With another international break around the corner, it’s perhaps the moment to avoid any rash decisions, but then Kevin De Bruyne gets injured. While the news has not been officially confirmed, there is a big chance that the Belgian misses the next gameweek, so how do you replace the top FPL scorer?
Option one: You don’t
This is the same man who finished with 19 assists and six goals in Pep Guardiola’s first season. The same man who finished with 8 goals and 16 assists in the centurion season before missing large portions of last season due to injuries. Thanks to that, Kevin de Bruyne entered this FPL season worth only 9.5m, a price that has now shot up thanks to his performances.
But one tiny injury to his groin and he’s now become the most transferred out player for the round even before Pep Guardiola confirmed it in his pre-match press conference that the Belgian misses the gameweek. That’s no way to treat the current highest points scorer in the 2019/20 FPL season and the very man who at the moment is on par to shatter Thierry Henry’s assist record.
Instead, you take the risk and De Bruyne moves nowhere because you realise that it would be nonsensical to sell him with an international break coming around the corner.
Option two: Replace him with a Manchester City star
But Kevin De Bruyne is injured and we must replace him to earn points. But how, that’s the question that plagues FPL managers around the world. The man is worth only 9.7m and that makes him a tough tough man to find a replacement for. And then in walks Riyad Mahrez with one of his best showings as a man in sky blue and at 8.5m it makes him the perfect option to replace de Bruyne.
Not only did Mahrez get himself a goal, but he proved to Pep Guardiola that he deserves more game-time by tearing Lucas Digne to pieces. That and a goal earned the Algerian 10 points, making it his second consecutive double figure haul this season. He now has three for the season and with Leroy Sane still injured, Mahrez could be a locked-down player. But he isn’t the only option from the Etihad Stadium with David Silva, and even Raheem Sterling available.
So is Bernardo Silva but bringing him in might be a short-term option, with a potential six match ban sitting on his head.
Option three: Bring in Emiliano Buendia and spend the extra money
This is the option to pick if you’re looking for a budget friendly man and Norwich City have arguably the best option in a tiny little Argentine. Emiliano Buendia may not have scored a goal in the English top tier yet but the young midfielder has been one of the best players at Norwich City. And that’s saying a lot given just how well Teemu Pukki, Todd Cantwell and co have performed.
But just as he did last season, Buendia has been the Canaries’ creative force with nearly every offensive move running through him. That works in Norwich’s favour, because if there is one thing he’s good at, it’s creating chances, with an average of 2.45 key passes per 90. That one of the highest in the league and his price does give you an extra 3.7m to work with.
That’s a lot of extra money, giving managers a chance to replace someone with a premium forward or midfielder or even defender. All short-term choices of course because eventually, Kevin De Bruyne will find his way back into any team in the world.
Option four: Reinforce your bench and leave him as it is
A crazy option for sure, but what if you don’t drop Kevin de Bruyne but drop someone else and spend money?? Keep him in your starting eleven and instead move your bench around to give you an option if he doesn’t play. That may seem like a lot more work because it is, but in the long-term, it might just be more than worth the trouble given KDB’s form.
With an international break coming around the corner, reinforcing or improving that bench with a few first-team defenders, a cheap goalscoring midfielder and even a striker will help. It gives managers a catalogue of options and ones that will automatically replace Kevin de Bruyne and slot anywhere on your team. Not only that, if you pick the bench well the options for future gameweeks are simply limitless.
Sounds good now, doesn’t it??
Option five: Free-hit to the rescue??
The last game-week before the international break is the wrong time to panic and blow your top over an FPL team, but injuries tend to do that to an FPL manager. An injury to a key superstar however, upends the entire balance of a team that has taken hours and hours of research to build which hurts even more and causes more panic.
That’s where the free-hit comes into play, with the first-half wild-card already used by 70% of managers around the world, and the last season’s newbie proved to be a great move. It allows managers the chance to create a new team altogether for one game-week before resetting things back to their original teams for the next game-week. Sounds like the perfect solution but as mentioned, ahead of the international break, the last thing FPL managers need to do is panic.
The free-hit does sound like a brilliant move to make, but like the triple captain and the bench-boost, you can only use the chip once in a season. That’s the only low-point and maybe panicking seven games into the season, isn’t the right moment for a once a season chip to be used. But then again, this is Kevin De Bruyne we’re talking about.
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