It feels like we’ve barely finished totting-up our bonus points from last weekend, yet the FPL deadline for Gameweek 6 is already rolling into view.
There are some tasty fixtures to get your teeth into this weekend, with Chelsea hosting Manchester City before Sunday’s North London Derby. Throw in a Monday night meeting between fierce rivals Crystal Palace and Brighton, and you’ve really got a recipe for fireworks.
But where does this leave your FPL strategy? If you’re looking for differential value, Ismaila Sarr and Jamie Vardy (both owned by fewer than 12 per cent of managers) have tasty fixtures in Gameweek 6.
In fact, we’ve used our free transfer to swap in Sarr for Ferran Torres, with Pep Guardiola’s rotational policy having stung us last weekend.
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Team news and injury updates
Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy faces a “race against time” to be fit for the meeting with Manchester City, while Christian Pulisic is on the verge of a return.
John Stones and Aymeric Laporte are still out, while Oleksandr Zinchenko, Rodri and Ilkay Gundogan have been added to Pep Guardiola’s injury list.
Manchester United are still without Edinson Cavani and Marcus Rashford, but Alex Telles returned in the defeat to West Ham in midweek. Aston Villa will assess John McGinn after he left the field with concussion last weekend, but Leon Baily is out and Axel Tuanzebe ineligible.
Richarlison, Jordan Pickford, Seamus Coleman and Dominic Calvert-Lewin are all expected to be out this weekend, but the club are hopeful Lucas Digne will feature despite coming off in midweek.
Patrick Bamford will not recover from an ankle injury in time to face West Ham, while Raphinha (hip), Luke Ayling (knee) and Jack Harrison (Covid) are doubtful.
Diego Llorente and Robin Koch are still managing long-term issues. For the visitors, Michail Antonio is back after serving a ban.
Newcaste trio Martin Dubravka, Paul Dummett, Callum Wilson are all out, while Joe Willock is a doubt.
Trent Alexander-Arnold is expected to return for Liverpool after suffering with illness last week, but Naby Keita and Roberto Firminho face late fitness tests.
Brighton are still short in defence, but Tariq Lamptey (hamstring) played 45 minutes in midweek as he steps up his recovery.
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Squawka’s FPL squad for Gameweek 6:
Robert Sánchez, 4.6: Only Ederson and Mendy kept more clean sheets than Sanchez’s 10 after he’d wrestled the gloves from Mat Ryan last season. Despite rocking a makeshift back line, Brighton have conceded just four goals in five matches so far. Sanchez has two clean sheets and nine saves to his name, and Brighton have some decent fixtures on the horizon.
Vicente Guaita, 4.5: You need two first-choice goalkeepers or risk missing out on points when the other is unavailable. Guaita has already kept two clean sheets and made 16 saves, so certainly shouldn’t be overlooked. Palace have a nice run from Gameweek 11, when his centre-back pairing Joachim Andersen and Marc Guehi will have had more time to settle in. Keep Guaita up your sleeve.
Trent Alexander-Arnold, 7.6: No player has created more chances than Alexander-Arnold (20) so far this season. The Liverpool man is bound to pick up clean sheet points this term, but even when the Reds concede he’s capable of decent hauls. The England international has had eight shots and provided two assists in four matches already.
Antonio Rudiger, 5.6: Interchangeable with Luke Shaw (both 5.5). While the Manchester United man might provide more attacking returns, we expect Rudiger to pick up more clean sheets. His place is safe in Chelsea’s back line, where he has picked up 13 cleans sheets in 20 Premier League starts since Thomas Tuchel’s appointment. A goal at Spurs helped, too!
Nelson Semedo, 4.9: The Wolves fixture list reads like this: Southampton, Newcastle, Villa, Leeds. With that run you can bank on some clean sheet points — only five teams have a smaller xGC (expected goals conceded) than Wolves so far this term. At the other end, no Wolves defender has had more shots (6) or created more chances (3) than Semedo despite the fact he missed the opener. If you’re running out of budget, Conor Coady represents a cheaper option but promises less going forward.
Tino Livramento, 4.2: A rotational option at a decent price. At Saints, only James Ward-Prowse and Che Adams created more chances than Livramento’s four this season. His FPL haul of 15 stacks up well against his Southampton team-mates, too (3rd best).
Brandon Williams, 4.0: Another budget pick, with a view to playing 3-4-3 and only leaning on him if necessary. Squeezes in ahead of Daniel Amartey purely because we expect Williams to play more.
Ismaila Sarr, 6.1: Only Mohamed Salah has had more shots on target than Sarr’s nine so far this season. The Watford man heads into a favourable fixtures high on confidence following his brace in the 3-1 win at Carrow Road in GW5. Next up for the Hornets it’s Newcastle and Leeds, who have two of the leakiest defences in the Premier League so far this season.
Raphinha, 6.5: No Leeds player has had more shots (16) than the 24-year-old and he already has two goals to show for it. Raphinha is also on free-kick and corner duty for Marcelo Biela’s men and will expect to add to his one assist during a favourable run of fixtures. You’ll need Leeds representation over the coming weeks, and Raphinha looks a decent bet. He’s doubtful for the West Ham game, but we’re pinning our hopes in the Leeds man overcoming a hip issue.
Mohamed Salah, 12.6: A premium option you can’t look past. Salah has 230+ FPL points in all four seasons since joining Liverpool, and he already has four goals and three assists in 2021/22. Only Sadio Mane has had more shots than Salah so far this season, while only Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jack Grealish have created more chances. A no-brainer.
Demarai Gray, 5.7: The budget pick continues to deliver. Gray averages more than five FPL points per 90 this season, with three goals in his last four matches. The 25-year-old is playing an advanced role under Rafael Benitez and the fixture list certainly favours Everton in the coming weeks.
Josh Brownhill, 4.5: It’s a toss-up between Brownhill and Billy Gilmour when it comes to a reliable cheap option for your bench. This selection is key to freeing funds for more premium picks in your XV, but it’s important you select someone who will get regular game time. Despite playing fewer minutes, Brownhill poses a bigger threat than Gilmour at the top of the field and is likely to return goal involvements at some point this season. The Burnley man has had four shots and created three chances so far this term, and he poses a genuine threat from set-pieces.
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Cristiano Ronaldo, 12.6: No Premier League player had a higher npxG (non-penalty expected goals) than Ronaldo’s 21.77 last season. The Portugal international also had more shots (168) than any Premier League player managed last term, averaging more than five shots per 90. For context, Golden Boot winner Harry Kane had 31 fewer attempts during the 2020/21 campaign. Ronaldo maintained that rate with 13 shots in two Premier League outings this season, scoring three.
Michail Antonio, 7.9: No FPL forward has had more shots on target (8) this season than Antonio. The West Ham man leads the scoring charts with four goals in four matches, plus he’s picked up three assists from seven chances created. His 39 FPL points so far this season put him second overall, with only Salah (50) ahead of him.
Patrick Bamford, 8.0: The Leeds man is out of Saturday’s meeting with West Ham with an injury, but we advise keeping him up your sleeve for future GWs. The 28-year-old managed a massive 20 goal involvements last term and, despite only clocking up a goal and two assists so far in 2021/22, heads into an enticing run of games next month.