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 24)
With amazing average points of sixty this week was one of the most up and down weeks in the Premier League. On the whole lots of spoils were shared, but others had been sorely missed out on. Romelu Lukaku owners and captains feel scored. Elsewhere in the land of the wildcards The Hype Train did particularly well, but it wasn’t enough to get to the average, but some of the differentials could have been difference makers this week. Two players registered ten or more points, Sigurdsson (SWA) and Antonio (WHU) should hold their heads high. Afobe continued his great run whilst Manchester City’s Otamendi kept another clean sheet. The goalless draw between Watford and Chelsea was also disappointing for attacking returns, so once again wildcard king Troy Deeney has to wait another week to assist Odion Ighalo.
Sadio Mane: 3pts
Jordan Henderson: 2pts
Steven Naismith: 2pts
Nicolas Otamendi: 8pts
Michail Antonio: 11pts
Benik Afobe: 8pts
Jonathan Walters: 2pts
Gylfi Sigurdsson: 10pts
Gerard Deulofeu: 0pts
Troy Deeney: 2pts
Gameweek 24 Average Points: 60pts
Gameweek 24 Wildcard Points: 48th
TEAM OF THE WEEK WILDCARDS
Every week the dream team educates unaware FPL managers of the wildcard glories on offer, once again the wildcards beat the established players with more players and points. Fraser Forster was the biggest statement made this week for the wildcards; back from injury he now has thirty points from four outings which is outrageous form. Aaron Lennon has also done well for Everton and looks set to feature heavily from now on for the Toffees. Michail Antonio was our wildcard pick for last week and he features in the dream team having headed in an amazing cross from Mark Noble from the heart of midfield, he is another player on the West Ham conveyor belt who is impressing.
The biggest talking point about the wildcards, and this has been stressed before, is the overwhelming number of defenders that appear in the dream team with a wildcard status. Two left backs for the Manchester team’s features, but both risk rotation in their respective squads. Forster and Reid suffer from the same selection issue which is that people view their to be better options, in Forster’s case it is in the likes of Cech and Butland who have been consistent, whereas people favouring a West Ham defender will choose Aaron Creswell no questions asked.
On a side note it is one of the first dream team’s where there has been no wildcards feature in the three attacking slots.
Wildcards: Forster, Borthwich-Jackson, Reid, Clichy, Lennon, Antonio (6)
Non-Wildcards: Barkley, Eriksen, Vardy, Kane, Martial (5)
Points achieved by wildcards: 65pts
Points achieved by non-wildcards: 64pts
THIS WEEKS WILDCARDS
For Gameweek Sixteen 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 Wednesday 04/02/2016.
CHRISTIAN FUCHS, MANCHESTER CITY VS LEICESTER
Name: Christian Fuchs
The early kick off this week is one of the most important fixtures of the calendar, and one year ago this would have been considered a walk in the park for Manchester City. How wrong we all were, so much has changed, and the pendulum is balanced in the middle going into this encounter. Leicester and Manchester City drew in a goalless affair last time round and it was the Foxes valiant defending that got them that valuable point. We can expect the same kind of rugged defending from Ranieri’s men this time round, and their best defender for value is Christian Fuchs who has great options all over the pitch unlike the cheaper Danny Simpson. Another low scoring affair is expected, and with that little bit of extra quality and ability to magnetise valuable bonus points the Austrian is worth considering this week.
22 – AVL (A) – 2pts
23 – STK (H) – 8pts
24 – LIV (H) – 7pts
25 – MCI (A) – 6th February, 12:45pm
26 – ARS (A) – 14th February, 12:00pm
27 – NOR (H) – 27th February, 15:00pm
Then again, this fixture could easily be a 0-0 affair, to which we will always point you in the direction of this bearded gentleman.
DIEUMERCI MBOKANI, ASTON VILLA VS NORWICH
Name: Dieumerci Mbokani
There are no hidden lies with Aston Villa, just the unfortunate truth that their season is going to get much worse, until the inevitable day comes when they are relegated from the Premier League. With a manager who is getting cold feet this must surely be resonating among a team already believing they are on the losing side of the coin every match. In such a losing mentality we always look to the starting strikers of opposition teams to see if they are worth a gamble for the week, and Mbokani looks to be fitting the bill nicely at Norwich, he is tall, powerful, quick, and very classy with his feet. He is the kind of striker that can cause Aston Villa plenty of problems and with the way things are that is most likely to be the case. This selection is an open and shut case.
