Fixtures

FPL festive fixture schedule: When might Premier League sides rotate the most?

The first of nine Gameweeks in the space of 36 days takes place this weekend and we’re readying ourselves for the festive fixture frenzy ahead of Saturday’s Fantasy Premier League (FPL) deadline.

Visits from the extended family, a Mrs Brown’s Boys special, bin collection day mayhem: there’s lots to dread about the Christmas period and top of the naughty list for FPL managers is rotation.

This is traditionally the period when starting XI changes ramp up a gear, with the matches coming thick and fast not just in the Premier League but also in cup competitions at home and abroad.

We’ll be looking at which players stand the best chance of avoiding a benching or two in a separate piece but it’s the fixture calendar itself that we’re focusing on here.

We’ll assess the clubs with the tightest and most generous turnarounds in this article, using moderator Legomane’s rather excellent ‘Fixture Crush’ matrix.

Our thanks go to him for allowing us to use this graphic as the focal point of this feature.

FPL FIXTURE OVERVIEW

(click the above image to expand)

CLUBS WITH THE MOST MATCHES FROM GAMEWEEKS 13-21

Chelsea, Leicester City, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham United12 (nine league matches, two European ties, one EFL Cup quarter-final)
Manchester City, Manchester United11 (nine league matches, two European ties)
Arsenal, Brentford10 (nine league matches, one EFL Cup quarter-final)
Aston Villa, Brighton and Hove Albion, Burnley, Crystal Palace, Everton, Leeds United, Newcastle United, Norwich City, Southampton, Watford, Wolverhampton Wanderers9 (all league matches)

CLUBS WITH THE TIGHTEST TURNAROUNDS

In this table, we look at the clubs who have the highest number of ‘tight’ turnarounds from the Wednesday before Gameweek 13 onwards. For this, we’re taking tight to mean two recovery days or fewer (eg Saturday-Tuesday, Thursday-Sunday etc).

West Ham United7
Chelsea, Leicester City, Liverpool, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur6
Burnley, Manchester United5
Brigthon and Hove Albion, Crystal Palace, Newcastle United, Watford4
Arsenal, Everton, Leeds United, Norwich City, Southampton3
Aston Villa, Brentford, Wolverhampton Wanderers2

It’s no surprise to see the clubs involved in European competition up there at the top, with West Ham United leading the way – a bit of a concern for owners of Michail Antonio (£8.2m), perhaps, although David Moyes can at least afford the luxury of resting him in the Europa League with qualification to the knockout rounds assured.

Manchester United’s non-involvement in the EFL Cup means that they have a full seven days of rest in between Gameweeks 18 and 19, which represents the longest recovery time given to any top-flight team throughout the period studied.

Tottenham Hotspur, by contrast, don’t have more than three days of rest, playing Thursday-Sunday for the next month and then having an EFL Cup clash with West Ham ahead of a three-game week between Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.

Aston Villa, Brentford and Wolves have been dealt the best hands if we follow the table above, with the Bees even afforded an extra day of rest between Gameweeks 19 and 20 (more of which below).

Arsenal deserve a mention, too: they might be in EFL Cup quarter-final action in between Gameweeks 18 and 19 but they have been gifted a home draw against League One side Sunderland, so there’ll surely be a few breathers handed out to some key personnel in that tie.

TIGHTEST TURNAROUNDS FROM GAMEWEEKS 19 TO 20

The tightest of all the tight turnarounds comes between Gameweeks 19 and 20, with FPL managers faced with two deadlines in the space of 48 hours.

The clubs’ recovery time in between these two Gameweeks are detailed below (hours are given between full-time and kick-off, rounded up to the nearest half-hour):

TeamHours between GW19-20
Arsenal43.5
Aston Villa, Crystal Palace, Norwich City, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham United, Wolverhampton Wanderers46
Watford48.5
Leeds United, Leicester City51
Liverpool53.5
Brighton and Hove Albion, Newcastle United69.5
Brentford, Manchester United70.5
Chelsea72
Manchester City75.5
Everton98.5
Burnley99.5

Arsenal are the worst hit: they are in action at the traditional 3pm kick-off time on Boxing Day and then have a lunchtime match against Wolverhampton Wanderers on December 28.

