Fantasy Premier League 2021/22 | Utilizing your wildcard in optimal fashion
Use your wildcard to shuffle things up and net maximum gains|
The hustle and bustle of the Premier League is in full swing as we march on to the tail end of the campaign where victors and losers are seperated. To achieve glory in FPL you have to utilize your best cards at the right time and therefore its time to put your wildcard to good use.
Fantasy Premier League players should prepare themselves for the calm before the inevitable storm with a relatively mundane Gameweek 35 that could threaten to explode as we approach the final weeks of the 2021-22 campaign. It's been a chaotic season so far with constant cancellations and rearranged fixtures throwing a wrench in the plans of many a FPL managers. Some have taken advantage of the chaos and utilized their best cards at the right time while other have found adapting to a fickle landscape much more difficult.
If you are one of the lucky/shrewd ones who held onto their second wildcard, this is the best time to use it as we enter back-to-back doubles followed by the final day of the 2021-22 campaign after this week. So its time to unleash your wildcard and rain down some bombs to gain supremacy over your friends or colleagues in this turbulent season.
Players who have favourable fixtures this week and at least one double gameweek to come in the future should be the priority and those who tick both boxes form the foundation of my selections. Here are my picks for the revamped 11 and this is a result of some of my couch-watching match experience and a few statistics.
Well everyone thought Burnley's decision to sack long-term servant Sean Dyche was a horrible decision and it could have its repercussions in the future but so far it has been a gamble that has worked out for the Clarets so far
The Premier League outfit has taken seven points from a possible nine to put pressure on relegation rivals, Everton, in the table. Their playstyle appears to be more fluid than they ever used to be under, the Clarets are now able to go toe-to-toe against sides of Wolves’ and Southampton’s stature and have gained results to overturn their fortunes.
Since Dyche's sacking their attacking numbers have improved while they have also tightened up their backline as evidenced by their back-to-back clean sheets. Pope was mighty impressive in both games as he made seven saves in total. The goalkeeper is sure to give it his all as they look to avoid the drop when they face relegation favourites, Watford, this week.
Marcos Alonso (Chelsea)
Alonso was never the favourite to end Chelsea's season as their starting left back but Ben Chilwell's unavailability due to his injury and Malang Sarr's unimpressive displays in recent weeks have propelled him to be a relatively secure option for your team in the closing weeks of the campaign.
The fullback was key in picking out Christian Pulisic for the winner at West Ham and scoring the opener against Manchester United midweek. The defender is one of the best-attacking presences for the European champions and it's set to continue as they close out their season.
Matty Cash (Aston Villa)
Villa secured a 0-0 draw against Leicester in a boring affair but it was important for the club as they arrested a concering run of consecutive defeats. With three goals and three assists in the season, the fullback has had a direct hand in more goals than any other Villa defender and a fixture against Norwich will be a good place to further his record in whats been a landmark season for the defender in FPL.
Ben Davies (Tottenham)
Spurs have failed to rediscover their goalscoring touch in the front of the pitch but atleast they look really tight at the back. They have kept three clean sheets in their last six games and have only conceded three goals during that run.
They face Leicester who at the moment are struggling to create chances for their frontline. The fullback has been a staple under Antonio Conte and has shown some improvements in his attacking game. Its worth it to pick Davies for some defensive solidarity along with the likelihood of getting a goal or two out of the defender.
Andy Robertson (Liverpool)
Well, it would be borderline stupid to not choose either one of Liverpool's fullbacks due to their sheer quality and attacking numbers. The reason I chose Robertson instead of Alexander-Arnold was due to his numbers. The Scottish defender has scored two goals and provided seven assists since Gameweek 18 compared to Alexander-Arnold's zero goals and five assists.
Philippe Coutinho (Aston Villa)
Since the Brazilian made his debut for Villa, he has had more shots (31), shots on target (13), and created more chances (20) than any other Villa player on the pitch. The attacker has also been in fine form at home and that looks set to continue when they face Norwich this week. Its could get even better considering that Villa have just one away fixture remaining.
Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City)
Mahrez has been in and out of the City lineup but that is down to the fact that Pep Guardiola has a host of quality players to select from. The Algerian has an impressive 11 goals and six assists to show for his measly 25 league appearances and has averaged the fourth-highest number of FPL points per game in City's squad. The attacker is a safe pick to include in your team.
Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace)
Crystal Palace was unlucky to score against Leeds on Monday and no one would be more at fault than Zaha who had seven shots at goal without finding the net. This inclusion is solely based on the fact that he is due for redemption soon and the fact that upcoming opponents Southampton have nothing to play which will hopefully lead to a high-octane game.
Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)
Well, I mean I don’t really need to explain this one, do I? Betting against the Egyptian is certain to be a recipe for disaster especially when Liverpool is fighting hard for a league title and Salah will want to secure some individual accolades for himself despite what he says to the contrary. Newcastle is in good form but Liverpool has higher stakes to play for and that could tip it in favour of the Egyptian and his side having a fruitful day at the pitch.
Harry Kane (Spurs)
Tottenham have failed to muster a single shot on target in either of their previous two games and Kane hasn’t set the world on fire with his displays. So its not an assured pick per say but if they are to snatch 4th place at the end of the campaign, Kane will have to find his goalscoring boots soon.
Kane has a spectacular record against the Foxes, scoring 18 times in 17 matches, and with Leicester having a clutch European game this week, his chances of boosting that tally could be enhanced.
Eddie Nketiah (Arsenal)
Nketiah has been featuring for the Gunners in recent weeks due to necessity rather than due to his quality. Nevertheless the forward has been in a fine form whenever he has been selected and he is set to start against West Ham who has four senior defenders missing. He will be relied on if Arsenal are set to get their top-four spot at the end of the season.
This should ideally be your starting 11 to get the best possible returns from your investments. You could consider some minor tweaks to reallign it with your ideas and purposes but make sure to use the wildcard to net maximum points in the closing weeks of the season and gain bragging rights over everyone else.