Spot the Differential

Signing Cancelo a week before fixture swing can give FPL owners the edge

Fantasy Premier League managers could turn to Manchester City, Aston Villa or Crystal Palace to replace their Liverpool defenders for Gameweek 9.

Key members of the Reds’ back-line leave teams in their droves following the international break, so we have used this week’s Differential column to identify three exciting replacements; all of whom we think have the ability to deliver points at both ends of the pitch over the forthcoming weeks.

As always, to qualify, the player must have an ownership of 5% or less at the time of writing.

João Cancelo

Cancelo stars for City as Sheff Utd's weak right-side bodes well for Chelsea
  • FPL ownership: 2.4%
  • Price: £5.4m
  • GW9-13 fixtures: tot | BUR | FUL | mun | WBA

João Cancelo (£5.4m) endured a tough first season in England, but is now starting to shine.

Since making his first Premier League start of the campaign in Gameweek 5, the Portugal international has amassed 24 FPL points, averaging six per game. In that time, he has registered two clean sheets and, despite only providing one assist, has created more chances than any defender in the entire division.

Having performed as a right full-back in his first appearance against Arsenal, he has since been deployed on the left in Benjamin Mendy’s (£5.9m) absence. It remains to be seen what will happen when the Frenchman returns from injury, but given Cancelo’s excellent form, it is hard to see an immediate route back into the team.

Since losing 5-2 to Leicester City back in September, Manchester City have conceded just four goals in nine games in all competitions, keeping five clean sheets. While many FPL managers will be looking at Gameweek 10 as the optimum time to invest in their backline, there could be value in going a week early, given Matt Doherty’s (£5.8m) positive coronavirus (COVID-19) test, and the fact most of Tottenham Hotspur’s chances tend to be conceded from their right-side.

Manchester City’s left-back problem has been a theme throughout Pep Guardiola’s time at the club, but the recent form of Cancelo has perhaps provided a solution. Consistency will now be the key to retaining his place, but if he can do that, it’s hard to envisage him being a differential too much longer. 

Matt Targett

  • FPL ownership: 2.4%
  • Price: £4.5m
  • GW9-13 fixtures: BHA | whu | NEW | wol | BUR

Matt Targett (£4.5m) has been a solid performer for Aston Villa since joining from Southampton in 2019, making the left-back spot his own.

A product of the Saints academy, he has played a key role in a defence that has already kept four clean sheets in seven attempts this season, and perhaps doesn’t get the praise his performances often deserve.

The Englishman is yet to miss a single minute of league action so far, and with Jack Grealish (£7.5m) regularly drifting infield in front of him, plenty of space often opens up for him to attack. He’s got a good delivery too, which he showed in flashes against Arsenal last time out, when he provided the cross that was turned in by Bukayo Saka (£5.3m) for Villa’s first goal in their 3-0 win.

Interestingly, the 25-year-old scored his first goal for the club when he netted an injury time winner against this weekend’s opponents, Brighton and Hove Albion, back in October 2019.

This time, with Tariq Lamptey (£4.8m) likely to surge forward for Albion and support their attack, Targett could have his hands full defensively on Saturday, but at the same time, gaps could appear if space is left in behind. That has certainly been the case so far this season, with the Seagulls giving up 17 of their 42 chances down their right-flank, compared to just nine from the left. 

Still priced at just £4.5m, Targett offers the cheapest route into Villa’s defence, and could be a solid set and forget option given their appealing fixtures.

Patrick van Aanholt

  • FPL ownership: 0.7%
  • Price: £5.4m
  • GW9-13 fixtures: bur | NEW | wba | TOT | whu

Having just returned from a long-term injury, Patrick van Aanholt (£5.4m) looked back to his best against Leeds United before the international break.

The Dutchman supplied an assist and carried plenty of goal threat, registering three shots in the box. Determined to get forward at every opportunity, his attacking runs created space for Eberechi Eze (£5.8m) and Wilfried Zaha (£7.4m) to thrive and gave them a cutting edge which has been missing without him in the team.

In his absence, Tyrick Mitchell (£4.1m) has impressed, but it was evident against Leeds just how much they’ve missed the 30-year-olds attacking nature, which leads us to think he’ll retain his place in the starting XI come Monday.

Despite often struggling in attack, Crystal Palace have had a bright start to the season. They sit eighth in the table, and looking at the run of games coming up, they have the potential to pick up points given the struggles of goal-shy Burnley and West Bromwich Albion, and to a slightly lesser extent Newcastle United.