Seven clubs’ fixtures kick off at the same time, two days apart, in Gameweeks 19 and 20, affording them less than 48 hours of recovery.

Burnley and Everton are on easy street by comparison, with matches on Boxing Day and December 30.

Chelsea and the two Manchester clubs also get off relatively lightly, with around three days of recuperation time in between their respective games.

CLUBS WITH SUCCESSIVE ‘RED ZONE’ TURNAROUNDS – AND WHEN THEY FALL

The below table looks at when Premier League clubs have successive ‘red zone’ turnarounds – that is, when there are only two recovery days between matches.

The game ranges in italics indicate that one of the three consecutive fixtures is a cup tie, so rotation could theoretically be more widespread outside of the league matches involved.

For example, Liverpool have three fixtures between December 1-7 – but the last one of those is a Champions League against Milan, so with qualification for the knockout rounds assured, Klopp may look to rest some key players in Italy.

Manchester United have also secured top spot in their Champions League group, so the home fixture against Young Boys in between Gameweeks 15-16 allows whoever is in charge to run wild with the starting XI alterations and focus on the four Premier League matches around it.

TeamSuccessive ‘red zone’ Gameweek turnarounds
Manchester CityGW13-15 (plus UCL after GW15)
GW19-21
Manchester UnitedGW14-17 (UCL in between GW15-16)
LiverpoolGW14-15 (plus UCL after GW15)
GW17-18 (plus EFL Cup after GW18)
ChelseaGW13-15
GW17-18 (plus EFL Cup after GW18)
Leicester CityGW13-14 (plus UEL before GW13)
GW17-18 (plus EFL Cup after GW18)
West Ham UnitedGW13-15 (plus UEL before GW13)
GW16-18 (plus UEL before GW16)
Tottenham HotspurGW17-18 (plus EFL Cup after GW18)
ArsenalGW17-18 (plus EFL Cup after GW18)
Newcastle UnitedGW19-21
Crystal PalaceGW16-18
Brighton and Hove AlbonGW16-18
BurnleyGW13-15, GW16-18
WatfordGW13-15

Manchester City, Chelsea and West Ham are three of five clubs who play Sunday-Wednesday-Saturday in Gameweeks 13-15, which may set alarm bells ringing for FPL managers who own players from any of those teams. Burnley and Watford are the other two sides with the same schedule.

The Hammers have exactly the same timetable in Gameweeks 16-18, along with Crystal Palace, Brighton and Burnley.

The spectre of Pep rotation then rears its head again from Gameweeks 19-21, when the Citizens once more have to negotiate league fixtures on the Sunday, Wednesday and Saturday. Newcastle United are also on a tight turnaround from December 27 to January 2 inclusive.

Ready those FPL benches…


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1,097 Comments Post a Comment
  1. T.Henry14
    • 8 Years
    10 days, 8 hours ago

    2 FT & 0.4 ITB

    Ramsdale
    TAA, Cancelo, Chilwell*, White
    Salah, Son, Raphinha, Smith-Rowe
    Vardy, Toney

    (Foster - Antonio, D.Luiz, Obamidele)

    a) Chilwell ----- James & save second transfer for next week.
    b) Chilwell & Antonio ----- James & Jimenez

    1. Little Red Lacazette
      • 5 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      a

    2. Shardlow
      • 4 Years
      10 days, 3 hours ago

      a

  2. Little Red Lacazette
    • 5 Years
    10 days, 8 hours ago

    If Foden is not fit, who to get?

    A. ESR
    B. Bilva

    1. TheBiffas
      • 1 Year
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      B of those

    2. Karhumies
      • 9 Years
      9 days, 4 hours ago

      Jota

  3. shelvey33
    • 6 Years
    10 days, 8 hours ago

    Need help! Current team:
    Ramsdale / Foster
    Cancelo Rudiger James White / Livra
    Salah Foden Raphina Gallagher / Mbeumo
    Jimmenez Kane / Antonio

    2FT, 0.4m ITB

    A) Rudiger Raphinha > TAA Norman
    B) White Foden > TAA Norman
    C) (-4) White Foden Raphina > TAA Norman BSilva
    D (-4) White Foden Raphina > TAA Brownhill Jota
    E) White Antonio > TAA + Gelhardt
    F) (-4) White Raphina Antonio > TAA ESR Dennis

    1. Back of the Garnett
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        B or F for me, depends how willing to take a hit you are

      • TheBiffas
        • 1 Year
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        B or D if u don't mind the hit

        1. shelvey33
          • 6 Years
          10 days, 5 hours ago

          I don't like the hits... but i also like very much D!

