Fantasy Premier League Gameweek 33: Tottenham stars boast big potential
The following Fantasy Premier League advice is tailored toward players of Togga's Perfect XI. It's a weekly game in which every Premier League player is eligible to be selected into a 4-4-2 formation. There is no salary cap, no squad restrictions and you pick a fresh XI every week.
A number of shocked selections, or rather non-selections, left Fantasy Premier League managers scrambling to field a full squad in Gameweek 32. However, many of the real-life replacements for dropped stars proved exceptional value. Notably, Tottenham's Kieran Trippier and Middlesbrough's Danny Ayala both made last week's Perfect XI while filling in for first-choice teammates. While a Plan B is provided here, if one of your selections gets dropped late on, it's worth considering his real-life replacement for your fantasy lineup.
Selecting the Perfect XI each week isn't an easy task and even the best-laid plans can use a Plan B, so we've provided alternatives for each position. Those designated (d) are differentials–players we expect will be owned by fewer than 5% of FPL managers this week. Togga has added "Own %" to its app so differentials are based on players' ownership percentage at the time of writing. You can check for updates when you set your squad.
Jordan Pickford (vs. West Ham)
Key Stats: Tom Heaton leads the EPL in saves with 120, and Pickford sits second on 108. But it is Pickford who has posted a remarkable 4.9 saves per 90 minutes. For comparison, Wayne Hennessey has played the same 1,980 minutes as Pickford, but has only 72 saves–still the most for any other player with fewer than 2,000 minutes played–a full 36 fewer than the Sunderland man. The Black Cats' defense has been poor lately, allowing the goalkeeper to post six or more saves in three straight.
Plan B: Lee Grant (d; vs. Hull); Hugo Lloris (vs. Bournemouth); Wayne Hennessey (d; vs. Leicester)
Grant was our stay away' a week ago as he faced a potentially high-powered Liverpool lineup. This week the Potters host a markedly worse attack in the visiting Tigers. Hull City has scored just eight away goals all season–worst in the EPL–and were blanked by Stoke in the reverse fixture in Gameweek 9. Grant may need to make fewer than a handful of saves and is a good value for a clean sheet.
Kyle Walker (vs. Bournemouth); Leighton Baines (vs. Burnley); Patrick van Aanholt (d; vs. Leicester); Shkrodan Mustafi (d; at Middlesbrough)
Key Stats: Van Aanholt has a puncher's chance of returning from injury this weekend. If he does, he'll face a Foxes team against which he set season highs in key passes (five) and successful crosses (three). While he is not in top performers on a points-per-match basis, his penchant for goals (four) and the odd assist (one) mean he's capable of posting a top score in any given week.
Plan B: Phil Jagielka (d; vs. Burnley); Martin Olsson (d; at Watford); Kieran Tripper (d; vs. Bournemouth); Erik Pieters (d; vs. Hull)
Trippier deserves a permanent spot in this section, as the once FPL superstar has been relegated to spot-starring duty at White Hart Lane. Deputizing occasionally for Walker, Trippier continues to impress in limited minutes and is a prime example of a real-life reserve who is a fantasy starter when he plays. If Trippier gets another start this weekend, expect fireworks.
Dele Alli (vs. Bournemouth); Wilfred Zaha (d; vs. Leicester); Robert Snodgrass (d; at Sunderland); Philippe Coutinho (at West Brom)
Key Stats: Snodgrass has not settled well in London. After remarkable contributions for Hull City, it took him 10 matches to tally his first assist with West Ham. Recent numbers are trending in the right direction and he has at least one key pass in four straight. During his time in Hull part of his value was quality tackling, and his three tackles won against Swansea last weekend marked his first match with more than one tackle since his move.
Plan B: Son Hueng-Min (vs. Bournemouth); Manuel Lanzini (d; at Sunderland); Leroy Sane (d; at Southampton); Kevin Mirallas (d; vs. Burnley)
Manchester City has an embarrassment of attacking riches, a fact that cuts both ways for fantasy managers. While there are plenty of points available, it can be difficult to predict which player will reap the reward in any given week. This split in ownership turns big names into value plays and provides a differential opportunity for one or more from Pep Guardiola's squad each week. Raheem Sterling, David Silva or Yaya Toure could easily be in your squad this week without raising any eyebrows.
Harry Kane (vs. Bournemouth); Romelu Lukaku (vs. Burnley)
Key Stats: Kane made a cameo off the bench in Spurs 4-0 win over Watford in Gameweek 32 and should start in Gameweek 33. The Spurs' striker is lethal at home, scoring 14 goals at White Hart Lane this season. Kane missed the first clash between these sides during a five-match injury absence, but he showed little rust last time, hitting for three goals in his first two matches back. Expect plenty of chance against Burlney who are winless in 16 away trips with a poor -21 goal differential.
Plan B: Troy Deeney (d; vs. Swansea); Jermain Defoe (d; vs. West Ham); Alexis Sanchez (at Middlesbrough); Roberto Firmino (at West Brom)
Defoe hasn't scored in seven league matches. Not coincidentally, Sunderland has not scored in seven league matches. The England forward has 14 of Sunderland's 24 goals and no other Black Cat has scored more than three (Victor Anichebe). He's also assisted three, giving him a hand in 17 of 24. Defoe has little value if he doesn't score, so this is play purely on the hope that he's due and hits a brace against the Hammers.