This weekly article profiles budget FPL players that you may wish to consider for selection in your Fantasy Premier League squads when looking to enable funds to be spent elsewhere in your team.
Defenders (max £4.5m)
Diego Rico (£4.2m) vs Watford (A)
Having started the season at the rock bottom price of £4.0m, the Spaniard is the cheapest defender in FPL with likely playing time in the future. I still have a doubt over the starts of the now injured Martin Kelly (£4.1m) at Crystal Palace with Mamadou Sakho as competition.
With Bournemouth’s other fit left-back, Lloyd Kelly, sitting on the bench for their last two fixtures, Rico can now be safely regarded as first choice. Quizzed on Rico’s recent impact, Eddie Howe said:
“I have been very impressed in recent weeks.”
The below heatmap from his brilliant match against Norwich on Saturday shows how far stationed he was in the Canaries’ own half.
Rico is also on free kick (both direct and indirect) and corner duties, which should mean that he adds to his attacking returns of two assists.
The Cherries kept their first clean sheet of the season on Saturday with Rico picking up two bonus points. Expect more bonus points as he averages the team’s highest amount of key passes (2.17) per 90 minutes.
As the ultimate budget enabler, he can benched in any gameweek but upcoming fixtures against Watford this Saturday, Newcastle away (gameweek 12), Wolves home (13) and Crystal Palace away (16) leaves Rico owners with realistic hopes of either a clean sheet or attacking return, if not both.
Adam Webster (£4.4m) vs Everton (H)
The English centre-back is the cheapest starting defender at Brighton with a return of six points or more in half of the games he has played in. I think he can be relied upon for clean sheets and perhaps another headed goal, which makes his £0.1m price drop even more appealing.
The Seagulls are at the AMEX for three of their next four with Norwich City (gameweek 11) and Leicester City (13) next to visit after the Toffees.
Everton and Norwich have each scored just once on their travels so far this season whilst Leicester are actually second from bottom in xG (2.21) from away matches of all Premier League teams.
Midfielder – Youri Tielemans (£6.4m) vs Southampton (A)
The young Belgian has been so impressive since arriving at Leicester City in January with a tally of five each for both goals and assists.
He is normally stationed as part of an advanced central midfield duo in a 4-1-4-1 formation with indirect free kick and corner duties. Tielemans is an instinctive shooter with the joint second highest amount of shots from outside the box amongst all league players until now.
The Foxes’ have an incredible fixture run until gameweek 18 (Man City), which means that ownership of a Leicester attacker should be highly considered during this time.
Tielemans is actually outscoring James Maddison (£7.2m) with the latter recently suffering from an troublesome ankle, so he is a credible alternative to those unable to buy Jamie Vardy (£9.1m).
Friday evening’s visit to the St Mary’s promises goals for Leicester with the Saints yet to keep a clean sheet at home so far in the 2019/20 season.