Welcome to the Fantasy Football Scout Guide to Gameweek 10 ahead of today’s 18:30 GMT deadline.
Is now the time to be getting Manchester City players? Is Diogo Jota (£6.7m) trustworthy? Should we all be backing Jamie Vardy (£10.2m) with the captain’s armband?
To help you answer those and other crucial questions, the Gameweek Guide draws on the best expert opinion, pertinent stats, and latest team news for the upcoming round of matches.
Form v Potential
The Manchester City conundrum. Two contrasting takes stood out in Neale’s Big Numbers piece encapsulating the dilemma facing Fantasy managers:
23-1 is the cumulative score of Manchester City‘s last six meetings with Burnley in all competitions. But 15.7 attempts on goal and 5.3 shots on target per game registered by Manchester City in the Premier League so far this season is the fewest they’ve managed in a single campaign under Pep Guardiola.– Neale
The fixture is there, and the potential for them to do well is huge, but the form is lacking.
Pro Pundit Darren Wiles has decided to go with his gut:
I am hoping this is one of those situations where my instincts as a football fan outweigh what the stats are telling me. Memories of big hauls are rooted in my memory and I’m backing City to make a return to form in the run-in to Christmas.– Darren
Darren is considering taking a leaf out of Lateriser’s book and committing to an uncharacteristic eight-point hit to triple up on City players. He’s looking to bring in both Raheem Sterling (£11.5m) and Kevin De Bruyne (£11.6m), with the former his choice for the armband.
Sterling has already scored twice against Burnley this season, both of his goals coming in the League Cup when Ferran Torres (£6.9m) assumed an unfamiliar centre-forward role. But with Sergio Aguero (£10.3m) and Gariel Jesus (£9.3m) back in contention, Sterling could once again take up his favoured position on the wing.
Both strikers are now fit and available, which solves the other issue: Sterling’s role in the team. With the forwards out, he was shoehorned into a false-nine role and robbed of the penetration he offers in wide areas. For that reason, I believe Sterling to be an outstanding pick for the Gameweek 10 captaincy.– Jan
Brave words from Jan Sienkiewicz in this week’s Captain Sensible article, and at just 4.6 per cent ownership Sterling is an unfamiliar differential. Something Pro Pundit Sam Bonfield, in her look at the best assets to help you climb the ranks between Gameweeks 10 and 14, and Tom Freeman both picked up on:
The likes of Sterling and Aguero seldom class as differentials and as such, there has never been a better time to invest in terms of the potential upside that they may yield.– Sam
Writing in his Differentials piece, Tom added:
England forward Raheem Sterling has gone from strength-to-strength during his time at Manchester City, netting 31, 25 and 23 goals in his last three seasons. He is yet to hit those heights this term, but has enjoyed a reasonably productive start, scoring five times in all competitions despite the Citizens’ well documented troubles in front of goal.– Tom
But as the Scoutcast highlighted, Kevin De Bruyne is performing best in terms of expected goal involvement among City players – and was rested in midweek for their Champions League trip to Greece. Joe is contemplating adding the Belgian alongside Sterling in his line-up.
To add to their appeal, Burnley ‘keeper Nick Pope (£5.4m) could miss out:
Leicester City host Fulham on Monday, handing Jamie Vardy (£10.2m) an opportunity to fill his boots. No team has conceded more goals than Scott Parker’s team this season. But David struck a cautious tone on the Captaincy Video:
The results haven’t been as good as away from home. If you compare [Vardy] home versus away this season, he’s had 1.7 shots per game at home versus 2.6 shots per game away from home… until the Wolves game, he hadn’t had a single shot on target at home yet. So the dynamic of Leicester being the home team, and being asked to break down a team that’s going to sit behind the ball, is more challenging for them.– David
Jan, however, was more confident, citing Vardy’s appeal as an alternative to a Manchester City player:
Since James Maddison (£7.0m) returned in Gameweek 6, only Harry Kane (£11.0m) and Patrick Bamford (£6.1m) recorded more attempts on goal than Vardy. When it comes to the xG, only the Leeds man’s score of 4.72 tops Vardy’s 3.98 figure in that period of time too.– Jan
Those who made the move from Mohamed Salah (£12.2m) to Bruno Fernandes (£10.8m) ahead of Gameweek 9 were justified in their decision, with the Portuguese producing his first double-figure haul at home this season.
