I’ve teamed up with my wonderful other half, Emma, to answer the community’s hottest FPL questions with regard to the upcoming final FPL Gameweek of the season
Welcome back to our ‘Community Questions’ series where I (Simon), usually have my say on the communities conundrums in an attempt to provide a different perspective, or perhaps some statistical information or insight some of you may not have thought about.
I set up a thread and asked the community what questions they had ahead of Gameweek 38 and I’ve picked the interesting ones, or the questions that apply to a wider majority, to feature on this article where myself and the missus have teamed up to provide you with our own answers.
Emma joined the FPL Twitter community following on from her love of sports and started playing FPL in the 16/17 season. She has been a part of the FPL Twitter community now for around 2 years and it is where we actually met each other (albeit virtually) and decided to arrange a date to meet in real life, where we challenged the strength of our heart rates and did the Scarefest (for those who don’t know, it’s where actors dress up as zombies and chase you around dark mazes… ) in Alton Towers – the rest is an extremely fond history. She’s having her best season to date and is currently residing in the top 5% of overall players.
If you want to follow her progress, or if you just want to interact with her about FPL, F1 or anything else, you can follow her here >> https://twitter.com/emmamereta
What to do with Doherty, Jiménez and Jota this week?
Simon (FPL Connect): Given Jiménezs’ form, I’d argue he should be benched, but given his large ownership, it could hurt if he does score. In spite of that though, I would still bench him and play Jota. He’s in better form FPL points wise and statistically, as Adam Hopcroft displays here:
Doherty is a tough one. I would have to know who the other options are on your bench but I’d be inclined to start him based on the attacking return we know he has, but if your other defensive option is a Saints defender who you think will start, then I would probably go with the Saints defender.
Emma: I’m trying to work this out for myself, because I also have all three and have no free transfers left. I think I am a bit too sentimental, as I have had some great scores from all three. It finished 2-0 to Liverpool in their last meeting in the Premier League however, Wolves won 2-1 in their most recent meeting, so it is a game where Wolves assets could get some returns.
I think we have to assume no clean sheet for Doherty, but of course, he is so attacking so there’s always a chance for an attacking return. Doherty and Jota have the same current form rating of 5.4, whilst Jiménez is down at 2.8. So if anyone deserves the bench, surely, looking at it logically, we have to go with Jiménez?
Worth taking a hit on the final GW of the season?
Simon (FPL Connect): I think this very much is dependant on your situation. Obviously we know now that Robbo has a good chance of starting tomorrow after Klopps comments in the presser: “They [Robbo and Henderson] should be fine [for Sunday].” So I think you should hold Robbo.
Son obviously has to go and then beyond that, if you don’t need to take a hit for whatever reason, be it to catch a ML leader or to rid yourself of a poor punt (like my Llorente punt for example), then I wouldn’t bother with the hit and just take Son out.
Emma: Klopp is hopeful that Robertson will play – so personally, I’d keep him. 5 assists in the last 5 gameweeks for TAA though (2 assists in the last 5 for Robertson), so if you wanted to upgrade Son, then you could ‘downgrade’ Robbo to TAA and use the extra cash for a higher upgrade on Son if you don’t already own TAA. But if it’s for a hit, I’d keep Robertson and then just consider bringing someone else in for Son.
We know Son will definitely not be playing, and there are some good midfielders that could return more than the 4 points you’ll take for the hit. I’d be looking at Fraser (v Crystal Palace, form 8.0, 1 goal and 4 assists in his last 4 matches, 2nd highest amount of assists this season behind Hazard), Babel (v Newcastle, form 7.0, 3 goals and 1 assist in his last 5 matches) or Redmond (form 5.0, 1 goal in the last game v Huddersfield, 2 goals 1 assist in his last 5 matches, Huddersfield away form W1, D3, L14).
Priority player structure on a Free Hit?
Simon (FPL Connect): I think you have the overall structure there nailed down. Certainly 6 from Liverpool and Manchester City given their motivations. I would be going for the same City trio and I’d go TAA, Mané and Salah for Liverpool, as I expect Wolves to score.
Beyond that, it really comes down to personal preference. Vardy and Redmond are good shouts and I would look to own a couple in the Palace and Bournemouth game, as my thinking is that it’s going to be an open and entertaining game, so I’d look at Fraser and Wilson/Zaha. I also wouldn’t rule out going with Lucas Moura, as Spurs, unless they play some reserves, don’t really have another option to replace him given Son is suspended. If you wanted an uber differential, Mason Greenwood might not be a bad punt (will talk more on this in the last question).
Emma: Looking at my own squad, I am pretty envious that you have your free hit to use this Gameweek! I have 3 City – the 3 you mentioned – so I agree with you on those. I also agree that 3 Liverpool is the way to go and I would advocate going with 2 attackers (Mané and Salah) and 1 defender (TAA), as Wolves are a dangerous team and have a decent chance of scoring.
Fraser, Babel, Zaha all viable choices, but I’d personally go with Fraser in midfield. GK – Mark Travers could be worth looking at. FWDs – Wilson or Rondon.
Everton players viable?
Simon (FPL Connect): I think it is, but I’d literally only look at Gylfi Sigurdsson from Everton in MID. The obvious motivations are there for him against his old team and with him being on all set-pieces, he’s a natural goal and assist threat. I wouldn’t rule out looking at Spurs though. Lucas Moura is still a great option despite their and his, win particular, exertions mid-week. They will want to finish strong in front of their own fans, ahead of their UCL final.
