The differential picks for gameweek 4 were slightly unlucky, especially Pascal Gross (who missed a penalty and was subbed off before the 60 minute mark – ouch)! However, with a 2 week international break prior to gameweek 5, fantasy managers have 2 weeks to re-assess. Injuries to popular players, a negative fixture swing for Liverpool, and Chelsea assets impressing have left many managers hovering over the wildcard button. In which case, here are some promising differential options.
ALEXANDRE LACAZETTE – £9.4m – TSB: 3.3% – Newcastle (A)
French striker Alexandre Lacazette announced himself as a potential fantasy option in gameweek 4 with a match-winning performance for Arsenal away to Cardiff City. He picked up a goal and an assist and looked threatening throughout, also hitting the post in the first half. His appeal over fellow striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£10.9m) stems from his far cheaper price tag and Aubameyang taking a position on the left-wing when Lacazette starts. Despite Lacazette being at a higher risk of rotation than Aubameyang, he looks set to play in Arsenal’s trip to Newcastle and could cement his place in the first team for a promising set of upcoming fixtures. Arsenal face none of last year’s top six until gameweek 11 and Lacazette will be expected to score well after six shots inside the box in limited minutes so far this campaign.
JAMIE VARDY – £8.9m – TSB: 3.2% – Bournemouth (A)
Another centre-forward who has started re-entering the minds of fantasy managers prior to gameweek 5 is retired England international Jamie Vardy. A forceful challenge on Wolves’ Matt Doherty in gameweek 2 has meant Vardy sitting out the most recent 2 gameweeks with a suspension. However, he is back just as Leicester’s fixtures pick up, with games against Bournemouth, Huddersfield, Newcastle and Everton in their next four. While Vardy is considerably more expensive than Leicester team mate James Maddison (£6.6m), he has certainly earned that valuation, with 20+ goals in two of the last three campaigns for the Foxes. Expect him to be in the goals in the coming weeks.
RICARDO PEREIRA – £5.1m – TSB: 5.2% – Bournemouth (A)
Another Leicester asset to consider is full-back Ricardo Pereira. The defender burst onto the scene in the Premier League with 2 assists in his first two appearances for Leicester. The ex-Porto defender has an attacking mentality and has been selected to play on the wing by boss Claude Puel in two of Leicester’s first four league games, increasing his potential going forward. As mentioned, Leicester have a nice looking schedule so Pereira may be worth bringing in over popular defenders Jose Holebas (£4.8m) and Trent Alexander-Arnold (£5.0m) whose fixtures look much more tricky over the next four gameweeks.
ROMELU LUKAKU – £11.0m – TSB: 7.8% – Watford (A)
Romelu Lukaku was included in the differential picks a few weeks back now, and is still seemingly criminally overlooked as an FPL option. Coming off a brace away to an out-of-form Burnley and three goals for Belgium in the international break, Lukaku looks to be hitting top gear in time for a great run of fixtures for Manchester United. United play Watford, Wolves, West Ham and Newcastle in their next four, all teams Lukaku has great goalscoring history against. He has managed 13 shots so far from three starts and a brief substitute appearance and has the same conversion rate as FPL’s most selected player, Sergio Aguero. Paul Pogba (£8.9m) appears to be the Red Devil’s spot-kick taker, but Lukaku may not need them to justify his lofty price tag.
MATT DOHERTY – £4.4m – TSB: 0.7% – Burnley (H)
Wolves wing-back Matt Doherty is looking an increasingly tempting budget fantasy defender. Wolves face off against Burnley and Southampton at home in two of their next three games, after picking up their first clean sheet of the season away to West Ham. Not only then does Doherty offer clean sheet potential, but the right-wing back has taken five shots inside the penalty area already so far this campaign and looked especially dangerous against the Hammers. With James Tomkins (£4.4m) sidelined through injury, a straight swap could prove beneficial for fantasy managers.
Good luck everyone!
Written by FPL Forum (@FPLForum)