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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avfc82 https://fantasy.premierleague.com/entry/818/history”

1,126 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Ëð
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Burn -> Phillips for a hit?

    Otherwise have to play either Dallas (MCI) ot Targett (liv)...

    1. FourLokoLeipzig
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      It’s not worth the hit, I’d play Dallas

    2. FPL ElasticO
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Yeah do it

    3. Rasping Drive
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 12 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Play Targett

  2. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Morning all!
    Forster Martinez
    Cancelo Creswell Lowton Dallas Shaw
    Bruno Son Lingard Raphinha Jota
    Kane Watkins Bamford

    This week:
    A) Bam - > Iheanacho
    B) Dallas -> TAA
    C) Both for -4

    Thanks!
    Plan is to get Salah for Son after the Tottenham double and at some point Martinez to Mendy.

    1. yanky
      • 11 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      c) hit should be repaid within two weeks or so, both strong options moving forward

      1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        Thanks. Leaning that way too

  3. yanky
    • 11 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

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

    1. Alisson WondHaaland
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Yes

  4. Bubbles1985
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Who is more nailed?

    Mount
    Greenwood

    Already have Bruno but thinking Greenwood is a good punt with no Cavani or Martial?

    1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Think Mount is slightly more nailed. I'd go with him out of those two

    2. Malkmus
      • 10 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      I'd go Mount. Greenwood isn't in great form, plus Cavani is back.

  5. Lindelol
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    How about Laca for differential captain??

    1. Malkmus
      • 10 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Not for me

      1. Lindelol
        • 3 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        The problem is I only have Kane son Bruno and jota to choose from.

        1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          5 months, 17 days ago

          I'd go with Jota out of those

          1. Lindelol
            • 3 Years
            5 months, 17 days ago

            Yeah will probably go with Kane or Jota then

    2. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Been burnt a few times with La(C)a so not for me either

    3. GROBARI
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 17 days ago

      I have him in my team,but as a (C) for me no

  6. Malkmus
    • 10 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    GTG? Subs ok?

    Mendy
    Shaw - Dias - Nat
    Salah (C) - Son - Bruno - Jesse - Jota
    Kane - DCL

    Subs - Nacho, Rudiger, Veltman

    Ta!

  7. focaccia
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Start Raphina or Bamford?

    (Feel like I have this dilemma most weeks...)

    1. Malkmus
      • 10 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Raph

      1. Andriy Shevchenko is Back
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        +1

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

    Tempted to do DALLAS to AZPI, but the minutes of Azpi is a little worry tomorrow.. CHE have quite match rush right now! Hmm..

    1. Malkmus
      • 10 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      I think Azpi is most nailed of Chels def

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

      Rudiger cheaper and rest last PL game.. So maybe I go with Rudiger..

  9. GROBARI
    • 1 Year
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Is GW32 good time to BB,or there is better time to use that?

  10. yanky
    • 11 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    thoughts??? here’s my master “take a hit after wc” plan which i think could pay off...

    Mendy
    TAA Rudiger Holding (Coady Veltman)
    Salah Jota Bruno Sterling(c) Saka
    Kane Iheanacho (Davis)

    plan is to do Sterling Saka > Son Maddison for -4 pt hit in dgw32
    Veltman not a strong option but is my gw33 cover since kane son davis will be benched

  11. Dammit_182
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Running a Free Hit this week as upside chasing and current team does not fill with confidence. There is a city shaped gap but no idea who to drop/go for. Currently lines up as:

    Leno

    TAA, Laporte, Alonso

    Salah(VC), Sterling (C), Auba, Mount, Periera

    Wood, Ings

    Forster - iheanacho, Rudiger, Phillips

    For reference my current team is:

    Aerola

    TAA, Wan Bis, cresswell

    Lingard, salah, son, Gundo

    Calvert lewin, Werner, Kane

    Johnstone - Vestman, Dawson, raphina

    No other chips. All thoughts welcome.

  12. Plagued by indecision
    • 11 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Apologies for another wildcard draft, but I am seriously struggling here to make up my mind...

    1) Keep Martinez or bring in Mendy? I have Rudiger

    2) I have TAA, Shaw and Rudiger... looking for Stones / Dallas replacements. Any thoughts?

    3) Aiming for a midfield of Son / Jota / Salah / Bruno / Lingard, but may have to sacrifice Son for Mount / Maddison because of lack of funds... what do you think?

    4) Kane / Iheanacho / Davis up front reasonable?

    1. maratus
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      I guess you dont have BB left, bebause you are bringing Davis up front?

      1. Plagued by indecision
        • 11 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        yeah, wasted my BB on Leeds's non-performance against Villa.

    2. Eat my goal!
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Mendy or leno

      Maddison over mount

      Bruno/Son spot - upgrade from son to Bruno after the dgw

      1. Plagued by indecision
        • 11 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        Thanks. I would lose .5 on Bruno though.

    3. Blue Moon Rising
      • 10 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Same

      1) Mendy for me
      2) struggling for the same
      3) I’ve ditched TAA to afford *the* midfield
      4) vydra over Davis due to game time

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

      very similar to my team, same front three no shaw lingard— see my plan above!

    5. JabariParkersEyelid
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 17 days ago

      1. I actually prefer Martinez to Mendy, Mendy is a 6 point ceiling it feels which is basically the same as Rudiger and I think you can do better. I don't love Martinez here though (I have Kasper).

