we just don’t know which ones yet.

So what should Fantasy managers do about the problem? Do we sell our Liverpool assets and wait for the injury storm to pass? Or should we hold on and bench them for the time-being?

We asked members of the Scout Network, to see what they had to say on the subject.

El Statto

Graph from El Statto to show Liverpool’s top 10 most-owned players and their points returns so far this season

I think the easy plan, that many have already set in motion, was to avoid Liverpool’s defence for now. Clean sheets weren’t a regular occurrence anyway and Robertson is the only one providing much in the way of attacking returns. I would move the money into midfield and attack for now. It’ll be interesting to see how Liverpool line up over the next few months with the shortage of centre backs. Will Robertson continue to push forward in attack or will he take a more conservative approach to protect the defence? Will a £4.0m defender for the champions become a viable option?

El Statto

FPL Poet

Is now the right time for some restructuring? 2

For Gameweek 8, I had Salah, Sadio Mané (£12.0m) and Robertson. When Alexander-Arnold was taken off with an injury, I sold Robertson and Rhian Brewster (£4.5m) in order to get Ollie Watkins (£6.1m) and Ezri Konsa (£4.7m) with four-point hit. Now we know Salah has tested positive for COVID-19 and, since I do not have Bruno Fernandes (£10.6m) or a Manchester City attacker for their promising run of fixtures, I feel tempted to sell the Liverpool ace. Then again, the Reds are to play Brighton and Fulham in Gameweeks 10 and 12 respectively, in between a home clash with Wolves, so Salah may punish his sellers. For the time-being, I am sticking with him, playing someone from the bench and hoping that he fetches me a haul when he returns for the Brighton game. However, if someone has not made a transfer already (unlike me), they could get Fernandes for Gameweek 9 for the West Bromwich Albion match and bring Salah back in Gameweek 10 or 11.

FPL Poet

Mini League Mate

With limited exposure to Liverpool’s woes in just owning Salah, I’m going to hold him and hope he is capable of a fairly quick recovery. Once again, we are reminded of the importance of a strong bench this season! Jarrod Bowen (£6.3m) will take Salah’s slot and I quite fancy his chances against a struggling Sheffield United. It is, however, a few days before the deadline and, if I know myself, then temptation to hop onto someone else may prove too strong.

Mini League Mate – Logan

FPL Poker Player

Sadio Mane

I’ve not had more than one Liverpool player in my team at any stage this season. Admittedly, my decision to start the season without Salah backfired big style when he was gifted two penalties in Gameweek 1. The only Liverpool defender I. have owned van Dijk for the first four Gameweeks and, in a rare instance of good timing, he was a makeweight for my Salah transfer in Gameweek 5 just before Jordan Pickford (£4.9m) injured the centre-back. Fortunately for me, I have not been punished for staying away from Liverpool’s defence since then. Looking ahead, I see no reason to be invested in their backline, given that my spreadsheets predict they only have strong prospects of a clean sheet in one of the next six Gameweeks. Offensively though, Liverpool are predicted to score at least two goals in each of their next six Premier League matches, and a case could have been made for a Salah and Mané double0up prior to the Egyptian’s positive COVID-19 test. I am of the opinion that now would not be the time to be planning on going without Salah for the medium/long-term. Therefore, I would be recommending Wildcarders have a plan for how they will integrate Salah back into their teams once he is available for selection again. Diogo Jota (£6.5m) looks an enticing proposition now, of course, especially if managers are in the luxurious position of being able to hop off Salah in the short-term.

FPL Poker Player

FPL Partridge

Liverpool’s Virgil Van Dijk

Looking at Liverpool’s upcoming fixtures (Brighton, Wolves and Fulham) I do feel that, despite the injuries, they are likely to pick up one or two clean sheets. I also wonder how the injuries will impact Robertson (if fit). Will he be on more set pieces? Will he have to take on more of the attacking responsibility? There’s a lot of uncertainty but I also think there’s a lot of potential upside for Robertson owners. I certainly won’t be selling for a hit. I could be tempted to sell for a free transfer but is Robertson my biggest issue right now? Probably not.

FPL Partridge

FPL Family

Liverpool’s Andrew Robertson

This international break has proved to be a tough time to own Liverpool players. With Gomez picking up a knee injury in training with England, potential injuries to Robertson and Henderson while away with Scotland and England respectively as well as a positive test from Salah whilst on duty with Egypt, on top of a series of other injury concerns we as FPL Managers are now left with key decisions to make.

The injury to Alexander-Arnold in Gameweek 8 made the decision to sell him easier and right now not owning a Liverpool defender feels like a good idea especially as there are so many injuries to key Liverpool defenders as well as a lack of clean sheets. Even if Robertson recovers from his hamstring injury ahead of the Gameweek 9 deadline I’m not sure he is worth the money you need to invest in him when he is playing in a makeshift defensive unit.

Salah is a more complicated issue. His positive test leaves him isolating in Egypt until he returns a negative test – hopefully this will mean only missing one Gameweek. Having owned Salah since pre-season I would stand to lose 0.2m in him by selling now and, therefore, for me, I will be holding him as I will want him back as soon as he is allowed to play again – especially right now when attack is Liverpool’s best form of defence.

