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. gooberman
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 21 days ago

    How are people interpreting Ole's comments about Shaw? He was protecting him because he was on a yellow or because he picked up a knock/injury? Annoyingly unclear.

  2. CFC1990
    • 10 Years
    5 months, 21 days ago

    a) Dias and Bamford (bench for Iheanacho for next two weeks)

    b) Shaw and DCL

    1. 007 [RoboKlopp]
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      A

      1. CFC1990
        • 10 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        I'm on A. Only tempted by B as DCL has a double but can always worry about that nearer the time

  3. FPLMACKEM
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    5 months, 21 days ago

    Which WC squad?

    A) The TAA version

    Mendy, Forster
    Coady, Holding, Rudiger, TAA, Amartey?
    Salah, Jota, Bruno, Neto, Son
    Vydra, Kane, Iheanacho

    Leaves 0.2 itb

    B) The non TAA version

    Mendy, Forster
    Coady, Holding, Rudiger, Phillips, Dias
    Salah, Jota, Bruno, Lingard, Son
    Vydra, Kane, Iheanacho

    Leaves 0.8 itb

  4. Bubbles1985
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 21 days ago

    WC mk247383!

    Schmeichel Forster
    TAA Rudiger Coady Masuaku Mitchell
    Bruno Son Mount Jota Lingard
    Kane Vardy Davis

    Trying to have a few premiums! Son will go after the double to enable upgrades elsewhere...

    Thoughts please??

    1. JabariParkersEyelid
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Thought 1 is that there is no easy route to Salah if it becomes necessary.

      Thought 2 is that Vardy is causing you to massively compromise your defence, but you've indicated you're happy with that for a couple of weeks so crack on.

      1. Bubbles1985
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Thanks.

        Agree with both but am chasing 80 points in my main ML so Jota and Vardy are my diff gambles!

      2. Bubbles1985
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Next issue is captain choice. 😀

      3. fusen
        • 9 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        The easy way is downgrade Vardy and switch Son to Salah

  5. CR7 is Home
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 21 days ago

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

    1. avfc82
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 11 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      It was Wee Rogue, but I think FPL Meta has done it this week.

      1. CR7 is Home
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Thnx mate

      2. CR7 is Home
        • 4 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Can you link the profile plz

  6. Silencetheweak
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 21 days ago

    Thought on my WC Team?

    Mendy (Forster)

    Philip, Rudi, Dias (Holding, Shaw)

    Son Maddi Salah(C) Bruno Neto

    Kane Vydra (Nacho)

    Thanks!

    1. JabariParkersEyelid
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 20 days ago

      I like it, but I'd play Nacho personally.

      1. Silencetheweak
        • 3 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Who would u sub with then? Vydra vs Newcastle this weekend. That's why i chose him over nacho.

  7. FCSB
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 21 days ago

    WC always gonna be a benching headache ugh, which three to bench:

    1. Holding (shu)
    2. Lascelles (bur)
    3. Son (MUN)
    4. Lingard (LEI)
    5. Iheanacho (whu)
    6. Vydra (NEW)

    Thanks

    1. CFC1990
      • 10 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      You obviously cant bench Son and Lingard. I would also play Iheanacho due to form and Rice out for West Ham

      1. JabariParkersEyelid
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 1 Year
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Agree with this.

        1. FCSB
          • 5 Years
          5 months, 20 days ago

          Thanks makes sense

    2. IN SANE IN DE BRUYNE
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      1,2,6

      1. FCSB
        • 5 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Thanks mate

  8. Mr Ozil
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 21 days ago

    On WC,

    A- Sell Martinez (so much value tied in him) for Mendy
    B- Play Areola. Already have Rudiger

    1. 007 [RoboKlopp]
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      A

    2. OptimusBlack
      • 8 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      ،B

  9. b91jh
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 21 days ago

    On WC,

    A) Alonso+Coufal
    Or
    B) Rudiger+Cresswell
    ?
    Cheers.

    1. 007 [RoboKlopp]
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Rudiger and Coufal, upgrade elsewhere

  10. davewg59
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Which 2 to bench guys?
    Shaw
    Dias
    TAA
    Lowton
    Coady

    1. Biggsy
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Lowton and Shaw probably

  11. Biggsy
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Part template, part outside-the-box, WC draft. Thoughts welcome

    Mendy, Forster
    Rudiger, TAA, Dias, (Coady, Lascelles)
    Bruno, Jota, Lingard, Mount, (Lucas Moura)
    Jesus, Ihenacho, Kane

    Don't like building in transfers, but don't fancy Son on past form and would like to give Salah a couple of weeks (can easily downgrade Jesus and bring Salah in for 33).

  12. unitednations
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Hey all, On a WC. Is it worth having sterling (c) and then shifting him to Bruno in 32?

    Pros: Differential, Good cpt shout (better then salah?), shd play 90
    Cons: lose 0.1m on Bruno, doesnt allow me to save a FT in 32. 2fts in 33 could be handy

    1. Biggsy
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      I don't quite get the Sterling punt - poor recent returns

    2. JabariParkersEyelid
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 20 days ago

      I don't like it. I think having 2 FTs for as long as possible is what you want for the run in. And Bruno could outscore Sterling any given week including this one.