      2. James is an option. So is Leicester defence, then lots of cheap 4.5 or under options for your 5th defender.

      3. Not for me, sacrifice elsewhere.

      4. If you don't have a bench boost I think it's ideal.

      1. Plagued by indecision
        • 11 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        thanks. I am now seriously wondering if Phillips might be a better option to bolster the defence... unfortunately if I go with what I really want I end up with 2 very weak options for 4th and 5th defenders.

  13. Ohh1454
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Start raph or bamford ?

    1. Corgzzzz
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Raph

      1. Corgzzzz
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        5 months, 16 days ago

        Raph

  14. ShaunGoater123
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Thoughts on this draft? Template with a few twists.

    Mendy / Forster

    Periera / TAA / coady / rudiger / Dawson

    Salah / jota / son / Bruno / Neto

    Kane / ihenacho / Davis

    Nothing in the bank but son can be moved on in the blank for grealish freeing up cash for nacho upgrade

  15. Sterling Archer
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Play KDB and captain him, if he doesnt start, hopefully he doesnt play at all - VC would be on Kane

    or Sell for Salah -4 and captain

    FT was Antonio to Nacho

  16. dark91
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Is there an article on the possible upcoming doubles and blanks?

  17. gstegnar
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Martinez - Forster
    Targett - Dunk - Dallas - Stones - Shaw
    Salah - Gundo - Lingard - Bruno - Raphinha
    DCL - Kane - Watkins

    1,3 ITB, 2FT

    Would you replace Martinez / DCL?

    1. Ohh1454
      • 3 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Maybe Dallas to Trent and dcl to iheancheo

  18. Igz08
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Would you get rid of Digne on a wc?

    1. Toby Lerone
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Definitely

  19. sarlosm
    • 1 Year
    5 months, 17 days ago

    On a WC would you rather

    Mendy Forster
    TAA Rüdiger Saiss Mitchell XX
    Bruno Jota Maddison Lingard XX
    Kane Nacho XX

    A)
    Stones, Son, Vardy

    B)
    Holding, Salah, Laca

    Would do Salah to Son next GW, but it means losing 0.2 on Son as I have him now. Thanks

  20. GROBARI
    • 1 Year
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Best duo to have,currently on A but idk now
    A) Laca,Neto
    B) Vydra,Maddison
    C) Davis,Maddison

    1. Alisson WondHaaland
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      B

  21. Pukki Blinders
    • 2 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Bench one

    A. Phillips
    B. Coady
    C. Shaw

    1. GROBARI
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 17 days ago

      A

  22. Alisson WondHaaland
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Bench 2:

    A) TAA AVL(H)
    B) Rudiger CRY(A)
    C) Fofana WHU(A)
    D) Holding SHU(A)
    E) Shaw TOT(A)

  23. FPL ElasticO
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Is it too risky to have no City players on WC? They are involved in too many competitions & rotation looms large on these favourable PL matches.
    As, if yes, then I could easily double up on CHE defence & get Leno as ARS cover.
    Then I can move early for Maddison or Neto in midfield... also get Vardy as well instead of Iheanacho...

    What do you guys think about this??

    1. Igz08
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      I’ve gone for Dias and Mahrez

  24. b91jh
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Pretty set on this front 8 on WC:

    Salah Bruno Maddison Jota Lingard
    Kane Nacho Wood

    31: bench Maddison
    32: bench Wood
    33: Wood to Watkins, bench Kane

    Also thinking should I go for Auba(c) one week punt then change to Salah.

    1. Alisson WondHaaland
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Dont mind the punt but I think the Wood to Watkins is a waste. Just start with Watkins and play Maddison in 31

      1. b91jh
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        Watkins is not really a main priority, owning Wood gives me room to select Bamford or Watkins or even Antonio if he becomes fit again. At least Wood gets a ok fixture on 33.

  25. focaccia
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Captain Salah or KDB?

    1. Abra Dubravka
      • 2 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Salah

  26. ebb2sparky
    • 10 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    I see many WC teams with both iheanacho and Vydra. Aren't both big rotation risks? Wondering whether a more established striker (say DCL) and 4.2/4.3 fodder is a better approach?

    1. Toby Lerone
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Think ihenacho is worth the punt. My plan is maybe drop son after 32 to Madison if ihenacho is out of favour and upgrade him

      1. ebb2sparky
        • 10 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        Yes I can see the appeal with iheanacho although dented when he got substituted for maddison in the last game. Vydra feels like a trap though.

  27. Toby Lerone
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Captain sterling or Salah?

    1. Dammit_182
      5 months, 17 days ago

      I’m FH and will C Sterling and VC salah.

  28. CR7 is Home
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Anyone knows the twitter link of the person who summarises the City lineup prediction from the fan forums?

  29. CroatianHammer
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Clicking finger is hovering over the mouse, and the cursor is hovering over the WildCard button... I could have done this 3 days ago and 'saved' at least 0.4 in value I think...

  30. Fernandito
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 2 Years
    5 months, 17 days ago

    Help me finish this WC team guys...

    Mendy XXX
    Holding Shaw TAA Rudiger XXX
    Salah Sterling Jota Saka XXX
    Kane Vardy Davis

    A Button Castagne Lingard
    B Button Coady Mount
    C Martinez Coady Neto

    1. CR7 is Home
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Forster Coady Lingard

    2. Toby Lerone
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Who would your captain be this week?

    3. Fernandito
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      5 months, 17 days ago

      Think im going for Sterling as C

      1. Toby Lerone
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        5 months, 17 days ago

        Thinking similar. Surely he starts after a midweek no show