Weekly Wildcards: Gameweek Twenty-Three
Every week The Hype Train analyses the best wildcard options for your Fantasy Premier League teams. Historically weekly dream team’s comprise of mostly wildcard players whose selection falls under 5% of overall players, to which there is no doubt that their influence cannot be ignored. With such an abundance of points coming from the FPL’s hidden gems The Hype Train selects one player from each match in the upcoming gameweek to decide who could be the differential for your teams.
LAST WEEKS PERFORMANCE (GW 22)
Gameweek twenty two was one of those where obvious points eluded the Premier League once again, the biggest case being how Swansea overcame Watford who were left to no win in the last month. Fuchs for Leicester also missed out on another great opportunity to bag a clean sheet, and in form strikers such as Defoe and midfielder Firmino failed to wow the FPL community. There is so much potential but also an equal amount of disappointment, team selections are becoming more and more difficult because at any point the league will throw you a curveball. The Hype Train still achieved four successes, and Otamendi scored points in a successive game we have chosen the Argentine, and Fraser Forster looks to have calmed the Saint’s defence in also obtaining a second clean sheet on the spin. There have been better weeks, there have been worse keeps…at least nobody got a solitary point.
Jermaine Defoe: 2pts
Benik Afobe: 7pts
Gerard Deulofeu: 4pts
Nicolas Otamendi: 6pts
Enner Valencia: 2pts
Fraser Forster: 6pts
Christian Fuchs: 2pts
Roberto Firmino: 2pts
Joselu: 2pts Troy Deeney: 2pts
Gameweek 22 Average Points: 46pts Gameweek 22 Wildcard Points: 35pts
TEAM OF THE WEEK WILDCARDS
There are weeks where the wildcards are on fire, but there are weeks like this where they are outnumbered by non-wildcards, but there has never been a week where the wildcards have been embarrassed. Points hide among the forgotten and the down-trodden players who carefully plot their arrival into the dream team. What is surprising about the wildcards is that exactly a year ago this team would have been dominant, as in most the players would have been selected. James Ward-Prowse was selected by many as a good fifth midfielder option and was barely a wildcard, and Fabregas and Eriksen were presented by double digits. In one year Fabregas has been overlooked because of the steep decline Chelsea has made, and it is such a bizarre thought. Everyone thought Chelsea would be up there with the others in the top four, Fabregas was their biggest creator of chances and now he can’t string a set of passes together or play in his team.
A special mention goes out to Bunn who broke the hearts of many FPL managers after he stopped that Riyad Mahrez penalty, he may not know the damage he has done to those who had selected him as captain that week.
Wildcards: Bunn, Daniels, Ward-Prowse, Eriksen, Fabregas (5)
Non Wildcards: Williams, Targett, Wijnaldum, Silva, Kane, Aguero (6)
Points achieved by Wildcards: 72pts
Points achieved by Non-Wildcards: 77pts
THIS WEEKS WILDCARDS
For Gameweek Twenty-Three we are once again selecting ten wildcards, one for each game. Same rules apply: the players we choose must not be selected by more than five percent of the games players. We start in order of the games listed on the official Fantasy Premier League site.
The wildcard options selection percentage is accurate as of Thusday 21/01/2015.
ROBERTO FIRMINO, NORWICH VS LIVERPOOL
Name: Roberto Firmino
Position: Midfielder Price: £7.8mil Ownership: 2.8%
Under Jürgen Klopp the Red’s look much more convincing when they are not playing in front of their home crowd, normally on the back foot they find more room to score goals when they are breaking from the back where the pace of their attacking players can hurt the opposition. One player who has been coming into his own of recent is Firmino who scored a brace against Arsenal a couple of gameweeks ago. The Brazilian retains his place in the wildcards because Liverpool’s defence is never fancied, and everyone is hoping that the high scoring fixtures between these two clubs continues. Liverpool have more shots than anyone team in the Premier League so if you opt for Firmino then the odds are likely he is going to be in and around goals this weekend.
