Scout Squad

The Scout Squad’s best players for FPL Blank Gameweek 18

The Scout Squad are back to pick their best players for Blank Gameweek 18.

The assets listed will then be narrowed down to a squad of 15 (with the starting XI not exceeding a total cost of £83.0m) for the weekly Scout Picks selection ahead of the FPL deadline at 16:30 GMT on Tuesday.

In each writer’s squad, there are requirements for at least:

  • One goalkeeper costing £5.0m or less
  • One sub-£5.0m defender
  • One midfielder listed at £6.5m or below
  • One forward priced at £7.5m or lower

Each panelist is also restricted to no more than three players from the same team, as is the case in FPL.

We will again be adding a captaincy to the Scout Picks, with details of that revealed on Tuesday.

TomAndyGeoffDavid *
GKDavid de GeaKarl DarlowBernd LenoKarl Darlow
Karl DarlowHugo LlorisRui PatrícioNick Pope
Aaron RamsdaleAaron RamsdaleNick PopeVicente Guaita
DEFRúben DiasJoão CanceloJoão CanceloKieran Tierney
João CanceloHarry MaguireAaron Wan-BissakaJoão Cancelo
Kieran TierneyKeiran TierneyKieran TierneyRomain Saïss
Romain SaïssRomain SaissRomain SaïssHarry Maguire
Ciaran ClarkSergio ReguilónChris BashamFederico Fernández
MIDKevin De BruyneBruno FernandesBruno FernandesKevin De Bruyne
Bruno FernandesKevin De BruyneKevin De BruyneBruno Fernandes
Marcus RashfordRaheem SterlingRaheem SterlingMarcus Rashford
Son Heung-minMarcus RashfordMarcus RashfordIlkay Gündogan
Bukayo SakaBukayo SakaPedro NetoEmile Smith Rowe
FWDHarry KaneAlexandre LacazetteAlexandre LacazetteAlexandre Lacazette
Alexandre LacazetteHarry KaneDominic Calvert-LewinCallum Wilson
Callum WilsonCallum WilsonDavid McGoldrickFabio Silva
Dominic Calvert-LewinOllie WatkinsCallum WilsonChristian Benteke
David McGoldrickChris WoodChris WoodChris Wood

TOM SAID

With eight teams blanking in Gameweek 18 I’ve tripled up on four sides in my selections.

Investing in Manchester City looks an obvious tactic, as they host Brighton and Hove Albion. They are clearly the best defensive play this week so a double-up makes sense, with just three goals conceded in their last 12 games in all competitions. Albion tend to defend pretty well from open-play, but given how poor they are at marking corners, I’ve called up one of City’s biggest aerial threats Rúben Dias and dead-ball specialist Kevin De Bruyne. João Cancelo also looks like an excellent option, having really shone on the right with Kyle Walker out of action. When in possession he’s taking up some really nice advanced positions, too.

Manchester United travel to Burnley so David de Gea, Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford get the nod. The Red Devils are now unbeaten in 10 in the league, and have done well in previous seasons at Turf Moor. Having scored against Aston Villa last time out, Fernandes now has seven goals and assists across his last six games, while Rashford is yet to blank on the road this term.

I’ve also taken three from Arsenal: Kieran Tierney, Bukayo Saka and Alexandre Lacazette. I really like Tierney in a back four, while Saka is a nice enabler with so many premium picks selected. Lacazette has stepped up his output too, scoring five goals in his last four outings. He now has the highest xG within the club this season, and is converting at an impressive 30.4%, comfortably the highest at Arsenal. 

Meanwhile, I’ve also turned to Newcastle United, via Karl Darlow, Ciaran Clark and Callum Wilson. Their opponents, Sheffield United, are still winless after 17 games, making the worst start in Premier League history by collecting just two points. At the back, Darlow has been one of Steve Bruce’s better performers, while Clark carries a bit of threat from set-pieces. Further forward, if they are to find the back of the net, it’s highly likely Wilson will be involved. 

However, I don’t fully trust Newcastle, so in a week where our player pool is vastly reduced, I’ve also opted for Aaron Ramsdale and David McGoldrick.

Despite it looking increasingly likely Aston Villa’s match against Tottenham Hotspur will be postponed, Son Heung-min and Harry Kane have the potential to do well if it does go ahead, while Romain Saiss and Dominic Calvert-Lewin complete the picks.

ANDY SAID

Some of the players in the squad this week pick themselves by virtue of there only being six fixtures to pick from. 

With the opposition they face it seems foolish not to target at least three players from each of Manchester City, Manchester United and Arsenal. 

There are of course other players to consider as well. It’s tricky to call Wolves v Everton. I expected the Wolves v Brighton game to be close in Gamweek 17 and there ended up being six goals. 

