There’s a lot of FPL Wildcard discussion going on in twitter, so I decided to publish some wildcard picks as well. These selections are based on the FPL fixture tracker (as usual), which you can find from here.
Goalkeepers and defence
I have been writing about Manchester United defence in every FPL preview this season. MUFC has been the number one team since GW 1 and this is not going to change anytime soon. Red Devils have had fantastic fixtures in the opening gameweeks and this run doesn’t stop until GW 8, when they travel to Anfield. United defence line has been also cemented to Valencia-Blind-Jones-Bailly quartet making it easy to pick the player(s) you want. I’d personally go with two United defenders, or one with DDG. Remember: a clean sheet is as valuable as a goal for an attacker.
Southampton has also been the defence choice in the early season and Saints have rewarded the faithful with two clean sheets. GW 4 fixture is excellent, but that is followed by three weak ones before they meet Newcastle and WBA at home. I’d keep still one Southampton defender (or Forster) in the team.
Picture: Frasier Forster has delivered in FPL so far.
You don’t want to pick players from Chelsea and Everton right now – just look at the horrible fixtures coming up. Everton will be an excellent choice for defenders starting GW 6, when they have three juicy fixtures in a row.
If you are looking for cheaper options you can rotate very nicely with Stoke and Swansea or Brighton. Stoke has great fixtures at GW 5+7+9 while Swansea and Brighton have nice potential at GW 4+6+8.
WBA has also been a good CS source in the opening rounds. Albion still have nice fixtures coming up and three out of four next gameweeks should bring at least one CS. I’d keep Hegazi (or other WBA defenders) in the team for now but possibly dump them after GW 5. Newcastle fixtures are also good for the next three gameweeks and Magpies have certainly players almost nobody else picks right now.
Note: I don’t like the next four Man City fixtures at all, so I’d consider City defenders at GW 8, where they have some nice matches.
Midfield and attack
One thing you should remember in attack: Manchester United has nowhere near the best potential. If you want to pick Lukaku or Pogba due to the classic form over fixtures reasoning, that’s fine. You might also have Lukaku for tactical reasons (because everyone else has him).
I don’t like this angle myself and I’m picking the players based on their potential. There’s a MASSIVE difference between Spurs/Man City vs Man United. Those United fixtures are great for clean sheets but I don’t see many goals being scored against teams like Stoke, Everton and Southampton. Remember that fixtures have been very easy so far and it’ll get much tougher now.
I’m personally stacked with three Spurs players: Alli + Eriksen + Kane. Especially Kane has been doing everything but the goals so far and sooner or later he’s going to have a few hattricks. The next fixture vs Everton is a bit tough one but it’s followed by some wonderful potential.
Picture: Kevin De Bruyne is not currently worth his price tag.
Manchester City is also a good source for goals but the line-up dilemma disturbs me. Last round Aguero was shockingly benched over Jesus. Now with Sterling suspended he’d start against Liverpool, but I have my reservations in general. If you have no fear for Pep’s rotation then City offers nice attacking potential for you. The best midfield option is for David Silva, who has also given attacking returns lately.
One potentially overlooked team is West Ham. The fixture tracker shows the have the 7th best attacking potential of all teams in the upcoming 6 gameweeks. Everyone’s forgotten already players like Michail Antonio for example. You might want to look at Hammers to get some differentials.
If you are looking for cheaper options there’s a great rotation possibility between Bournemouth and Burnley. Bournemouth have nice GW5+7 fixtures while Burnley meets Palace, Huddersfield and West Ham at home at GW 4+6+8. Look no further than Robbie Brady, who has the joint most crosses in the league and is a bargain to get. Bournemouth is more difficult, since the team has struggled in attack so far. Defoe and King feel way too expensive right now so I’d gamble with some of their midfielders.
One team you should not forget is Arsenal. Nobody likes Gunners right now but they have much higher goal potential than Manchester United or Liverpool. Four out of next five fixtures are fantastic ones. I wouldn’t pick Alexis just yet and Xhaka is a ridiculous choice with his 15.6% selected percentage. 7M man Ramsey (3.1%) is my favourite pick. Alexis would be a real differential, but his 11.9M price tag is so high for a player with his status.
Here’s one wildcard team based on the previous suggestions.
There are lots of variations in defence, where I picked DDG on goal and Jones from the United back four. Then we have one Southampton and one WBA defender and the previously mentioned STK/SWA rotation.
On midfield, we have the BOU/BUR rotation with two Spurs players and David Silva. Chicarito is picked from previously mentioned WHU and then Hurricane of course. This selection left 8.9M money for the third striker and Firmino is the best bet in that category.
If you don’t like the idea of leaving Lukaku and Mkhitaryan/Pogba out you can do this: change Jones to Stephens for example and then you can switch Kane+Silva or Alli+Eriksen to Lukaku+Pogba. You can also do Alli+Firmino+X to Lukaku+Pogba+X, where X is some existing player you downgrade a bit.
Image credit: iStock / Chris Hepburn