Last Three 20 – WHU (A) – 2pts
21 – ARS (H) – 13pts
22 – MUN (H) – 2pts Next Three
23 – NOR (A) – 23rd January, 12:45pm
24 – LEI (A) – 2nd February, 19:45pm
25 – SUN (H) – 6th February, 15:00pm
DANNY ROSE, CRYSTAL PALACE VS SPURS
Name: Danny Rose
Position: Defender Price: £5.1mil Ownership: 1.6%
Spurs have four decent full-backs this year, so there is risk of rotation, but Ben Davies was played against Leicester in the cup and is likely to be rested for Danny Rose at the weekend. After a solid performance for Spurs against Sunderland and even bagging an assist the Tottenham defender has a promising next three game run. Palace, Norwich, and Watford greet Spurs mission to climb the table, and what an opportunity this could be for them to turn a few heads. Rose is great value because he possesses great returns potential from both ends of the pitch. Crystal Palace doesn’t look the same without Yannick Bolasie and they should breeze to a comfortable victory in this tie.
Last Three 20 – EVE (A) – 0pts
21 – LEI (H) – 0pts
22 – SUN (H) – 8pts Next Three
23 – CRY (A) – 23rd January, 15:00pm
24 – NOR (A) – 2nd February, 19:45pm
25 – WAT (H) – 6th February, 15:00pm
SHINJI OKAZAKI, LEICESTER VS STOKE CITY
Name: Shinji Okazaki
Position: Forward Price: £5.6mil Ownership: 0.4%
Choosing wildcards in games Leicester feature is a hard ask, particularly because there are so many but you never know which are going to be the ones to benefit your team. Defense is an option but one player who is just as important to their squad is the Japanese striker Okazaki whose work-rate puts him good goal scoring opportunities. Stoke have improved defensively since last season but this is a fixture in which Leicester are expected to carry away all three points, and Okazaki could be a great option to compliment Jamie Vardy this week.
Last Three 20 – BOU (H) – 1pt
21 – TOT (A) – 2pts
22 – ARS (A) – 5pts Next Three
23 – STK (H) – 23rd January, 15:00pm
24 – LIV (H) – 2nd February, 19:45pm
25 – MCI (A) – 6th February, 12:45pm
JESSE LINGARD, MANCHESTER UNITED VS SOUTHAMPTON
Name: Jesse Lingard
Club: Manchester United
Position: Midfielder Price: £4.2mil Ownership: 0.4%
Having found a slither of form the Red Devils have looked to a youngster to provide a different kind of edge to their game, with Memphis Depay summoned to the bench the Englishman Lingard has scored ten points from his last two outings and with another home game ahead they could be looking for more returns should Wayne Rooney keep up his good form of late. Lingard is refreshing because he can just enjoy the game, drifting in and receiving passes he is a good winger to have in the squad. The United team looks better balanced at the moment than Southampton so it should provide a clinical edge, particularly because away from the Saints struggle to pick up points. Lingard is also a gem due to his very low price so it could a bargain should be pick up points at the weekend.
Last Three 20 – SWA (H) – 0pts
21 – NEW (A) – 7pts
22 – LIV (A) – 3pts Next Three
23 – SOU (H) – 23rd January, 15:00pm
24 – STK (H) – 2nd February, 20:00pm
25 – CHE (A) – 7th February, 16:00pm
CHARLIE DANIELS, SUNDERLAND VS BOURNEMOUTH
Name: Charlie Daniels
Position: Defender Price: £4.6mil Ownership: 2.0%
Bournemouth are buzzing at the moment, and no surprises why as they are coping with the test of the Premier League with a renewed optimism. Charlie Daniels has really stepped up and proved to be a phenomenal FPL asset if you are wise, nobody expected him on penalties so it is a more than welcome addition. Bournemouth are fighting tooth and nail in their matches and with a boost in attack there are other returns Daniels looks set to be affiliated with in open play too as the Cherries full-backs love getting forward. Sunderland and Crystal Palace in the next two games look appetising for any Bournemouth defender, Adam Smith is another option for the price conscious.
Last Three 20 – LEI (A) – 6pts
21 – WHU (H) – 1pt
22 – NOR (H) – 18pts Next Three
23 – SUN (A) – 23rd January, 15:00pm
24 – CRY (A) – 2nd February, 20:00pm
25 – ARS (H) – 7th February, 13:30pm
TROY DEENEY, WATFORD VS NEWCASTLE
Name: Troy Deeney
Position: Forward Price: £5.2mil Ownership: 4.6%
Once again we welcome formalities as ever as Troy Deeney gets the nod against Newcastle, the king of wildcards has had a few bumpy weeks but sooner or later he will come good for points, and against Newcastle they have their best opportunity to turn the tide as they have already beaten the Toon twice this season. Deeney is still on penalties and Newcastle aren’t Barcelona, so if you read between the lines he could be a fantastic pick should Watford get the rub of the green.
