FPL Shrewd Moves and Differentials – Pre-season Tips

7:13pm Aug 17 2020

Top 5 Fantasy Premier League differentials to consider ahead of the new 2020/21 FPL season

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Here at the Fantasy Football Pundits, we would like to introduce and welcome @FPL_Detective as our newest member of the editorial team.

As we eagerly await the return of Fantasy Premier League action on September 12th, FPLDetective will be on hand to unravel some of the community noise and hopefully help you, and us, identify a handful (or two) of key enablers.

If you’re looking to fill your 15-man squad with the likes of Kevin de Bruyne (11.5), Mo Salah (12.0M) and Sir Harry Kane (10.5M), it’s likely you’ll need a shrewed move or two to enable such stars.

Phil Bardsley – Burnley

Price: £4.5M – Ownership: 1.5%

Still at the mature age of 35-years-old, the experienced Bardsley could prove to be a smart option for FPL managers to consider; as a regular on the right-side of a reliable Burnley defence, where clean sheet frequency is at a premium.

With 9 clean sheets in 21 games and now firmly ahead of fellow right-back, Lowton (£4.5m), Bardsley can provide a cheap route into a Burnley defence where there have been price hikes elsewhere in Pope (£5.5m) and Tarkowski (£5.5m).

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Despite making 3 more appearances (24) and gaining one more clean sheet than Bardsley, injuries to Taylor (£4.5m) throughout the season, and with Pieters (£4.5m) the back-up choice at left-back when Taylor is fit, Bardsley emerges as the safest choice for FPL managers in search of a budget Burnley defender.

He may also build on his 1890 minutes played in then 2019/20 campaign and feature more regularly over the course of the season then his fellow £4.5m priced team mates.

Rúben Vinagre – Wolves

Price: 4.5M – Ownership: 9.8%

The Portuguese left-wing-back made a modest 16 Premier League appearances last term, with 10 of these as a substitute.

Fortunes in 2020/21 are set to change for the 21-year-old, who is set to stand in for long-term absentee, Jonny (£5.5m).

Wolves’ clean sheet probability is statistically higher when the influential Boly (£5.5m) plays.

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With 12 clean sheets in the 22 games Boly featured in during the 2019/20 season, versus 1 clean sheet in the 16 games without Boly, Vinagre could be an eye-catching benefactor with the French centre-back, with a respectable supply of minutes looking ever more likely for the young left-wing-back; who likes to get forward and cross the ball into the danger area.

Vinagre conceded a goal every 2.6 appearances in 2019/20; a statistic which may improve with a more solidified Wolves defence, accompanied by potential attacking returns in Nuno’s famous 3-5-2/3-4-3 formation.

Mateusz Klich – Leeds United

Price: 5.0M – Ownership: 1.2%

The combustive Polish box-to-box midfielder who makes things click in Bielsa’s attacking tactical shape.

Klich played in 45 EFL Championship games last season (45 starts) and scored 6 goals, with 5 assists (11 goal involvements).

A value pick for a player who is also Leeds United’s first choice penalty taker, with 2 penalties converted in 2019/20.

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A modest return, but one which may increase with the introduction of VAR to a Leeds team which did not have this feature during their Championship title-winning campaign.

With an 80% career penalty conversion rate and the prospect of more penalties awarded in their long-awaited return to the Premier League, we could see more goals from the Leeds midfielder in 2020/21.

Kyle Walker-Peters – Southampton

Price: 4.5M – Ownership: 7.4% 

An astute piece of business for Fantasy Premier League managers looking to balance out their defence could be Southampton right-back, Walker-Peters.

Now playing regularly in a rejuvenated Southampton team, Walker-Peters could prove to be a bargain if he and Hasenhüttl’s team can carry their stellar Project Restart form into the new season ahead.

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With just one defeat in 9 games since lockdown, including a defensive masterclass (1-0) against Manchester City, it is fair to say The Saints have hardened at the back.

With many FPL bosses eagerly searching Premier League squads for 4.0M and 4.5M starters, the wing-back could be the perfect enabler we’re all looking for.

Tyrick Mitchell – Crystal Palace

Price: 4.0M – Ownership: 1.4%

The new Lord? Lord Mitchell? We as FPL managers cry out for that surprise package £4.0m player each season.

In reality, Mitchell may not be as good as Lundstram (£5.5m) in the upcoming season; largely due to positional differences as Lundstram played in a central-midfield position all season for The Blades in 2019/20.

Nevertheless, Mitchell can prove to be extreme value for money with fellow left-back, and first-choice left-back, Van Aanholt (£5.5m) currently out of action due to a shoulder dislocation picked up in Gameweek 36 against Manchester United.

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Mitchell made 4 (2) appearances towards the end of the 2019/20 season for Crystal Palace and may continue his run in the team during the early stages of the new season at least.

Ferguson (£4.0m) after signing from West Brom, of whom he made 21 EFL Championship appearances for last season is another £4.0m enabler to consider.

With Van Aanholt missing, and Mitchell impressing in the last few Premier League games where he was drafted in as a direct replacement at left-back; he is certainly one to watch.

Crystal Palace currently have four first team defenders on the injury table, so Mitchell and Ferguson could both be thrown in early on in 2020/21.

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Thank you for reading ‘Fantasy Premier League Tips – FPL Shrewd Moves and Differentials – Pre-season Tips’ which was written and produced by @_FPLtips