A June release – we’ve never seen this before! FPL headquarters have given us six long weeks to tamper and tinker with our teams before the deadline on Friday 9th August.
With the new season come new players like Leandro Trossard, Pablo Fornals and Tanguy Ndombele as well as the Norwich City, Sheffield United and Aston Villa squads. However, what we’re focusing today’s article on is the annual player position changes.
Every year there are a few players who have changed from being listed as a defender, midfielder or a forward to another . Be it a more attacking or defensive move, the implication of these position changes can be quite significant as the below table shows:
|Conceding every 2nd goal||(1)||(1)||0||0|
Defensively-moving position changes (FWD to MID and MID to DEF) ae advantageous because the more defensively a player is listed, the more points they get for goals and clean sheets however this can be a double edged sword when goals conceded are taken into account. Defenders who concede a high amount of goals can easily have points taken away from them every time they concede an even goal in a game.
There are 10 players who have had their position changed for the 2019/20 season. Let’s see how their 2018/19 point totals for last season would have changed if they were listed as their new 2019/20 position:
|Player||Club||Old Pos||18/19 Points||New Pos||18/19 Points with New Pos||Diff|
Notable position changes:
DARK HORSE: Oleksandr Zinchenko: Man City / DEF / £5.5m
Previously listed as a MID, Zinchenko is one of the largest beneficiaries of the position changes. He kept nine clean sheets last season but they only gained him nine points last season. Now listed as a DEF, those nine clean sheets would have gained him 36 points, a +27 point swing!
Zinchenko started most of Man City’s games in the latter half of last season. If you think this will continue into the new campaign, he should be worth considering as a budget way into the Man City defence.
Matt Ritchie: Newcastle United / DEF / £5.5m
How on earth is Ritchie a defender?! Yes, he played a few games at left back last season but his natural position is as an attacking midfielder! Ritchie takes a considerable amount of set-pieces for the magpies, but now that they’ve sold their two most prolific strikers, will there be anyone good enough in the box to put these crosses home?
Ritchie’s 2018/19 adjusted points total to a defender has seen him massively gain from the amount of clean sheets Newcastle kept last season. With no more Rafa Benitez, it’s hard to imagine Newcastle being as defensively sound as they were last season. This could cause Ritchie to lose as many points as he gains from being listed as a defender, however if they do manage to steady ship, Ritchie could well be worth a punt.
ONE TO WATCH: Wilfried Zaha: Crystal Palace / MID / £7.0m
I don’t think many of us saw this position change coming. Often paired with a big man up front, Zaha lead the line for Palace last season and scored 10 goals in the process. Alongside an extra point per goal and a point per clean sheet, Zaha’s position change could be one of the most influential in the game this year. He is heavily rumoured to be moving away from Selhurst Park to Arsenal in this transfer window. Regardless of if it comes off or not, Zaha will play a talismanic role in whichever team he plays for next season. He is one of the nicest picks in the mid-priced midfielders tier – one for your gameweek 1 squad?
HEADLINER: Ayoze Perez: Leicester City / MID / £6.5m
Perez scored 12 Premier League goals last season, in what proved to be his most fruitful top flight campaign in history. His recent form, coupled with a move to Leicester could prove to be one of the FPL bargains of the season. Perez is a huge beneficiary of his position change as he would have been the joint 8th highest scoring midfielder in the game last season if he was listed as one, scoring more points than Eriksen, Son, Sane, Richarlison and Bernardo Silva in the process. Nobody who would have scored higher than him is priced as cheap as Perez so he’s worth a punt. Having paid £30 million for him, it’s hard to think Leicester won’t play him every week. Is it too good to be true? I hope not!
TIME UP? Diogo Jota & Gerard Deulofeu: Wolves & Watford / FWD / £6.5m
Both Jota and Deulofeu were nice mid-priced midfielders last season and were very popular picks throughout the season, both of which came good during the second half of the season. As previously mentioned, attacking position changes are never as juicy as is proven here. Both players have lost around 20 points due to their position changes as they now get less points for goals and no points for clean sheets. Having scored 9 and 10 goals respectively last season, there is still value there to be had but compared to last season, the appeal isn’t there as much.
I thought this might have been the case when Firmino changed from a midfielder to a forward however he’s still proven to be a valuable FPL player. Maybe the same will occur here?
Is that all?
Make sure you keep up to date with position changes on the football pitch. Mo Salah is listed as a midfielder but regularly plays up front, as does Son Heung Min and Richarlison. No doubt there will be more throughout the season!
Written by Hello FPL (@HelloFPL)