It has been an incredible couple of Gameweeks in Fantasy Premier League. Manchester City and Liverpool are living up to their hype and their players are proving to be excellent picks so far, whereas some teams are yet to get going.
Here are the lessons learned so far after two Gameweeks:
Left is Right:
Five of the seven highest scoring defenders in the game are left backs and the standout among them are Marcos Alonso, Benjamin Mendy, Andrew Robertson. With their dominating performances, they are three of the four highest scoring defenders in the game. Alonso has quickly erased fears that his switch from left wing back role to left back role will hinder his attacking potential, by registering back to back double digits haul. Robertson has continued on from where he left and Mendy is showing his FPL potential, glimpses of which we last season before he got injured.
And it just doesn’t stop at left back position. Further up forward, players in the left wing position are also performing extremely well. Four of the five highest scoring midfielders are from the left wing position, with standout performances from Sadio Mane and Richarlison de Andrade.
Wan The Man:
From a Gameweek 1 high of 12 points, to getting sent off in Gameweek 2, it has been a roller-coaster start to the campaign for Aaron Wan-Bissaka and his FPL owners. Despite getting sent off in Gameweek 2, he put in a solid performance and his Gameweek 1 assist showed that he has good attacking skills too. Combine that with Crystal Palace’s impressive defensive statistics which has been continuing from the end of last season and Wan-Bissaka looks like a season keeper based on what we have seen in the opening two round of fixtures. He is suspended for Gameweek 3 but I would suggest you to keep him on the bench and not ship him out because a nailed on 4 million (starting price) defender who has the potential to score points at both ends of the pitch is not just gold dust, but pure Gold!
Is Sadio the Mane Man from LFC this season?
Back to back double digits haul has propelled Sadio Mane to the summit of Fantasy Premier League points scoring table. After a breathtaking debut season from Mohamed Salah in 2017/18, opposition teams will no doubt mark Salah more closely than last season which might leave space for Mane to create havoc. Though Salah has had more efforts than Mane, the pair have same number of shots on target. Furthermore, the Bonus Point system seems to favor Mane more than Salah. Mane has five bonus points to Salah’s zero. It’s too early to say that Mane should be the main go-to Reds midfield option, but certainly a double up with Salah looks sensible right now.
Same old story for Arsenal:
Struggle against fellow top 6 sides, potent in attack and vulnerable in defense. New season, new manager, but same old story. Though they had two difficult fixtures to start with, but early signs are that we can expect more of the same from Arsenal this season. However, if that is the case then their next eleven fixtures (in which they face only one of last season’s top six team – Liverpool at home in Gameweek 11) screams for investment in their assets, especially their attackers as Arsenal traditionally perform well against teams outside the top 6. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Mesut Özil, Aaron Ramsey and even Alexandre Lacazette (if he becomes a regular starter) could be solid options offensively. Even though Aubameyang fluffed his lines at Stamford Bridge, he had two Big Chances and has the most number of minutes per touch inside the penalty area (3.9) among the forwards in the opening two Gameweeks of the season. Whereas, Mkhitaryan already has a goal and an assist and created more chances than any other player (30) at Stamford Bridge. Defensively though, it’s still a case of wait and see as Arsenal get accustomed to playing the ball out of the back.
Europa League Exertion taking its toll on Burnley:
As we have seen from the previous seasons, Europa League action does take its toll on the Premier League side when they have a fixture immediately after that in the same week. And the same happened this Gameweek. A thin squad does not help either as witnessed by the fact that Burnley had no midfielders on the bench this weekend. The hectic Thursday-Sunday fixtures are very demanding and there is a high chance that Burnley’s players will not be as fruitful to Fantasy Premier League managers as they were last season.
Marco Silva effect is there to witness. The initial Gameweeks have shown that this Everton team will play attacking football, in contrast to how Sam Allardyce set them up to play. Everton are ranked joint fifth for minutes per chances (10.1) and Shots on target (12), which increases the appeal of attackers, particularly Richarlison as he looks like being the focal point of their attack. Defensively, just like Arsenal, it’s a case of wait and see as Silva is yet to start his preferred back four in defense. But, with a kind run of fixtures over the next few weeks and the emphasis on attack, Everton attackers could be good picks for the upcoming Gameweeks.
With great risks come great rewards:
Just like last season, second guessing Pep Guardiola’s team sheet is an accident waiting to happen. After surprisingly starting Raheem Sterling in Gameweek 1, Sterling was benched for Gameweek 2 after Guardiola rolled out 3-5-2 formation for the home encounter with Huddersfield Town. In addition to Sterling, Riyad Mahrez and Kyle Walker were also benched, leaving their Fantasy Premier League owners in agony as Manchester City decimated Huddersfield at the Etihad Stadium. Picking a City player, let alone captaining him, has its risk as the player might get benched occasionally. But as the owners of Captain Agüero found out in Gameweek 2, with great risks come great rewards!
Photo by RuaraidhG