Ahead of each round of Premier League games The Hype Train analyses the best wildcard player options for your Fantasy Premier League teams. Historically, weekly FPL Dream Team’s comprise of mostly differential players whose selection falls with a low selection percentage 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 Premier League match in the upcoming Gameweek to decide who could be the differential that sets your team apart. All aboard.
WILDCARDS: WHAT IS A DIFFERENTIAL PLAYER?
The rules for the 2015/16 season were easy enough to follow. The only rule was that a player had be to selected by less than 5% of the FPL's populace. With 2016/17's price changes, and player selection trends, we were been forced to revise our rules on what constitutes a differential. In the 2017/18 season, after testing the waters with selection, there are just not enough differentials with the classification in each position from years past, so we have introduced position specific rules regarding what is and isn't a wildcard/differential player in the FPL that we believe is representative to the game this season.
- Any shot stopper outside of the top 8 selected. A differential Goalkeeper is now considered outside of the top bracket due to the overwhelming ownership selection % of the top 8 GK's for any one Gameweek.
- A GK's ownership must not exceed 10%
- A Defender's ownership must fall below 8%, with the top 20 owned defenders all harbouring 8% ownership or more.
- The Outsider Rule: This new rule applies to defenders who are the last defensive option in a team who we provide an exception to as the 4th of 5th most owned defender from one team if they offer a different value. For Example, if Chelsea or Spurs have three defenders with 10% plus ownership, and their 4th defender choice has downwards of 10% ownership, we will include them as a differential, as they are outside of the common conversation when picking defenders, even from within their own squad. This rule will mostly be used when adding defenders from top half clubs, who lack proper differential status for their defensive options.
- Any Midfielder under 8% ownership is classified as a differential.
- Our percentage criteria of 8% is due to a greater wealth of premium midfielders. There is a monopoly of top midfielders for most Premier League clubs, leaving only a handful of Midfielders that provide differential options on a weekly basis.
- The top 10 most owned Forwards in the FPL at any given time can not be touched as a differential.
- Any Forward outside of the 10% ownership range, who is not in the top 10 owned forwards.
GAMEWEEK WILDCARD DIFFERENTIALS
For each FPL Gameweek we select a wildcard player from each game.
We do not select a back-up player for the differentials we bank on – that’s the whole point, being a wildcard.
The selection percentage and player price is accurate with the posting of the article.
Our rundowns of player selections are representative of the Premier League’s TV fixture list.
Weekly Differentials (GW2)
Here we go again, back into the fiery cauldron of the fantasy premier league. Differentials were making their mark all over the opening weekend, one or two might even make an appearance in this week’s picks. With so many players on the fringes prove their worth we pick our ten best differentials for the second round of Premier League fixtures.
Kepa Arrizabalaga (CHE)
We are taking a leap of faith on the worlds most expensive goalkeeper, and whilst we held the belief Alisson would hold that title until next summer, Chelsea really rolled up their sleeves to remind the world who can flash the cash in the transfer market. Kepa kept his first clean sheet in a comfortable win over Huddersfield, and now a bigger test all eyes will be on the Spaniard to impress in his Stamford Bridge debut. Usually these games are full of goals but in the current climate we predict that this will be an edgy affair that comes down to the keepers between the posts. Few differentials exist in this fixture, but it is the differential debut for the worlds costliest pair of gloves.
Eric Bailly (MUN)
The opening day at Old Trafford was an interesting affair as Mourinho picked up his first three points of the season, and that was down partly to the heroics of Eric Bailly who was an absolute rock. Brighton won’t pose as much a threat as Leicester, so it could be a comfortable win. Brighton have yet to kick on from last season, and it is a bad time to find form against a team in a winning mood.
Kenedy (NEW), Dele Alli (TOT), Felipe Anderson (WHU), Roberto Pereyra (WAT), Raheem Sterling (MCI), James Milner (LIV)
Cardiff versus Newcastle is a game that will be decided by the quality players on the pitch, I know this is an overstatement as you always need quality, but it is games of tight margins where players of regarded quality always shine through to force a result. Kenedy is one such player, he is tricky, can force open a defence, and has a habit of finding himself on the scoresheet when things go right for Newcastle. Kenedy is Newcastle’s best offensive player and he is an overlooked option due to the Brazilian holding the tag of being a Newcastle player.
Dele Alli (TOT)
The England international was one of make Three Lions to make a scoring return to the Premier League, including Sterling, and Vardy, who both feature in this week’s differentials. Alli’s goal against Newcastle was a carbon copy of the one scored against Sweden which sent the nation into delirium. Alli should be the focal point when Kane continues his dry August streak, and it is only Fulham at home.