    2. George James
      • 6 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      Best move?

      A) Chilwell >> James

      B) Chilwell + Foden >> James + Jota -4

      Sa
      TAA • Semedo • Chilwell
      Salah • Foden • Raph • Son
      Toney • Jimenez • Antonio

      Steele / Williams / Livra / Sissoko

      1. drughi
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 12 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        A

      2. Bam Saka Laca
        • 2 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        A

      3. The Units
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        B

    3. Gudjohnsen
      • 4 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      Chilwell, Foden to R.James, Jota for -4?

      1. The Units
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        Yes

    4. Bam Saka Laca
      • 2 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      0.1 short of Chilwell to James 🙁
      Chilwell+Mbeumo -> James+Hojbjerg (-4)?

      1. TheBiffas
        • 1 Year
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        noooo lol.

      2. The Units
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        Nope

      3. Bam Saka Laca
        • 2 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        Cheers both

      4. Pompel
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        In the same situation, and considering Sissoko for Brownhill or Bissouma to raise those pesky £0.1m.
        But Alonso could be a nice differential, if more risky

    5. FPL Doctor
      • 7 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      1FT 1.5ITB

      Ramsdale
      TAA Cancelo James
      Salah Son Raph Mbeumo Saka
      Toney Wilson

      Foster Antonio Duffy Livra

      1. TheBiffas
        • 1 Year
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        superb

      2. Bam Saka Laca
        • 2 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        What seems to be the problem doctor?

        1. FPL Doctor
          • 7 Years
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          See below… any transfer suggestions?

          ? Jota for Raph
          ? Regs for Duffy
          ? hold

    6. FPL Doctor
      • 7 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      A) Raph —> Jota
      B) Duffy —> Livra
      C) Hold

      1. Bam Saka Laca
        • 2 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        C

    7. Mane Mane Mane
      • 1 Year
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      No urgent changes to make and have two free transfers so don’t want to burn one. Is Rudiger to Alonso a good move?

      1. Hryszko
        • 4 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        I wouldn't make that move personally, Rudiger the most nailed on Chelsea defender and way too sideways imo.

        1. Mane Mane Mane
          • 1 Year
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          If I already have Mendy does that change anything?

        2. NateDog
          • 1 Year
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          Agreed, Rudiger also has been posting good attacking stats of late too, he loves to go forward and shoot as well as having threat from setpieces

      2. Toblerone52 - Jimmy Flloyd …
        • 5 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        Not a good move imo

      3. The Units
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        Nope

    8. Hryszko
      • 4 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      Chilwell > James for free?

      or to Alonso, which one?

      1. Toblerone52 - Jimmy Flloyd …
        • 5 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        James

      2. The Units
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        James

    9. Gandalf
      • 11 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      Antonio out on wildcard? Or if can get good teams out each week, then hold on assuming that he eventually gets his form back?

      Jiménez's fixtures turn in a few weeks and he's probably be 1st choice replacement followed by maybe Benteke

    10. chaser123
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      Foden to Jota is a no brainier, right?

      1. Gandalf
        • 11 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        My concern is if he returns to false 9

      2. The Units
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        No brainer

      3. NateDog
        • 1 Year
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        Not for me at all, he might miss this weekend (even then there's a 4 day gap between last night's game and West Ham, and Pep said he had been training) but look at their next fixtures:

        Villa
        Watford
        Wolves
        Leeds
        Newcastle
        Leicester
        Brentford

        It seems a popular move / idea here but personally I think it's recency bias in full flow. Even with Foden going into the Everton game with a knock and having to go off and him spending the game out wide, he was by far their main threat going forward.

        1. chaser123
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          Hmm yeh fair enough. But I could buy him back with my Jimenez money in a couple of weeks?

          1. NateDog
            • 1 Year
            10 days, 7 hours ago

            It's your call, I'd definitely wait to see what the pressers say (although I know Pep is notoriously cagey with info most of the time) but I think he's worth holding if it's not a big injury

        2. Ze_Austin
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 3 Years
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          Hello again, Nate with the logic 🙂

          1. NateDog
            • 1 Year
            10 days, 7 hours ago

            We have to stop meeting like this!