I’d also probably look toward Paul Pogba, despite United’s poor form, for a Son replacement. Even with the poor Huddersfield performance last time out, he hit the bar twice and got into the box frequently. On penalties too and in front of their own fans for the last time against a week defensive team, he’s still a great option.
Emma: Spurs will be on a high after their midweek antics, so it should be a good match. Even without Son, if they turn up and play well, then they could still win comfortably. The last time Everton took on Spurs it was 6-2 to Spurs. Spurs have recently lost to Bournemouth and West Ham however, they will want to finish their Premier League season on a high.
Everton have managed to keep a clean sheet in 8 of their last 10 matches, so they won’t make it easy for them. It is Lucas Digne that is the form player for Everton with a rating of 8.8, but Sigurdsson (form 5.5) is always worth looking at, against his former team, there’s always that extra motivation in it. So I like Siggy, but I wouldn’t write Spurs off.
Worth selling Hazard after his Europa League exertions?
Simon (FPL Connect): Like Emma, I also have Hazard. I actually brought him in for Mané last week which of course and captained him, which worked well, as Hazard is 11-2 up currently on points but I must admit, I would certainly prefer it the other way around this week if I had the choice, given the 120 mins and penalties Hazard played through against Frankfurt.
I think it’s a bit of a luxury move though. If you literally have no other fires to put out and it’s a free transfer, then I don’t think it’s the worst move, but it could still bite, as I expect him to still play, and if he plays, then he’s the most likely to be involved if Chelsea score. He’s been rested throughout the majority of Chelsea’s Europa League knockout phase, so he should be fresh and there’s no reason he can’t start again in my opinion.
Emma: I have Hazard and I am admittedly a little worried, especially given Sarri’s press conference:
“For sure it will be very difficult for Sunday but we need to consider that our best match, in my opinion, was against Tottenham, three days after 120 minutes in the cup final against Man City. Now it’s more difficult because we played 61 matches… We need to rest.”
So really, it could go either way based on that. They need a rest however, one of their best performances was after they’d played 120mins 3 days before. I AM gutted I don’t have Mané or Salah though, in a must win game for Liverpool.
Having looked at Simon’s Captain Metric article, Salah just edges Mané as the predicted highest scorer (out of Salah, Mané, Agüero & Sterling). But dependant on budget then, yes, personally I think Mané would be a good move. Mané is 2 goals away from equalling Salah’s Premier League tally… so that might motivate him a bit more as well. I am considering Hazard to Mané though, so beware – I am quite good at cursing players.
Which of Rondon, Zaha, Wilson or Jiménez to punt on?
Simon (FPL Connect): Based on the fact that Fulham have defensive momentum at the moment, with just 1 goal conceded in their last 4 games, and Liverpool being extremely solid at Anfield defensively, I’m gonna rule out Rondon and Jiménez.
So that leaves Zaha or Wilson. Both of these options are great, but if I was pushed to choose one, I’d go with Callum Wilson simply because of the 10 goals that Zaha has scored this season, only 1 of them has come at home, whereas Wilson by stark contrast, has picked up huge hauls on the road, most recently a 16 and 15 pointer in their last 2 away games against Southampton and Brighton.
Emma: Rondon – 1 goal and 3 assists in his last 4 matches. Zaha – 2 goals in his last 4 matches. Wilson – currently in top form (8.8), 3 goals and 3 assists in his last 4 matches. Jiménez – out of form, and playing against a Liverpool team who will be desperate to win.
Out of the four, I would probably go for Callum Wilson, just because of his recent form and the fact that Bournemouth can explode and score a lot of goals.
Who to start out of Jiménez or Yoshida?
Simon (FPL Connect): I’d be a little nervous of a start for Yoshida, given Hasenhüttl has expressed his desire to change things up and was playing the team news very close to the chest in his press conference. But I guess, Yoshida is unlikely to come on if he doesn’t start, so I’d go with Yoshida, as I rate his chances of a clean sheet higher than Jiménezs’ chances of an attacking return and if he doesn’t start, Jimi comes in.
Emma: Jiménez is out of form. Yoshida was not mentioned in the press conference despite him being yellow flagged on the Official FPL site. So there is a chance he might not play, but if he does, then playing against the team that have scored the least amount of goals this season should, in theory, be the best chance of a clean sheet!
Mason Greenwood a good final day punt option?
Simon (FPL Connect): Well well well, I like this Alex. The young guns have trained with the first team this week and Ole has told us in his presser that he’s going to give a few of them an opportunity to start against Cardiff at Old Trafford, and given he’s our most promising talent, I think it’s a logical bet he gets the nod.
At youth level, he’s played 26 games, scored 26 and assisted on 8 occasions, just to give a level of the kind of talent he has. More than that, he was voted Jimmy Murphy Youth Team Player of the Year for 2018/19. Against a poor defensive Cardiff team, a young, hungry rising talent like Greenwood could be a cracking differential on the last day, but I would say, only if there are no other fires to put out and I’d probably say only for a free transfer. Not sure I’d advocate risking it for a hit.
Emma: Anything can happen in the last Gameweek, but I’d probably not risk it personally. I’ll leave that question to the Manchester United fan 😉