In Gameweek 8 there were signs of progress. The expectation now is that results should pick up, and with the possibility of goals and clean sheets, at least in the short term, van Aanholt could be a nice pick-up for those in search of a differential currently owned by just 0.7% of FPL managers. 

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1,986 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Voodoo
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 3 days ago

    Who’s the better pick?

    A) Richarlison
    B) Calvert-Lewin

    Thinking of changing to Rich...

    1. jay01
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 3 days ago

      On a wc im punting richarlison for 2 weeks. My plan doesnt have an everton player in a few weeks anyway

      1. Voodoo
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 3 days ago

        I’m thinking of the same, Richarlison being on pens is a help.

    2. doher.ty
        2 months, 3 days ago

        Changing? Are you on WC? I wouldn't use a transfer to switch. Think it's pretty close. I would punt on Rich instead if on a WC.

        1. Voodoo
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          On WC.

    3. King Kohli
      • 8 Years
      2 months, 3 days ago

      Can I get away with Kilman & Mitchell as cover if I have the below defence?

      Chilwell Cancelo Cresswell

      1. Zim0
        • 2 Years
        2 months, 3 days ago

        I suppose so

      2. Black Knights
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 3 days ago

        No. If you're on WC, improve both. Cancelo will definitely miss a game at some point so if Mitchell doesn't get his place back, you're already relying on just Kilman's rubbish fixtures even his place isn't assured.

        1. King Kohli
          • 8 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          Sadly not on Wc.
          Looking to get in over the next two gws one of Cancelo/Dias and Cresswell/Coufal.

          1. Black Knights
            • 8 Years
            2 months, 3 days ago

            I would possibly get Dias instead so you rely on Kilman and Mitchell less.

            1. King Kohli
              • 8 Years
              2 months, 3 days ago

              Cheers mate.
              Just tempted by the attacking potential of Cancelo

      3. doher.ty
          2 months, 3 days ago

          Maybe - I expect Chill and Cress to start every game, Cancelo not so much.

        • Hazz
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          This GW, probably. Going forward, less sure. I'd want to promote one of those two to a Targett/Coufal/Masuaku etc.

        • No Salah
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          Keep above three defenders.

          Can you Downgrade Mitchell to 3.9 and stretch to Kilman to Targett?

          1. King Kohli
            • 8 Years
            2 months, 3 days ago

            Not on Wc.
            Looking to get in Cresswell and Cancelo over the next two gws

      4. Shark_Sandwich
        • 5 Years
        2 months, 3 days ago

        is it safe to bring Sterling in - has a good record against spurs, thank-you

        1. Holmes
          • 7 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          Not an issue if you are fine with holding him for long

      5. Abhishek Chitre
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        2 months, 3 days ago

        DCL or Richarlison?

        1. jay01
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          Im punting richarlison for 2 weeks

        2. Voodoo
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          Good question?, I think Richarlison!

        3. Jimmy Boy
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          DCL

        4. barcaa7
          • 2 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          RICH

      6. andres
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        2 months, 3 days ago

        you guys prefer,

        A 352 with brewester
        B 343 with soucek

        1. Alex_thekid
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          I went with B on wc from A what ive played up till now
          A = 1-2
          B = 2-14
          Points

        2. Alex_thekid
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          Id rather have soucek & you could even start him in easy fix

        3. ElChapo
          • 2 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          individual player form and fixtures over a set formation, always.

      7. Drogo
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 3 days ago

        Best premium defender to replace TAA?

        Also, bench Salah or transfer for Mané / Fernandes?

        1. Black Knights
          • 8 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          Cancelo and/or Dias.

        2. Pukki Party
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          I'm going Cancelo

      8. jay01
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 3 days ago

        Who to captain:
        A) Vardy
        B) Werner
        C) Richarlison

        1. Miguel Sanchez
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          C

        2. ⚔★Vibudh★⚔
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          B

      9. KAPTAIN KANE
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 3 days ago

        Any news on Brewster?

        1. doher.ty
            2 months, 3 days ago

            Do you have to start him?

            1. KAPTAIN KANE
              • 4 Years
              2 months, 3 days ago

              Quite possibly this week, if Kilman is out

        2. RED_ARMY
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 3 days ago

          I've got 2 FTs. The moves I can't decide between are Kane + Salah + Podence to:
          a) Bamford + Bruno (c) + KDB
          b) Vardy + KDB + JRod with Werner (c)

        3. Tango74
            2 months, 3 days ago

            Right I’m gonna see Salah on my WC

            Mane or KDB ??

