With FPL GW13 having concluded, there are as per usual, lessons to take out of every GW.
Here are five talking points to think about for a short period of time, with the GW14 deadline being under 48 hours away.
Defence is the Best Form of Attack
Just like last gameweek, the defence is being discussed first, and with good reason. With some premiums letting us down on this occasion, there were some cheap alternatives who delivered the goods.
This point is cemented with 9 of the 18 attacking returns from Saturday’s games coming from defenders.
Three of the nine returns were complete ‘defence-involved’. Two of the three full-defence associated attacking returns were featured from the Crystal Palace vs Aston Villa match.
The two goalless scorelines did help defenders in achieving maximum bonus in the BPS.
In two of the three games that had goals scored, the three bonus points are awarded to defenders. This includes the Arsenal vs Newcastle game, where all bonus points were distributed to defenders all across the board.
As opposed to Sunday, it wasn’t as mammoth compared to Saturday. However, two defenders still managed to produce assists as a source of attacking points. These came from Thiago Silva and Jonny Evans.
It’s Jota’s World and we are Living in it
Diogo Jota carried on his terrific goalscoring record for Liverpool, stepping in place for the absent Roberto Firmino.
His brace on Saturday afternoon against Southampton solidifies his worth in being one of the best-valued players in the game. This backs up his performances against Arsenal and Manchester United, having scored in both of those games, too.
The Portuguese’ 14-point haul adds to his four goals and a solitary assist from his last five gameweeks. Prior to the gameweek, Jota was ranked fourth for expected goal involvement amongst all midfielders, despite his limited minutes. It seems his haul was inevitable to occur.
With over 250,000 managers transferring him in (being the most transferred-in player) heading into GW14, the inference can be made there is no better time to buy the former Wolves striker. All of his next eight fixtures are not rated higher than a three in the FDR.
The Emphasis in having a Strong Bench
This gameweek showed more than anything, that having just an XI of players won’t cut it for the festive period. With unpredictable weather, inevitable rotation, and a quick turnaround in days, there is going to be curveballs thrown to all fantasy managers.
This point was illustrated throughout Sunday with Burnley vs Tottenham being postponed due to heavy snow.
For fantasy managers, this meant no points were awarded to their players from the respective sides. Most managers had to rely on their benched players to autosub in for the postponed players.
However, the match will be played at a later date, potentially in a DGW later in the season. This consists of sides playing two matches in the one gameweek.
In addition to the postponement, the same can be said for Phil Foden owners. Foden didn’t make Man City’s matchday squad to face West Ham, due to a leg disturbance. This makes it four consecutive gameweeks for him without a return.
Great Man Utd Fixtures but who can we Trust?
With interim manager Michael Carrick having taken charge for Manchester United for just two games, the pair of matches has given us fantasy managers more questions than answers.
Yesterday’s team selection against league-leaders Chelsea shows no player is immune from rotation.
This was headlined by the benching of superstar striker Cristiano Ronaldo. Sunday’s game marked the second time Ronaldo has been benched, with both occasions coming after their matches against Villarreal in the Champions League.
Ronaldo played 26 minutes and received a yellow card in the process. This left the 757,000 managers who gave him the armband frustrated, with no FPL points to show for it.
More importantly, it leaves us fantasy managers puzzled on who we can trust from the Red Devils, as FPL options. This comes just before their kind fixture run, with their next nine fixtures not being higher than three in the FDR.
The only player to have scored from both games and have started is Jadon Sancho, priced at £8.9m. However, yesterday’s match at the Bridge marked his third start all season.
Dennis the Menace
Sunday consolidated the rise in Watford’s Emmanuel Dennis. Although the Hornets did lose 4-2 against Leicester at the King Power, Dennis proves his worth as a genuine enabler.
With not many forward proving their consistency, the Nigerian priced at £5.3m could be the answer to free up money to afford moves in other positions.
His goal and assist clinched his third double-digit return for the season. Dennis, alongside Mohamed Salah, are the only two in the game to have produced 11 or more attacking returns.
With that said, his next two fixtures are as tough as it gets, being at home to Chelsea and Manchester City. Despite that, he is ranked in the top four in the ICT index, amongst the 86 forwards in the game.