Spot the Differential

Firmino has timed resurgent FPL form to be useful Gameweek 38 differential

Gameweek 38 offers FPL managers a final opportunity to identify a differential to inspire a final push up the rankings.

This time, we’ve selected low-owned picks at Liverpool, Arsenal and West Ham United who we think have the potential to make an impact.

As always, to qualify, the player must have an ownership of 5% or less at the time of writing.

Roberto Firmino

  • FPL ownership: 4.9%
  • Price: £9.1m
  • GW38 fixture: CRY

With three goals and an assist in his last four appearances, Roberto Firmino (£9.1m) is an intriguing final day differential.

The Brazilian has had a disappointing campaign by his standards, with his place in Jürgen Klopp’s starting XI threatened by the impact of Diogo Jota (£6.9m). However, he has finally found some form at the business end of the season.

Firmino fed Thiago (£5.5m) to seal Liverpool’s 2-0 victory against Southampton back in Gameweek 34, and has since followed that up with a brace of goals at Manchester United, a part in the equaliser at West Bromwich Albion, plus Wednesday’s opener at Burnley. During that time, he has acquired 27 FPL points, and now sits level alongside Sadio Mané (£11.8m) and Jota on nine Premier League goals, with only Mohamed Salah (£12.9m) scoring more for the Reds.

For a player who contributes so much to Liverpool’s all-round game, it does perhaps seem unfair to criticise him, but purely in FPL terms, he has struggled. In fact, prior to Gameweek 35, he had scored just one goal since Gameweek 14. Despite that, his numbers throughout the season have generally remained good, only his finishing has let him down, which is backed up by his negative 2.62 expected goals (xG) delta. However, such is the impact of confidence and goals on centre-forwards, that total has jumped to +1.77 over the last four Gameweeks.

Barring a huge Leicester City win over Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday, victory at home against Crystal Palace will be enough for Liverpool to secure a top-four finish, and as a result, qualify for next seasons Champions League. With a run of seven wins and two draws in their last nine Premier League matches, it looks like they have got their act together at exactly the right moment, and with Firmino full of confidence, could be set for a big finish.

Nicolas Pépé

  • FPL ownership: 1.7%
  • Price: £7.7m
  • GW38 fixture: BHA

Nicolas Pépé (£7.7m) has been in fine form of late, and is starting to show his quality following his £72m transfer from Lille back in 2019.

It would be fair to say it has taken the 25-year-old a fair bit of time to get going, but with 13 goal involvements in all competitions in 2021, which included a brace against Crystal Palace in Gameweek 37, he is now starting to produce more consistently.

The Ivorian winger’s first on Wednesday night, a lovely cushioned volley after great link-up play between Kieran Tierney (£5.2m) and Bukayo Saka (£5.1m), set Arsenal on their way, while his second late on was a fine solo effort. He ended the match with 55 final-third touches, more than any other player, and was comfortably the best performer on the pitch.  

Those who have been paying attention will know his numbers have been good for a while, though. 

Since the turn of the year, amongst team-mates, he ranks top for penalty area touches and goal attempts in the box, second for shots on target and third for xG. In fact, amongst all midfielders who have played a substantial number of minutes, only Liverpool trio Jota, Salah and Mané, plus Mason Greenwood (£7.3m) and Kai Havertz (£8.3m), can better his 2.29 shots in the box per 90 minutes total. 

The Gunners’ square off against Brighton and Hove Albion in their last Premier League game of the season on Sunday, knowing victory, coupled with rivals Spurs’ and Everton dropping points, would see them finish seventh, and as a result secure a spot in the inaugural Europa Conference League competition.

Pepe has impressed for Arsenal in 2021, and now showing increased consistency and more end-product, could be an effective midfield differential for the final-day.

Saïd Benrahma

  • FPL ownership: 0.3%
  • Price: £5.9m
  • GW38 fixture: SOU

Saïd Benrahma (£5.9m) has been something of a bit-part player at West Ham United this season, but has now produced attacking returns in three of his last four appearances.

The unpredictable Algerian has supplied assists against Burnley and West Bromwich Albion, and also found the back of the net at Brighton with a superb curling finish from the edge of the area.

His attacking numbers during that time have caught the eye, too.

Over the last four Gameweeks, he ranks top amongst team-mates for expected assists (xA), second for chances created and joint-third for shots on target. Meanwhile, amongst all Premier League players who have featured for over 100 minutes during that period, only Gabriel Martinelli (£4.9m) can trump his 0.45 xA per 90 minutes.

However, the real appeal lies in this weekend’s opponents, Southampton. 

