In this Fantasy Premier League series FPL Junior (four top 13k finishes in last four seasons) shares his FPL tips by selecting a team each week to try and score as many points as possible. In essence, he will be “free hitting” every single Gameweek. Rather than selecting longer-term options, he’ll solely focus on players with the best form and fixtures for the upcoming Gameweek.
Finally, we’re finally about to complete the 19/20 FPL season and many a FPL manager is hoping to go out with a bang playing their free hit chip in GW38+. For the Hub XI, I’ll be picking my team based on who I think will score the most points in each position. Individual managers are going to have different scenario’s and will be playing different strategies based on their rank and mini-leagues. Some may need to play it safer or take a few more risks in regard to players ownership or who their rivals own, so keep that in mind. A number of players I mention have similar options but with lower ownership, so if you’re going for a boom or bust approach, a few alternatives may be for you. Clearly there are standout matches this week but there will be a few matches managers disregard giving managers another opportunity to roll the dice.
With early team news being possible for a number of matches, this team may change as a result of a player in the XI being benched, but I’ll update you before the deadline.
Gameweek 38+ Team
Sheffield Utd appear to have forgotten how to score goals. They’ve attempted the least amount of shots over the last four games (29). During those games they had four big chances and three were during their 3-0 win against Chelsea. We know their defence is their strongest asset, so McCarthy is my number one for GW38+. Nick Pope is the obvious pick and is about to become the top-scoring goalkeeper but I’m staying away from a defensive double up this week.
The game’s highest scoring defender Alexander-Arnold was the first name in my backline. Newcastle have produced one big chance a game on average over their last four games and don’t have anything to play sitting in 13th. Liverpool’s defence has regressed hugely since they became champions so their player’s ceilings have dropped but the right back’s attacking output is able to make up for that. Alexander-Arnold nestled a free-kick into the back of Kepa’s net for the second time this season and bettered his number of his assists from last season to show what a gem of a defender he is. Robertson is another good pick and less owned; I’d have doubled up if it wasn’t for their backline being on the beach.
Crystal Palace have failed to score in six of their previous seven games. Over that period they’ve created five big chances which is only better than Norwich (3). Hodgson’s men seem to be on the beach after securing safety. Subsequently, a Spurs defender looks a good addition to the Hub XI. Aurier only just pips the 0.4% owned Davies. Both have similar baseline bonus and both are getting down their respective flanks. It’s really a coin toss as neither having been lighting up the chances created column but the clean sheet looks a good bet for GW38+.
A Burnley defender looks a great pick this week. They’ve admitted they’re all behind Pope to help him clinch the golden glove by keeping a clean sheet in Gameweek 38+. They’ve nothing else to play for otherwise after a strong finish to the campaign steered them to safety after a shaky start to the season. Burnley’s defensive stats aren’t as impressive as their 15 clean sheets this season bit with a reliable keeper between the sticks they’ve become a relatively reliable option. Pieters is my pick of the backline with injuries ruling out any competition on the left flank. Opponents Brighton have scored four times in their last seven matches and sit safely in 16th place.
Three Man City players was a given this Gameweek, it was just a matter of which three. I don’t think I need to talk about down and out Norwich’s defensive and offensive statistics at this point. Combine them with Man City who put Watford to the sword for the second time this season and Pep building momentum for their Champions League campaign, that spells goals. David Silva is a bit of a sentimental pick with it being his last game in the Premier League and FPL, but it comes with good reason. He looks certain to start and take set-pieces in his final game for Man City and oozed class on his last start against Bournemouth. He’s not at the top of the stats when he’s compared with his teammates with just a single big chance and three big chances created in his last four appearances but I think he’ll score well against Norwich. Sterling is my second sky blue midfielder he’s racked up three double-digit hauls in his last four Gameweeks (half of those games he didn’t play more than 45 minutes). The England forward is becoming more clinical, tucking away three of his six big chances and scoring another two. His desperation to score saw him take a penalty off De Bruyne as he’s just one-off 20 goals for the season. His ceiling looks very high this Sunday.
Martial is my sole Man Utd player this Gameweek in the Hub XI. Leicester continues to be without key players through injury and suspension and have been shipping goals left right and centre. However, I expect this tie to be a cagey affair initially as both sides look to nick a win that would see them gain Champions League football. The Frenchman looks dangerous on the counter-attack and if Leicester aren’t winning they will need to go for broke which plays into United and the number nine’s hands.