FPL Family Sam

What’s going on in the Scout Network?

El Statto

El Statto used the first week of the international break to take a break from writing articles and turned his attention to his much anticipated video content. This week he produced a short video instead summarising Chilwell on the back of last weeks Scout Network question on Chilwell and Chelsea after last weeks question from Scout

FPL Poker Player

This week FPL Poker Player published a blog reporting the key trends this season so far as identified by a review of my spreadsheet’s rolling data which contained good news for managers transferring in assets from Aston Villa and West Ham, and some mixed news for those bringing in Bruno Fernandes. I

Poker Player has also prepared a first draft of his weekly poker tables blog, which is due out next week. His latest 6 gameweek spreadsheet was emailed to customers around the world, if you would like to receive it don’t forget to sign up.

FPL Family

Lee and Sam had a busy week last week last week recording a Scout Question and Answer session as well as Sam appearing on last weeks FPLShow alongside Duncan Alexander. This week Sam will be on the Official FPLPodcast and Lee and Sam will be back streaming as usual on their YouTube channel at 20:30 GMT on Sunday night. The FPLFamily are also fast approaching 15k subs on YouTube – if you haven’t already hit that subscribe button!

FFS International and Scout Academy

FFS International 1

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You’ll be able to hear more from these additions to our network over the rest of the 2020/21 season and beyond! If you want to be part of our community be it – Scout Network, Scout Academy, FFS International or Community Trials then please get in touch!

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858 Comments Post a Comment
  1. PortisRed
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    11 days, 10 hours ago

    Advice please,....Who is more nailed for Palace in the mid-term...Clyne or Dann?

    1. Miguel Sanchez
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      11 days, 10 hours ago

      At a guess Clyne, overtaken Ward and Ferguson nowhere to be seen

    2. K_UN_DE_BRU_YNE
      • 3 Years
      11 days, 10 hours ago

      probably clyne atm !!!

    3. Corgzzzz
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      At £4.5 Why Clyne or Dann over Coufal of WHU ??

      1. El Presidente
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        11 days, 8 hours ago

        Because we all play our own game?...

  2. Atimis
    • 4 Years
    11 days, 10 hours ago

    Thoughts on Salah Son to Bruno KDB?

    2FTs 1.6ITB

    Martinez
    Robo/Kilman/Chilwell
    Salah/Son/Hamez/Grealish
    Kane/DCL/Bamford

    Martin/Reguilon/Mitchell/Stephens

    1. LegendMoon
      • 3 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      I think i would bench Salah and turn Reguillon into Coufal maybe

    2. Tonyawesome69
      • 1 Year
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      Depends on the Salah news on Thurs.

      1. LegendMoon
        • 3 Years
        11 days, 9 hours ago

        The way this season is going I reckon the news on Thursday will be good just to punish all the early sellers!!

  3. Newsman70
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 8 Years
    11 days, 10 hours ago

    On a Wildcard and this is the latest draft.

    McCarthy Forster
    Zouma Targett Balbouma Kilman Bernado
    KDB Bruno Ziyech Zaha Grealish
    DCL Bamford Kane

    Question is who would you rather have?
    A Soucek Martinez Cancelo Cresswell
    B Zaha McCarthy Bernado Balbouma

    1. K_UN_DE_BRU_YNE
      • 3 Years
      11 days, 10 hours ago

      A by far margin lots of good players !!!

    2. LegendMoon
      • 3 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      definitely A, and even then you've a benching headache with your front 8

      1. Newsman70
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 8 Years
        11 days, 9 hours ago

        Soucek on the bench though?

        1. LegendMoon
          • 3 Years
          11 days, 9 hours ago

          i would, could even downgrade him and use the cash elsewhere

          1. Newsman70
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 8 Years
            11 days, 9 hours ago

            4.9 to a 4.4 and upgrade defence I guess?

            1. LegendMoon
              • 3 Years
              11 days, 9 hours ago

              yep even if its just balbueno to coufal or bernardo to possibly KWP

    3. Tonyawesome69
      • 1 Year
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      100% A

    4. El Presidente
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      11 days, 8 hours ago

      What a great defender Balbouma would be...

  4. K_UN_DE_BRU_YNE
    • 3 Years
    11 days, 10 hours ago

    I love to have KDB in my team but always wants to captain sterling over him.
    So always 50/50 for me to own,errrrrrr!!!
    Your preference?
    KDB
    OR,
    STERLING

    1. LegendMoon
      • 3 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      KDB, Sterling is so hit and miss

    2. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      KDB

    3. Miguel Sanchez
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      I know what you mean and have never had too much luck captaining KDB. Sterling for me cause I feel more comfrotable captaining him now.

    4. Tonyawesome69
      • 1 Year
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      KDB for me at the moment. Sterling hasn't convinced me to cap him over KDB this season. Sterling was great towards the end of last season especially when I captained him for his hat trick.

