This article gets more difficult to write each week, as it get closer to BGW31. Your remaining FTs and hits will be predicated on your chip strategy ahead of the first big blank of the season. What works for me, might not work for you. I have no plans on taking a hit to bring in an additional players, giving me 9 or 10 starters. Some are looking at moving in a DGW player for a non-playing one, knowing they can recoup the -4 points. At this point of the season, points, like chips are important. Why give away unnecessary points if you don’t have to?
Still can’t believe I moved off my chip strategy last week, as FOMO took hold and I based my FT off all the talk surrounding Raheem Sterling, a midfielder who missed BGW31. In retrospect, it seems a waste of a FT, when FPL managers are attempting to maximize their limited transfers to build a team for BGW31. This is just one strategy. My plans have been to build for BGW31 and BGW33, using the Free Hit Chip in DGW32 and activating the second Wild Card for GW34, with an eye to DGW35 and the Bench Boost. No thoughts on where the Triple Captain Chip ends up…yet.
This week, there are two players that are in my thoughts ahead of GW30. Originally, the plan was to introduce Newcastle’s, Florian Lejeune, as I move away from Wolves and Jonny Otto. Newcastle lost 2-0 at West Ham last week, which makes me have second thoughts about their defensive unit ahead of a visit from Everton. The Toffees have scored just three goals in their last four games and have a league worst, 28 goal attempts and one big chance taken in that time frame. Given that information, Newcastle could still be a viable option.
My eyes are being turned by Chelsea…still. Last week could have been a potential Blues double up, introducing Eden Hazard and David Luiz (who didn’t start), but went Raheem Sterling and Jamie Vardy. Chelsea host Wolves this weekend and travel to Goodison Park in BGW31. That gives me two transfers to strengthen, what will be my starting nine for that game week.
If I pass on a Newcastle defender this weekend, then I could potentially move Paul Pogba and his poor attitude for Hazard, giving me £0.3 ITB for future moves. The only reason I am not pulling the trigger before Friday, the fact that Jamie Vardy is still flagged with a head injury sustained in a collision with Ben Foster last weekend. That could force me into a hit ahead of BGW31, if he can’t play this weekend. Indications are it’s all precautionary and Vardy should start at home to Fulham.
Depending on your chip strategy and number of potential BGW31 players, where are a few differential options who will play the next two game weeks.
Kasper Schmeichel (£5.0/TSB 4.8%)
While Artur Boruc (£4.0) is an excellent option, I don’t buy into the Cherries defense. The same can be said of Leicester City, great run of fixtures, but their performances have been lackluster. Schmeichel faces Fulham, just 21 goals on the season, this is their best chance at a clean sheet. The Foxes follow this week up, away to Burnley and home to Bournemouth.
Declan Rice (£4.6/TSB 3.6%)
West Ham is another scary option when it comes to defense, much like Leicester City and Bournemouth. The Hammers have just one clean sheet in their last seven games and Rice is coming off his second 15-point game against Newcastle, playing in an advanced roll. West Ham visit Cardiff City followed by a home games against Huddersfield and Everton.
David Brooks (£5.0/TSB 3.6%)
This options seems to be a “no brainer” as Brooks returned to fitness last week, picking up 74 minutes. Prior to the injury he’d been the catalyst of the Cherries midfield, with Ryan Fraser gaining most of the accolades. Brooks, a model of consistency, 6 goals and 4 assists, could give Bournemouth what they have been missing the past four weeks in the midfield.
Salomon Rondon (£5.9/TSB 8.0%)
This position becomes challenging, as there are some good options, but most above £6.0. Rondon is an interesting selection, as been posting good penalty touches and shooting numbers, but has just a goal and assist in the last four games. Magpies play the next three weeks and with the addition of Miguel Almiron in the midifield, I still like the look of Rondon as a budget option.