Week in, week out, I’ve left this man in notable omissions but finally, Antonio gets into the XI. The out of position midfielder has been tearing up the stats since his demolition of Chelsea in Gameweek 32+. For midfielders in the past four games, he’s had 20 attempts, 18 of which have been inside the box which has led to the highest number of big chances (8). He’s also swindled penalty duties off of his skipper but that remains to be seen if it’s permanent. Aston Villa have put themselves in a more favourable situation than they may have expected by having to match Watford. Their defensive stats have improved massively but they’re still not watertight. With West Ham safe, one may think they’ll be on the beach but the style of football and intensity they have shown in recent games are hardly going to hit a cliff within a matter of days. With Villa looking for goals West Ham and Antonio could grab another few goals.
Newcastle have an injury crisis at the back with Steve Bruce left with just a single recognised centre back to choose from. This plays into Liverpool’s hands who’ve shown what they can do against a poor backline. The Magpies have conceded the sixth highest big chances and fourth-most shots in the box over their last four games. They were battered at the hands of City and with their depleted squad I’ve opted for Salah. He looks set to lose his golden boot as he sits four goals behind Leicester’s number nine but you never know with Salah. In my opinion, he’s been extremely unlucky to just have nine points in his last three games. His finishing has been his main let down, so if he can rectify that a haul may be on the cards. If you’re chasing Mane is a very good choice and he seems to like the final game of the season. However, I prefer the Egyptian based on his underlying stats. I’m slightly sceptical of this pick but I believe it’s got more upside than downside.
Danny Ings has some personal goals to achieve on Sunday as he trails the race for the golden boot by two goals. His team is backing him to the hilt and have handed him penalty duties which didn’t go well initially after his miss last Gameweek. Sheffield Utd are a strong defensive unit, conceding the sixth least amount of shots inside the box in the last four matches but Ings doesn’t need many chances, let alone big chances to get on the score sheet. This season he’s converted 23% of his shots into goals and netted the joint highest amount of goals from outside of the box (4). While having something to play for doesn’t guarantee points, the extra incentive is going to make him an extremely selfish striker on the final day.
Man City’s striker, Jesus is my third attacker from the blues. Vardyis the only forward to attempt more shots and more inside that box than the Brazillian in the last four in 68 more minutes. However, he’s only hitting the target with every third shot, so that explains why he’s just scored thrice. As explained Norwich is a plum fixture and the best tie on paper to choose from. If he starts he could be in for a field day, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him frustrate.
Martinez is the backup this week against Watford. Greenwood warms the bench in case anyone misses out. He looked much sharper against West Ham after he finally got a rest. Lamptey and Branthwaite provide two budget options on the bench. Neither have a large ceiling but a six pointer would do if a defender misses out.
Gameweek 38+ Captaincy
A Man City is a no brainer with their massive ceiling this week. Sterling who’s had a nice break in France during the week should be eager to increase his best ever goals tally in a season. He’s got form, he’s got the fixture and I believe he’s the most reliable out of my three City attackers.
I’ve opted to avoid Arsenal players, like last week against a side fighting for survival in Watford. The hornet’s need to get a better result than Aston Villa which does mean they will be going for goals which could benefit the likes of Aubameyang. However, Arsenal are a difficult team to predict but could be worth investing in if you fancy a punt. Aubameyang is three goals behind in the race for the golden boot and Martinez provides a good valued keeper. Arteta may also have one eye on the FA Cup final.
Like most weeks, selecting the optimal midfield five is difficult and Chelsea’s Pulisic misses out again after seeing him return twice on last week’s bench. Lampard has eased him back after his knock and he looks set to start in a game Chelsea can’t afford to lose. He looks deadly in front of goal but Wolves have been solid at the back, conceding four times in their last nine games. Wolves could take advantage on the counter-attack and the likes of Jimenez, Doherty and Jonny are a differential option from the mainstream picks.
I’ve just opted for one Man Utd attacker this Gameweek. The Red Devils need just a point against their top four rivals and haven’t been as effective as their initial games since the restart. They look jaded and their lack of rest in comparison to their opponents. Fernandes has been playing like a terrier and it seems to have finally caught up to him. That being said it’s a risk with his set-piece and penalty duties.
Kane is a player that I’d like to own as he plays Crystal Palace who’ve regressed defensively keeping just one clean sheet in Gameweek 30+ since the return. It won’t be such an open game like the Leicester match but Kane reminded us he only needs half a chance to find the corner of the net.
De Bruyne and Mahrez are two City players I would have liked to have owned if there wasn’t a three-man cap. The former is aiming for an assists record which may see him make an extra pass rather the go for goal himself. The latter hasn’t started the previous two but looks likely to start against Norwich. It’s extremely tough to choose just three.
Good luck everyone and I’ll be back next picking the Hub’s Gameweek 1 XI!
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