Pro Pundits - Tom

Why unpredictable Wolves formation has me worried about their FPL assets

Tom Freeman has finished in the top 1k five times in his Fantasy Premier League career. He has been weighing up Wolves and Leicester ahead of Gameweek 31.


As we approach the business end of the season, in this week’s column, I’m going to have a look at Wolverhampton Wanderers, who have a tasty run of fixtures from Gameweek 31 to 35.

I will also pick out a few players that I’m considering for the run-in, and include my plans for Gameweek 31.

Shall we begin?

WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS

With eight games remaining, Wolves sit 14th in the Premier League table, nine points above the relegation zone. It looks like they are destined for a mid-table finish, and with seemingly very little to play for, it’s a tad off-putting. 

However, their next five fixtures come against teams below them in the table, and are as good as you are likely to see in FPL terms:

At the back, Jonny (£5.4m) has suffered another ACL injury, and Willy Boly (£5.4m) is self-isolating having tested positive for COVID-19. 

That raises alarm bells, especially given their performance without them earlier this week, but rather than the personnel available to Nuno Espírito Santo, I am more interested in the system he settles on for the remainder of the season.

The 4-2-3-1 formation they used against West Ham United in Gameweek 30 is naturally more attacking, and boy is it fun to watch, but it does leave them open.

Above: Wolves’ average position map in Gameweek 30.

Results like Monday’s, plus the goal-fests served up against West Bromwich Albion and Brighton and Hove Albion back in January, highlight the unpredictable nature of the setup. 

If they are to persist with it, with one eye on 2021-22, Pedro Neto (£5.7m) becomes an excellent FPL option. In Gameweek 30, the young winger provided an assist, created four chances and had five goal attempts, more than any other player on the pitch. 

The 4-2-3-1 does have implications at the other end though, and definitely makes their defensive options less appealing. The current midfielders just do not offer enough protection to a back four, which often leaves Conor Coady (£4.8m) and Romain Saïss (£4.9m) exposed.

However, in their usual 3-4-3 shape, they look more solid and tend to defend much better. In fact, in their past five games using a back-three they have conceded just six goals, and four of those were at Manchester City. In this setup, Coady becomes more appealing, especially now he is going up for set-pieces.

Frustratingly, at this stage we have no idea which formation Nuno will use in the coming weeks. Due to that uncertainty, I’m avoiding for now, but am hopeful tomorrow night’s meeting with Fulham will tell us more, and reveal if I should be targeting Coady or Neto in Gameweek 32.

JAMES MADDISON

Another player I’m eyeing up for Gameweek 32 is fit-again Leicester City midfielder James Maddison (£7.1m). The playmaker recently missed six matches through injury, but returned with an appearance off the bench against Man City last weekend.

He has already scored 11 goals this season, eight of which have come in the Premier League, and as you can see on the graphic below, he has been shooting in better locations, and closer to goal, since the turn of the year.

Above: Maddison’s shots heatmap from Gameweek 1-16 (left) and 17-30 (right).

Everything goes through him at Leicester, as he leads the way amongst team-mates for final-third touches, successful crosses and chances created, plus expected assists (xA). 

Personal motivation could be a key factor, too. The only way Maddison can force his way back into the England setup is by playing a starring role for the Foxes during the run-in, which sees Brendan Rodgers’ side take on West Brom, Crystal Palace, Southampton and Newcastle United between Gameweeks 32 and 35.

GAMEWEEK 31 + CHIP STRATEGY

Having used my second Wildcard in Gameweek 26, and Bench Boosting the week after, I’m left with the Triple Captain and Free Hit chips.

I will probably Triple Captain Harry Kane (£11.7m) in Double Gameweek 32, then FH in 33 or 35.

This week, I’m considering selling Kevin De Bruyne (£11.9m), who will probably be benched, for Mohamed Salah (£12.4m), who I will then hand the armband. I may also look at a defensive move, with Trent Alexander-Arnold (£7.3m) a likely target if I do take a hit.

So, thanks for reading all, and best of luck in Gameweek 31.

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1,126 Comments Post a Comment
  1. D.Glynn
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Which option on WC?
    A). Phillips and Jeusus.
    B). TAA and Wood?

    1. aleksios
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      B.

  2. LC1
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Morning all.

    Out for the day so it's my last chance to tinker my WC team and starting 11;

    Mendy
    Rudiger Holding Dias
    Son Salah(c) Lingard Jota Bruno
    Kane Vydra

    Forster
    Iheanacho Phillips Coady

    Have 0.7 ITB but can't really afford to bring in TAA unless I rip my team apart.

    Any suggestions on starting 11 / changes would be much appreciated!

    GL all!

    1. Baines on Toast...
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Start Nacho.

      1. LC1
        • 6 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        Yup just changed that lol.
        Rest look okay?

