Pro Pundit Teams

The best teams to target for a hectic FPL schedule

Double Gameweek fever will often take hold of even the best Fantasy Premier League (FPL) managers. Once it hits you it’s hard to think about anything else, and we often forget to plan for the future.

The Gameweek 20 deadline begins on January 26 and we’ll have the Gameweek 23 deadline on February 6. That’s four Gameweek deadlines in just 12 days.

In this article I want to look at which players and teams we should be targeting over the coming weeks, given that we’re not going to have a huge amount of time to react to between deadlines.

Leicester City

The Fixtures: Everton (a) | Leeds United (h) | Fulham (a) | Wolves (a)

With all the talk of the Premier League title race being between Liverpool, Manchester United and Manchester City, we have Leicester casually lying in 3rd place, ahead of Liverpool. Not that it matters much I suppose, Leicester couldn’t possibly win the league could they?

In terms of the upcoming fixtures there’s a lot to like for targeting Leicester attackers.

Wolves, Leeds and Fulham are all in the bottom six for expected goals conceded (xGC) over the last four matches, although it is worth noting that Fulham have played Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea in that time.

In terms of players to target, Jamie Vardy (£10.1m) is always an obvious pick, with 10 shots in the box over the last four Gameweeks, you’d expect him to cause these defences problems.

He’s also a great option to swap to Harry Kane (£11.1m) in Gameweek 23 when Spurs play West Brom as well.

Vardy does have this hip impingement which has caused him problems so we should expect his minutes to be managed where possible, and we should be careful between the Leeds and Fulham game where there is about 48 hours between kick-offs.

Harvey Barnes (£6.8m) and James Maddison (£7.1m) are the other considerations in attack.

Barnes isn’t far behind Vardy in terms of shots in the box with eight in his last four, however Maddison comes in at just three, and it’s always his lower goal threat that puts me off.

He’s creative as we know, but if I’m going to take up a valuable midfield spot with someone right now, I want them to be someone who’s regularly threatening the goal.

My only issue with backing their defence right now is trying to find value.

James Justin (£5.0m) is the standout but if you don’t already own him it feels like a big investment when you can get the likes of John Stones (£5.1m).

Now that Ricardo Pereira (£5.9m) has made an appearance in the league, it’s difficult to know exactly how they’ll set up going forward.

It feels like Justin has done enough to keep his place, but whether that’s at right-back, left-back or even a right centre-back in a back three, it’s difficult to know.

Until we see another game I wouldn’t read too much into Pereira playing right-wing as a substitute, I think that might have been to provide a bit more defensive stability to see the game out with Christian Pulisic (£8.2m) and Timo Werner (£9.2m) both playing down Chelsea’s left side.

Manchester City

Stones produces season-high haul as City keep another clean sheet

The Fixtures: West Brom (a) | Sheffield United (h) | Burnley (a) | Liverpool (a)

If you don’t already own a double or triple up with Manchester City players then you’re probably sick of hearing about them. However the fixtures shouldn’t be ignored, and it’s not too late to jump on.

In West Bromwich Albion, Sheffield United and Burnley they face the three lowest scoring teams in the league so far this season.

This is on top of an already impressive defensive record which has seen them keep seven clean sheets in their last nine league games.

With an xGC of just 13.41 so far this season, the number of clean sheets is no fluke for City.

If you want absolute safety in starts (or at least as close as you can get with Pep Guardiola in charge) then Rúben Dias (£5.8m) is the one to target.

John Stones has formed a formidable partnership with the Portuguese centre-back, and looks to be nearly as nailed on.

It would be difficult for Guardiola to break this partnership even if the other centre-backs at the club were fully fit.

There’s always a chance of rotation but for £5.1m Stones is looking like a bargain.

It’s worth noting that he’s only had three shots in the box since Gameweek 10, so don’t expect double-digit hauls too often.

João Cancelo (£5.8m) feels a bit like the forgotten man right now, but in that same time period he’s had eight shots, four of them in the box and created 10 chances as well.

When you watch Manchester City in attack he’s often found in midfield and it feels like a big haul isn’t too far away, but you have to expect him to miss more minutes than the other two defenders mentioned.

In attack, I’m finding it hard to back anyone apart from Kevin De Bruyne (£11.9m) at the moment.