      4. Ze_Austin
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        Not to me, it isn't

        Everything said about Foden sounds like a minor knock that had him less than 100% fit for the PSG game, not for the weekend

        I'd wait for Pep's presser tomorrow. If he's out for the weekend but back in midweek, I'll go Chilwell to Reguilon this week for cover, then Livra to Alonso next GW... All while holding Foden: GWs 14 to 20 are perfect, even if benched for one

        Jota only comes in for a hit for me if Foden is confirmed out for more than 2 GWs, as the cons of Foden's future benching will then outweigh the pros of his fixture run. Jota is still heavily dependent on Firmino's fitness, and is still annoyingly wasteful with few assists, so he's not a priority move for me

    11. JVALDEZ
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      Any further Chilwell update apart from Tuchel’s initial assessment?

      1. hustler7
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        10 days, 2 hours ago

        ACL injury rumoured and so out for remainder of 2021, how true it is I don't know

    12. Gandalf
      • 11 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      Why is ESR seemingly unpopular again? Has been getting hauls in recent home matches and seems a good 1st sub for tougher fixtures

      1. noquarternt
        • 6 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        You know how this place is, he blanked therefore is useless

      2. NateDog
        • 1 Year
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        He's still a good option but yeah what Noquarternt says, one blank people here would sell their whole team that a few days ago was going to have them set up for the season. Arsenal have nice fixtures and he's been a good attacking threat

    13. Lanley Staurel
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      10 days, 7 hours ago

      Any Chilwell owners going down to Alonso as opposed to straight to R James?

      1. Lanley Staurel
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 11 Years
        10 days, 7 hours ago

        Just seen same question posted higher up. Obvs a common query. As a James owner Im now pondering on doubling up with Alonso.

      2. pBelck
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          Unless money is tight, I'd say James is the safer pick, while Alonso is more a fun differential

        • NateDog
          • 1 Year
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          I'm going for Alonso, I feel he should technically be a little more nailed than James (and I've been burned with Chilwell and James three times now this season so definitely silly bias in there too)

      3. pBelck
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          Any status on Raphinha?

          I can afford to swap him out for Jota, so if hes out its a no-brainer

          1. Lanley Staurel
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 11 Years
            10 days, 7 hours ago

            So hard to tell. Hes like the hokey cokey.

          2. NateDog
            • 1 Year
            10 days, 7 hours ago

            He trained a few days ago as normal with the group, as did Rodrigo and Shackleton. Bamford and Koch are back on the grass and doing ball work too so they might be back in the next few weeks

        • TheBiffas
          • 1 Year
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          1ft 0itb

          Ramsdale

          TAA - James - Cancelo - Lamptey

          Salah - Son - Raphinha

          Antonio - Jesus - Vardy

          (Foster - Livra - Brownhill - D Luiz)

          a) Raphinha > Cornet
          b) suggestions?

          1. Tshelby
            • 6 Years
            10 days, 7 hours ago

            Keep Raphina imo

        • Tshelby
          • 6 Years
          10 days, 7 hours ago

          G2g?

          1ft and 0.0 itb - Still got my WC

          Sanchez
          TAA, Cancelo, Christensen
          Salah, Son, raphina, Jota
          Jimenez, Wilson, Antonio

          Foster, White, Gilmour, Livra

          1. TheBiffas
            • 1 Year
            10 days, 7 hours ago

            That team with WC intact? Well played sir

            1. Tshelby
              • 6 Years
              10 days, 7 hours ago

              Argh I don't know.. Overall Rank: 412.238
              Not really a great season..

            2. fplkuksy
                10 days, 7 hours ago

                Yeah, impressive.

          2. fplkuksy
              10 days, 7 hours ago

              Thanks Fantasy Football Scout for making this article available for free. Important Stuff!

