Pro Pundit Teams

The merits of a Gameweek 26 Wildcard and what my new FPL squad could look like

How Fantasy Premier League managers navigate the upcoming series of Double Gameweeks could prove season-defining for many of them.

We are currently facing the potential for back-to-back Double Gameweeks in 24, 25, 26 and 27, which is exciting indeed.

The bigger of the Doubles is likely to be in Gameweek 26 and traditionally, the practice has been to Wildcard before this sort of round so you are ready to Bench Boost in it. What is different this year is that the big Double Gameweek does not fall in Gameweek 34 or 37 like previous seasons, but much earlier. 

With it falling at a later stage, there was less worry about setting up long-term for the rest of the season but using the second Wildcard as early as Gameweek 25 means that you have to make sure you don’t handicap yourself by getting tunnel vision and looking solely at the Gameweek 26 fixtures alone. 

What is beneficial though, is that most of the top teams, Manchester City, Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea and Spurs, have the Double Gameweek in 26 and assets from these teams are good picks long-term. 

However, due to these expensive assets having a Double Gameweek, setting up a Bench Boost team is quite tricky. I had a go at a potential Wildcard team, with a view to Bench Boost in Gameweek 26, which you can see below. There is £2.6m in the bank there to convert Danny Ings (£8.4m) to Harry Kane (£11.0m).

The Bench Bwho have a single Gameweek fixture at home to Aston Villa, which is decent and Leeds on their day can score a few past anyone. 

Still, they’ve not been as free-scoring at home so this could be a disappointment. Alex McCarthy (£4.5m) would be the Bench Boost keeper, but I am a little bit concerned about his recent performances and Fraser Forster (£4.0m) waiting in the wings.

Antonio Rüdiger’s (£4.6m) possible Gameweek 26 fixtures are Manchester United (home) and Liverpool (away) so I am not really confident about a clean sheet in either. Matthew Lowton (£4.5m) is likely to have Spurs and Leicester where, again, I don’t feel too confident about his point potential. 

Now let’s have a look at what I could do by focusing most of the money in the starting eleven while still retaining five starting defenders.

Right off the bat, I like having Jack Grealish (£7.8m), he is as nailed as it gets with the European schedule coming up and I trust Villa’s attack to deliver. I included James Justin (£5.2m) as a placeholder as he can be changed for any other Leicester defender now that we know about his long-term injury. The Foxes have a great run of fixtures from Gameweek 27 with Brighton (away), Sheffield United (home), although are not playing in Blank Gameweek 29.

Jannik Vestergaard’s (£4.7m) potential Double Gameweek 26 is not as appealing, which could see Southampton travel to Everton and Spurs but the Saints play Sheffield United (away), Brighton (home), Burnley (home) and West Brom (away) between Gameweeks 27 and 31 which I like. Ben White (£4.4m) is also a great budget option from a decent defensive side. 

Another factor that cannot be underrated – information. Closer to Gameweek 26, we will have more clarity about injuries, European rotation, upcoming doubles and in general can set up the Wildcard better for the rest of the season. 

Like many of you, I have left plenty of points on the bench in the last few weeks and while we have been fortunate that money was not an issue with many of the heavy hitters injured or out of form, it is likely to be scarce going forward. 

I really don’t like having to make a decision who to bench out of Raphinha etc every week. Yes bench strength could be useful but most of the players I have picked are reliable starters. I also want to have every last bit of cash available going forward and not have it tied up in the likes of a bench goalkeeper, and/or an eighth attacker. That’s about £1.5m which can go a long way in the coming Gameweeks. 

This is how my team currently looks:

I have two free transfers and £3.0m in the bank for Double Gameweek 24. Before the flags on Dominic Calvert-Lewin (£7.7m) and Michail Antonio (£6.7m), I was pretty set on using the two free transfers on Eric Dier (£4.9m) to James Tarkowski (£5.3m) and Forster to Nick Pope (£5.5m) and activating my Bench Boost. 

