Premier League action resumes after the final international break of the year. This week, we’ll be paying extra close attention to new managerial appointments after four clubs hired new managers since the start of November.
As always, we’ll be using our popular FPL Fixture Tracker to help us!
FPL GW 12 Tips – Attack
We kick things off with Manchester City who have an xG of over 2.00 for each of the next four fixtures.
As always, the trouble with City is the inescapable ‘Pep roulette’. Arguably, the current standout attacking asset for the defending champions is a defender. João Cancelo (6.5m) added two more assists to his tally, taking him to four after last gameweek. Only three other City assets have produced more attacking returns, and none of them have profited from their seven clean sheets as much as Cancelo.
One of those three players is compatriot Bernardo Silva (7.1m). The Portuguese international is back to his very best and has started every game since gameweek 2. Silva has three attacking returns in his last four games and has been subbed just twice. Given his affordable price, he may be a safe(ish) route to avoid rotation in the near future.
If you’re looking to spend a bit more on City assets, Phil Foden (8.3m) and Gabriel Jesus (8.7m) are the obvious candidates right now. Like Silva, the pair have played their way into Guardiola’s good books and look set to get plenty of game time over next few fixtures. Each have averaged over 5.0 points per game and only Cancelo has more FPL points for City than Jesus.
Looking further down the xG table, Spurs are unusually high given their goalscoring troubles so far. Only Norich have scored fewer goals than Tottenham in the PL but the arrival of Antonio Conte and a promising set of fixtures will no doubt change that.
Despite looking off-colour for much of the season, Harry Kane (12.2m) could profit from a change of manager and system. The England captain netted seven in two on international duty (albeit against Albania and San Marino), and could carry that confidence into the PL. Meanwhile, Heung-Min Son (10.3) single-handedly carried Tottenham through their poor form and remains a great pick.
Elsewhere, the undeniably talented Dele Alli (6.4m) is a lost cause for many, but could finally regain his form in the no.10 role. However, Alli has a lot of work to do before that happens, so he’s very much in the ‘ones to watch’ bracket for the time being.
Widely praised for their summer recruitment, Aston Villa have nonetheless struggled to replace Jack Grealish’s attacking contributions. With Steven Gerrard now at the helm, Villa could kick things off in style against a Sánchez-less Brighton.
Trying to fit several talented attackers into one team has so far proved difficult, but the absence of Danny Ings through injury could simplify things. Ings has missed the last two and a return date isn’t clear, allowing Ollie Watkins (7.3m) to start through the centre and possibly add to his two league goals.
John McGinn (5.8m) leads the way in terms of midfield points for Villa and is a decent value pick. There are certainly players with higher ceilings in the form of recent signings Emiliano Buendía (6.2m) and Leon Bailey (6.4m), both of which are immensely talented.So far, Bailey has offered the most promise with a goal and three assists, averaging a goal contribution every 72.5 minutes. If he can nail down a place, he may be Villa’s go-to FPL asset.
FPL GW 12 Tips – Defence
The Blues are top of the league, joint-top in the clean sheets table and out ahead in the expected clean sheets chart.
Anyone who jumped on Chelsea’s wing-backs early has profited enormously over the past few weeks. Reece James (5.9m) has scored three and assisted one in his last three whilst Ben Chilwell (6.0) has three goals in five. Anyone looking at their minutes may be worried but there is a good explanation for this. Marcos Alonso kept Chilwell benched earlier in the season but he is now sidelined through injury, whilst James dealt with his own injuries and suspensions. Their respective spots in the team are assured on current form.
Antonio Rüdiger (5.9m) and Thiago Silva (5.5m) are safe, reliable choices but offer far less attacking potential than James and Chilwell.
Antonio Conte’s PL return saw a clean sheet against Everton ahead of Leeds, Burnley, Brentford, Norwich, and Brighton in the next five.
Spurs’ new manager immediately switched to his favoured three-at-the-back formation in his first Premier League game, deploying Emerson Royal (4.9m) and Sergio Reguilón (5.0m) on the flanks. The latter is the most interesting prospect given Spaniard’s attacking ability – Reguilón managed six assists last season and already has two this. With the defence sure to tighten up, Reguilón could be worth an early gamble.
Eric Dier (4.5m) is a cheaper route into the Spurs defence but offers little in attack. If you’re looking to make savings, Ben Davies (4.4m) has started the last two and could function similarly to Cesar Azpilicueta when he played as a wide centre-back under Conte.
The Canaries make their first appearance of the season in our previews but it’s hardly on merit. If you’re looking to save some money and fancy a differential, Dean Smith will take charge against Southampton, Wolves, and Newcastle in the next three.
Incoming managers for relegation-threatened teams often look to tighten up first. Two 0-0 draws shows Norwich are capable, so keep an eye out for Max Aarons (4.3m), Brandon Williams (4.0m), and Andrew Omobamidele (3.9m).