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Great Expectations

Will this be Kai Havertz’s breakout season in FPL?

We assess the Fantasy Premier League (FPL) appeal of Kai Havertz (£8.5m) in this first pre-season instalment of Great Expectations, a series of articles on players who have shown glimpses of promise and who are potentially on the cusp of a breakout FPL campaign.

All stats, heatmaps and xG charts used in this piece are taken from our Premium Members Area.

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FPL price reveal and launch reaction from three-time top 200 finisher Lateriser 1

INITIAL STRUGGLES

The Germany international mostly struggled to live up to his FPL price tag in 2020/21 but belatedly showed promise at the tail-end of the season.

The 22-year-old didn’t look comfortable in Frank Lampard’s 4-3-3 formation and then missed several weeks of the campaign after testing positive for COVID-19 in November.

The condition had long-term effects, something he touched on earlier this year:

The illness hit me hard. It lasted some four to five weeks before I could even think of getting back on to a football pitch. During the time I was ill. I was quite ill, to be honest. And I wish it upon absolutely no one. Then the aftermath was difficult too – I really had to work hard to get back to the pre-COVID fitness levels. You have to live with it.

Following the appointment of Thomas Tuchel in January, Havertz picked up an injury which ruled him out for a month but he has since shone in the German tactician’s 3-4-2-1 setup.

Benefiting from a move to a more advanced, central position, he thrived either as a no. 10 or as a false nine.

Above: Kai Havertz’s 2020/21 average position map under Frank Lampard (yellow) and Thomas Tuchel (green)

Havertz produced several decisive moments during the run-in, with the biggest, of course, arriving against Manchester City in the Champions League final, when he slotted in the winning goal.

“In my opinion right now, between a nine and a ten is pretty much his best position. He has the freedom to drop, to move between the two positions, and to shift positions between a ten and nine. Between a nine, a ten and a winger: that is the space where can be decisive for us.” – Thomas Tuchel

As a result of being positioned higher up the pitch, Havertz is shooting in better, more central areas, which is highlighted in these shot maps:

Above: Kai Havertz’s shot heatmap (left), goal attempts with shots on target in green (centre) and xG shot map (right) under Thomas Tuchel.

2020/21 STATISTICS:

Premier LeagueAll competitions
Appearances2745
Starts1829
Goals49
Assists611

PROTECTING HAVERTZ?

The main issue with Havertz in 2020/21 was the fact that his minutes were managed.

Tuchel started him in just seven of his 19 Premier League games, which made it increasingly difficult for FPL managers to invest.

However, the table below from Gameweek 27 onwards does suggest that a lot of that rotation was based around keeping him fresh for the Champions League.

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611 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Denniezy
    • 1 Year
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    Join FPL Mini-leagues & Cups here:
    https://youtu.be/SZs1NErguc4

  2. Moxon
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    Extremely dull question.

    A. Bissouma
    B. Gilmour
    C. Brownhill

    1. Fulchester's New Centr…
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Brownhill, reasonably attacking and you are unlikely to ever want more than a couple of Burnley at best

    2. Steve The Spud
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Going brownhill as long as I think he will start the season, scored a brace in pre season so at least a goal or 2 might not be beyond the realm of possiblity

    3. Moxon
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Cheers lads. Brownhill it is.

      1. Finding Timo
        2 months, 20 hours ago

        D) luiz?

    4. Big dog
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      (If for bench place) The chance of your last midfielder getting their one goal of the year in the one week you actually need them is so low it probably doesn't matter....having said that brownhill

  3. @Bryan
    • 12 Years
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    Hi, following his strong ending to lady season - any reason that people aren't keen on Rodrigo at leeds as a 6.5m striker? He seems a safer bet then Tony to start off with?

    1. Fulchester's New Centr…
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Lady season?

      Even if he is nailed, look at his career returns; not inspiring. More than 2 better options at Leeds.

    2. Fulchester's New Centr…
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Or, "strong ending to lady" season?

      1. @Bryan
        • 12 Years
        2 months, 20 hours ago

        Dam autocorrect strikes again!

      2. Moxon
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 20 hours ago

        *Last season

    3. gogs67
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      Still looks like Bamford will get more minutes, that's the problem.
      I was actually going to swap them over in my draft today but I'm holding Bam until we see how pre season line ups look

  4. Rupert The Horse
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    What’s going to happen with Pulisic do we think? Seems to have disappeared.

    1. Fulchester's New Centr…
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Expect me... like you'd expect jesus to come back expect me... I'm coming.

      1. Rupert The Horse
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 20 hours ago

        Baffled

        1. Fulchester's New Centr…
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 20 hours ago

          Tupac - I'm old.

          Puli too good to be banished, but plenty of competition for spots I guess. Definitely a wait and see.

          1. Rupert The Horse
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 8 Years
            2 months, 20 hours ago

            Gotcha.

  5. King Kohli
    • 8 Years
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    Which looks better?

    A. TAA + 4x4.5 def + Buendia (3-5-2)
    B. TAA + 5.5 def + 3x4.5 def + ESR (Hybrid 4-4-2/3-5-2)

    1. Fulchester's New Centr…
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Probably B, I'm torn on something similar, but overall am happier with not having to pick 2 from 4 defs each week - recipe for regrets

      1. King Kohli
        • 8 Years
        2 months, 20 hours ago

        Yes I'm leaning towards that as well.