The flags on those two forwards have made things a bit trickier. I don’t mind taking a hit for Ings this week as I was planning to do that next week anyway. I could then do Tomas Soucek (£5.4m) to Raphinha and possibly another hit for Dallas to ‘dead-end’ my team in Gameweek 25, and then Wildcard out the Southampton and Leeds assets in Gameweek 26. I am not too keen on taking a minus-eight just to Bench Boost though. 

I imagine a lot of us are in the same boat, I was initially thinking of even navigating Gameweek 26 without using the Wildcard but West Ham not having a Double then has made that a bit tricky. 

I should also mention that I have my Free Hit chip intact, so navigating Gameweek 29 is not that much of an issue. 

Plenty to think about! Hope this article gave you food for thought, thanks for reading. 

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

Full-year memberships, monthly subscriptions and a FREE trial are all now available.

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

4,305 Comments Post a Comment
  1. tbos83
      4 months, 9 days ago

      Foden in for Maddison worth a punt?

      1. KrisMCFC
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        yep!

      2. Corona is not good 4 U
        • 1 Year
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Five weeks ago I thought for a long time whether I should add Foden or Gündogan to my team. Unfortunately I chose the wrong one and it cost me about 80 points. This was the worst mistake of the season. Do not make the same mistake. Foden is not nailed.

        1. tbos83
            4 months, 9 days ago

            Yeah, this is my fear. Even if he starts Tott game it will likely be quite tight, and then if rotated v Eve it has all been in vain.

      3. fantasywizard
        • 8 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Choose!
        Cavani (WBA and NEW) or
        Ings (WOL and CHE+LEE) ?

        Could Cavani outscore Ings with those fixtures?

        Thanks!

        1. KrisMCFC
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Ings has more fixtures and less chance of rotation. Do like Cavani if he was guaranteed to start both. Think Ings scores at least 2 goals though in them 3 fixtures

          1. Mork calling Orson
            • 8 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            No guarantee Ings stays fit for all 3 fixtures would be my concern.

      4. KrisMCFC
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Who scores more this week:

        A. Rashford
        B. Cavani
        C. Ings
        D. Mee

        1. dunas_dog
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Cavani

        2. Aubamazette
          • 6 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Rash

      5. Tmel
        • 10 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        For those without FH & TC, are you planning on:

        a) WC GW25 & BB GW26
        b) BB GW26
        c) WC GW26
        d) Neither

        1. Aubamazette
          • 6 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          BB 26
          WC After 29

        2. Taegugk Warrior
          • 3 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          A

      6. MattysFantasyFooty
        • 7 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Triple captain Gundogan anyone?

        1. Coys96
          • 3 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          I wouldn't

          1. MattysFantasyFooty
            • 7 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            Reasons?

            1. Emp
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 9 Years
              4 months, 9 days ago

              There will be better options going forward in future dgws imo

              1. G00LI0
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 3 Years
                4 months, 9 days ago

                Won't be a differential in those cases

        2. G00LI0
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          A good TC this week would pay off. Very few even considering it

        3. KrisMCFC
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Depends on your rankings. If you're chasing, go for it, if not, hold the TC. I don't see Gundogan's current output sustainable. Aguero I believe will get minutes and Jesus so that pushes him further back into midfield.

          1. G00LI0
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            Would prefer a sterling TC this week over gundogan

      7. Coys96
        • 3 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        3rd attempt...

        R.James -> Lowton (free)? play over Watkins.

        Have Pope, so would be double up. Chasing (loads).

        Y/N

        1. Alisson WondHaaland
          • 5 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Depends on ur team and plan. For example Im not WCing till GW 30 so getting a Burnley defender just messes with my plan, since Ill have no use for them after this GW.

          Not a bad option but better to think ahead if you need to imo

          1. Coys96
            • 3 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            It would help fund Kane in GW26 so is a decent move. it's between him this DGW or Targett in DGW26, factoring in the benching headache.

            1. Alisson WondHaaland
              • 5 Years
              4 months, 9 days ago

              I like Targett because you'd have an extra GW 29 player

      8. marpy016
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Worth a BB?