    2. Whazza
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Assuming you have BB then?

      1. LC1
        • 6 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        yup bench boosting 32 mate.

        1. Whazza
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          5 months, 11 days ago

          Don't think I would have it any other way with that in mind! GL

  3. Whazza
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Not seen Semedo in any teams, would opt for him over Coady if you have the 0.4. As underperformed his XGI with 2.34 this season, returns could be coming with these fixtures

    1. Echoes
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Don't think he had much goal involvement even when at Barca. Seems to be one of those players who, despite the xGI, doesn't quite have the final product. Coady better than him imo. Atleast he's a threat from set pieces.

      1. Whazza
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        That is true, an attacking return every 10th game playing for Barca. Taken his past into account it's quite funny you're using Coady's goal threat who is allergic to goals 😆 But I know he has a new role but think it could have been since Boly was missing. Boly and Saiss to attack the corners when playing imo

    2. Alisson WondHaaland
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Cant justify that price tag for such a shaky defence. Cant really expect attacking returns when Wolves are so poor going forward either

      1. Whazza
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        True

  4. FCSB
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    On a WC, keep either:

    1. Lingard
    2. Gundogan

    Thanks

    1. Begbie.
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      1.

    2. LC1
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      1

    3. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      1

  5. Begbie.
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Best Grealish replacement up to 8.0?

    Been leaning Jota all week but Mount is tempting me.

    1. GS456
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Jota

    2. LC1
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Jota imo

    3. BremerHB
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Both are decent. Neto or Maddison also options.

      I think with Jotas form it’s got to be him, as long as you have an ok bench replacement for eventual no-shows.

  6. Louis Van Gaalstones
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Was thinking of going with Lacazette, but after last night's performance, Chris Wood is waiting in the wings

  7. mrrahrah
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 12 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Is it worth getting lloris in over mendy on the basis I get the double gameweek out of him.

    I’ll have to transfer him out for 33 but I’m willing to live with that.

    The other option is a triple Chelsea defense but that’s maybe too punchy in any case

  8. BremerHB
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Anything worth a -4 here? Wolves, Leicester defender perhaps for Dallas/Dunk?

    Martinez
    Dunk - Azpi - Dias
    Bruno - Son - Jota - Lingard - Raphinha
    Kane - DCL

    Watkins-White-Dallas

    5.4 ITB

    1. Magic Zico
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Stick IMO

      1. BremerHB
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        Thanks! Dunk isn’t too optimal but a -4 two weeks in a row is probably one to avoid!

  9. GS456
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Vardy or Iheanacho?

    1. Party time
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Jamie V

    2. Bury94
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Can't justify the price difference, Ihenacho for me

  10. Corgzzzz
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Morning guys.....With all the injury news for West Ham, is Maddison ( great fixtures ) a better pick than Lingard now ???

    1. Feed tha Sheep
      • 9 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Form over fixtures for me

    2. BremerHB
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Hard to say without seeing West Ham play. Probably go with Lingard first of all. Form > fixtures for me. Especially with Maddison coming back from injury.

      1. Magic Zico
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        This

    3. yanky
      • 11 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      im going with maddison but bringing in gw32 for this nice fixture run, it would be for a hit though

  11. Feed tha Sheep
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Has Dan Burn completely lost his spot in Brighton team?

    1. Sterling Archer
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      no, he has been injured recently

  12. arkom
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Get rid first:

    A) Bale
    or?
    B) Rapinha

    1. BremerHB
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      A

    2. Echoes
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 11 days ago

      A

    3. Magic Zico
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      A

    4. Bury94
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      A

      1. arkom
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        TY!

  13. FCSB
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Best combo:

    1. Lascelles(sub) Vydra(sub) Lingard
    2. Amartey(sub) Davis(sub) Maddison

    Cheers guys

    1. Magic Zico
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      1 but find option for Lascelles

      1. FCSB
        • 5 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        There’s no other 4.2 mate?!

        1. b91jh
          • 4 Years
          5 months, 11 days ago

          Holding?

          1. FCSB
            • 5 Years
            5 months, 11 days ago

            Already have him, I could just get amartey and save 0.3 (would be fodder anyway)

    2. Echoes
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 11 days ago

      1

  14. Lindelol
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Captain
    1. Jota
    2. Bruno
    3. Kane
    4. Laca

    1. Bury94
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      A

      1. Lindelol
        • 3 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        How about Laca for differential captain??

  15. aleksios
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    On wc, Gundogan or Neto?

    1. Holmes
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Neto

  16. Kaptenen
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Do we reckon Stones will start this gameweek?

    1. Holmes
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Yes imo

  17. arkom
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Rapinha, Bale, Gresswell --> Salah, Jota, Phillips

    Yes or no? Guys, Is't worth sacrificing Cresswell for this? TY!