He not only has the most shots out of all the City attackers over the last four Gameweeks, but he’s also created the most chances too. He’s about as nailed on as it gets and the next three fixtures look appealing.

Elsewhere, you’re trying to bank on minutes and it’s difficult.

Even when playing, the likes of Gabriel Jesus (£9.1m) haven’t impressed.

I thought we might see a resurgence from Raheem Sterling (£11.4m) as well but he hasn’t quite been at it recently. Just four shots in the box over the last four Gameweeks, and two chances created. It’s not a lot of potential with such a high price to pay, at a time where we’re already struggling to fit premium players into our squads.

The only other attacker I think I’d look at right now is Ilkay Gündogan (£5.5m). At his price he doesn’t pose much of a risk, although he does take up a potentially valuable Man City slot. He’s had the same number of shots in the box as De Bruyne for less than half the price, and has created a few chances as well. We should forget thinking about him as a deep lying player, he’s getting into the box as much as anyone else right now. It’s just whether you want to take the risk over him being guaranteed minutes, but right now he seems to be.

Aston Villa

andys-gw17-article 7

The Fixtures: Burnley (a) | Southampton (a) | West Ham (h) | Arsenal (h)

It’s quite easy to forget about Aston Villa right now considering they haven’t played in the league since New Year’s Day where they lost to Manchester United 2-1.

They’re a bit of an unknown right now, not in terms of how good they’ve been, but how good they’ll continue to be.

This whole season is setting new precedents and giving us new challenges. Seeing how a team copes with forced lockdown and training ground closures has still only happened a handful of times.

Luckily we’ll get to see their fitness against Manchester City and then how good of a performance they can put in against Newcastle before we have to start buying their players again ahead of a fairly good fixture run in Gameweek 20.

It’s also worth noting that like Manchester City, they have fixtures they still need to rearrange, so at some point they’ll have more Double Gameweeks, although we can’t say exactly when yet.

In terms of value I think they still offer lots. At the back their defensive numbers are some of the best in the league. Their average expected xGC per match is 1.14. To put that into perspective, Manchester City have 0.79 and Chelsea have 0.94.

Matt Targett (£4.6m) is the cheapest way into the defence, however he’s only created two chances in his last four matches, compared to Matt Cash (£5.0m) who’s created six. If you want to back the clean sheets though and save some money you could do worse than Targett.

In attack Jack Grealish (£7.7m) is still the standout. Even after missing Gameweek 18 he’s still the fourth highest scoring midfield by both total points and points per match this season.

No player has created more chances so far this season (55), nor has higher expected assists (xA) at 5.02. This includes De Bruyne who has played just one minute less than Grealish. Even for shots in the box, he stacks up with 31 so far. That’s 11th out of all FPL players.

Anwar El Ghazi (£5.8m) is another player that was popular before the enforced break for Villa, but I do worry about what might happen once Ross Barkley (£5.9m) is back.

Barkley was a mainstay in the team until injury and if he comes back into the side it could be El Ghazi who misses out.

We will likely get some kind of indication of this in the Manchester City or Newcastle games. If El Ghazi did miss out, Villa will be looking for another penalty taker and unless Watkins has found some confidence from somewhere they could fall to Barkley, although this is only speculation on my part.

Up front I still think Ollie Watkins (£6.1m) provides lots of value. With some doubts over Dominic CalvertLewin’s (£7.6m) fitness we are perhaps starting to run a little low on cheap forwards, with Patrick Bamford (£6.7m) and Michail Antonio (£6.3m) being some of the other popular ones.

Watkins has provided plenty of frustration to owners after missing some decent chances, but his movement is key, being able to get into great positions so consistently and having Grealish behind creating those chances. In fact, Watkins’ expected goals (xG) per 90 is 0.51 so far this season, that’s the same as Kane and higher than Danny Ings (£8.3m) and Timo Werner (£9.2m) who are 0.41 and 0.40 respectively.

Who Else?

Mitchell benefits from Palace's first clean sheet since Gameweek 1

Crystal Palace face West Ham (h), Wolves (h), Newcastle (a) and Leeds (a) over the next four weeks. With Tyrick Mitchell (£3.9m) looking to have won the left-back spot back, he provides great value for our squads and potential good cover when needed to be called upon.

