As Gameweek 6 approaches, many managers will be reeling from a Gameweek 5 full of surprises.
Palace’s sturdy defence was torn apart by Spurs, both Kevin de Bruyne and Raheem Sterling blanked against an injury-hit Norwich while the Canaries’ attackers benefitted from some shocking City defending. Liverpool failed to keep a clean sheet against Newcastle and Wolves were annihilated by Chelsea.
Ahead of the imminent round of Premier League fixtures, we’ve identified three players to buy and three players to sell to improve your FPL sides.
Buy: Emiliano Buendia (£6.0m)
Norwich are showing everyone in the league what they’re about this season: it doesn’t matter if you’re Liverpool, Manchester City or Newcastle – they’re going to attack you.
Surely by this point, most of you will have Todd Cantwell and Teemu Pukki (if you don’t, what are you doing?). However, a lesser known option is Argentinian Emiliano Buendia.
The midfielder has already registered four assists this season and was absolutely brilliant against Man City last Saturday evening. He also is Norwich’s primary set-piece taker – a valuable asset to any FPL purchase.
At just £6m, he represents another excellent Norwich option to complete the value for money trio that everyone dreams of.
Sell: Virgil van Dijk (£6.5m)
Virgil van Dijk is the best defender in the league, but not necessarily on FPL.
Liverpool have only kept one clean sheet in five games so far this season. While many still have Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold in their ranks, Van Dijk does not offer the same thing they do. As a centre-half, his attacking points potential is minimal.
The Reds suffered a damaging defeat in Naples in the week and go to Stamford Bridge to face a Chelsea side that have been scoring goals at a rate of knots this season, particularly Tammy Abraham. Liverpool have also kept just one clean sheet in 20 games against Chelsea, a record dating back to 2011.
Van Dijk made an uncharacteristic error against Napoli on Tuesday night, personifying what has been a disappointing defensive start to the season by Klopp’s standards. The Dutch star is owned by 49.9% of players – maybe it’s time to bring in some differentials, like…
Buy: Serge Aurier (£4.9m)
A defender to perhaps plug the Virgil-sized gap?
Aurier made his first start of the season against Palace last weekend and registered two assists as well as keeping a clean sheet. He is currently Spurs’ only fit right-back and was rested against Olympiacos in the week, as Pochettino more or less guaranteed he will start at the weekend.
At just under £5m, he is also cheaper than the vast majority of mid-table defenders – for a full-back playing for a Champions League side, he is an absolute steal.
Spurs face Leicester away on Saturday – not easy, of course – followed by Southampton the week after. The return of the Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld partnership has made Spurs clean sheets a more realistic possibility and Aurier will only profit from this.
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Sell: Diogo Jota (£6.3m)
Jota was a massively popular budget option last season and was a player capable of bringing home big points in any gameweek.
This season his stock has fallen slightly and he is only owned by just over 5% – a surprise for someone who was so successful last season. However, we believe this decline is justified.
Wolves have struggled so far this season as their relatively thin squad is being pushed to the limits by the Europa League. This Thursday is their first group stage game, meaning the ‘Europa League hangover’ could be in full effect when they visit a Palace side who are yet to concede at Selhurst Park this season.
A player who could also be a victim of rotation due to the arrival of Patrick Cutrone, we advise looking at some other budget options instead, such as…
Buy: Ashley Barnes (£6.7m)
It has been well documented that Barnes’ scoring exploits in 2019 put him up there with Sadio Mane and Sergio Aguero. With this in mind, it’s baffling that only 10.1% own the striker.
Perhaps the rise of Pukki has been detrimental to him, but Barnes is a player that could prove to be a valuable differential in your FPL league.
Only Abraham, Aubameyang, Pukki and Aguero have outscored Barnes this season (4). Granted, he has had a minor drought (two games), but he has still registered three shots in those games against Liverpool and Brighton in lacklustre Burnley displays and is about to face a leaky Norwich side at Turf Moor before travelling to Villa Park.
Burnley attackers certainly hold more value for money than they have done in the past and Barnes is a solid option who has been excellent since the turn of the year.
Sell: Kyle Walker (£6.0m)
Kyle Walker’s FPL valuation could be about to nosedive.
City’s defensive display at Carrow Road was horrific. To make matters worse, they now have just one first-team centre-back available.
A few things could happen to Walker:
- His clean sheets plummet.
- He is deployed at centre-back, thus nullifying his assist potential.
- He is rotated in and out of the side for Joao Cancelo, as the UCL season begins.
- As City seek defensive stability, he will be more conservative down the right-hand-side.
Basically, there are multiple outcomes which could result in Walker’s FPL points drying up and drying up fast. Again, like Virgil van Dijk, he is certainly a luxury to have at the back.
Free up those funds and invest them elsewhere. If you back City’s defensive capabilities, the likes of Oleksander Zinchenko (£5.6m) and Nicolas Otamendi (£5.4m) will likely offer a similar points return for a cheaper price.