    5. Flair
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      KDB plays #10 in big games and is very advanced. He's the clear better option, especially with Sterling's poor form.

  5. Jay Jay Okocha
    • 7 Years
    11 days, 10 hours ago

    A) Chilwell, Tsrgett
    B) Cancelo, Reece James

    1. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      A

    2. Tonyawesome69
      • 1 Year
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      A

  6. xHaTr
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    11 days, 10 hours ago

    My current team: 1.9 ITB with 1FT

    Martinez
    Lamptey TAA* Chilwell*
    Foden* Salah* Son Grealish
    Bamford DCL Kane

    Steer Ayling Anguissa Mitchell*

    My thoughts are TAA and Foden to Coufal and Bruno for -4

    Is anything else worth another hit this week?

    1. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      That looks ok

    2. LegendMoon
      • 3 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      You don't really want to be -8ing , just the 2 transfers is fine

    3. Tonyawesome69
      • 1 Year
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      Nothing else for another hit.

  7. Reyson
    • 4 Years
    11 days, 9 hours ago

    see a burnley cs against crystal. good luck to zaha owners.

    1. Tonyawesome69
      • 1 Year
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      I hope so, starting Taylor ahead of Bissouma

    2. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      What a horrible thought that game is.

  8. Tonyawesome69
    • 1 Year
    11 days, 9 hours ago

    Would you triple up in Villa players with Watkins (Martinez and Grealish) or bring in Bamford? I've been on Watkins due to the fixtures but Bamford stats are hard to ignore.

    1. LegendMoon
      • 3 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      I like the villa triple up, if you've already got Watkins I certainly wouldn't be transferring him out with the fixtures they've got.

    2. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      If it is a straight choice I prefer Bamford.

  9. OBAMA
    • 6 Years
    11 days, 9 hours ago

    im completely lost...

    Mendy/Nyland
    James/Coufal/TAA/Mithcell/Dunne
    Salah/Zaha/Foden/Son/Burke
    DCL/Kane/Watkins

    I need to get out TAA, Foden and probably Salah now but don't want to take a -8. I can't rely on bench as none are playing (nightmare)

    A) Free hit
    B) -8 and take out salah, TAA & Foden
    C) -4 and take out TAA & Salah. Hope that Foden gets some minutes
    D) -4 and take out TAA & Foden. Accept that I have one blank in my team and bench salah for next GW.
    E) other - please say if you have a better idea (Yes I've already wildcarded lol)

    1. The Knights Template
      • 7 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      You may need the -8

    2. LegendMoon
      • 3 Years
      11 days, 9 hours ago

      TAA to Chillwell, Mitchell to Digne?

      Imagine a scenario at the beginning of the season where you might be taking out TAA, Salah and Foden for a -8 , you could never imagine it!

  10. Corgzzzz
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    11 days, 9 hours ago

    Guys, I have downloaded Chrome extension and now I have lots of boxes under each player ( a good thing ) but none of the boxes have any data in them ?? I am on apple Mac, does anyone know the answer to my problem ??

  11. Thewonderfulgame
    • 3 Years
    11 days, 8 hours ago

    Should be topical given Liverpool's injury crisis and fixture swing;

    Defender Picks which are not intentionally budget but give options for heavy Mid (KDB/Bruno etc). Also not just one week options but should provide medium term picks (in no order);

    Everton (Ful/Leeds/Bur)
    1.Coleman - 4.9 - likely to be fit
    2. Holgate - 4.8

    Palace (Bur/New/WBA)
    3.Clyne - 4.5
    4. Dann - 4.4 (less nailed but palace legend and recent strong performances raises case)

    Others:

    -Cancelo (5.4)- an option after Spurs this week
    -Justin (4.8)- an option after Liverpool this week
    -Neco Williams (3.9)- enabler, likely to get game time

    the case against others getting a lot of press time -

    -Cress- Stats good but ultimately playing LCB and not amazing fixtures after Sheffield. Courfal better pick but hammers historically leaky.
    -Bellerin- Arsenal out of form and Leeds/Wolv/Tottenham capable of scoring >1 goal
    -Villa defenders- argument to triple up on Grealish/Martinez/Watkins

    Happy to hear feedback as always 🙂

    1. Mr. O'Connell
      • 8 Years
      11 days, 8 hours ago

      1. Quite like this pick if fit.
      2. Nah, been there in the past. Not nailed. Loves a card/injury.
      3. Is he first choice? Mitchell played RB with PVA LB a couple of weeks ago.
      4. Wouldn't go there.

      Cancelo - think I prefer Dias for nailedness, but can see him racking up a double figure score soon (followed by a benching).
      Justin - fair pick. Ricardo due back, but we've been hearing that for some time. Don't buy, don't sell.
      Williams - will only get a few weeks (if that). Milner may play RB anyway. Wastes a transfer down the line when 3 Liverpool becomes an option again.

      Cress - good pick, but it he worth it over Coufal?
      Bellerin - don't buy Arsenal players should be a global rule.
      Martinez is the best Villa def pick.