Milivojevic vs Zaha – FPL Dilemma

We still over a month away from the start of the Premier League season, however many of us are already considering who to bring into the midfield of our fantasy teams. One popular dilemma is between Crystal Palace’s £7.0m midfielders, Luka Milivojevic and Wilfried Zaha.

Crystal Palace have got a reasonable run of fixtures in the first 4 gameweeks, playing 2 of the newly promoted teams in the form of Sheffield United and Aston Villa. Coupled with the fantasy potential these players have, Zaha to be the second highest owned midfielder at 35.1% TSB, whilst Milivojevic is the ninth highest at 15.1% TSB.

Generally when Fantasy Premier League managers think of Crystal Palace the big names that came to our mind last season were Luka Milivojevic, Wilfried Zaha and Aaron Wan Bissaka, but now that Aaron Wan Bissaka has left for Manchester United after a very successful season in the 2018/19 campaign, the two best Crystal Palace options look to be Zaha and Milivojevic, but who should you chose?

Luka Milivojevic

Luka Milivojevic has been a great signing since he arrived in the winter transfer window back in 2017 and has been a real fan favourite at Selhurst Park. After a lot of brilliant performances, the Serbian went onto captain the team, whilst also becoming their set piece specialist. Milivojevic is the main man when it comes to taking penalties and free kicks, and at £7.0m he seems to be a pretty good price for a player who has been so impressive.

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Last season Milivojevic managed to score 166 points which was more than all the other Crystal Palace players and just above his teammate Wilfried Zaha who had 143 points. He also finished the 2018/19 season as the top scorer at Palace with 12 goals, whilst also contributing 2 assists.

Wilfried Zaha

Wilfried Zaha started his career at Crystal Palace, advancing to their first team from their academy in 2010, subsequently transferred to Manchester United in 2013 for a fee of £10 million. After a somewhat unsuccessful season at Manchester United, which was also partly spent on loan at Cardiff, Zaha returned to Crystal Palace on a season long loan before rejoining the club on a permanent basis in February 2015.

As mentioned, Zaha is currently selected by 35.1% of Fantasy Premier League managers, more than his teammate Luka Milivojevic. Zaha scored 10 goals last campaign, in a season which was not his greatest, whilst also contributing 11 assists. Last season Zaha was classified as a forward on FPL, but has been moved back to midfield ahead of the 2019/20 season giving him an extra point for a goal and clean sheet. If he was classified as midfielder last season he would have scored a total of 164, just two points short of Milivojevic’s total.

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Zaha and Milivojevic are two very different players, whilst both may benefit from the introduction of VAR, as last season Zaha won 6 penalties, whilst Mlivojevic scored 10 penalties. That said, here is a comparison between the two midfielders:

Player Luka Milivojevic Wilfried Zaha
Points 166 143
Minutes Played 3420 3057
Goals 12 10
Assists 2 11
Points per match 4.4 4.2
Mins per attacking return 244 146

Whilst it was Milivojevic scoring 23 more points across the season, Zaha managed to have a lower number of minutes per attacking return, but less points per game by 0.2 points.


Zaha may be more of a goalscorer than Milivojevic, with 10 of the Serbian’s goals coming from penalties, but with Luka being in charge of set pieces and the implementation of VAR this season does mean that he is an exciting prospect. There are also various rumours that Zaha is likely to move to Arsenal this summer, so there could be an argument to include both players in your fantasy teams this season.

That said, if Zaha remains at Palace it doesn’t make sense to have two midfielders from a team that finished in the second half of the league last season. With Luka Milivojevic being on penalties and VAR being introduced this season, it may just be worth going with the Serbian this season.

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