While a lot of FPL managers are likely loathe to invest in the Chelsea attack, we shouldn’t ignore their defence. As mentioned above they have some of the best defensive numbers in the league.

They’re not going through a great period right now but they do have some fixtures which should see defensive returns. They play Wolves (h), Burnley (h), Spurs (a) and Sheffield United (a) over the next four. Apart from Spurs, the other sides are all in the bottom seven for xG this season.

If Reece James (£5.1m) can prove his fitness he still looks to be a bargain, although right now Ben Chilwell (£6.1m) possibly provides a more reliable option, especially with the risk that Kurt Zouma (£5.8m) may have now lost his regular centre-back spot.

With fixtures to rearrange we shouldn’t completely forget about Fulham. They face Brighton (a), West Brom (a), Leicester (h) and West Ham (h) in the next four.

We have seen some signs of defensive improvement from Scott Parker’s team, although given the difficulty of fixtures over the last four, we will have to wait and see exactly how that plays out in the next few weeks.

Alphonse Areola (£4.5m) offers a cheap back-up goalkeeper opportunity and Ademola Lookman (£5.0m) offers a very cheap midfield option as a 4th midfielder or more likely a bench option.

He does have some competition from Bukayo Saka (£5.3m), Tomas Soucek (£5.3m) and Raphinha (£5.5m), but with Double Gameweeks at some point in his future he may be the one to opt for, especially with West Brom to play soon.

Become a Member and get unrestricted access to our data and articles

Full-year memberships are now available for the price of £19.99. Monthly subscriptions also cost just £2.99. A FREE trial is now available during December.

Join now to get the following:

  • Plot your transfer strategies using the fully interactive Season Ticker.
  • Get projections for every Premier League player provided by the Rate My Team statistical model.
  • Use Rate My Team throughout the season to guide your selections and transfers.
  • Get access to over 150+ exclusive members articles over the season.
  • Analyse our OPTA-powered statistic tables specifically tailored for Fantasy Football Managers.
  • Use our exclusive tool to build custom stats tables from over 100 OPTA player and team stats.
  • Enjoy our brand NEW Flat-Track Bully feature which introduces an opposition filter to your tables.
  • View heatmaps and expected goals data for every player.
  • Use our powerful comparison tool to analyse players head-to-head.

ALREADY A USER? CLICK HERE TO UPGRADE YOUR FREE ACCOUNT

NEW TO SCOUT? CLICK HERE TO START A MEMBERSHIP ACCOUNT

1,029 Comments Post a Comment
  1. dshv
    • 3 Years
    1 month, 10 days ago

    Need salah to come off the bench and did the same like crystal palace game..

  2. El Fenomeno R9
    • 5 Years
    1 month, 10 days ago

    Salah(C) benched...perfect for bad GW already

    1. Weasel Boy
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      1 month, 10 days ago

      Can you beat 57 -4?
      Salah (c) Robbo Martinez Watkins left to play

  3. tisza
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    1 month, 10 days ago

    Salah owner but Zambian Witch Doctor one of my favourite Scout things ever 🙂

    1. Mr. O'Connell
      • 8 Years
      1 month, 10 days ago

      Captained him for every single one of them

  4. Jon Snow
    • 5 Years
    1 month, 10 days ago

    any help is appreciated 🙂 leaning towards B

    McCarthy, Johnstone
    Dias, James, Justin, Coufal, Mitchell
    Salah, Bruno, KdB, Saka, Soucek
    Vardy, Bamford, Adams

    BB is gone but lots of fires need putting out especially if De Bruyne is out for a few games. Will probably use spare cash for Kane in GW21. 0itb 1FT

    A) KdB >>> Gundogan
    B) KdB + James >>> Grealish + Cancelo (-4)
    C) James >>> Stones
    D) something else?

    1. JohnWick
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      1 month, 10 days ago

      Why sell James? Valuable asset in my opinion

      1. Jon Snow
        • 5 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Don't trust Chelsea at all, and there are better options at that price (like Stones)

  5. BenDavies
    • 8 Years
    1 month, 10 days ago

    Chris Wood to save my season.

