FPL Tips Team Selection - Salah Captain for Gameweek 1
Posted by FFPundits
8:52pm Aug 6 2019
Three Liverpool players make their way in to FPLTips’ Fantasy Premier League squad for Gameweek 1. Captain Salah?
With pre-season all wrapped up and just a few days to go before the 2019-20 season kicks off, the ‘First Draft’ team has been updated ahead of Gameweek 1.
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There may still be one or two further changes, updated via Twitter (@_FPLtips), but here’s how the team is shaping up as things stand:
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There’s an immediate change between the sticks, with Ederson replaced by Mat Ryan to free up funds.
Nick Pope looks like a great alternative in the longer term but Brighton have more favourable opening fixtures than Burnley and this team will be optimised for the first 4 Gameweeks, with an early wildcard in mind.
The defence is largely unchanged, with Trent Alexander-Arnold, Lucas Digne and Andy Robertson all keeping their places from the First Draft team.
Laporte, however, makes way for teammate Zinchenko, primarily due to funds but the centre-back is also currently a doubt, having missed the Community Shield with a knock.
Whilst Zinchenko has competition for the left-back spot, he started in 10 out of 11 games from Gameweek 28 onwards last season and looks set to keep his place for the trip to West Ham in Gameweek 1, with Mendy sidelined and Angelino failing to impress in pre-season.
Gylfi Sigurdsson comes into the team, on the basis of Everton’s favourable run-in to start the season.
The Toffees travel away to Crystal Palace and Aston Villa during the first 3 Gameweeks, either side of a home fixture against Watford.
According to reports, Everton are looking to secure a late deal for Wilfried Zaha.
No Premier League player won more penalties (6) than the Ivory Coast international last season. So, if that move were to happen, it would boost Sigurdsson’s appeal even further.
Premium midfielders Salah and Sterling keep their places after impressing during the Community Shield.
With averages of 6.8 and 6.9 points per game last season, the pair proved themselves to be reliable captaincy options and their kind opening fixtures suggest that can continue.
Having made the switch to Leicester this summer, Ayoze Pérez netted twice in pre-season for the Foxes.
Last season, the 25-year-old found 11 of his 13 FPL involvements during this calendar year (GW21-38) and was one of only 4 players to reach double-digits for goals scored in that time.
Only Vardy, Agüero (each 12) and Mané (14) bettered the Spaniard’s tally of 10 goals.
Ryan Fraser completes a 5-man midfield, due to a favourable start for the Cherries, who face newly promoted Sheffield United and Aston Villa in the opening 2 Gameweeks.
The Scotland international achieved an average of 6.9 points per game against last season’s ‘bottom six’ teams; highlighting his potential against lower table opposition.
Josh King is the only forward to retain his place from the ‘First Draft’ team, appearing as the standout budget forward for those opening two fixtures.
The plan will be to use the two Bournemouth spots as placeholders for whichever bandwagons emerge in Gameweek 3. Although, if something else comes up and one of them ends up staying in the team, it won’t be the end of the world.
Boosted by his penalty duties, King actually averaged an impressive 4.1 points per game against the ‘top six’ last season, more than Callum Wilson’s 2.9.
One problem with playing this 4-5-1 formation is the lack of options it leaves on the bench, with the £4.5m midfielders offering those reliable 2-point returns.
Diego Rico started in Bournemouth’s 3-0 win over Lyon, their final pre-season game, and appears likely to retain the left-back spot in Gameweek 1, with Lloyd Kelly sidelined.
Although unlikely to start, Mason Greenwood could receive minutes off the bench this season, after impressing on United’s pre-season tour.
Mo Salah is comfortably topping the Gameweek 1 captaincy poll and there seems to be no reason to go against the crowd, with Liverpool hosting newly promoted Norwich on opening day.
There are a couple of minor tweaks still to be considered, which would allow for a stronger bench.
One possible alternative would be to swap Sigurdsson for Wilson, bringing Dendoncker in as the first man on the bench.
In order to keep Sigurdsson over Fraser, it would also be an option to downgrade one of the Liverpool defenders to Virgil van Dijk.
But for now, the 4-5-1 remains the current lineup, given that the plan is to use the wildcard early anyway, so a weak bench may be viable short-term.
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