Moving Target

Zouma’s West Ham move could boost Cresswell’s FPL appeal

Kurt Zouma‘s (£5.4m) move to West Ham United could prove fruitful for both attacking and defensive returns in Fantasy Premier League (FPL).

The France international has swapped west London for east in a transfer thought to be worth not far off £30m and may be in line for his debut against Southampton in Gameweek 4.

ZOUMA’S POSSIBLE IMPACT ON WEST HAM’S DEFENCE

Zouma's West Ham move could boost Cresswell and Coufal's FPL appeal 2

Despite their qualification for European competition at the back-end of 2020/21 and a very positive start to the current campaign, West Ham have struggled defensively for a while.

From Gameweek 28 of last season onwards, they have kept just one clean sheet:

Played14
Goals conceded21
Clean sheets1

The loss of Declan Rice (£5.0m) to injury, and the lack of a like-for-like back-up, was certainly one mitigating factor in the 2020/21 run-in. The Hammers have sought to address that with the capture of Czech defensive midfielder Alex Kral (£4.5m) on deadline day.

But West Ham’s defensive struggles both preceded and succeeded Rice’s absence.

Zouma is expected to take the place of Craig Dawson (£5.0m) in the West Ham starting XI.

The former West Bromwich Albion stopper has very much exceeded expectations in his time in east London, having originally arrived at the club as fourth-choice centre-half.

But after an initial bright start to life under David Moyes, Dawson – fairly or not – has come under fire of late. A piece of slack marking in the Gameweek 1 win over Newcastle allowed Callum Wilson (£7.5m) to score, while the West Ham centre-half was leaden-footed for Conor Gallagher’s (£5.5m) leveler last weekend.

There were two own-goals and a red card towards the back-end of 2020/21, too.

While it’s grossly unjust to pin West Ham’s defensive woes solely on Dawson’s shoulders, Zouma does represent an upgrade. The former predictably registered more clearances, blocks and interceptions last season, playing for a side that saw less possession and had more to do defensively, but some key percentages tell a different tale:

ZoumaDawson
Tackle success rate80%61.1%
Aerial duels won68.9%69.1%
Pass completion rate91%80%
Errors that led to chances02

The table above neatly sums up the pair: both good in the air (their aerial duel success rates were near-identical) but Zouma the better on the deck, both with and without the ball.

While we can’t expect the second coming of Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea, Zouma’s arrival raises the hopes for more clean sheets for Aaron Cresswell (£5.5m) and Vladimir Coufal (£5.0m), who have recently had to rely on their attacking exploits to compensate for the loss of shut-outs.

CRESSWELL/ZOUMA: SET-PIECE THREATS

Zouma's West Ham move could boost Cresswell and Coufal's FPL appeal 1

Two of Cresswell’s 11 assists last season were converted by Dawson and the latter’s possible demotion to the bench would seemingly represent a small blow to the left-back’s FPL appeal, such was his presence at corners and free-kicks.

Luckily, Zouma carries his own significant attacking aerial threat.

No centre-half bettered the French stopper for Premier League goals (five) in 2020/21 and he trumped Dawson for some key underlying attacking numbers:

In a very similar amount of game-time (Dawson 1,926 minutes, Zouma 2,024 minutes), the France international registered 22 set-piece attempts to Dawson’s 16 – although West Ham did only take around 74% of the corners that Chelsea did, so their relative involvement at dead-ball situations was somewhere near equal.



So, then, the hope is that Zouma can replicate Dawson’s attacking threat and act as a magnet for Cresswell’s set-piece deliveries while boosting the rest of the West Ham defence’s clean sheet count.

The schedule up until the end of October isn’t too bad for existing owners but it’s fair to say a Hammers defender isn’t a priority right now for those without Cresswell or Coufal (or Zouma), especially as the impact of involvement in the UEFA Europa League – which starts after Gameweek 4 – is yet to be felt.

The next big fixture swing in the Irons’ favour isn’t until Gameweeks 16-27, so that gives the rest of us ample time to assess Zouma’s influence on those around him, good or bad.

661 Comments Post a Comment
  1. FPL Pillars
    • 5 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Sanchez
    TAA Semado Tierney
    Salah Torres Gray ESR
    Ronaldo Lukaku Antonio

    Steele 4.5 Mid Liv Williams

    How is she?