  6. tafrère
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    1 month, 10 days ago

    To all the Salah cappers who celebrated a KDB injury yesterday.

    Lmao.

    1. Gudjohnsen
      • 4 Years
      1 month, 10 days ago

      Karma

    2. Camino Aleatorio
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 10 days ago

      When Salah scores a brace + assist off the bench

      Then you will be crying

      Lets see at who is laughing in 2 hours and 15 minutes

      I hope you...cause I captained KDB

  7. jammie26
      1 month, 10 days ago

      Thats a dodgy looking liverpool line up.

    • tiger
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 10 days ago

      What on earth!

    • Pukki Party
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 10 days ago

      Dropped or rested?

      1. Obi Wan Elokobi
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Rested

      2. ZimZalabim
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        dropped imo

      3. tambourineman
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Dropped. Klopp's quote yesterday on front three potential tiredness “Nobody's tired, nobody's fatigued."

    • Hazz
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 10 days ago

      Absolutely massive success for most people who didn't use TC/BB chips this week.

      1. UNDERWORLD7
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Indeed, so glad I didn’t waste it on this trash week

      2. Pukki Party
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        55 here lol

        1. Mr. O'Connell
          • 8 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Omg there is another one. Felt so lonely on my 50 haha.

          1. Pukki Party
            • 3 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            I thought my team was decent too haha. Cancelo over Stones/&Dias, Vardy C and no Antonio.

            1. Mr. O'Connell
              • 8 Years
              1 month, 10 days ago

              I was well happy with the team. In hindsight Kane to Vardy for a hit was a mistake. Absolute season-ending week I feel. 100k > 500k+ I'm guessing (haven't looked).

              1. Pukki Party
                • 3 Years
                1 month, 10 days ago

                300K to 600K here, took weeks to slowly climb after being stuck in top 1m. Well we go again for next doubles, at least TC, BB, WC intact.

      3. S.Kuqi
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 8 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Really? I had a good gw with bb active despite captaincy fail

      4. Salan
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Agree on this fair comment.

      5. Il Capitano
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Silver lining for me, even with Salah benching I'm going to outscore my ML rival who TCd KDB.

        • KAPTAIN KANE
          • 4 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Feel very lucky with no chips used, over 100 points and no Salah!
          But he could come on and change that tbf

          1. Super Saints
            • 4 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            Bloody hell things are going for you! That's insane, I captained Salah

        • Rolls-Royce
          • 7 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Benchboosted provided me with extra 20 points and Martinez left. Fail?

          1. KAPTAIN KANE
            • 4 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            Nah decent that I think

          2. Hazz
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            I said most, not all. 20 is decent enough on BB (but only if there wasn't a chance you'd have started them this GW on no BB. )

            1. dansmusen
              • 3 Years
              1 month, 10 days ago

              Yeah some BB on my ML have great players on the bench and Bamford playing. And they like damn my BB was good

        • Jon Snow
          • 5 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          My BB has netted me 4 whole extra points. incredible gains

        • tafrère
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          I understand why with the TC.

          But BB why ? 154 pts with BB here with Wilson left...

          1. Mr. O'Connell
            • 8 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            Lol casually outscoring me by 104 points

          2. Hazz
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            Great score. I said most, not all. How much did your BB score (no jam benchings included)?

        • Baps hunter
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Nope. Simply bad news for Salah cappers.

        • Railwayman
          • 8 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          At least I have all of my chips...

        • HMC
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Yep mostly
          I’m on 123(-12) this week transfers gained +40 and BB wasted with Leeds triple up

          1. joey
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 10 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            Technically my bench hasn't done well (8 with Watkins to play again) but knowing I was playing it I made a couple more transfers to maximise it bringing in Antonio and Stones for DCL and Dallas. Massive point swing and I players I want going forward anyway so an indirect success. Plus now I don't have to have money wasted on my bench and can play more freely going forward so I'd still call it a success.

      6. Gobigorgohome
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Obviously I should have believed in Zambian Witch Doctor curse 🙁

      7. Gudjohnsen
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Got 25 points on the bench and Salah (C)

        Salah doing everything he can to ruin my -8 of Son, Kane, Lavacette to Salah, Vardy, Antonio

      8. Stand By Mee
        • 4 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Remember what happened the last time Salah was benched? As a Salah non-captainer I am still worried but a little reliefed. His EO is 120% so he is a rank killer.