On the face of it, Manchester United’s quick counter-attack should do well against Southampton’s high defensive line this Gameweek. But the Saints have improved since their capitulation to Tottenham Hotspur, although the recent visitors to St Mary’s included West Bromwich Albion, an Everton short of key players and Newcastle.
Do we think that it’s the opposition that is the reason why they’ve done so well at home or is it because they are in fact much better at home now than we thought they were when they played Spurs?– Joe
Joe and David debated the chances for Fernandes and co:
McCarthy’s performance against Wolves, it was epic, it was one of the great goalkeeping performances we’ve seen this season. To get eight saves in that game and come away with seven points. Even if Southampton concede a heck of a lot of shots, McCarthy is going to be right there, making things difficult for Man United.– David
However, Pro Pundit Fábio Borges is set to hand his fellow countryman the armband for the second successive Gameweek, reasoning:
I expect Southampton to play an attacking style of football (as they always do), which hopefully will benefit Fernandes’ potential for points.– Fábio
This means he will forgo Manchester City attacking players for now.
Meanwhile Pro Pundit Andy, who already owns both De Bruyne and Marcus Rashford (£9.5m), is considering an immediate return for Salah:
It’s important not to overthink sometimes, and a fit Salah really should be in my squad.– Andy
Although how will he feel after watching Liverpool’s below-par performance in their midweek Champions League defeat to Atalanta?
Get him while he’s hot
Diogo Jota (£6.7m) is the form Liverpool attacker: 10 attempts on goal, eight shots in the box, four big chances and six efforts on target over the last four Gameweeks – all totals that neither Sadio Mane (£12.1m) nor Mohamed Salah can better in that time.
“Get him while he’s hot” was Lateriser’s advice. On the FPL Wire this week, Zophar, Neale and Lateriser sensed an opportunity for the former Wolves player, with midfielder Fabinho (£5.4m) set to deputise at centre-back for the foreseeable future:
To circumvent the lack of central midfielders, there’s going to be a lot more of the 4-2-3-1 formation, and I can see Jota getting a lot of game time over Christmas.– Neale
Neale gave a wide-ranging interview discussing his role at Fantasy Football Scout and his FPL career. The Newcastle fan’s excellent work covering the press conferences and putting together the predicted line-ups has not gone unnoticed:
Fantasy Football Scout’s site they go into some depth on the latest news and manager news conferences which is a clear indication of the time and attention to detail that they put into their predictions and this is paying off with their results.– Footstock
Finally, Patrick Bamford (£6.1m) appears to have seduced Lateriser, with the upside chasing manager considering selling Timo Werner (£9.5m) for the Leeds forward.
Neale mentioned that goal conversion is an often overlooked statistic and it’s one that suggests Bamford’s form is sustainable:
[Bamford’s] goal conversion rate is at approximately 20% right now which doesn’t seem very unsustainable to m.e– Lateriser
Encouragingly Bamford is top for expected goals over the last four Gameweeks, and their attack continues to create chances:
97 attempts on goal and 70 shots in the box recorded by Leeds United over the last six Gameweeks, more than any other side has registered over the same period.– Neale
And an injury to Lucas Digne (£6.1m) only heightens his appeal ahead of the trip to Goodison Park.
For those interested in the Head-to-Head Leagues, the main page can be linked to here. The fixtures for Gameweek 10 can be found below:
Use the drop-down menus to show your league and division. To find out which league and division you are in, follow the instructions on the main Head-to-Head page.
Once the Gameweek starts, if you click on your opponent’s name you will be linked to their team on the FPL website.
And may your arrows be green!
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