        Martinez - Son - Bamford - Holding

        1. DA Minnion (In Bielsa we tr…
          • 8 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Bamford playing Holding so I wouldn't

      9. Alisson WondHaaland
        • 5 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Few questions,

        For the next 2 GWs:
        A) DCL (MCI+liv)
        B) Cavani -4 (wba+NEW)

        For DGW 26:
        1) Kane (BUR+SOU) + sgw player
        2) Grealish (lee+shu) + Answer to first Q (DCL (SOU+wba)/Cavani (che+cry))

        1. Coys96
          • 3 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          B1

      10. MikeLowrey
        • 3 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        G2G? Or use my 2nd FT on a Burnley defender

        Martinez
        Dias Cancelo Coufal KWP
        Gundo (C) Salah Bruno Grealish
        Bamford Antonio

        (Forster Son Mitchell Brewster)

        A) Forster to Pope - means I probably can’t get Kane in 26 without a hit
        B) Coufal to Mee
        C) Brewster to Ings - no Kane for 26
        D) Roll FT to wait for confirmation on doubles

      11. Emp
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Play two:
        A. Dawson
        B. Coufal
        C. Son
        D. Grealish

      12. the dom 1
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Morning all,

        Son & DCL > Stirling & Cavani worth a - 4?

        Cheers

        1. Emp
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          No keep dcl

          1. the dom 1
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 6 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            evan though DCL has MCI & LIV after this game vs FUL

            1. Emp
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 9 Years
              4 months, 9 days ago

              I mean I'd definitely want both son and Dylan going forward i think you are being too shortsighted looking only one go more ahead. No other way to get sterling? And can't you bench dcl next week ?

              1. Emp
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 9 Years
                4 months, 9 days ago

                * looking one more week ahead

                1. Emp
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 9 Years
                  4 months, 9 days ago

                  I'd also benxh dcl this week presumably you got strong bench with all this money floating around ? Post your team?

        2. OptimusBlack
          • 8 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Yes Do it

          1. the dom 1
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 6 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            cheers

      13. Boom XhakaLacaSaka
        • 1 Year
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Martinez
        Mee Dias Stones Coufal
        Grealish Gundo(c) Bruno Salah
        Cavani Antonio

        Mccarthy Adams Maddison Allioski

        Gtg? Right bench?

      14. Indio
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        A: Forster > Pope (-4) and BB; or
        B: Hold chip and play Soucek over DCL?

        Martinez
        Tarkowski, Cancelo, Shaw
        Salah, Gundo (V), Sterling (C), Bruno,
        DCL, Antonio, Bamford
        (Forster, Soucek, Coufal, KWP)

        1. Boom XhakaLacaSaka
          • 1 Year
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Coufal over dcl

      15. HarryS
        • 8 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Play one

        A) Bam
        B) Raph

        1. Kay317
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 2 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Depends on your other mids and strikers I think.

          1. Emp
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            No it does not

            1. Kay317
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 2 Years
              4 months, 9 days ago

              Of course it does. If playing Raph means he has to bench someone better then it's an obvious choice and vice versa. So many good options this week.

              1. Emp
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 9 Years
                4 months, 9 days ago

                But he has obviously eliminated the other options so its just between these two...

          2. HarryS
            • 8 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            All ones that I def want to play

        2. Emp
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          A

        3. MattysFantasyFooty
          • 7 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Bamford

        4. the dom 1
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          A

      16. DA Minnion (In Bielsa we tr…
        • 8 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Salah and Kilman to sterling and Mee for free?

        1. Emp
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Thats a big yes from me and captain sterling

      17. Tonyawesome69
        • 2 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Would one would you prefer to have for 26?

        A. Lowton Son
        B. Pope Grealish

        I would have Kane and Watkins

        If I go with Pope I can't double up Son and Kane.

        1. F_Ivanovic
          • 5 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          honestly i want both grealish and Son. I guess I'd go for A.