          • AJ24
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 4 Years
            2 months, 3 days ago

            A) Cancelo
            B) Dias

            1. jay01
              • 6 Years
              2 months, 3 days ago

              A

            2. Pukki Party
              • 3 Years
              2 months, 3 days ago

              A

          • cheese XL
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 4 Years
            2 months, 3 days ago

            What to do with Foden? Already used ft on Salah to bruno

            Martinez
            Robbo Zouma Ayling
            Grealish Ziyech Foden Bruno Son
            DCL Kane

            Button KWP Mitchell Brewster
            1.1 itb

            A) Foden > Zaha or mid up to 7.6
            (Kane & son > vardy & kdb next week for -4)

            B) Brewster > Antonio & bench Foden
            (would need -8 to get vardy & kdb but could also get kdb & sterling instead)

            C) bench and play KWP or Brewster

            Cheers

          • Matsy123
            • 6 Years
            2 months, 3 days ago

            Best 5th defender for 4.5 or under?
            Chilwell, Cancelo, Cresswell, Lamptey,_________

            1. AJ24
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 4 Years
              2 months, 3 days ago

              Kilman

            2. djoker_nole
                2 months, 3 days ago

                Targett/Ayling

              • Alex_thekid
                • 3 Years
                2 months, 3 days ago

                Targett coufal

            3. Inazuma X1
              • 3 Years
              2 months, 3 days ago

              Is Son in quarantine?

              1. RAFA THE GAFFA
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 4 Years
                2 months, 3 days ago

                No

              2. THFC4LIFE
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 4 Years
                2 months, 3 days ago

                Check the scout tweets

              3. Tonyawesome69
                • 2 Years
                2 months, 3 days ago

                Negative test result and available

              4. Miguel Sanchez
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 4 Years
                2 months, 3 days ago

                He had a negative test on arrival back in UK

            4. kime67
              • 3 Years
              2 months, 3 days ago

              play ayling or bissouma?

              1. djoker_nole
                  2 months, 3 days ago

                  Ayling

                • Tonyawesome69
                  • 2 Years
                  2 months, 3 days ago

                  Ayling

                • kime67
                  • 3 Years
                  2 months, 3 days ago

                  thanks

              2. Tonyawesome69
                • 2 Years
                2 months, 3 days ago

                Which player would you start and first on the bench?
                A. Justin (A vs LIV)
                B. Ayling (H vs ARS)
                C. Taylor (H vs CRY)

                1. ElChapo
                  • 2 Years
                  2 months, 3 days ago

                  CAB

              3. djoker_nole
                  2 months, 3 days ago

                  Mane/Werner for captain?

                  1. RAFA THE GAFFA
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 4 Years
                    2 months, 3 days ago

                    Mane

                  2. Tonyawesome69
                    • 2 Years
                    2 months, 3 days ago

                    Werner

                • RAFA THE GAFFA
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 4 Years
                  2 months, 3 days ago

                  How many have gone Salah >> Mane(C)?

                  1. jdp219
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 4 Years
                    2 months, 3 days ago

                    Seriously thinking about that over Bruno. That small price difference also would allow me to bring back Salah more easily.

                • C_G
                  • 5 Years
                  2 months, 3 days ago

                  On WC

                  A) Ziyech & Werner
                  B) Grealish & Watkins
                  C) Grealish & Bamford

                  1. Tonyawesome69
                    • 2 Years
                    2 months, 3 days ago

                    B

                  2. djoker_nole
                      2 months, 3 days ago

                      C)

                    • ElChapo
                      • 2 Years
                      2 months, 3 days ago

                      A - by some distance

                  3. Inazuma X1
                    • 3 Years
                    2 months, 3 days ago

                    CCC in defence is the template then

                    Chilwell Cancelo Cresswell

                  4. Bennyboy1907
                      2 months, 3 days ago

                      FPL scout

                      Current team : 2FT’s 1.1ITB

                      Martinez (Forster)
                      Robbo Chillwell Lamptey (Saiss, Mitchell)
                      Salah Son Zaha Grealish (Bisouma)
                      Kane DCL Bamford

                      How’s the plan:

                      GW9:Son >>> Bruno
                      Saiss >>> Creswell
                      Salah >>> KDB (-4)
                      GW10: Kane >>> Vardy
                      GW11: Save transfer
                      GW12: Vardy >>> Antonio
                      Zaha >>> KDB

                      1. djoker_nole
                          2 months, 3 days ago

                          Are you getting two KDB's?