    1. BremerHB
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      I’d just do Bale to Jota for the moment.

      1. arkom
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        Thanks for your opinion!

  18. Miguel Sanchez
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Play Bamford or Raphinha this GW?

    1. Steve The Spud
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Bam, just gut feeling, off chance of a pen as well

  19. Steve The Spud
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Morning all! I am looking forward to this game week!

  20. yanky
    • 11 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Sterling(c) SmithRowe then shipping out for Son Maddison for -4 pt hit in dgwk32. hit after wc not ideal but sterling(c) and son x2 could repay it in two weeks yea??

    1. Whazza
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Sure, why not if you have a plan for the BGW33 that doesn't require more hits

      1. yanky
        • 11 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        yup, that plans name is Veltman!

  21. Bleh
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Current team:
    Sanchez (Martinez)
    Dias, Digne, Cresswell (Targett, Struijk)
    Bruno, Lingard, Son, Gundo, Jota
    Bamford, Kane (Antonio)

    Have exact money for Martinez, Digne, Gundo, Antonio > Mendy, Phillips, Salah, Iheanacho.

    Am I mad to be considering spreading these out over the next week or two?

    1. Big Hands Barry
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Wont be able to afford if spread it out

  22. focaccia
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    GTG? Am rolling a transfer this week unless anyone sees a move I should definitely make ?!

    Forster
    Rudiger - AWB - Veltman
    Salah (v) - Jota - KDB (C) - Gundo - Raphina
    Kane - DCL

    Martinez - Bamford - Coufal - Dallas

    1. GE
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Gtg

    2. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Will KDB def start? Salah (C) perhaps?

      1. focaccia
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        Slightly hoping KDB either starts or doesn't play at all...

  23. GE
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    What would you improve on WC? 🙂

    (0.4 itb)

    Martinez
    TAA/Dias/Rudiger
    Salah/Bruno/Son/Lingard/Jota
    Kane/Nacho

    Bench: Forster, Shaw, Veltman, Vydra

    1. Whazza
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      First thoughts are Martinez and Shaw to Mendy and Castagne.
      I expect 3 CS for Villa for the rest of the season, and 1 for United in the next 4

    2. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Is this your pre-WC team? It's in excellent shape. Obvious move needed Martinez out but nothing else urgent

      1. Whazza
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        😆

  24. Alisson WondHaaland
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Thoughts on Saka over Lingard on WC?

    West Ham have a few injuries and Saka has better fixtures.

    It would just about give me the funds to do a one week punt on Sterling -> Son in 32

    1. stu92
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      It would be brave given the form he is in. Is Saka not just on the way back from an injury? Arsenal are just too inconsistent for me at the moment.

      1. Alisson WondHaaland
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        Seemed like a minor injury, and true Lingards form is scary good but again, I think no Antonio in particular could impact his returns quite heavily

    2. Blue Moon Rising
      • 9 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Game time?

      1. Alisson WondHaaland
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        5 months, 11 days ago

        I guess its a bit of a worry but Saka tends to start almost all games when fit

  25. b91jh
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Which backline plus TAA on WC?

    A) Alonso+Castagne+Coufal/Dawson/Masu+Holding
    B) Rudiger+Castagne+Cresswell+Holding
    C) Rudiger+Shaw+Cresswell+Coady

  26. stu92
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Who to start?

    A) Martinez (liv)
    B) Sanchez (EVE)

    1) Bamford (mci)
    2) Coufal (LEI)

    1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      B 1

  27. Blue Moon Rising
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    On WC

    A) Sanchez and Alonso

    or

    B) Mendy and Rudiger

    1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      B. Think Alonso will play less for the rest of the season

    2. Ëð
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      B

  28. yanky
    • 11 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    whats up with Saka, is he fir to start???

  29. Tshelby
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Wildcard time?

    Martinez,
    Shaw, Dias, Coufal, Dallas, Veltman
    Son, Lingard, Jota, Fernandes, Gundogan
    Kane, Antonio, Bamford

    1ft - 4.7 itb

    Or Just Bamford to Vardy this week? Or get Salah or Trent?

    1. gmando2011
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      i think you could improve on this...Leeds fixtures not great, Gundo playing deeper...

    2. Ëð
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 11 days ago

      Can you do Bamford -> Iheanacho to afford Gundo -> Salah? I don't think you need to wildcard.

  30. gmando2011
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 11 days ago

    Whats the general view on Everton and West Ham players for the rest of the season - they seem to have mixed fixtures - but they stand out as great value picks.

    tempted to move cresswell & Digne out but not sure who for
    Lingard and DCL im thinking of getting in

    any help?