    Tempting this 😀

    1. n-doggg
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Real good. ESR risk with odegard signing? Torres pep roulette but…

  2. Original - Wolves Ay We
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    A) Gray and Christensen
    B) Benrahma and White

    Which pair would you get on a WC

    Have Antonio and Lukaku but not DCL

    1. Manani
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      a

    2. n-doggg
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      A. Although Christensen not a risk - try and afford James?

      1. Rocket Raccoon
        • 11 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        He’s not really. Started most games under Tuchel.

    3. Rocket Raccoon
      • 11 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      A

  3. FPL Pillars
    • 5 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Tierney misses sitter. Also I thought he would do well with BAPS but he only got 4 the whole of last season. Making me reconsider him as an option.

  4. n-doggg
    • 9 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Decisions on WC.

    A. DCL, Jota, Mount/Greenwood
    B. Lukaku, gray, raphinia

    Sanchez, Steele
    TAA, semedo, ayling, livermanto, Williams
    Salah, XXX, XXX, traore, sissoko
    Ronaldo, XXX, Antonio

    Thanks all

    1. Rocket Raccoon
      • 11 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      B

    2. ZeBestee
      • 7 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Traore is infuriarating with all those chances missed. Gray over him then A with Greenwood

      1. ZeBestee
        • 7 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Also Jimenez over DCL is better imo

        1. Rocket Raccoon
          • 11 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Hmmm, I can’t agree. The poor bloke hasn't scored yet, has he? Psychologically I worry he’ll ever be the same.

    3. Bobby Digital
      • 4 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      B

  5. ZeBestee
    • 7 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Below is my team. Have used my 1ft to bring in Jota early on for Barnes.

    Any weaknesses and how I can address them?

    Sanchez
    Dias VVD Coufal
    Benrahma Jota Bruno Greenwood Gundo
    Kane Antonio

    Foster Veltman Amartey 4.5

    1. Sanchit
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      You obviously know you don't have Salah, which I think is a high risk move.

      Apart from that, looks good. I wouldn't transfer anyone out for a hit

  6. Manani
    • 9 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Torres or Raphinna?

    have to bring them in (and play) this week

    1. Rocket Raccoon
      • 11 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Raph. Will play…always.

      1. fclackless [Brazil Nuts]
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        except gw4 ?

        1. Rocket Raccoon
          • 11 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Looks ok

    2. n-doggg
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Raphinia is a season keeper, Torres will be headache each week to see if he starts

    3. ZeBestee
      • 7 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Torres if you have a good sub. Raphinha otherwise

      1. n-doggg
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Not sure if get this sub argument. If Torres doesn’t start he’s probably going to come on for 1 point and bench player won’t feature?

        1. ZeBestee
          • 7 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Its all about risk management. If he rather starts and get you 15 points then that diminishes the risk of 1 pointers long term. I just went Gundo set and forget for that reason.

        2. Rocket Raccoon
          • 11 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Agreed

  7. Ser Davos
    • 6 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Thoughts on the best formation? 3-4-3, 3-5-2 (trying to squeeze to Dennis) and then there's 4-4-2 with scope to switch to 3-5-2 or 3-4-3 once things become clearer.

    I see quite a few 4-3-3, which is the one I'm likely to discount tbh

    1. ZeBestee
      • 7 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      When Lukaku and possibly Cr7 start to hit them in, the will have to go with 3 attackers. 343 imo is the best but it 433 can also be successful when you want to save for the heavy hitters

      1. Ser Davos
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        There's a decent 4-3-3 on the previous page with Squirrel

        I do wonder if a 5.5 - 6.0 defender will surely be better than trying to pin down which of Gray, Sarr, Traore, Harrison are going to get going

    2. Salarrivederci
      • 5 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Really think 3-4-3 is the way to go.
      1) We actually got decent 4.0 - 4.1 playing defenders.
      2) The cheap midfield options are way better than the cheap forward options. From 4.5 to Pukki there is nothing of interest up top. Plenty options at 4.5 - 5.9 in midfield to sit on the bench next to two cheap defenders.
      3) The amount of good mid-priced-forwards on penalties is overwhelming (Jiménez, Bamford, Antonio, Ings, DCL, Wilson, Pukki) All of them also nailed on up top, and therefore worth the extra cash > the attacking midfield options from their teams.

      1. Salarrivederci
        • 5 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        I also think the fact that Bamford and Jiménez got so kind fixtures combined with the fact that DCL and Antonio hit the ground running makes it so hard to justify going both CR7 and Lukaku.