            • Tom
              • 9 Years
              10 days, 7 hours ago

              Bit of a goalkeeper benching headache this week. Would you play;

              A. Guaita (AVL)
              B. Ramsdale (NEW)

              1. NateDog
                • 1 Year
                10 days, 7 hours ago

                I'd go B, I'd probably expect both may concede but I think Newcastle posted the most shots of the last gameweek so he should pick up some saves

              2. Tonyawesome69
                • 2 Years
                10 days, 7 hours ago

                Bookies CS odds
                Arsenal 42%
                Palace 36%

                1. Tom
                  • 9 Years
                  10 days, 7 hours ago

                  Thanks chaps, good to know!

              3. Gandalf
                • 11 Years
                10 days, 7 hours ago

                B - EO for Ramsdale high so would be damaging if get it wrong

              4. fplkuksy
                  10 days, 7 hours ago

                  Hmmm....... Dicey one, however I think Ramsdale just edges it.
                  Villa have won 1 away game(@Man U)and scored 2 away goals @ Watford. Newcastle haven't won a game(neva mind away) though there's the caveat of a new manager bounce? So I think Ramsdale should have an easier game than Guaita.
                  Cheers.

              5. Hryszko
                • 4 Years
                10 days, 7 hours ago

                Would you say this is G2G? Done Chilwell to James and now just trying to figure out who to bench, Rudiger or Antonio?

                Sanchez
                TAA - Cancelo - James - Rudiger
                Salah (c) - Son - Jota - ESR
                Jesus - Toney

                Steele - Antonio - Livra - Sissoko

                1. Hryszko
                  • 4 Years
                  10 days, 7 hours ago

                  Or, do I downgrade Rudiger to bench Fodder and then use that money to upgrade ESR to Gallagher?

                  For example: Rudiger > White & ESR > Gallagher.

                2. NateDog
                  • 1 Year
                  10 days, 7 hours ago

                  ESR over Gallagher is fine IMO, looks like Milivojevic is going to be back in the team and that hinders Gallagher a bit and he may be further impacted by Eze's return from injury too, definitely keep Rudiger, he'll be a vital asset through the busy period as I'd say he's unlikely to be rotated much (or at all) while I'd expect all other Chelsea defenders to have their share of rotation

              6. Fpl_Ludwig
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                10 days, 7 hours ago

                Thoughts? Got 1 FT and 0.5 itb

                Sanchez
                TAA - James - Cancelo
                Salah - Son - Gallagher - Bernardo - ESR
                Wilson - Toney

                Bench: Steele - Duffy - Jansson - Antonio

              7. Gudjohnsen
                • 4 Years
                10 days, 7 hours ago

                Anyone managed to have a team with
                TAA, Cancelo, Chilwell, R.James
                Foden, Jota, Salah
                One premium forward?

                1. Fitzy.
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 10 Years
                  10 days, 4 hours ago

                  Should be very easy

              8. Finding Timo
                • 1 Year
                10 days, 7 hours ago

                Guys what about foden, chilly and Omo to Alonso & reguilion & foden? I can do these transfers over GW13 &14 without a hit.

                1. Finding Timo
                  • 1 Year
                  10 days, 7 hours ago

                  Sorry to Alonso, reguilion & SILVA!

              9. Back of the Garnett
                  10 days, 4 hours ago

                  Start Antonio or Livra? Both looking likely to have a pretty rough time… is the sensible choice Antonio?

                  Ramsdale
                  TAA - James - Rudiger - Cancelo - (Livra)
                  Salah - Son - Raph
                  Wilson - Toney - (Antonio)

                  Cheers!

                  1. Fitzy.
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 10 Years
                    10 days, 4 hours ago

                    Yes it is

                • CiCi 3.0
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  10 days, 3 hours ago

                  Def = TAA, Dias, Rudy, Cancello, Duffy

                  Dias -> James ??

                  1. CiCi 3.0
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    10 days, 2 hours ago

                    In GW14….

                • Shardlow
                  • 4 Years
                  10 days, 3 hours ago

                  Mbuemo to Gallagher for free?

                  1. hustler7
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 9 Years
                    10 days, 2 hours ago

                    Everton been very poor and can see Mbuemo finally scoring

                • Finding Timo
                  • 1 Year
                  10 days, 57 mins ago

                  Manchester United are close to appointing Ralf Rangnick as interim manager on a six-month contract.

                • YNWA74
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  6 days, 22 hours ago

                  This is a tricky one - will replace Chillwell for either James or Cancelo.
                  Who is most likely to be rested for the mid-week fixture?