22 – BOU (A) – 2pts
23 – LIV (H) – 6pts
24 – TOT (H) – 2pts
25 – AVL (A) – 6th February, 15:00pm
26 – WHU (H) – 13th February, 15:00pm
27 – LEI (A) – 27th February, 15:00pm
MAMADOU SAKHO, LIVERPOOL VS SUNDERLAND
Name: Mamadou Sakho
Two seasons running and this is normally one of the most gruelling matches in the Premier League, which is because Sunderland loves visiting Anfield for their annual goalless draw. Defensive options are advised in this match, but you’ll always favour the home team, particularly because Liverpool beat Sunderland away from home by one goal and keeping a clean sheet. Big Mama is the heart of the Liverpool defence; he is a fine omelette, some days the best, some days the worst. One advantage he has is that whenever Liverpool picks up a clean sheet he normally gets bonus points, the last time The Hype Train selected him in the wildcards he picked up eight points which says everything. Don’t watch this encounter, just expect not a lot to happen which is why this tie doesn’t appeal to the watcher but to the keen eye of FPL masters it will be refreshing to see such a predictable fixture for gameweek twenty five.
22 – MUN (H) – 2pts
23 – NOR (A) – 0pts
24 – LEI (A) – 1pts
25 – SUN (H) – 6th February, 15:00pm
26 – AVL (A) – 14th February, 14:05pm
27 – N/A, Liverpool playing in League Cup final that weekend.
There are also new signings to consider for wildcards, January was a buzz of activity and the Toon were busy signing players such as...
ANDROS TOWNSEND, NEWCASTLE VS WEST BROM
Name: Andros Townsend
Club: Newcastle United
Newcastle is in real trouble, hence the spending over the transfer window. One player brought in to provide a different attacking edge is the formers Spurs winger Andros Townsend who looks to be a starter in Steve McLaren’s squad. He will join Gini, Perez, and Sissoko in the attacking roles at the club which looks to be an amazing team on the counter attacking which is where Newcastle normally gets a lot of their goals. Being kings of their home turf they will need the impact of Townsend to come thick and fast if they are to get the relegation monkey off their back, and he should be fine in a Toon shirt if he is playing with Gini at St James Park. Townsend might find what fits with him at Newcastle in this tie with West Brom; he is truly a differential for the club and for FPL managers.
22 – SUN (H) – 0pts
23 – CRY (A) – 0pts
24 – EVE (A) – 2pts
25 – WBA (H) – 6th February, 15:00pm
26 – CHE (A) – 13th February, 17:30pm
27 – N/A, due to League Cup Final same weekend.
Another new addition to consider is Seydou Doumbia who arrives at St James with a good scoring reputation, he may not start but he could make an impact.
KEVIN WIMMER, SPURS VS WATFORD
Name: Kevin Wimmer
White Hart Lane used to be an anti-fortress; the Spurs team didn’t know what a clean sheet was. Flash forward twelve months and they are now so drilled that every team must have a Spurs defender on call for every game. Their defensive form has been so impressive due to the arrival of Toby Alderweireld who has rejuvenated a predicable Europa League squad into Champions League contenders. Wimmer has come into this fold, the cheap centre-back has taken the place of the injured Jan Vertonghen who could be out for some time, and when cheap defensive options are on the table you should consider snapping them up before they are gone. Spurs welcome Watford to the Lane and after a drab goalless draw their attacking might with Deeney and Ighalo looks to be hit and miss against good defences, so it is with wisdom to see returns for Spurs defenders instead of Watford attackers this gameweek.
22 – SUN (H) – 0pts
23 – CRY (A) – 1pts
24 – NOR (A) – 6pts
25 – WAT (H) – 6th February, 15:00pm
26 – MCI (A) – 14th February, 16:15pm
27 – SWA (H) – 28th February, 14:05pm
AARON LENNON, STOKE CITY VS EVERTON
Name: Aaron Lennon
Shattering the hearts of Geordies everywhere the nippy English winger scored and assisted in his last performance to be in this week’s dream team. Performances like this will mean that he will retain his place in the starting eleven and cause a Shawcross-less Stoke City a few problems at the weekend. The last time these teams met it was a seven goal thriller with FPL points flying thick and fast throughout the air. Nobody expects it to repeat that score line, but it has the potential to offer big attacking returns. Roberto Martinez (while he isn’t auditioning for Dancing with the Stars) has a soft spot for Lennon who he believes has real quality, and if the contribution against Newcastle wasn’t an indicator then nothing else will show you that the England international could be offering more than just cameo appearances from now on.
22 – CHE (A) – 2pts
23 – SWA (H) – 0pts
24 – NEW (H) – 13pts
25 – STK (A) – 6th February, 15:00pm
26 – WBA (H) – 13th February, 15:00pm
27 – N/A – Due to League Cup final weekend.