      18. Tmel
        • 10 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Is this bench be worth a BB (-4)?

        Areola Coufal Mitchell Son

        1. Please Answer Me
          • 6 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Easy no. Fulham won't get any clean sheets and only Coufal has potential to get points there

      19. Hybrid.power
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Bench Soucek, Bamford or Son? This is my last decision and it's killing me. Currently got Bamford benched.

        1. Tonyawesome69
          • 2 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Play Bamford, Soucek and Son in that priority.

          Bamford is in great form, most attacks involve him, leeds have good away form and he is on pens

          1. Hybrid.power
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 11 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            Thanks. I'm still very confused!

        2. Emp
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          I'd bench soucek out of those

          1. Hybrid.power
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 11 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            The fear of reliving benching him for his hauls is still too real!

      20. ppv
        • 10 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Norwegian who is top of FPL by 50 odd points must have had some serious luck.His previous record is awful

        1. Fudgy
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Insane luck , not even one decent rank

        2. Hybrid.power
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 11 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          14 weeks as number 1 and 50 points ahead is not luck. They have a strategy and I need to know what it is!

          1. G00LI0
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 3 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            Strategy = luck

      21. MattysFantasyFooty
        • 7 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Good to go?

        Martinez
        Stones Dias Coufal
        Salah Bruno Maddison Son Gundogan C
        Antonio Bamford

        DCL Robertson Mitchell

      22. Vardy boys
        • 1 Year
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Which 2 to start??? Need a majority here

        A) Saka
        B) Barnes
        C) Dallas
        D) Coufal

      23. dunas_dog
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Best Burnley defender for double

        A Tarkowski
        B Lowton
        C Mee

        1. dunas_dog
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          * got Pope already

        2. Emp
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          I'd rank it in the order you have put there

        3. Tonyawesome69
          • 2 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Go cheap in Lowton

        4. Mr Tin
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Based on cost it's Lowton as you won't want them for many more weeks. For short term it's Mee.

          1. Emp
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            Tarky has more goal threat than Mee

      24. jdp219
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Stick with the plan?
        gw24 - Forster > Pope & save other FT (start Pope - means 6 for the dgw)
        gw25 - Pope, Antonio > Forster, Kane

        Or just DCL > Cavani...?

        1. Tonyawesome69
          • 2 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Pope has a good fixture against WBA in 25

      25. Fudgy
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        4 months, 9 days ago

        How tempting is son to rashy for a hit

        1. Emp
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Not very

      26. DMP
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Play Coufal or Soucek?

        1. Tonyawesome69
          • 2 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Soucek

        2. Emp
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Coulfal

      27. Park the bus
        • 10 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Bench:
        A. Soucek
        B. Antonio
        C. Bamford
        D. DCL
        E. Son

        1. Fudgy
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          4 months, 9 days ago

          DCL easily

        2. the dom 1
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          D

      28. HMC
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        DCL out for me

        Bring in Cavani and possibly switch to Ings in 26 if he hits form
        Just get Ings now?

        I do feel Cavani next 2 are great...

        1. OptimusBlack
          • 8 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Yes that's my plan too

          1. HMC
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 10 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            You going Cavani even though it might be extra transfer later?

        2. Please Answer Me
          • 6 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          Why do you think Cavani will start the next two?

          1. HMC
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 10 Years
            4 months, 9 days ago

            Can’t say I do expect both starts. Returns possibly still there

      29. aborg
        • 4 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Play Dallas or Antonio? Afraid of just an Antonio cameo....

      30. Mr Tin
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        4 months, 9 days ago

        GTG? Not sure on bench choice of Son.

        Martinez
        Cresswell *Cancelo *Lowton *Mee
        Grealish *Sterling (c) *Gundo Bruno
        Bamford Antonio

        Nyland Son DCL Justin

      31. Muscout
        • 1 Year
        4 months, 9 days ago

        Planning to WC25, BB26

        Son, Chilwell and DCL to Sterling, Tarkowski and Richarlison -4?

        1. the dom 1
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          4 months, 9 days ago

          not sure on Rich but rest looks good