What's Currently the Most Popular Starting FPL Squad?
Posted by @FFPundits_Drew
12:19pm Aug 6 2018
Liverpool’s Mo Salah is in over 50% of Fantasy Premier League managers’ teams, but who else tops the most owned list ahead of Gameweek 1?
Contained within the Fantasy Football Fix Pre-Season pack is our ‘Template Teams’ feature, which shows the FPL players with the current highest ownership and is updated every 24 hours.
But what do our other features say about these players? Are they projected to score well in the opening weeks of the new season?
As always, we have provided you with a video version of this article, which you can find above.
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Over 50% of FPL managers now own Mohamed Salah, making the Egyptian the most owned player in the game and with a record-breaking score of 303 FPL points last season, is it any wonder?
Using our Points Projections tool, we can see that the Liverpool midfielder is projected to score 9.9 points in Gameweek 1 and no player is predicted to score more points across the first 4 Gameweeks combined.
Liverpool’s opening fixtures are heavily favoured by our algorithm (Fixture Analyser tool) and are currently projected to be the third most favourable across the first 4 Gameweeks, with only Everton and Bournemouth predicted to have an easier run in.
David De Gea
Manchester United’s David De Gea is the most selected goalkeeper ahead of Gameweek 1, with more than 29% of FPL managers opting for the Spaniard, who kept a league-high tally of 18 clean sheets last season.
Leicester manager, Claude Puel, has already talked about the possibility of being without Jamie Vardy for the season opener; which would further boost United’s chances of keeping a clean sheet.
With a projected score of 9.1 points across the first 2 Gameweeks, De Gea ranks top amongst goalkeepers, beating Lloris – with 8.2 points, Heaton – with 7.8 and Ederson – who is projected to score 7.5 across that period.
Leicester are currently projected to have the worst attacking potential in Gameweek 1 by our Fixture Difficulty tool, with their fixture against Man Utd ranking worse than West Ham’s away trip to Liverpool and Arsenal’s home encounter with Man City.
With a current ownership of 26.4%, Marko Arnautovic is the fourth most selected forward player amongst FPL teams, with only Zaha, Kane and Firmino accruing more owners.
West Ham face an away trip to Liverpool in Gameweek 1, where the Austrian international is projected to return just 3.1 points at present.
However, West Ham’s opening 4 fixtures combined include home encounters with Bournemouth and Wolves and our Fixture Difficulty tool currently ranks the Hammers 4th best over that period, with only Liverpool, Everton and Bournemouth projected to have better attacking potential.
In the second half of last season, between Gameweeks 23 and 38, Arnautovic’s tally of 20 shots on target was 2nd only to Harry Kane, amongst forwards; while only Kane and Aubameyang were directly involved in more goals.
World Cup Players
Amongst defenders, England trio Trent Alexander-Arnold (15.3%), Kieran Trippier (26.9%) and Harry Maguire (24.3%) all feature heavily in current FPL teams.
However, could there be cause for concern, given the limited amount of pre-season training undertaken by these players, following their extended rest from the World Cup?
The same applies to France and Belgium internationals, N’Golo Kante (16.3%) and Kevin De Bruyne (28.2%), with the midfielders currently sitting in over 16% and 28% of teams, respectively.
You can monitor the expected lineups within our ‘Team Analysis’ section, which features a variety of helpful tools for each of the 20 Premier League teams.
At present, Kevin De Bruyne is given just a 35% chance of starting in Man City’s Gameweek 1 fixture against Arsenal, with our algorithm expecting Gundogan to be the more likely player to feature.
These lineups will of course be continuously updated as more information becomes available.
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BEFORE YOU GO… We’ve teamed up with Starting 11 once again this season and will playing their Daily Fantasy Premier League game, alongside FPL.