A sensational start to the 2020/21 FPL season, for some, and it handed us with an average of 50 points per team although that does include Mohamed Salah. However, with Manchester United and Manchester City back in action, Gameweek 2 hands us a lot more problems but that’s the life of an FPL manager.
The man of the hour
Raheem Sterling a differential pick? The same man who is worth £11.5m and the same man who simply can't stop scoring goals for fun? And yet, despite that about a day before the Gameweek deadline and the Englishman is owned by less than 5% of FPL managers. It feels strange, don’t get it wrong, it feels very very strange to include someone as lethal and prolific as Sterling is as a part of this list but the basis of his ownership levels has changed the game completely.
This makes the Manchester City man a sensational pick and remember, he enters the new season for this first time, having missed last week, at under 5% ownership despite scoring 204 points last term. What should shock owners or potential owners, even more, is the fact that the forward led Project Restart for goals with nine, and had arguably one of the best xGs in the same period. Now the Cityzens have a tricky run-in with a start against Wolves before games against Leicester City, Leeds United and Arsenal around the corner.
But, as we all know, there are few players that are fixture proof and Raheem Sterling is not only on that list but his attacking output is alongside the best especially at City. It could net, the right owner a massive differential haul if they play their cards correctly.
The maybe/maybe not
Another Manchester City man on the list but when you consider the wealth of talent that is at Pep Guardiola’s disposal, someone is bound to make the bench. More often than not, it has been Mahrez with the Algerian playing thirty-three league games last term but only a grand total of just under 2000 minutes. What that effectively means is that the former Leicester man played a lot of minutes either off the bench or getting benched.
And yet, that never seemed to hurt his chances to cause serious problems. Four goals and three assists in Project Restart, 11 goals and 14 assists for the 2019/20 season and a grand total of 175 points. Yet the Algerian, at the time of writing, was in 2.2% of FPL teams across the fantasy universe which could, once again, transform a team. Pep Guardiola’s first game of the new season is against bogey team Wolves with Nuno Espirito Santo doing the double over the Cityzens last time.
However, for Mahrez this game means even more especially with the arrival of Ferran Torres this summer and it could mean even more competition for the Algerian. It also adds to the permutations and combinations for the Pep roulette which means that Mahrez will want to get out the blocks with a thundering start to ensure his place in the starting eleven.
A goal on his Premier League debut and former Atalanta full-back Timothy Castagne is off to a fantastic start for his new side. Leicester City’s new left-back headed home the opener and for those who’ve seen the Belgian play for La Dea in the past, they know that this is not an unusual sight. The 24-year-old loves getting into the box with him netting five goals in his last two Serie A seasons which is more than any defender at Leicester City, barring Ricardo Pereira can claim.
What adds to his value, even more than the fact that he is owned by only 4.1% of FPL managers (at the time of writing), is the fact that Castagne can play on either side. He’s equally adept at playing left-back or right-back and given that Leicester are without a catalogue of defensive options, the Belgian’s place at the moment is pretty much locked down. Hell, even once Pereria is fully fit, Castagne remains their best option at left-back and at £5.5m, he’s a great choice.
However, beware this is a punt because the Foxes play Burnley, Manchester City, Aston Villa and Arsenal in their next five games which could cause problems for them. They weren’t the greatest against the Baggies before upping the tempo in the second half although James Maddison’s return from injury helped their cause. That will play a part going forward but either way, expect Timothy Castagne to play regularly enough to make him an enticing punt.
The Flash in the Pan
In a game between Carlo Ancelotti’s Everton and Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham, who would have ever banked the Toffees on walking out with a win? Somehow, they did exactly that and they did it in some style with the trio of their new men thriving. James Rodriguez created five chances for teammates, the most in a long time by a debutant, with Abdoulaye Doucoure and Allan also doing well.
However, the man who stood out, beyond James and Richarlison, was good ol' Dominic Calvert-Lewin with him netting the only goal of the game. It came via a free-kick and possibly the one way you’d expect Spurs to defend by Calvert-Lewin proved to be a massive problem. More importantly, what that game showed us is how starved of a proper creator the Toffees have been. James, and Doucoure to a certain extent, changes that although all five of the Colombian’s chances created did fall to Richarlison.
Either way, the chances are being created and if it keeps going at this pace, then expect DCL to eventually benefit from them. He does come on the expensive side at £7.1m but it makes him cheaper than Vardy, Timo Werner, Anthony Marital, Danny Ings, Raul Jimenez and Richarlison. And he’s only owned by 11.7% of FPL teams across the world, not too shabby, is it?