Regardless of clean sheet potential there’s hope for Romain Saiss who’s back in the team as he’s had seven shots in the box over the last four Gameweeks, two more than the second place Harry Maguire with five.

Bruno Fernandes continues to deliver key underlying numbers to back up his returns. Only Anwar El Ghazi has had more total shots (18), than the Manchester United talisman (16) over the last four weeks. 

With 14 chances created, Fernandes is second in that metric only to Jack Grealish. With nine shots inside the box in the same time and penalties in his locker there’s no doubt more returns against Burnley to come.

While most non-free hitters will likely opt for double Manchester City defence over attack for the long term play, if I was free hitting this week or indeed picking a squad for an article then I’d look at double attack instead. 

Kevin De Bruyne (3.31) and Raheem Sterling (2.74) are in the top 5 players for expected goal involvement over the last four weeks. It’s worth mentioning that Fernandes, El Ghazi and Chris Wood make up the other three spots who are all playing in Gameweek 18.

Looking at the last four Gameweeks Keiran Tierney (11) has only been beaten by Luke Shaw (12) for chances created. The only reason I’ve included Maguire over Shaw is because I can’t be completely reliant on minutes with Alex Telles waiting in the winds. 

Tierney and Arsenal are on somewhat of a resurgence over the last few games, with three wins on the bounce they play a Crystal Palace side who are on an average of 1.51 expected goals conceded so far this season, as bad as Sheffield United.

GEOFF SAID

I have serious doubts over the status of the Aston Villa v Tottenham game on Wednesday, and have therefore left out two players I would certainly look at if the game does go ahead, Son Heung-min and Harry Kane.

Including the pair would have helped me avoid picking
defenders who play against my attackers, as I’ve looked to include
no more than three players from each team.

Midfield looks like the place to score points this week and a 3-5-2
formation might be optimal. I’ve gone for Bruno Fernandes
and Kevin De Bruyne as my headline picks with penalties and high goal involvement for their sides.

Raheem Sterling has attacking returns in four straight, and
Marcus Rashford has scored five goals in seven. I’ve opted for Pedro Neto as my cheaper option.

Allowed one more from both City and United I look to João Cancelo and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

Elsewhere, Kieran Tierney has both form and fixture, while Romain Saïss has an eye for goal.

Sheffield United haven’t had a clean sheet all season but I think this is the week that Chris Basham returns points.

Alexandre Lacazette has four goals in three Gameweeks and has more than twice as many goals as any other Arsenal player; I expect him to score again at home to Crystal Palace.

I’m ignoring Kane and Watkins and have three City and three United already, so look to Dominic Calvert-Lewin, who has attacking returns in all but four fixtures this season.

David McGoldrick might seem a strange pick but I agree with
RateMyTeam, where he sits third for forwards this Gameweek; a look at his
incredible goal involvement for Sheffield United tells the story here and if the Blades do score, he’ll likely be involved.

I am then left with Callum Wilson and Chris Wood, two players who play against defenders I’ve picked but two players who will likely be involved in goals, if their teams score.

At the back, Bernd Leno is my top goalkeeper this week, with Rui Patricio and Nick Pope serving as possibly-able backups, though
they play against players I’ve picked in attack.

786 Comments Post a Comment
  1. wildnothing
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    What do you think of this FH draft?

    Leno
    Cancelo Tierney Saiss
    KDB Fernandes Rashford Grealish Gündogan
    Kane Lacazette

    4.0 Lindelöf Mitchell Davis

    1. Davros
      • 12 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Well Grealish ain’t gonna play...

      1. Old Man
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        You don't know that for certain .... or do you?

        1. Davros
          • 12 Years
          10 months, 28 days ago

          Not for certain, but given that the whole villa 1st team are in isolation I would say it is highly unlikely

    2. CAVEAT KING
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      I would (IMO) set up a side less Villa atm. Good for spurs though if they have to play under 18's

      1. ebb2sparky
        • 11 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Why would Villa have to field an U18 team but the PL let Man City, Fulham and Newcastle postpone? Doesn't make any sense.

        1. CAVEAT KING
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 7 Years
          10 months, 28 days ago

          Exactly. I am in the dark too. Who knows the real rules.

          1. ebb2sparky
            • 11 Years
            10 months, 28 days ago

            I'm sure it will be postponed rather than U18s playing.
            I have a feeling they'll stop the season within the next week or so but really hope i'm wrong

  2. Amey
    • 3 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    FPL is becoming a bit boring right now with so many uncertainties ....