      1. unitednations
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Yeah thats a good point too.

    3. Toby Lerone
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      I'm thinking the same. Gonna captain sterling I think

      1. unitednations
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Its def tempting!

  13. 007 [RoboKlopp]
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Start A or B?
    A. Holding vs shu
    B. Shaw vs tot
    Ta.

  14. Assist me a river
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Which one to go for?

    A: Rudiger - Castagne
    B: Azpilcueta - Fofana

    1. 007 [RoboKlopp]
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      B

  15. RamboRN
    • 10 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    WC team gtg?

    Mendy forster
    TAA dias rudiger holding fofana
    Salah jota lingard Bruno son
    Kane inheanacho vydra

    I am worried that I'm gonna struggle on who to bench from the defenders as can only really play 3 at the back to keep the main front 7

    1. 007 [RoboKlopp]
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Play 352, you'll be fine

      1. RamboRN
        • 10 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        But which 2 defenders to bench each week. They all have semi decent fixtures haha

    2. JabariParkersEyelid
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Holding is your bench player, play Trent and Dias every week available, then just picking between Rudi and Fofana each week.

      I think it's fine, team looks good

  16. Aaa
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    GTG?

    Johnstone
    TAA/Digne/James/Cancelo
    Salah(c)/Bruno/Lingard/Gundo(vc)
    Kane/Ineanacho
    (Martinez/Bamford/Raph/Velt)

    1. 007 [RoboKlopp]
      • 5 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Gtg

  17. zeslinguer
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    A) Gundo > Lingard
    B) DeBruyne/Dias > Son/TAA -4?

    If DeBruyne/Dias were guaranteed to start I would go A, but I think both could be benched and my bench is weak. Also whichever transfer I make this week, I'd be making the other the week after anyway, so maybe A this week B next?

  18. Shark Team
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Which 2 should I bench out of this 5 ?
    Dunk Dias Shaw Raphinha Bamford

    Also play Sanchez or Martinez?

  19. Flynny
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Does anyone know if fofana is nailed?

    I can afford over coady - but only want to go there on wildcard if nailed

    Already have alonso and holding so need coady / fofana to be reliable option

    Thanks

    1. Whazza
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      He is, I have both

      1. Flynny
        • 6 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Thanks

  20. Mr_Barbs
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    This week:
    A) Raph > Jota
    B) Antonio > inheanacho

    Martinez
    Azpi, TAA, Cancelo
    Son, Bruno, Raph, Gundo, Lingard
    Kane, Bamford

    Fabri, Dias, Antonio, Struijk

  21. Mr_Barbs
    • 4 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Most likely do the other the following week

    1. Mr_Barbs
      • 4 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Doh....See post above

  22. fc_skrald
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Who should sit on my bench?

    a. Digne, away against Brighton
    b. Shaw, away against ManU
    c. Lowton, home against Newcastle
    d. Cancelo, home against Leeds

    1. fc_skrald
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Shaw is away against Tottenham of course..

    2. kysersosa
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      I’d actually say Lowton, due to the attacking returns of the others

      1. fc_skrald
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Thanks. Lowton has been attacking himself lately but probably the correct one.

  23. gmando2011
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    NO Sterling allows me a much more balanced team but it also leaves me with no Man City players - is this a huge risk or could it pay off?

    1. kysersosa
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      On a WC or normal transfers? I’d say it isn’t a risk, he’s currently owned by 5.8%. He’s almost a differential!

    2. JabariParkersEyelid
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      5 months, 20 days ago

      Most wildcards are going 0 city.

      1. gmando2011
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        great thanks

  24. kysersosa
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Is it worth keeping a city def on a wildcard?

    1. bombayblues
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      5 months, 20 days ago

      I would keep Dias. Seems the mostly likely to start and City are the best team in the league. A strong bench would help in case he is rotated

      1. kysersosa
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        5 months, 20 days ago

        Makes sense. Thanks

  25. bombayblues
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 8 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Any word on Antonio's injury? Is Moyes due for a presser?

  26. Mr Ozil
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    On WC:

    A- Gundogan
    B- Lingard

  27. Eat my goal!
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Setup correct here?

    Pope
    Stones azpi cresswell
    (J)ota salah lingz gundo Bruno
    Kane iheanacho

    Martinez Dcl veltman dallas

  28. Gideons Rolling Another One
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Anyone with Mahrez and Gundog? Considering selling one for Jota... but not sure whether to do it or not. Mahrez unlikely to start but unless Pep says he's giving him the day off, he may start

  29. akhilrajau
    • 2 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Mendy, Forser
    TAA, Cedric, Ait Nouri, Amartey, Konsa
    Salah, Bruno, Sterling, Lingard, Smith Rowe
    Iheanacho, Kane, wood

    my final wc team. Any suggestions

  30. JasonG123
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    5 months, 20 days ago

    Is Holding nailed?