GYLFI SIGURDSSON, SWANSEA VS CRYSTAL PALACE
Name: Gylfi Sigurdsson
Alberto Paloschi looks promising and was going to be the star for Swansea this week, but until he gets his first start the new Swan will take a step back whilst the real star of the show at the moment is Gylfi Sigurdsson who has scored twenty points in his last three appearances. The Icelander must be sniffing the Euro fever because since the new manager rocked up his performance level has increased dramatically. He is getting into scoring and assisting positions all game, there is also the fact he is the penalty taker too. Gylfi looks to be good value against a Crystal Palace team who are struggling to find any sort of form in recent weeks, so this is one of those situations where it is ok to bank against an out-of-form team with the most lethal player from the opposition squad. Two home games on the horizon and a trip to the culpable White Hart Lane make Gylfi a mouth-watering option again.
22 – WAT (H) – 2pts
23 – EVE (A) – 8pts
24 – WBA (A) – 10pts
25 – CRY (H) – 6th February, 15:00pm
26 – SOU (H) – 13th February, 15:00pm
27 – TOT (A) – 28th February, 14:05pm
FRASER FORSTER, SOUTHAMPTON VS WEST HAM
Name: Fraser Forster
Thirty points from a goalkeeper in four games is huge, what a difference the colossal keeper has made to the Saint’s. Forster has calmed the backline and also on his own accord kept Arsenal out ten times in gameweek twenty four to claim a gigantic twelve points. Southampton appears not to care who their next opponent is, the goal is clear: keep a clean sheet, don’t lose. Southampton has in the past been known for their defence and their resurgence is down to their returning goalkeeper. Cheaper than any of the top five the England international looks to step up his game to secure a place at the European Championships this summer, so expect the beast in the Saint’s goal to keep pulling out rewarding performances.
22 – WBA (H) – 6pts
23 – MUN (A) – 6pts
24 – ARS (A) – 12pts
25 – WHU (H) – 6th February, 17:30pm
26 – SWA (A) – 13th February, 15:00pm
27 – CHE (H) – 27th February, 15:00pm
BENIK AFOBE, BOURNEMOUTH VS ARSENAL
Name: Benik Afobe
Club: AFC Bournemouth
Having never made a senior appearance for Arsenal the powerful Benik Afobe is one of the many talented young strikers that Arsenal have let go in recent seasons from their academy only to end up doing big things. Afobe is a natural goal-scorer and has immediately made the transition from Championship to Premier League. Visiting the Vitality this week is his old employers who are looking to pick themselves up from their designated position of fourth and get back on the title charge. Bournemouth have shown great character and look to retain their place in this year’s Premier League if they keep repeating resilient performances like beating Crystal Palace away from home last gameweek. The allure of Afobe this week is that Arsenal have hit a slump and it would be the ironic hand of fate to see a former player of theirs to push the serrated knife further into the Gunners title chances. Afobe has a lot to prove, and he isn’t expensive. Strikers who are playing on good form don’t care who their next opponents are, it normally doesn’t matter.
22 – NOR (H) – 7pts
23 – SUN (A) – 8pts
24 – CRY (A) – 8pts
25 – ARS (H) – 7th February, 13:30pm
26 – STK (H) – 13th February, 15:00pm
27 – WAT (A) – 27th February, 15:00pm
Now, what about this man for your teams? Chelsea have a Gini Wijnaldum and he comes in Brazilian packaging.
OSCAR DOS SANTOS EMBOABA JUNIOR, CHELSEA VS MANCHESTER UNITED
The Chelsea’s Gini is that of Oscar, the playmaker who has come into some good form for Chelsea since Hiddink too temporary charge of Chelsea. He has a tireless work-rate and an eye for goal too; he is also one of their penalty takers. The best reason to bank on Oscar in the next two gameweeks is that Chelsea is at home against two opponents they should be beating, so there would be no need to drop or rotate him in the next two gameweeks. Oscar is providing that ‘something else’ Chelsea need other than Willian’s contributions, and it would be a refreshing change of pace for the Blue who are drawing their way out of relegation problems. Oscar has done well in our wildcard picks before so there is a positive feeling about his selection in the next two games.
22 – EVE (H) – 4pts
23 – ARS (A) – 2pts
24 – WAT (A) – 3pts
25 – MUN (H) – 7th February, 16:00pm
26 – NEW (H) – 13th February, 17:30pm
27 – SOU (A) – 27th February, 15:00pm
For all GW 25 build up, check out the Weekly Hype page now.