There’ll be Premier League football almost every day from Boxing Day into the New Year as Gameweeks 18, 19 and 20 play out in short succession. Last weekend’s Premier League action earned plenty of points for players recommended in our previous article, so read more below to see our recent winners and our tips for who to buy and who to bench for the upcoming matches!
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— Football Super Tips (@FootySuperTips) 8 August 2016
Last Week’s Winner!
Last week’s winner was Peter Wrigley’s “Peter2k96”, who bagged himself £20 in bet365 free bets and, most importantly, an FST Mug!
FANTASY FOOTBALL WINNER – WEEK 17
Peter Wrigley’s “Peter2k96”
DM us to claim your £20 bet365 Free Bets & FST Mug! pic.twitter.com/pnF7cp2Lbs
— Football Super Tips (@FootySuperTips) December 20, 2016
Who to Buy
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Manchester United) – Price: £11.5m
Manchester United have been on the quieter side when it comes to scoring goals in recent weeks – United have scored no more than 2 goals in any of their last 6 Premier League fixtures. Consequently, Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s return to form has gone somewhat unnoticed. Zlatan has scored seven, assisted one and taken twelve bonus points over his last six appearances for United, making him one of the most in-form forwards in the Premier League. Last week’s brace against West Brom has brought him back into the limelight and seen his price return to its original £11.5m value. United have a very favourable set of fixtures ahead of them – at home to Sunderland and Middlesborough followed by West Ham away – and his form warrants him an essential investment.
Theo Walcott (Arsenal) – Price: £7.8m
Almost 40% of managers have “false-nine” forward Alexis Sanchez in their Fantasy Premier League teams. But Arsenal’s next three fixtures against West Brom (H), Crystal Palace (H) and Bournemouth (A) should be enough to platform Theo Walcott in alongside him. Walcott’s opener against Man City last weekend was his third goal in five appearances and helped him climb back up to 4th in the overall FPL midfield standings. Walcott’s attempts on goal per match have risen over the last four gameweeks and his 13 shots inside in the penalty area are more than Alexis Sanchez (5) and Mesut Ozil (5) combined. Walcott has started all 16 Premier League matches he has been available for this season and appears immune to Arsene Wenger’s rotation plans.
Chelsea Defenders – Price: varied
Since being swept aside by Arsenal in gameweek 6, Chelsea have won eleven successive matches, keeping a clean sheet in nine of these. Antonio Conte’s decision to move to a back three supported by wing backs has produced unrivaled defensive stability and seen defensive trio Cesar Azpilicueta (£6.5m), Gary Cahill (£6.3m) and Marcos Alonso (£6.3m) become three of the top four defenders in FPL. Alonso’s relentless forward raids offer attacking potential and he has only once failed to finish the match with either an assist or clean sheet in his 11 starts. Azpilicueta is the most popular of the trio and claimed three bonus points for his defensive masterclass last time out against Crystal Palace, alongside a clean sheet and an assist. Gary Cahill was marginally behind him, taking away two bonus points.
Raheem Sterling (Manchester City) – Price: £7.6m
Sterling’s inability to maintain his explosive start to the season – four goals and three assists in the first six fixtures – has seen his price fall about £1.0m from a season high £8.6m. Sterling’s winning goal against Arsenal and assist against Watford in the match prior suggest he’s set to revive his FPL fortunes. His average goal attempts per match, shots in the penalty area and chances created have all improved over the last two matches when compared to Gameweeks 1-15. Now down to 8% ownership in FPL, Sterling should warrant interest as City prepare to face bottom-of-the-table Hull City and Burnley over the next three matches.
Gylfi Sigurdsson (Swansea) – Price: £7.5m
Swansea are another side who have a particularly “favourable” set of fixtures on Boxing Day and into the New Year. Swansea face West Ham and Bournemouth at home, before travelling to London to face Crystal Palace for their first match of 2017. Though Sigurdsson has failed to score or in assist in any of Swansea’s last three away matches, he thrives at home and has scored two and assisted three in his last three outings at the Liberty Stadium. Being Swansea’s core player, he’ll also be immune to any potential squad rotation over this busy period.
Who to Bench
Diego Costa (Chelsea)
It was only a matter of time before Diego Costa found himself on the sidelines due to suspension. Costa picked up his 4th yellow card way back in Gameweek 6 and though his temper has definitely calmed, a likely consequence of his improved performances under Antonio Conte, an eventual 5th yellow card was inevitable. Chelsea will be without the Spaniard for their Boxing Day match at home to Bournemouth and we suggest a short term switch for Manchester United’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic for FPL owners of Diego Costa.
Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
Following a hat-trick against Man City in Gameweek 15, Vardy’s popularity was speculatively on the rise. Vardy has suffered from season-long inconsistency and simply lacked the same flare and momentum as in Leicester’s title winning campaign last season. However, Vardy also faces suspension, though for all of Leicester’s next three matches against Everton, West Ham and Middlesborough, following his straight red card against Stoke City for a two footed tackle on Mame Diouf.
John Stones (Manchester City)
Though £4.8m for a defender from a top side like Man City seems a decent price – and 19.1% of people seem to agree – John Stones has been one of the main “victims” of Pep Guardiola’s squad rotation. He has been rested in four of City’s last six Premier League matches and this will likely be a regular occurrence over the coming weeks as Guardiola continues to utilize his defensive squad depth as the pace of the festive schedule increases.
Roberto Firmino (Liverpool)
Roberto Firmino has simply struggled to perform in the absence of fellow-Brazilian attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho, who is expected back in mid-January. Firmino has neither scored nor assisted in any of his last six Premier League outings for Liverpool, with the Reds’ Sadio Mane (£9.4m) and Adam Lallana (£7.4) two of the players that have thrived and been involved in most of the crucial plays in front of goal.
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City), Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City), Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool), Charlie Austin (Southampton)
All of the above are some of the latest doubtful or suspended players ahead of Gameweek 18, though there are plenty of others to be aware of. Leaving doubtful players in your lineup in the hope that they are fit in time is a gamble, but it can sometimes have its reward. If you choose to take the risk then make sure to order your benched players, so if your doubtful player doesn’t feature, the players you want will automatically be subbed in after all this weekend’s matches are over.
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— Football Super Tips (@FootySuperTips) 8 August