Prior to the weekend FA Cup matches, I have 5 confirmed starters for BGW31. While not “advisable” I moved Marcos Alonso out and introducing budget defender, Ahmed Hegazi, leaving me with a FT for GW28. Playing the percentages, I believe WBA will feature in BGW31 but more importantly this move provides me more budget for bringing in 3 new attacking players.
If we look at Ben Crellin‘s percentages and permutations for BGW31, we see the real possibility of two more fixtures being confirmed; BOU v WBA and HUD v CRY.
Percentages are in favor of FPL managers. Chances Huddersfield defeat Man United are low resulting in a 22.58% chance the GW31 fixture HUD v CRY ends up as a blank. So’ton needs to defeat WBA a third time this season in order to add a fourth game to the weekend action. There is a 44.61% chance this happens.
Adding these two fixtures to the already confirmed matches, my starting squad increases to 7 players. With a transfer still to be made. Intentions are to sell Alexis Sanchez, which frees up £11.7, bringing my ITB total to £15.3 to upgrade my squad.
One BGW31 strategy I have seen discussed, owning 3 Liverpool players. Currently, Virgil van Dijk and Mohammad Salah are in my starting XI with my eye on Roberto Firmino or Sadio Mane, after his 3-goal performance against Porto in the UCL. Lesser owned than Firmino (39.6% vs 7.3%), Firmino has scored 141 points on 12G/7A and 24 BPS. Mane sits on 91 points, 6G/6A and 5 BPS, he did miss 5 games earlier in the season.
To keep with the template, the obvious move would be to transfer in Firmino at £9.2 with 3G/2A in the last 5 games. If it were not for van Dijk, I might consider a triple Liverpool attack, but with FTs at a premium, due to no WC or FH chip, I believe Mane won’t make the cut, leaving Firmino to partner with Harry Kane up front.
Looking at upcoming fixtures from GW29-38, Arsenal heads the list, conventional wisdom would say we look towards the tripling up on the Gunners at some point. With Henrikh Mkhitaryan in the midfield, consideration for Pierre-Emerick Aumbeyang (£10.5) is a real possibility. Take a look at this information posted by FPL Guidance on Twitter.
I agree with Guidance that Aubameyang could return some crazy attacking numbers through the remainder of the season. Can’t say much for Arsenal’s defense, but who cares? Could it be time to rethink three big forwards again?
Before jumping ahead, it leaves with one midfielder short heading into Gameweek 28. Who replaces Sanchez? With potentially £32.5 tied up in forwards I am left with £6.2 ITB when considering my 5th midfielder. It seems it a list of “usual suspects” for this price range: Pascal Groß, Xerhidan Shaqiri, Richarlison, Eric Maxim Choupo-Mothing and Abdoulaye Doucouré.
As a Watford supporter I have been high on Doucouré all season, as our most consistent performer in the midfield, 7G/3A and 16 BPS. Still favorably priced at £5.4, Doucouré rivals some of the other, more popular names, trailing just Groß based on total score (122 v 111). He also fills a BGW31 slot to give me 8 starting players, while setting me up for the rest of the season and DGWs yet to be confirmed.
What does concern me, owning 3 budget midfielders, potentially going back to my roots, as I started the season in a 5-2-3 formation. Unfortunately, Crystal Palace has a terrible run of fixtures; TOT/MNU/che/hud/LIV, so even though Milivojevic is on penalties, not sure he will find his way into many games over the next 5 weeks.
Realistically, it will be a 4-3-3 with Doucouré featuring along side Mkhitaryan and Salah, while rotating the 4th defender based on strength of schedule. On paper, as has been the case all season, it appears to be a good plan. This will be a tentative plan until we see how the FA Cup games finish.