As noted by Neale earlier this week, Benrahma has spent a lot of time on the right-flank over the last two matches, and it was from this position that he assisted against West Brom. And if stationed on that side on Sunday, he’ll be up against a Saints team who have conceded the second-highest number of chances from their left over the last six games – a period that has coincided with Ryan Bertrand’s (£5.0m) unavailability and the deployment of centre-halves Mohammed Salisu (£4.3m) and Jack Stephens (£4.6m) as make-shift left-backs.

Motivation shouldn’t be an issue for the Hammers, either, as a single point in Gameweek 38 will be enough for them to seal a place in next seasons Europa League.

Benrahma is a real difference-maker, and could be an explosive mid-price punt for those willing to move away from the midfield template.

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1,336 Comments Post a Comment
  1. DavidHopkin
    • 10 Years
    2 months, 9 days ago

    15pts behind, 2 ft and already have 8 differentials. Which two out of the three?

    A. Watkins to Antonio (rival has bamford, I have raph)
    B. Shaw to Dallas
    C. Son to mane (rival owns son too)

    1. teknicolourfox
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 9 days ago

      B and C

  2. Henning
    • 6 Years
    2 months, 9 days ago

    27 p behind in ml thinking ofndoing DCL to Firminho and cap him.

    Don i have any chance to Catch Up?

    My team
    Mendy Forster
    TAA Dallas Shaw Digne Holding
    Salah Son Raphina GreenwoodJwp
    Kane DCL Wood

    Ml leader team
    Martinez Pope
    Lindelov Digne Rudiger Struijk Kabak
    Harrison Salah Bruno Trossard Eze
    Kane Antonio Bamford

    1. DavidHopkin
      • 10 Years
      2 months, 9 days ago

      Lots of differentials and if firm cap pick works out, definitely got a shot

      1. Henning
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Thanx.

    2. Jambot
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      2 months, 9 days ago

      27 points is a lot for one week. I’d be tempted to captain Trent if I was you as there is no way he’s getting him in (he might cover Dallas) not sure I would sell an exiting differential in DCL. Be bold and switch Kane out and give yourself another diff. Maybe Nacho?

      1. Jambot
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        *existing differential. I’m not saying DCL is exciting lol

      2. Henning
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Hmmm maby worth a shot.

    3. Tomsk
        2 months, 9 days ago

        I like the Firmino idea. Good luck

        1. Henning
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Thanx

      • teknicolourfox
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        I'd be looking at someone who could get a brace, hat trick against a poor side. Hence why I got rid of DCL to Wood l, but I was VERY tempted to shift Kane.

        I'm 130pts in front on my ML though so don't have any pressure.

        1. Henning
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Wow a nice lead. Thanx

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

      Anything worth consider a hit?

      Lloris
      Stones TAA Dallas
      Salah Lingard Willock Mane Greenwood
      DCL Bamford

      Johnstone, Cavani, Konsa, X

      1. Hy liverpool
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Cavani to antonio and play antonio with Greenwood.. DCL over Greenwood if we got news that Greenwood will be benched?

        1. ludaslol
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          That is defo a nice ”plan B”. Not sure on Nacho/Antonio tho. Think the WHU game might be quite tight

          1. Hy liverpool
            • 7 Years
            2 months, 9 days ago

            I don’t think so, sou are one of the worst teams away lately and westham need to win to play in europe league next season.
            But none of them is a must, i just fancy westham attacker this week.

    5. ZEZIMA
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 9 days ago

      Do you guys think any of Wan Bissaka, Dias, Greenwood play today? Thanks

    6. Weeb Kakashi
      • 5 Years
      2 months, 9 days ago

      Mendy
      TAA RobboTargett
      Salah(C) Mahrez Foden Lingard
      Kane DCL Bam

      2 FT. 5 point lead in ML. Opponent has Dallas and Antonio who can hurt me. Apart from that his team is pretty meh.

      ESR Shaw

      1. Hy liverpool
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Targett DCL and one of city midfielders to Antonio Dallas and harrison/raph

      2. DavidHopkin
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Looks good. Do people think foden gets game time? I own and is a differential but considering torres as an option. Feels too sideways and with pep you just never know.

      3. Tinmen
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        You think Mahrez will start ?

      4. dansully3
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Mahrez and Foden will not play, I'd be moving them

    7. Khalico
      • 5 Years
      2 months, 9 days ago

      final team, gtg?
      Martinez
      N.Phillips, TAA, Dallas
      Raphinha, Salah(VC), Son, Lingard
      Wood(C), Antonio, Kane
      subs: Steer, Bruno, Coufal, Shaw

    8. Tinmen
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 9 days ago

      Folks, how is Smith Rowe as an option?
      I haven’t really seen him if I’m honest

      1. dansully3
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Quality

    9. marcos11
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Best way to burn a transfer here? 1.2itb and willing to take a hit if necessary.