      2. Ser Davos
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Good post, thank you

        TAA
        Salah - Allan
        Ronaldo - Antonio - DCL

        Fill in the blanks accordingly

        Will be interesting if there's any 6.0-6.5 strikers emerge

        1. Salarrivederci
          • 5 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          If I had to WC I think I would go:

          Meslier (4.0)
          TAA - Shaw - Semedo - Livramento - Williams
          Salah - Jota - Traoré - Sarr - Allan
          Ronaldo - Antonio - Bamford

          Feels wrong having so many players against each other in the next GW though. Anyway I am not WC'ing and sitting on this team:
          0 FTs and 1.0 ITB

          Raya
          TAA - Shaw - Reguilón
          Salah(C) - Bruno - Traoré - Sarr - ESR
          Antonio - Toney

          (Sanchez, Ings, Williams, Amartey)

          1. Salarrivederci
            • 5 Years
            1 month, 15 days ago

            I need ESR to get a return. Brentford to better Brighton, and Reguilón to keep doing his business.

            Oh and obviously Bruno to match CR7....

  8. Dannyb
    • 4 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Currently prefer B but which one?
    A
    Sanchez (Steele)
    TAA Shaw Reguilon (Duffy, Ayling)
    Salah, Jota, Raphina, Grealish, Gray
    Ronaldo Antonio (4.5)
    B
    De Gea
    Reguilon, Shaw, Ayling
    Salah, Raphina, Torres, Gray
    Lukaku, Ronaldo, Antonio
    Steele, Williams, Gilmour, Duffy.

    1. Rocket Raccoon
      • 11 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      A

    2. Rocket Raccoon
      • 11 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Actually, B. Blinded by no TAA

  9. Aaa
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 7 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Sanchez
    TAA/Shaw/Digne
    Salah(c)/Bruno/Greenwood/Gray/Mbeumo
    Ings/Antonio
    (Steele/Liv/Scarlett/Tsmis)

    1ft & 1.9itb

    A - Ings -> DCL/Bam
    B - Bruno & Ings -> Trincao & Ronaldo
    C - Roll the ft

    1. dshv
      • 4 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      I am
      In the same
      Position maybe save…

    2. Sanchit
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      A

  10. Sanchit
    • 6 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    RMWCT

    A bit different, spending high on defense.

    Sanchez (Steele)
    TAA Robbo Shaw Digne (Williams)
    Salah Raphinha Benrahama (4.5 4.5)
    Ronaldo DCL Antonio

    1. n-doggg
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Looks good. But would probably swap robbo for James and one of the 4.5 mids for gray.

      1. Sanchit
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Robbo for James is something I want to do. Was thinking to do it after the three good Liverpool fixtures.

        Also, don't like spending an extra million for a bench player, who is actually not very nailed on.

    2. ZeBestee
      • 7 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Wont go with 2 Pool defenders when you have Jota as cheaply priced Pool attacker with the risk attached but he plays short term at least

      1. Sanchit
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Ben Dinnery says Firmino will most likely be back in GW4

        1. ZeBestee
          • 7 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Why did you WC your team though? Better than the WC team imo

          1. Sanchit
            • 6 Years
            1 month, 15 days ago

            Had to move out Ings Tsimikas Bruno Ayling and had a dead bench.

            1. n-doggg
              • 9 Years
              1 month, 15 days ago

              Why ayling out?

              1. Sanchit
                • 6 Years
                1 month, 15 days ago

                Initially bought him as a cover for Tsimikas.
                Don't trust the Leeds defence enough for Ayling to be a perma player.

                Also, personally I like defenders who have attacking potential

    3. Justin Credibles
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      I wouldn't spend so much on defence personally and upgrade midfield

      1. Sanchit
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Assuming you don't have a problem a Trent, I can replace my defenders for a midfielder ranged in 6-7.5 bracket

        Which nailed on mid would you recommend in this price range?
        Torres Jota Greenwood - none of them are nailed imo?

    4. Ser Davos
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Typical, I'm starting to see some viable 4-3-3s now!

      I like this, but I would say Jota ahead of Robbo, depending on Firmino news

      1. Sanchit
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Yes if Firmino is confirmed our for long, would bring in Jota for Robbo definitely.

    5. Rocket Raccoon
      • 11 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Similar to mine. I like it then.

      1. Sanchit
        • 6 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        What's the difference between our teams?

  11. Messiah Hazard
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Not seeing any Spurs defenders in WC teams… but Reguilon seems to be transferred in a lot… Are Spurs defenders worth it? Is Tanganaga a regular starter?