    1. Davros
      • 12 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Chaos is a ladder

      1. Over Midwicket
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        You should be an FPL pundit

      2. Amey
        • 3 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Agree but it's becoming a norm now....

  3. George James
    • 6 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    Best way forward with this lot? (If spurs game off)

    Martinez • Steer
    James* • Coufal • Stones • Cancelo • Robbo
    Salah • Bruno • Son • Podence* Bissouma*
    Kane • DCL • Brewster

    A) -4 to field 8 in GW18 then -4 for GW19 and use TC

    B) FH then -8 for GW19 with 10 DGW players and use TC

    C) WC and have 10 for GW18 then BB 14/15 DGW players in GW19

    1. StayoutheSpiceZone
      • 4 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      C

      1. George James
        • 6 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Cheers

  4. StayoutheSpiceZone
    • 4 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    I think FPL towers should grant us one more FH chip this season. Surely that could be added without too much of a fuss. Unprecedented times and all that. Would help with the confusion/cancellations and luck aspect a bit

    1. Holmes
      • 8 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Nah, to FH or not to FH this week is going to be interesting...

      1. StayoutheSpiceZone
        • 4 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Yes I agree with this. But it seems like the game needs to adapt a little. I’m not talking about 10 extra chips or anything, just one to adapt to the climate

        1. Grounderz
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          10 months, 28 days ago

          Perhaps, fantasy managers to adapt the environment rather than the game itself?

    2. ebb2sparky
      • 11 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Tbh would make it easier overall if they did the opposite and had removed the FH this season

    3. circusmonkey
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      They'll probably just do what they did in the summer if there is a multi month stoppage.

  5. HonestBlatter
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    Give me the fixture news please...

    1. Holmes
      • 8 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      5 days to go...

  6. Kryptonite666
    • 2 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    I have triple Spurs and Double Villa - will have only 5 players left if the game is called off.

    -
    Cancelo Stones
    KDB Fernandes
    Wilson

    Any advice on what I should do if the game is off?

    1. ebb2sparky
      • 11 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Use your FT to get one more starter then leave as is since you have the key players already

      1. Kryptonite666
        • 2 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        This is after KDB in for Salah for my FT 🙁

  7. CAVEAT KING
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    I April/May 2019 I was stuck in a high care ward with my TV entertainment being local propaganda. This forced me to search the web for entertainment of interest. I stumbled upon Podcasts/Streams etc relating to FPL. Over the last 18 months I have got more and more involved, starting with the scoutcast and gradually widening my horizons. Lockdown has reinvigorated my searches. Below are some of what I take in. Let me know of ones I could have missed.
    Planet FPL; Suj the easy going one and James the "know all" (To be honest James is very well informed) Rating 8/10 with content often being top drawer.
    Black Box: marc is probably my favorite for content. Usually 2 hours of info backed up by stats with Az being a good sounding board. (8/10)
    Scoutcast: A nice variation of information from different content creators chaired by Joe. I like the rough with the smoothe and the questions submitted. (7/10)
    FF Hub: Never really licked it until the Ben Crellin info offered. Started to grow on me. (6/10)
    Lets talk FPL; Apart from many of the podcasts being repeats of scoutcasts I really like it. Andy is my favorite character. Down to earth and comes across as human. (10/10)
    Elite FPL: The least informative and lacking content, it can still be worth watching on matchday feeds. Probably more social than informative. Not a fan of their "guests". (5/10)
    FPL Family: All the overtalking does my head in a little Sam and Lee can compliment each other. I probably prefer Sam (6/10)
    FPL18: A breath of fresh air. Not followed that much but should be right up there. (9/10)
    FPL General: I really like the simplicity of it all. in 30 minutes you get 90% of what you need to know from a very knowledgeable content creator.
    FPL Cougars: Like the pair of them but probably too entrenched in XG XA X whatever. An east watch outside of that though. (6/10)
    Dayvy FPL: I have a soft spot for a likeable South African. A perfect beginners watch.(7/10)
    FPL Dave: Pure entertainment. I watch the character rather than the content. He can be very original. (7/10)

    Well done Andy; you win IMO

    1. ritzyd
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      You are missing two of the very best:
      - FML FPL which is, imo, the very best pod out there for entertainment
      - always cheating, like being down the pub

      1. CAVEAT KING
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Thanks mate. I will look.

    2. Jafalad
      • 11 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Anyone who gets to the point with the right information gets my attention.

      1. CAVEAT KING
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Good point. But sometimes I watch for entertainment. Andy did a great "Wild card option" the other day. Pod of the season IMO

        1. ritzyd
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          10 months, 28 days ago

          Yeah, that was good

    3. The 12th Man
      • 8 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Listen/ watch most of them.
      Have to agree regarding Elite FPL. Ok for 10 mins then get bored and switch.
      On the nail about Cougers too.
      Like Andy but feel he could reduce his streams. Streaming for streaming sake.
      Not fussed on FPL Family. Lee’s ok.
      General is good.
      Planet I’d say is the best out there.
      I like Always Cheating .