        Forster
        Philips Rudiger Shaw
        Salah Bruno Son Raph
        Kane Antonio Bamford
        Sanchez Lingard Struijk Dias

      • StellaMan
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Any changes here? On a wildcard 🙂

        Mendy (Sanchez)
        Dallas, TTA, Coufal (holding/mitchell)
        mane, Salah, Son, Raphina (willock)
        Antonio, Kane, Nacho

        1. waltzingmatildas
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Don't think I'd have son on a wc. Punt on city or Chelsea mid?

          1. StellaMan
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 8 Years
            2 months, 9 days ago

            Tempting with Torres or Pulisic

      • Thejimbola
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Is it worth risking Pep roulette and transferring in KDB for Bruno?

        1. Hy liverpool
          • 7 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Not imo.. But wait for any leaked city line ups

        2. Mouldmaster
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          I think KDB plays, but I've done Mane for Bruno. KDB would be a nice differential

      • Mouldmaster
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Morning all - hope you are looking forward to the final day fixtures all at one time!

        Advice please: 30k rank, worried about not having Dallas.

        Digne to Dallas for -4 worth it?

        1. FPL Pillars
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          To protect rank, sure Dallas has a haul in him

      • The Big Fella
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        I've got Mendy in net & want to play one of following: Rudiger; Lowton; Shaw.

        Logic:Chelsea have best bookie odds to keep a CS, Sheffield can't score (but Burnley have nothing to play for now) & Wolves also struggling to score & Shaw may get an attacking return (but may not play their best team lowering chance of CS & conversion of any possible crosses).

        Any help would be much appreciated!

      • Only a Hazard of time
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        3 point lead in the ML.

        I have Son, he doesn't.
        He has Mount and Torres, I don't.

        Worth blocking one of his players by getting rid of Son? (I have Kane)

        1. Eh, just one more thing ...
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Don’t think so ....

      • mcsteely
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Play Greenwood or ESR?

      • FPL Pillars
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Areola
        TAA Dallas Coufal
        Salah Ralph Ling Son
        Kane Nacho Bamford

        If you had Auba would you start him over any of the above?

        Cheers

        1. Mouldmaster
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Maybe Son, but it's close and wouldn't use a transfer on it

          1. FPL Pillars
            • 4 Years
            2 months, 9 days ago

            Well it would be for free, he can be for free on the bench too... 0.5 off Mane for free which is annoying

            1. Mouldmaster
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 6 Years
              2 months, 9 days ago

              Team looks solid - hard to make a call as to who would defo improve it. Son weakest, but last day of season at Leicester could be 4-4. You may just wanna improve bench.

      • Legohair
        • 5 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Bruno to Auba(c)???

      • Jack.Armstrong96
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 5 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Maddison to Mane for a -4

        1. Tomerick
          • 7 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Yarp

        2. Mouldmaster
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          I wouldn't - Maddison could do well. Nothing to say Mane outscores him by 4

      • Tomerick
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Pope

        TAA, Dallas, Coufal
        Salah, Bruno, Greenwood, Pereira, Harrison
        Kane, Antonio

        Sanchez, Nacho, Stones, White

        I’m chasing my mini league by 17 points. Anyone else a good captain pick other than Salah?

        Would you play Nacho ahead of Pereira?

        1. FPL Pillars
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Play Nacho

        2. RamboRN
          • 10 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Taa or antonio

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

          Narp

          Yarp

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

          Yes to Nacho, both sides chasing a win = goals

          Does oppo have Salah?

          1. Tomerick
            • 7 Years
            2 months, 9 days ago

            Yeah and he’s super cautious so will almost definitely captain him.

            1. TopCorner
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              2 months, 9 days ago

              Then go for the safer risk of Kane/Antonio or big risk of TAA/Dallas?

              1. Tomerick
                • 7 Years
                2 months, 9 days ago

                Yeah I’m leaning towards TAA for the massive potential

      • Weeb Kakashi
        • 5 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        FPL Rockstar will be a legend if he manages to get the City lineup before deadline.

        1. Tomerick
          • 7 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          There’s an easy trick. Just pick the player that is least likely to play/haul and they will be the one to play and haul. Unless ofcourse you expect them to in which case they won’t.

      • dansully3
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        21pts behind top, is capt Robbo insane or a good punt?

        1. RamboRN
          • 10 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          May aswell if nothing to lose

        2. Efan Ekoku Pops
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Need to make a big punt. Go for it.

        3. Tomerick
          • 7 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Good punt IMO

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

          Any attacker punt?

        5. dansully3
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Cheers, locked and loaded!

      • RamboRN
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Mendy
        TAA Phillips coufal
        Salah raphina lingard son
        Kane Antonio bamford

        Subs forster, regulion, rudiger, greenwood.
        If we hear that greenwood is starting would you play him over anyone

        1. dansully3
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Jesse messi

      • AD2110
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Which would you go for here?