        I think if Arsenal don't sign a #10, ESR is a great pick for gw 1 and from gw 4 onwards Arsenal have a good run of fixtures.

        1. Fulchester's New Centr…
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 20 hours ago

          Yes, ESR being a regular would be huge. Mbeumo another one to look at.

  6. 1justlookin
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    Thoughts on Bachmann? I'm thinking of going with him instead of Sanchez if I'm going with a Brighton defender.

    1. Fulchester's New Centr…
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Watford "should" be quite tight, at home at least, but have gone for Sanchez myself as BRI are more of a known quantity and, in my set-up, only 1 playing keeper.

    2. I Member
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Would get Bachmann if I was going for a Brighton defender but think I prefer Sanchez and a defender from another team.

    3. Indpush
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 29 days ago

      Both at the moment but if just one, tossup.

  7. 1justlookin
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    Anyone know of a decent 3 man defensive budget rotation?

      1. Magic Zico
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 19 hours ago

        Fantastic!

      2. 1justlookin
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 19 hours ago

        Beill, thanks mate

    1. Jdpz
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      amazing site

  8. FPL Kaka
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 5 Years
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    So Alderweild has just been sold, I didn’t see that one coming!

    Does that make Dier at 4.5m more nailed?

    1. Fulchester's New Centr…
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      They are supposed to be in talks with both Atalanta's Cristian Romero and Bologna's Takehiro Tomiyasu so not necessarily.

    2. The Mighty Hippo
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 5 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      I think Regulion provides the best value in the Spurs defence.

      1. Art Vandelay
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        2 months, 19 hours ago

        Reguilon could be a great option if the incoming players start well.

    3. Art Vandelay
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      Spurs trying to get rid of Dier, and even if they are unsuccessful, he won’t be playing unless their various signings fail to materialise.

      Rodon could actually emerge as a starter alongside Romero and if they play 3 at the back the Japanese lad will play RCB.

  9. xHaTr
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 3 Years
    2 months, 20 hours ago

    Which sounds better?

    A: Buendia DCL

    B: H.Barnes Wilson

    C: Buendia Wilson + 0.5

    1. Fulchester's New Centr…
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      C please Bob

      1. Finding Timo
        2 months, 20 hours ago

        C if means can use 0.5 to upgrade elsewhere

    2. Big dog
      2 months, 20 hours ago

      B. Barnes is underpriced

      1. Rod_72
        2 months, 9 hours ago

        Barnes might not start

    3. Dogs Of War
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      A

    4. DIMITRIS
      • 3 Years
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      C

    5. Rod_72
      2 months, 9 hours ago

      a

  10. Howyoudoin
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    2 months, 19 hours ago

    So I've set my team up to go Kane/Smith Rowe if Kane goes to Man C or Fernandes/Wellbeck. Double Liverpool defence with Lamptey/, Fofana rotation. Salah of course. Then value with Raphina/Beundia/Smith Rowe and big up front with Kane/Watkins/DCL. I hope Kane goes to Man C. I don't really want Fernandes and Wellbeck.

  11. g_jannyg
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    2 months, 19 hours ago

    On a scale of 1-5 (5 highest)

    How essential does this forum rate Raphinha and TAA?

    1. IN SANE IN DE BRUYNE
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      Trent 5/5
      Raph 3.5/5

    2. Snevitz
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 12 Years
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      No one is essential but from pre season impressions Raphinha seems to be the most under valued player in FPL to me

    3. g_jannyg
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      Thanks all think I'll be downgrading Toney to fund one of Raph or TAA

  12. DIMITRIS
    • 3 Years
    2 months, 19 hours ago

    How do you rate this bunch?

    Sanchez (Steele)
    TAA / Robbo / Coufal / White (Manquillo)
    Salah / Bruno / Raph / Buendia (Harrison)
    Watkins / Antonio (Obafemi)

    0.5 ITB to catch any emerging bandwagon.
    Possibility of switching between 4-4-2 and 3-5-2.

  13. twhalliii
    • 12 Years
    2 months, 19 hours ago

    My current thinking

    MARTINEZ (Foster)
    TAA+ ROBBO+ SHAW (Ayling, Omobomidele)
    ESR+BUENDIA+RAPHINA+SALAH(c)+SANCHO
    WATKINS+ANTONIO+TONEY

    1. twhalliii
      • 12 Years
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      Sorry... ESR or TONEY on the bench.

  14. Finding Timo
    2 months, 19 hours ago

    Gw1 only a) DCL b) Antonio c) cavani d) nacho e) Someone else (not Watkins)? Ta

  15. FPL Joker
    • 4 Years
    2 months, 19 hours ago

    I’m really struggling with the best Goalkeeping combo. I want a 4.5&4.0 from the same team, but the 4.0 HAS to play if the 4.5 doesn’t. With this in mind I’m thinking Watford as I don’t believe Steele is backup at Brighton. So it seems out of:

    A) Watford
    B) Brighton
    C) Norwich
    D) Brentford

    1. Finding Timo
      2 months, 19 hours ago

      A) but I am going Sanchez & foster

  16. Triffic
    • 10 Years
    2 months, 5 hours ago

    Top 3K any year league code “lacz6l”. Aiming to create a worlds best league.

  17. MARK US RASHFORD
    • 2 Years
    2 months, 5 hours ago

    Join my league lads a5x0cn
    Winner gets a £100 amazon gift card