Almost a year removed from when most of us were conjuring up initial FPL drafts at a frightening rate, the conclusion of the 2019/20 Premier League Fantasy Football campaign is finally upon us.
In a season full of hasty wildcards, dilly dallying over the use of the bench boost and wondering how the f*ck one can even surpass the 100-point mark in a single gameweek, there’s just one final push in a bid for some to claim FPL bragging rights.
It’s been a slog, but we’re nearly there. Congratulations to everyone who didn’t ditch their side by September and stuck with their group of players amid the coronavirus crisis. It brought us all closer together.
Nevertheless, we’ve got a full schedule heading our way on Sunday afternoon as Chelsea, Manchester United and Leicester vie for two Champions League places, while Aston Villa, Bournemouth and Watford fight for just one survival spot at the other end. I heard the Europa League race could get tasty as well…but who really cares?
From an FPL perspective, here’s 90min‘s preview of the final round of Premier League fixtures.
Hugo Lloris: A shot-stopper who often fails to receive the recognition he deserves due to his uncanny knack of committing high-profile errors, Lloris has been majestic since the restart and a major factor in Spurs’ statistical defensive improvements. He’s kept four clean sheets in his last eight and a trip to Crystal Palace – held scoreless in their last three – rounds off Spurs’ tumultuous season.
Pepe Reina: Sure, Nick Pope would be a wise choice as well but Reina represents a wildcard alternative. The Villa defence has tightened up exponentially since the restart – especially after their 3-0 defeat to United – and have conceded just once in their last three. Reina will be looking to continue his fine form between the sticks against a West Ham side playing for very little.
David de Gea: I don’t think the form of this man could be colder. Get rid.
James Tarkowski: Burnley have been quite brilliant defensively since their 5-0 drubbing at Manchester City in their first game back post-lockdown. Sean Dyche’s plucky Clarets have conceded just three times since the Etihad mauling, keeping four clean sheets in the process. The form of Tarkowski has been exceptional and the centre-half represents a relatively cheap option at £5.5m.
Eric Garcia: Pep Guardiola may have finally found a reliable partner for Aymeric Laporte at the Etihad. Garcia has been brilliant since the restart; so composed in everything that he does, and is poised to start once more as the Cityzens take on a hapless Norwich side this Sunday. It’s almost guaranteed points for the £4.5m man.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka: The former Palace defender’s been a popular choice for FPL owners this term as a result of United’s stoutness, but things have started to unravel in the defensive third for United in recent weeks. They allowed Southampton to score twice, Chelsea bag three and Paul Pogba’s bid to protect his face ensured they weren’t able to keep a clean sheet against the Hammers. It’d be wise to ditch Wan-Bissaka, who offers little in terms of attacking production.
Christian Pulisic: I mean, have you seen what this guy’s done since the restart? The Blues may have almost accidentally stumbled across the heir to Eden Hazard’s throne at Stamford Bridge. The American made a huge impact off the bench with a goal and an assist at Anfield on Wednesday night, with Frank Lampard surely granting Pulisic the opportunity to add to his nine-goal haul this term from the outset against Wolves.
Trezeguet: The Egypt international ended his 17-game goal drought with a brace against Palace on matchday 35 and bagged Villa’s all-important winner with a well-taken drive against Arsenal midweek. Trezeguet will be heading into the Villans’ crucial clash at West Ham with the utmost confidence and his tame £5.2m price makes the winger an intriguing prospect for the final day.
Bernardo Silva: With David Silva making his final Premier League appearance and Kevin De Bruyne chasing Thierry Henry’s single-season assist record, Bernardo seems like the most likely candidate to drop out of the City side that breezed past Watford 4-0 on Tuesday evening – where he played as more of a free eight in Pep’s 4-3-3. The Portuguese international may well enter the fray later on against the Canaries, but his recent production – three goal contributions since the restart – suggest he won’t have too much of an impact from an FPL perspective.
Harry Kane: That’s right, he’s back, baby. After looking a little jaded following his return from a hamstring tear last month, the England skipper has looked much more like the 2017 iteration of himself in recent weeks. His performance in the North London Derby was impressive and selfless, with his reward being a pair of braces in the two games that followed at Newcastle and Leicester. Kane was simply majestic against the Foxes and there’s no doubting he’ll be hungry to round off a frustrating campaign in emphatic fashion at a slumping Crystal Palace.
Marcus Greenwood: It’s quite frankly absurd that nearly 75% of you don’t have this man in your squads. Although his price has risen amid a stellar run of form, he’s still up for grabs at a tame £4.8m and he’s destined for a start in United’s crunch clash at Leicester this weekend. Greenwood’s scored five times since the restart and netted the Red Devils’ equaliser against West Ham last time out. An absolute sharpshooter.
Roberto Firmino: He may have broken his Anfield duck with a fantastically-taken header against Chelsea on Wednesday night, but we fancy Jurgen Klopp to rotate for the Reds’ trip to Newcastle at the weekend. With Takumi Minamino and Divock Origi both capable of spearheading the Liverpool attack – despite their differing profiles – the genius false nine is in line for a rest on Tyneside.