    1. Justin Credibles
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Spurs just bought a right back, so Tanganaga probably won't start much longer. Started season well so might be worth a punt, but other teams have better fixtures

    2. Sanchit
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Transfers in are including casuals who just see that Spurs have 3 clean sheets in 3 games and have returned in each game.
      Their underlying defensive data is not that good

      1. Baps hunter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Lloris is though

  12. Justin Credibles
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 8 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Salah, Ronaldo & Lukaku
    or
    Kane, Ronaldo & Lukaku
    ?

    1. n-doggg
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      A

    2. Kun Tozser
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Just 2 premiums max for me a
      Mid and Fwd makes it easy to switch around, take your pick

    3. Rocket Raccoon
      • 11 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      A by miles

    4. Sanchit
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      A. Can you show your team with either? I tried to tinker a lot but could not come up with a decent team with 3 premiums

      1. Baps hunter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Maximus Bonimus Pointimus tried to make one not so long ago. Having three six million attacking players is not worth it. It should be 4-3-3 and still isn't good enough. Salah and Kaku/CR7 rotating is the best formation now imo.

        1. Baps hunter
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          After having written that text above it looks like that I could actually easily end up with 3 premiums next week without WC. If I ditch Pogba and Ings for C Kaku and Allan my team will be:

          Sanchez / Foster
          TAA, Shaw, Coufal, Reg, Livra
          Salah, Bruno, Benrahma, Harrison, Allan
          Lukaku, Antonio, Perica

      2. Herman Toothrot
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Here's mine:

        Sanchez
        Regulion / Rudiger / Coady / TAA
        Salah / Gray / Raphina
        Antonio / Lukaku / Ronaldo

        4.0 / Livramento / Gilmour / Sissoko

      3. Maximus Bonimus Pointimus
        • 11 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        You can get away with it if you utilise 3x 5.5-6.0 attackers

        Luckily there are several with genuinely interesting fixture runs starting GW4:

        Sarr (WOL, nor, NEW, lee, LIV, Eve, SOU, ars)
        ESR (NOR, bur, TOT, BHA, CPL, AVL, lei, WAT, liv, NEW)
        Armstrong (WHM, mci, WOL, che, LEE, BUR, wat, AVL, nor)
        Traore (wat, BRE, sou, NEW, avl, lee, EVE, cpl, WHM, nor, BUR)
        Dennis (WOL, nor, NEW, lee, LIV, Eve, SOU, ars)

        1. n-doggg
          • 9 Years
          1 month, 15 days ago

          Not gray?

          1. Maximus Bonimus Pointimus
            • 11 Years
            1 month, 15 days ago

            Yeah him too, and Trincao - but not sure whether José two will drop out when Jrod & Podence etc get back

      4. Justin Credibles
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 8 Years
        1 month, 15 days ago

        Yeah...

        Pickford Bego
        Rudiger Shaw/Walker Coady Williams Livramento
        Salah Torres Benrahma Gray Sissoko
        Antonio Ronaldo Lukaku

        0.0itb

        or

        Sanchez Steele
        Rudiger Shaw/Walker Coady Williams Livramento
        Havertz Torres Benrahma Gray Sissoko
        Kane Ronaldo Lukaku

        0.1itb

        What do you think?

  13. n-doggg
    • 9 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    A. Shaw and Rice
    B. Semedo and gray

    1. Messiah Hazard
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      I am on B at the moment although I do have Shaw as well

    2. Sanchit
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      If both are starters, then B.
      Otherwise A

    3. Bobby Digital
      • 4 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      B

    4. Justin Credibles
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 8 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      B

  14. Messiah Hazard
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 9 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Which one to choose:
    A: Semedo and Sanchez
    B: Coady and Sa

    1. n-doggg
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 15 days ago

      Very tough. Probably A as semedo could get some decent hauls

  15. Tomas_brolin
    • 3 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    I need to stop tinkering. Any thoughts on this? I’m still dithering on ronaldo vs Lukaku + 1.0m to spend

    3-5-2
    Sanchez
    TAA Shaw Semedo
    Salah Raph Jota Torres Sarr
    Ronaldo (c) Antonio

    Steele ayling livramento

  16. OptimusBlack
    • 8 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Pick one to get for long term
    A- Ayling
    B- White
    C- Coady
    D- Dier

    1. BeWater
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 15 days ago

      C

  17. BeWater
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 1 Year
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Who scores more:

    A. Ings
    B. DCL -4

  18. Paddyburns
    • 4 Years
    1 month, 15 days ago

    Ings and Alli to DCL and Jota worth -4? 1,9 ITB. Or any better options?