Our review of the Fantasy Premier League (FPL) Gameweek 9 action continues with Crystal Palace v Newcastle United, a match in which two differential mid-price forwards found the net for the second Gameweek running.
For a briefer summary of Saturday’s Premier League action, click here, while you can read up on Arsenal v Aston Villa, Brentford v Leicester City, Leeds United v Wolverhampton Wanderers and West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur via the links below.
- READ MORE: Tierney injury latest as Smith Rowe and Aubameyang impress in Gameweek 9
- READ MORE: Raphinha and Marcal injury news as £4.5m FPL forward Gelhardt stars
- READ MORE: Antonio on target as Son and Kane’s blanks are assessed
- READ MORE: Vardy and Mbeumo injury updates as Tielemans’ FPL appeal rises
CRYSTAL PALACE 1-1 NEWCASTLE UNITED
- Goals: Christian Benteke (£6.3m) | Callum Wilson (£7.3m)
- Assists: Tyrick Mitchell (£4.5m) | Emil Krafth (£4.3m)
- Bonus: James McArthur (£4.5m) x3, Mitchell x2, Krafth x1
DIFFERENTIAL WILSON CONTINUES TO GO UNDER THE RADAR
From Sam Greenwood (£4.5m) to Cristiano Ronaldo (£12.6m), a grand total of 30 FPL forwards have a higher ownership figure than Callum Wilson (£7.3m).
Even after back-to-back goals, the Newcastle United striker has been bought by fewer than 20 other players in his Fantasy position in the run-up to Gameweek 10.
The Magpies’ ropey form, Wilson’s injury record and an upcoming clash with Chelsea are understandable reasons why he might be still overlooked.
But there’s a strong argument to suggest that the former Bournemouth man is, when fit, the best option among the current crop of sub-£8.0m forwards.
None of them have scored more league goals than Wilson (four) this season, for example, despite the Newcastle number nine missing four of his side’s fixtures.
As a consequence, his points-per-match average is the best among players in this price rung:
And last season, only the premium pair of Harry Kane (£12.1m) and Jamie Vardy (£10.8m) could better his rate of points among Fantasy forwards:
Having found the side netting from close range earlier in the match, Wilson’s spectacular overhead kick against Crystal Palace on Saturday rescued a point for a Newcastle side who created very little for their talisman.
Interim boss Graeme Jones paired Wilson with Allan Saint-Maximin (£6.8m) in a 3-5-2, with the Frenchman, for once, fairly unimpressive en route to a third straight blank.
“I’m delighted for him: it’s his talent, that’s what he’s got. His quality, you can’t give that to people. The most impressive thing with Callum is that he usually does it on a match day. Training can be hit and miss at times, but when it matters, he’s got that mentality to come up grab the moment.” – Graeme Jones
Making the most of what few chances fell his way was what Wilson did best in his debut season in the north-east, with his goal conversion rate of 24.5% not too far away from his corresponding (and, for most strikers, unsustainable) figure of 30.8% in 2021/22.
As a general rule of thumb, anything around 20% or above is quite clinical – something Wilson has achieved in five of his last seven seasons, if we stretch to include 2016/17:
|Season||Shot-to-goal conversion rate|
For those FPL managers who prioritise fixture difficulty, Newcastle move to third on our Season Ticker from Gameweeks 11-16, with enticing home matches against Burnley, Norwich and, to a lesser extent, an impressive Brentford side punctuated by some tougher away trips.
BENTEKE’S BIG CHANCES
The visit of a defence in the bottom two for goals conceded and clean sheets didn’t result in the longed-for points extravaganza for the likes of Conor Gallagher (£5.7m) and Odsonne Edouard (£6.5m), with the latter again stationed on the left to slightly dent his goal threat.
Gallagher’s close-range goal attempts have dried up a tad of late, while the loss of most set plays to Luka Milivojevic (£5.4m) is also a blow. As a result, his expected goal involvement (xGI) figure has tumbled from 3.22 in Gameweeks 1-4 to 0.64 from Gameweek 5 onwards:
Above: Conor Gallagher’s expected goals shotmap from Gameweeks 1-4 (left) and Gameweeks 5-9 (right)
The Chelsea loanee is, at the very least, still performing well overall and prominent in the build-up to Palace’s attacks (he is among the top 15 midfielders for final-third touches over the last five Gameweeks), with some juicy fixtures to come between now and the turn of 2022.
With Wilfried Zaha (£6.7m) not fit enough to start after illness, it was Christian Benteke (£6.3m) who was front and centre of Palace’s forward play in Gameweek 9.
The Belgian scored, had a late winner disallowed, hit the woodwork twice and missed a glaring one-on-one opportunity in an up-and-down display, with his total of seven shots in the box the best among FPL forwards at the weekend.
Patrick Vieira’s frontline looks difficult to tap into at present, with Zaha presumably to come back into the side when up to full speed, Edouard a ‘reverse out of position’ prospect and Michael Olise (£5.4m) turning in an encouraging display on the right flank on his first league start of 2021/22.
“I think [Zaha] was maybe too early to start the game. Obviously, as a team and a football club, it’s important to have Wilfried on the field, but he wasn’t ready to start the game.
“I was really pleased and really happy with the way that [Benteke] played today and the way that he played against Arsenal. He didn’t go with the international so that allowed him to stay with us and work well physically. He is in a really good period – his confidence is higher, he is working hard for the team, he is creating chances. Today he should score more than one goal.
“At times, [Olise] was isolated, when he got the ball at his feet he was against two or three players so it was difficult for him to find the space and to express his talent. But for his first start, I was really pleased with his work ethic. He delivered really good crosses for Christian and I was happy for him to start the game. He did what was expected and he showed his talent but there is still more to come from him.
“I was really pleased with Edouard on the left, he is somebody who won’t stay on the line he will come and play between the lines and play really close to Christian. Today he did it really well. Christian and he combine really well together and this is one of the options we have where those two players can play together.
“There are players who are capable of playing in the position as well but this is one of the tools that I can use. When we are facing teams that play with a really low block, having those players, especially Christian, who can play between the lines, is something good with how we want to play the game.” – Patrick Vieira on his attacking options
Crystal Palace XI: Guaita, Mitchell, Andersen, Guéhi, Ward, Milivojevic (Schlupp 73), McArthur, Gallagher (Mateta 86), Olise (Zaha 66), Benteke, Edouard.
Newcastle United XI: Darlow, Clark, Lascelles, Ritchie, Hayden, Krafth, Manquillo, Fraser (Almirón 66), Longstaff (Willock 66), Saint-Maximin (Joelinton 81), Wilson.
ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW FROM GAMEWEEK 9
- Saturday review in brief
- Arsenal 3-1 Aston Villa: Tierney injury latest as Aubameyang and Smith-Rowe impress
- Chelsea 7-0 Norwich
- Crystal Palace 1-1 Newcastle: Is Wilson the best sub-£8.0m forward?
- Everton 2-5 Watford
- Leeds 1-1 Wolves: The latest injury news on Raphinha and Marcal
- Southampton 2-2 Burnley: “More goals” to come from budget FPL defender Livramento
- Brighton 1-4 Man City: Why Duffy was benched and Foden’s fine form
- Brentford 1-2 Leicester: Vardy and Mbeumo injury latest
- West Ham 1-0 Spurs: Antonio back among the goals as Son and Kane’s blanks are assessed
- Man Utd 0-5 Liverpool: Klopp talks rotation after Salah continues best-ever FPL start
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