        A) Mount
        B) Pepe
        C) Sterling
        D) Torres

        1. SHOWSTOPPERRR
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          D

        2. waltzingmatildas
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Hmm I'd be tempted by B

        3. dansully3
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          B

      • waltzingmatildas
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Jota to
        A) raph
        B) torres
        C) hold?

        1. Efan Ekoku Pops
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          A

        2. SHOWSTOPPERRR
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          A

        3. dansully3
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Jota will get mins and could do more damage than any of those.

          1. waltzingmatildas
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 10 Years
            2 months, 9 days ago

            You reckon? I'm tempted to hold him but just not sure what else to do with ft!

        4. ZAMUNDA
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Raph

      • Efan Ekoku Pops
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Me: ESR, Mane, Raphina, Antonio, Bamford

        Him: Son, Greenwood, Lingard, Mahrez, Adams (+8 points)

        Will both likely captain Salah.
        Who wins?

        1. SHOWSTOPPERRR
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          You coz Adams is out and how did you know he has taken a 8 point hit?

          1. Eh, just one more thing ...
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            2 months, 9 days ago

            I think he means his rival has an 8 point lead?

            1. SHOWSTOPPERRR
              • 3 Years
              2 months, 9 days ago

              Oh...

          2. Efan Ekoku Pops
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 9 Years
            2 months, 9 days ago

            Rival has an 8 point lead going into today. No doubt he will take a hit with some of the doubts and his injured player.

        2. Eh, just one more thing ...
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          Tight indeed ... I’m gonna be optimistic and say you just pip your rival to glory.

        3. Original - Wolves Ay We
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 5 Years
          2 months, 9 days ago

          You, Adams, Mahrez and Greewood may not play. I suspect he will take a hit or two before the deadline.

      • Weeb Kakashi
        • 5 Years
        2 months, 9 days ago

        Mendy
        TAA Robbo Targett
        Salah Mahrez Foden Lingz
        Kane DCL Bamford

        ESR Shaw

        2 FT.

        Shaw DCL> Dallas Antonio?? Play Mahrez and Foden with ESR and Targett on bench as cover.

        Thoughts??

        1. artvandelay316
            2 months, 9 days ago

            Both good transfers, but I'd be wary of both City players.

        2. artvandelay316
            2 months, 9 days ago

            Transfers done.

            Forster (Meslier)
            TAA, Phillips, Dallas (Rudiger, Mitchell)
            Salah (C), Torres, Lingard, Pepe (Greenwood)
            Kane, Bamford, Nacho (VC)

            GTG?

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

              Gtg

              1. artvandelay316
                  2 months, 9 days ago

                  Cheers!

                • Mouldmaster
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 9 days ago

                  Nice

            2. Lucky Z
              • 3 Years
              2 months, 9 days ago

              Start one:

              A. Maddison
              B. Greenwood

              1. SHOWSTOPPERRR
                • 3 Years
                2 months, 9 days ago

                Greenwood

              2. artvandelay316
                  2 months, 9 days ago

                  Greenwood

                • ZAMUNDA
                  • 4 Years
                  2 months, 9 days ago

                  Greenwood

                • Original - Wolves Ay We
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 5 Years
                  2 months, 9 days ago

                  A

                • Lucky Z
                  • 3 Years
                  2 months, 9 days ago

                  Thanks!

              3. Eh, just one more thing ...
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 9 Years
                2 months, 9 days ago

                Good morning all ... please recommend how to use my one free transfer ... 0.6m in bank?

                Mendy Ederson
                TAA Digne Dallas Shaw Coady
                Salah Son Lingard Harrison Jota
                Antonio Kane Nacho

                Thank you all.

                1. artvandelay316
                    2 months, 9 days ago

                    Couple of ideas...
                    Jota to third Leeds player?
                    Shaw to second Pool def?

                    1. Eh, just one more thing ...
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 9 Years
                      2 months, 9 days ago

                      Thanks ... currently thinking Raphina for Jota ..... already have three Pool so don’t want a hit for Robbo in as I’d have to ditch Jota as well .... so looking at Shaw replacements up to 5.9m ....

                2. Harry's Car Window
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 9 days ago

                  Madness to captain Bamford over Salah?

                  A) Yes
                  B) No

                  1. Eastman
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 3 Years
                    2 months, 9 days ago

                    B
                    Having said that I have both and going Mo

                3. duledj
                    2 months, 9 days ago

                    A) Robbo & Antonio
                    B) Coufal & Firmino

                    1. waltzingmatildas
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 10 Years
                      2 months, 9 days ago

                      A

                    2. Original - Wolves Ay We
                      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                      • 5 Years
                      2 months, 9 days ago

                      A

                    3. dansully3
                      • 4 Years
                      2 months, 9 days ago

                      Robbo will do damage

                    4. ZAMUNDA
                      • 4 Years
                      2 months, 9 days ago

                      A