A lifelong Birmingham City fan, Tom relocated to Germany for five years after graduating from university, where his interest in the Bundesliga developed. He began writing about and betting on German football for FST in 2016. He's also an avid fantasy football player and closely follows the Premier League and European competitions.
The Premier League is finally back following last weekend’s FA Cup fixtures. Gameweek 25’s action earnt plenty of points for players recommended in our previous article. 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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Last Week’s Winner!
Last week’s winner was Mark Howard’s “Bayer Neverlusen”, who bagged himself £20 in bet365 free bets and, most importantly, an FST Mug!
FANTASY FOOTBALL WINNER – WEEK 25
Mark Howard’s “Bayer Neverlusen”
DM us to claim your £20 bet365 Free Bets & FST Mug! pic.twitter.com/nADDB3SqR1
— Football Super Tips (@FootySuperTips) February 21, 2017
Who to Buy
Romelu Lukaku (Everton) – Price: £9.9m
Romelu Lukaku may have failed to score last time out away to Middlesborough (0-0 draw), but Everton have been at their best at Goodison Park (W7 D4 L1). Everton pulled off a massive 6-3 win at home to Bournemouth last time out on their own turf, with Lukaku scoring 4 goals for a massive 21 points and a spot in the Fantasy Premier League “Dream Team” for the 3rd time this season. Everton still have a favourable set of fixtures in the coming weeks – three of their upcoming four matches are rated 2 or lower on the FDR (Fixture Difficulty Ranking), all of which at are home – and a match at home to Sunderland this weekend is no exception. The Black Cats have lost 75% of their away matches and conceded about 2 goals per match on the road, so expect more from the Belgian striker here. Other Everton players, such as, Ross Barkley, Seamus Coleman, or young prodigy Tom Davies also warrant consideration for the same reasons.
Chelsea Defenders – Price: varied
Chelsea are leagues above the rest when it comes to keeping clean sheets this season (13). It’s no surprise then that three of the top four defenders in Premier League Fantasy belong to the league leaders. Chelsea’s back three consistently produce unrivaled defensive stability, with wing back Marcos Alonso (£6.7m) earning himself a spot in the limelight. Alonso’s relentless forward raids offer huge attacking potential for a defender – his four goals, three assists, thirteen clean sheets and 6 bonus points means he has only finished a match with less than six points in 5 of his 19 starts for Chelsea. Azpilicueta (£6.5m) is the most popular of the Chelsea back line (19.1% owned) and has earnt the highest number of bonus points (16) from the bunch. Gary Cahill, meanwhile, stands as the highest scoring of all three and is slightly cheaper (£6.5m), but his points tend to come in bulk in matches where he scores (3 so far this season).
Sadio Mane (Liverpool) – Price: £9.3m
At a time when Philippe Coutinho (£8.2m) and Adam Lallana have struggled to meet FPL expectations, Sadio Mane offers an explosive, in-form route into the Liverpool midfield. Gameweek 25 saw Mane score a brace against Tottenham Hotspur and move the Senegal international up to fourth overall in the FPL midfield standings. Liverpool face Leicester City this weekend, who not only have the added strain of a mid-week Champions League fixture, but have also conceded at least twice in six of their last seven Premier League home outings. With Mane ranked joint-first for “big chances” and “goal attempts on target” over the last two matches, we expect another bumper tally from him this weekend.
Lazar Markovic (Hull City) – Price: £5.4m
Head coach Marco Silva has rejuvenated Hull City’s season. His emphasis on attacking from the flanks makes winger Lazar Markovic a potential new draw for a budget midfield option for Fantasy Premier League managers. Over Silva’s five matches in charge, 75% of Hull’s chances have arrived from wide areas and only five teams have registered more than the Tigers’ 26 completed crosses during that spell. Markovic boasts a 57.1% cross accuracy, better than teammate Grosicki’s 36.4% completion rate, and the Tigers’ upcoming schedule strengthens Markovic’s position further – five of Hull’s next six matches are rated two or lower in the (FDR).
Gary McAuley (West Brom) – Price: £5.1m
Gary McAuley is in decent form, earning no fewer than 7 points in four of his last six outings thanks to two goals, one assist, two clean sheets, and five bonus points. West Brom are another side that have been strong at home (W7 D2 L3) and a fixture at home to the out-of-form Bournemouth – the Cherries have lost four of their last six (D2 L4) and have conceded an average of 3 goals per match over the same number – should provide ample opportunity for him to pick up some more points.
Who to Bench
Arsenal and Southampton miss out on Gameweek 26 due to Southampton’s involvement in the EFL Cup final this Sunday – players from both sides will earn exactly 0 points this weekend. However, it’s worth noting that these same players will have huge potential in the future for the so-called “double gameweeks” once the match has been rescheduled.
Manchester United/Manchester City Players
The Manchester Derby is another match that has been postponed due to the EFL Cup final this Sunday – Manchester United are the side involved. Again, it’s worth noting that these same players will have huge potential in the future for the so-called “double gameweeks” once the match has been rescheduled.
Adam Lallana (Liverpool)
Adam Lallana has undoubtedly had a blinding season so far. Seven goals, six assists and 13 bonus points make him one of the highest earning midfielders from the mid-range budget. However, Liverpool’s poor league form has seen Lallana now six matches without a goal or assist. Hence, there is some cause for concern, especially when there’s the option of more inform alternatives in the same price range, for example, Everton’s Ross Barkley.
Alvaro Negredo (Middlesborough)
12.7% of fantasy managers still have faith in Alvaro Negredo – making him the 7th most popular foward. Negredo’s strong start to the season, where he earnt 19 points over Middlesborough’s opening two matches from one goal and two assists, saw plenty of people snap him up early. Since then, however, the Spaniard has contributed just 5 goals and 2 assists. His price tag of £6.3m is, admittedly, not burning a huge hole in your budget for a striker who plays 90 minutes every weekend. However, Middlesborough’s status as the weakest offense in the Premier League (just 19 goals scored) speaks for itself.
Andy Carroll (West Ham), Phil Jones (Manchester United), Danny Rose (Spurs), Virgil van Dijk (Southampton)
All of the above are some of the latest guaranteed absentees ahead of Gameweek 26, though there are plenty of other doubtfuls 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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