                        • Bennyboy1907
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            Zaha to SALAH****

                        • AJ24
                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          • 4 Years
                          2 months, 3 days ago

                          Wildcard Team:

                          Martinez, Ryan
                          Chilwell, Cancelo, Justin, Coufal, Kilman
                          Mane, KDB, Bruno, Grealish, Soucek
                          DCL, Bamford, Watkins

                          0.1m ITB

                        • chaser123
                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          • 3 Years
                          2 months, 3 days ago

                          Started the season with Ferguson thinking he would be back from injury by now..... anyone know how much longer I need to wait?

                          1. Miguel Sanchez
                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                            • 4 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            I think they are now waiting for an easy draw in the 3rd round of the Cup in January to play him

                          2. Black Knights
                            • 8 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            Back? Has he even played before?

                          3. RAFA THE GAFFA
                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                            • 4 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            He’s not first choice and he’s injured.

                          4. Hazz
                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                            • 3 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            Could be months. Read between the lines: Clyne was training with them & signed because Ferguson isn't expected to be back anytime soon.

                            If Ferguson's timeframe was short, they could have lived with Ward etc for a month or so.

                        • andres
                          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                          • 9 Years
                          2 months, 3 days ago

                          On a WC,

                          Werner or Vardy?

                          Have Ziyech

                          1. Tonyawesome69
                            • 2 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            Vardy

                        • Vasshin
                          • 2 Years
                          2 months, 3 days ago

                          2 FT and 0.6 itb what should I do?
                          Martinez/ Steer
                          James Chilwell Robbo \ Justin Mitchell
                          Grealish Salah Foden Son Hamez
                          Calvert-lewin Jimenez \ Mitrovic

                          Thanks

                        • ⚔★Vibudh★⚔
                          • 4 Years
                          2 months, 3 days ago

                          Play Lamptey or Cancelo?
                          Have been asking this all week and seems like a coin flip

                          1. Tonyawesome69
                            • 2 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            Exactly coin flip. Probaly Cancelo

                          2. Vasshin
                            • 2 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            Probably Lamptey

                          3. djoker_nole
                              2 months, 3 days ago

                              Cancelo

                            • linkafu
                              • 1 Year
                              2 months, 3 days ago

                              Cancelo

                            • Little Red Lacazette
                              • 4 Years
                              2 months, 3 days ago

                              I still say Lamptey.

                            • Jimmy Boy
                              • 4 Years
                              2 months, 3 days ago

                              Paying too much money for Cancelo if you're not willing to start him every game imo

                          4. barcaa7
                            • 2 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            a-Salah to Bruno (c) (-4)
                            b-Play Bamford

                            1. ⚔★Vibudh★⚔
                              • 4 Years
                              2 months, 3 days ago

                              B

                            2. Tonyawesome69
                              • 2 Years
                              2 months, 3 days ago

                              both

                              1. barcaa7
                                • 2 Years
                                2 months, 3 days ago

                                I wouldn't bench Grealish over Bamford

                            3. Little Red Lacazette
                              • 4 Years
                              2 months, 3 days ago

                              b

                          5. RAFA THE GAFFA
                            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                            • 4 Years
                            2 months, 3 days ago

                            Is the captain article out tonight admins?

                          6. Bennyboy1907
                              2 months, 3 days ago

                              Current team : 2FT’s 1.1ITB

                              Martinez (Forster)
                              Robbo Chillwell Lamptey (Saiss, Mitchell)
                              Salah Son Zaha Grealish (Bisouma)
                              Kane DCL Bamford

                              How’s the plan:
                              GW9:Son >>> Bruno
                              Saiss >>> Creswell
                              Salah >>> KDB
                              GW10: Kane >>> Vardy
                              GW11: Save transfer
                              GW12: Vardy >>> Antonio
                              Zaha >>> Salah

                              1. Bennyboy1907
                                  2 months, 3 days ago

                                  Salah to KDB this week for -4 btw

                              2. gonzalocampos
                                • 5 Years
                                2 months, 3 days ago

                                Any news about Kilman about his father passing away? He will play?

                                1. Kindness
                                  • 3 Years
                                  2 months, 3 days ago

                                  Show some class man