Felipe Anderson (WHU)
Despite being thumped by Liverpool, the bright spark on the pitch for West Ham was new signing Felipe Anderson who comes to the London Stadium with a reputation to live up to. The Brazilian was lively and was unfortunate to be playing for West Ham, he was the only lively player that looked like he was going to make something happen, always testing Alexander-Arnold’s positional awareness. West Ham can wipe the slate clean and start fresh with their first home game against a team not challenging for the title, they get a second chance to show that the investment in Anderson was worth every penny.
Roberto Pereyra (WAT)
The in-form Hornet lit up the opening weekend with two perfect strikes and is the player to watch in Watford’s away trip to Burnley. We don’t need to explain Pereyra, there are few other players you want to consider in this match, and if you are looking for quality to break through the stubborn Burnley defence then the Argentine midfielder is that man.
James Milner (LIV)
The 32-year-old midfielder was Liverpool’s best player on the pitch versus West Ham, his movement and passing was inspiring and it is incredible to think just how fit the England international is to be the outspoken midfielder in Klopp’s ranks. Milner is on set pieces and Liverpool’s chief busybody in midfield, and with his desire not in question he will be an integral part whether Liverpool get a result at Selhurst Park.
Raheem Sterling has been covered in more detail as our captain further down the article.
Cenk Tosun (EVE), Jamie Vardy (LEI)
Cenk Tosun (EVE)
After picking up an assist against Wolves, the link up play with Richarlison was good to see for FPL players. The Turkish forward has a point to prove to keep his place in the team, and with Southampton visiting Merseyside, and Everton most likely going to beef up their team with new signings it be a busy week for the forward.
Jamie Vardy (LEI)
After making an instant impact for Leicester when he scored at Old Trafford the eager Fox will want to keep the momentum going and keep impressing Gareth Southgate to have any hope of making it to the next Euros. That journey starts now, and with Wolves at home, the England forward will be looking to take advantage of gaps in their defence and show that there is life after Mahrez at the King Power.
Key Differential: Raheem Sterling (MCI)
After a mixed World Cup 2018 the England forward moved on quickly from the disappointment in Russia by kick-starting the Unai Emery era at Arsenal with a loss the Gunners record. His inclusion in the Man City came as a huge surprise after Mahrez and Sane were the starting wingers during pre-season, and in typical Pep Guardiola style the Spaniard rotated his midfield as common as he changes his underwear. This has gifted the differentials with one of the FPL’s top performers last season as the best differential that we can recall in a long time.
Everyone expected Sane to be starting, and Kevin De Bruyne (which still is very strange to think why people considered him an option at the beginning of the season), and soon enough David Silva will be back in rotation, and Jesus too…and this will be normal. What isn’t normal is Sterling getting rotated, he is Pep’s teachers pet and when in favour he plays every minute. After destroying Arsenal’s hope yet again there comes the first home game for Man City against Huddersfield.
The Terriers were woeful against Chelsea, it looks like they are going to be struggling for both goals and clean sheets, so this fixture is a double-edged sword for City options, and none better than Raheem Sterling whose potential automatically places him as this week’s prime differential.
As a reminder here are the ten differential picks for GW2: FIXTURES:
CAR/NEW: Kenedy (NEW, MID, £5.0mil, 2.5% ownership)
EVE/SOU: Cenk Tosun (EVE, FWD, £7.0mil, 6.8% ownership)
LEI/WOL: Jamie Vardy (LEI, FWD, £9.0mil, 7.9% ownership)
TOT/FUL: Deli Alli (TOT, MID, £9.0mil, 6.3% ownership)
WHU/BOU: Felipe Anderson (WHU, MID, £7.0mil, 3.6% ownership)
CHE/ARS: Kepa Arrizabalaga (CHE, GK, £5.5mil, 3.7% ownership)
BUR/WAT: Roberto Pereyra (WAT, MID, £6.1mil, 4.9% ownership)
MCI/HUD: Raheem Sterling (MCI, MID, £11.0mil, 3.2% ownership)
BHA/MUN: Eric Bailly (MUN, DEF, £5.5mil, 4.0% ownership)
CRY/LIV: James Milner (LIV, MID, £5.5mil, 0.9% ownership)
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The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in the Fantasy Premier League (#FPL), providing beautiful graphics and weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb ranking tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review movies, live sport, and professional wrestling.
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The Hype Train were nominated and shortlisted for the 'Best Football Blog 2016' by the Football Bloggers Association at their annual Football Blogging Awards (The FBA's), with the final presentation held at Old Trafford in Manchester.