Last Three 20 – MCI (H) – 2pts
21 – SOU (A) – 1pt
22 – SWA (A) – 2pts Next Three
23 – NEW (H) – 23rd January, 15:00pm
24 – CHE (H) – 3rd February, 19:45pm
25 – TOT (A) – 6th February, 15:00pm
SALOMON RONDON, WEST BROM VS ASTON VILLA
Name: Salomon Rondon
Club: West Brom
Position: Forward Price: £6.5mil Ownership: 0.3%
Scoring the only goal in the cup tie against Bristol saw West Brom into the fourth round of the FA Cup, and it also gave Tony Pulis a gentle reminder that Rondon is the man for the job at his club. The powerful striker goes into this tightly contested derby looking to make an impact in front of the home crowd, there could be goals in this encounter with both teams pursuing the three points for bragging rights. Defensive returns are a possibility but in general West Brom have a good run-in and there are lots of defensive options you could consider for your teams, but Rondon is their goal-scorer and should fare well against bottom feeders Aston Villa.
Last Three 20 – STK (H) – 0pts
21 – CHE (A) – 2pts
22 – SOU (A) – 1pt Next Three
23 – (H) – 23rd January, 15:00pm
24 – (H) – 2nd February, 20:00pm
25 – (A) – 6th February, 15:00pm
PABLO ZABALETA, WEST HAM VS MANCHESTER CITY
Name: Pablo Zabaleta
Club: Manchester City
Position: Defender Price: £5.7mil Ownership: 0.6%
Manchester City are out for blood against West Ham of whom they lost to earlier in the season at home, and bolstered by the return of Argentine Pablo Zabaleta at right-back the team looks set to be hunting for three points on their travels this week. The Hype Train was going to opt for Otamendi again as the wildcard but with Zabaleta put back in the first team it could spell better attacking returns at a cheaper price. A risk for those who believe Sagna will play, but in a fixture where he should get the nod ahead of the Frenchman.
Last Three 20 – WAT (A) – 0pts
21 – EVE (H) – 0pts
22 – CRY (H) – 6pts Next Three
23 – WHU (A) – 23rd January, 17:30pm
24 – SUN (A) – 2nd February, 19:45pm
25 – LEI (H) – 6th February, 12:45pm
LEIGHTON BAINES, EVERTON VS SWANSEA
Name: Leighton Baines
Position: Defender Price: £6.1mil Ownership: 3.7%
Goodison Park has been revered as a goal magnet this season, and this week could stir up some more rollercoaster performances from both teams. Visiting is Swansea who looks goal shy, they may have won their last game but they look weak and are in danger of being relegated. Everton on the other hand have seen their ups and downs but one boost in their ranks has been the return of left-back Leighton Baines. Seventeen points from his last three appearances against three decent teams has left everyone purring over his potential once again. Don’t forget that Baines has been a trustworthy source of points for FPL managers in the last couple of seasons and the next three fixtures reinforce this. Baines is also the penalty and set piece taker; he can also fire in a mean cross too which could benefit those with Lukaku in their squads.
Last Three 20 – TOT (H) – 2pts
21 – MCI (A) – 6pts
22 – CHE (A) – 9pts Next Three
23 – SWA (H) – 24th January, 13:30pm
24 – NEW (H) – 3rd February, 19:45pm
25 – STK (A) – 6th February, 15:00pm
AARON RAMSEY, ARSENAL VS CHELSEA
Name: Aaron Ramsey
Position: Midfielder Price: £8.1mil Ownership: 4.4%
This fixture in the past has been, well, less than entertaining. Normally both teams have too much which cancels each other out, earlier in the season however Arsenal lost to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. What a difference twelve makes because champions Chelsea are on the back-foot in terms of expectations for this match, it will be competitive, but ultimately in Arsenal’s hands to win. Aaron Ramsey has started displaying the same kind of returns that made him the expensive midfielder that he is, and a contributor in big games too. Choosing a Chelsea player in this fixture didn’t make much sense, and there are few wildcards from the Gunners so the Welshman gets the nod.
Last Three 20 – NEW (A) – 3pts
21 – LIV (A) – 11pts
22 – STK (A) – 3pts Next Three
23 – CHE (H) – 24th January, 16:00pm
24 – SOU (H) – 2nd February, 19:45pm
25 – BOU (A) – 7th February, 13:30pm
For all GW 23 build up, check out the Weekly Hype page now.