      1. CAVEAT KING
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        The second Always cheating push. Going to look now.
        Agree a little about Andy. Does not help he works for FF Scout

        1. The 12th Man
          • 8 Years
          10 months, 28 days ago

          Getting into FPL Wire too.

    4. Blzbobuk
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      You missed out Nathan bacon - the most entertaining fpl YouTuber.

      1. CAVEAT KING
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Not my type

    5. Little Frank
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      FPL Wire is probably my favourite but also a big fan of Black Box and FML FPL.

    6. LegendMoon
      • 4 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Always cheating is easily the best out of everything on offer, funny and informative

    7. circusmonkey
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      FPL Mate is persona non grata, I feel sorry for him.

  8. Jafalad
    • 11 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    The Blank Gameweek.

    Two qs: 1. Play the FH chip? 2. Got two frees - which trannies?

    Team:

    McCarthy/Johnson

    Stones, Cancello, Taylor, Dallas, Balbuena

    Salah, Soucek, Bruno, Son, Raphina

    Kane, Bamford, DCL.

    1. CAVEAT KING
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      1 ) Yes 2) Damage control Salah to KDB and Raphina to Neto/Saka IMO

      1. Jafalad
        • 11 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Thanks. My gut feeling is that this isn't going to be a prolific gameweek so I'm a little reluctant to use a chip at this stage. Good ideas on the trades. Happy to do three transfers at this stage.

    2. The 12th Man
      • 8 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      So you have 7 for this week if Spurs play.
      If your willing to remove Salah for KDB then I’d hold the FH.

      And roll the FT so you can get Salah back for free with 2FTs by moving Son or Kane.

      1. Jafalad
        • 11 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        I like your thinking. Never thought about saving a FT. I have a feeling the Spuds/Villa game will be off though. Thanks 🙂

      2. sminkypinky
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        I guess this would be the general answer to my problems as well. I just don’t like it.

  9. The 12th Man
    • 8 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    Just tinkering with FH team.
    Leno
    Holding,Cancelo,Coleman
    Sterling,KDB, Fernandes,Rashford,Son
    Lacazette,McGoldrick

    Steer, Brewster,Mitchell,Douglas 0.1m itb

    I know McGoldrick in the first eleven. Downgrade to fodder and upgrade a defender and go 4-5-1?

    1. CAVEAT KING
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      I am not going near Coleman and look at my Grav

  10. Grounderz
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    Folks, is there any website/tool available to analyse the following:

    - How many chips have been used in a league
    - Ownership of players in a league

      1. Grounderz
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        10 months, 28 days ago

        Cheers, mate. This helps a lot.

  11. FFS Ultras are for Kinnear
    • 8 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    Any announcements about Aston Villa overnight?

  12. sminkypinky
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    Hey all!

    I’ve been taking price losses on the chin to get more info on which to basd my decision but the deadline is ever nearing and I really haven’t made a conclusion on what to do.

    Well tbh I’m pretty set on not using a chip on gw18 and trying to bust a Bb for gw19, but however I tinker with my team I can’t get it to work. Hence, I really need help! Here’s the team with 2ft and 2.1mil in the kitty.

    Martinez Steer
    Zouma Robbo Dias Stones
    Grealish Son Salah Bruno Soucek
    DCL Bamford Brewster

    Obviously as many gw18/19 players wanted in thats possible.

    1. sminkypinky
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      Left out Dallas

    2. MOTHRA
      • 6 Years
      10 months, 28 days ago

      I’d downgrade zouma and lose Brewster and get in kdb/city.
      Antonio may be a good punt.

  13. Buck The Trent
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    10 months, 28 days ago

    New Post

  14. CapK
      10 months, 27 days ago

      Free Hit Options

      A)

      Darlow
      Holding / Stones / AWB
      Bruno / KDB / Rash / Son / ESR
      Laca / Kane

      Bench Fodder (mitchel x x )

      B)

      Leno
      Holding / Stones / AWB
      Bruno / Kevin / Rash / Sterling / ESR
      Wilson / Kane

      Bench Fodder (brewster, mitchell, x)

      Thanks!

    • BlueAngel
      • 1 Year
      10 months, 27 days ago

      I had 9 players for BGW18 but with Martinez and DCL out I'm down to 7.

      Dier - Stones - Cancelo

      De Bruyne - Fernandes - Son

      Kane

      I could get to Wilson, Leno and Wan-Bissaka for a -12 from Bernardo, Martinez and DCL.

      Is this worth it or should I trigger the WC? Already used FH!

    • gospodinedin
      • 6 Years
      10 months, 26 days ago

      Should I free hit, wildcard or what, can't get my head around it.

      GK McCarthy (Martin)
      DEF Zouma, Stones, Holding, Mitchell, Coufal
      MID Salah, Son, Grealish, Fernandes, Klich
      FRW Kane, Calvert, Vassilev