        1. Railwayman
          • 8 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          No way he will score a goal tonight, let alone 2 + assist...

      9. Ajax Hamsterdam
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Did not see that one coming . Let's not forget his latest big haul was limited time v palace

        1. Jon Walter's Hatty
          • 7 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Lift the curse o great one

      10. Skloppy Kops
        • 5 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        I understand Sqlah captainers and TCers are gutted but as a LFC fan, I back Klopp on this. Salah has been out of shape for sometime now and needed a good benching to pump him up. But mind you, Salah against tired legs might do wonders. Burnley will sit deep as usual.

        1. Steve The Spud
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Burnley getting tired lol

        2. Qaiss
          • 5 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          It’s not that gutting as a captainer. If he comes off the bench and gets something cool, if he doesn’t, oh well. I’d be more annoyed if I wasted my TC on it like I did with Mané one year ago.

        3. Do I Not Like Orange
          • 8 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Should he not have benched him vs Villa under 12s? Even jokers like Shaq & Origi could have seen them through that game.

      11. Nightcrawler
        • 1 Year
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Who else would rather listen to Zambian FPL addidct than pro pundits?

        100% selling son if goes ahead with what he said

      12. Shark Team
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Salah TC going well

        1. Gudjohnsen
          • 4 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Bad enough I captained him.

          I feel for you

      13. Jon Walter's Hatty
        • 7 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        I seem to now have 24 million pounds redundant in my team

        1. Do I Not Like Orange
          • 8 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Same. Don't care if I have to take hits, I'm not having a 12M Neto in my team.

      14. Free Hat
        • 2 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Well thats a kick in the nuts.

        But maybe deserved for their performances.

      15. potatoace
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Salah captainers, pipe down will ya and stop yer ganchin. He can still come on and do damage.
        There are real victims here ..us Vardy captainers.

        1. Utopsis
          • 1 Year
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Vardy is the conman who keeps mugging me off

          1. potatoace
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            Hes dead to me . 5 weeks of sod all now

      16. Railwayman
        • 8 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        This is unbelievable, this double gameweek disaster. And I was 50-50 between Mane and Antonio in instead for Salah and Watkins, was 0.1 short of getting Salah and Antonio, but no, of course, I've got the worst possible option. Dear God...just end this season 🙁

      17. dunas_dog
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Time for Mané (c) to get big score and boost my ranking

        1. Rupert The Horse
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Good luck bud.

      18. Rupert The Horse
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 8 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Was really hoping for a 150 this week. Well that’s over. Thought I had a chance with a KDB haul but now Salah too. Ugh

      19. evilfish
        • 5 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        10 DGW + Bamford at the start of the GW and I thought I was going to get a haul. 77 points and now Captain Salah not playing 🙁

        1. Rupert The Horse
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Awful.

      20. tiger
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        It must be a cunning plan where Salah will be subbed on after 9 minutes...a cunning plan

      21. Shark
        • 1 Year
        1 month, 10 days ago

        When will the pain end?!!?

      22. tisza
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Salah does blank and The Sun will be doing a Backpage splash of an interview with some Zambian Witch Doctor:)

        1. aleksaa2
          • 4 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          That would actually be the first time I'd actually read something from that BS paper.

      23. BenDavies
        • 8 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Kane has now outscored all three of KDB, Salah and Bruno despite playing 1 game less. Incredible. With the fixtures of the latter three I would have never in a million years predicted that.

        1. Cilly Bonnolly
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Has he? Liverpool game hasn’t finished yet.

          1. Rupert The Horse
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 8 Years
            1 month, 10 days ago

            Or started. But you know.

            1. Cilly Bonnolly
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 9 Years
              1 month, 10 days ago

              Well yeah, but with Salah on the bench I figured it having not finished was more relevant than it having not started.

        2. Gudjohnsen
          • 4 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          This and Kane didn't even haul.

      24. ClassiX
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 2 Years
        1 month, 10 days ago

        Salah TC stil 3x more than Mane TC last season... 😆

        1. Red Devil Swede
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 8 Years
          1 month, 10 days ago

          Yep, that was rough