With the 2018/19 season having drawn to a close, now seems a good time to look back and see what can be learnt from the previous season in preparation for Newcastle’s dramatic Premier League winning campaign with Kylian Mbappe taking home the golden boot at the same time.
2018/19 Season Analysis
The goalkeeper strategy for FPL usually forms one of two well trodden paths. Either a premium goalkeeper with a cheap bench filler, or 2 mid priced options that rotate well together. So to understand what could potentially be the best way, I have got some stats to narrow down the field to help you choose for the upcoming season.
I have decided to ignore Bournemouth and Southampton as options due to their relative uncertainty surrounding their number 1 choice. Pre season is a great indicator of which player managers prefer, and this will particularly be the case for these two sides.
Of the other 15 FPL starting keepers, we can roughly split these into 2 camps:
Premium – Alisson, Ederson, Kepa, De Gea and Lloris
Mid Price – Likely most others in the list will be at least £4.5m, so fall into this category.
It is no surprise to see Alisson and Ederson top both the clean sheets and points per game tallies, given they are the final line of the 2 best defences in the league. If you were going down the route of 1 premium keeper to set-and-forget, last seasons stats (if value is the same) would point you towards the Liverpool shot stopper.
However, looking at the bigger picture with only 3 slots per FPL team, would you really want 1 of those 3 Liverpool slots taken up by Alisson? Especially when they have a number of great defensive options, who provide both gametime security and the riches going forward. Something that from a defensive point of view could not be said for Man City, with only Laporte potentially being seen as a rotation proof option.
2019/20 Goalkeeper Thoughts
So if the preferred option was a set-and-forget premium, for me it would be Ederson with then at least 1 Liverpool defender being a great option. Of the other 3 premiums, as good as De Gea has been over the years, last year was by far his worst and defensive frailties and constant rotation in front of him won’t help.
Lloris and Kepa are much the same for me, both have the odd mistake in them. A lot depends on summer activity from a Spurs point of view, whether they splash any cash and if Toby Alderweireld stays at the club.
For Chelsea, a lot depends on who is the manager. With too many questions it would be one of the big 2 for me, with the cheap option being Travers from Bournemouth as a punt, suspecting he will be £4m and maybe the number one.
Going for 2 mid price options, with the option of changing between the 2, has previously been my preferred option. However, this does to an extent rely on whose fixtures go well with whose.
From looking at the stats for this season, the stand out performer was Jordan Pickford. Something seemed to click at the back end of the season for Everton, finishing the best non-premium goalkeeper for clean sheets and points per game. Pickford was only 1 of 3 keepers to have made more than 1 penalty save and collected plenty of bonus points.
From the remaining 9, Ryan is of no interest given Brighton’s form and luck in getting over the line last season. Heaton and Burnley could get back to the solid defensive base that got them into Europe 2 seasons back, but again comes with some risk.
Leno in a similar way to De Gea, has nothing in front of him to give any sort of hope of upturn in form. Patricio will be an interesting player to watch along with the other defensive assets, as there is a feeling Europe could be a distraction to Wolves this season.
Of the remaining options, Ben Foster simply concedes too many goals to be an option. This is a negative against the defence as opposed to just him.
Fabianski is already an FPL Hall of Famer over the seasons, however it is again that trust in the managers ability to set up the team correctly and choose the right players in front of him. Having only kept 7 clean sheets throughout the season, you are owning the West Ham stopper mainly for his save and bonus points.
The 3 remaining options are all similar – Dubravka, Guaita and Schmeichel. All of these have managers who know how to set up a team well and build from the back. Each have comparably similar stats and it could come down to their price tag at the start of the season.
I suspect Guaita may be £4.5m with both Dubravka and Schmeichel being £5m. If this is the case for me it is a no brainer, Pickford with Guaita as the 2 mid price options.
If Dubravka was £4.5m and Newcastle invest heavily into new signings over the summer, then he would come into serious consideration. Having kept 11 clean sheets last season and established himself as the number 1, new additions could make him great FPL value.
Norwich, Sheffield United and Aston Villa are the newly promoted sides from the Championship and in turn bring a host of new FPL options. The 3 keepers coming up from the Championship would most probably all be valued around the £4.5m price range, making them affordable options for managers.
Tim Krul – Norwich
Krul conceded 57 goals during last seasons campaign, only keeping 13 clean sheets. Norwich enjoyed a great season, playing an attacking style of play that might see save points as the best way of accumulating for the Dutch shotstopper.
Dean Henderson – Sheffield United
By far the most intriguing option having kept the most clean sheets in the division with 21 from 46 games, only conceding 41 goals. If this Man United and England under 21s loan move is replicated – as expected this season – then him tied in with the Sheffield United defence seems a great value option with the potential to be this seasons Neil Etheridge.
Definitely one to consider.
No set number 1 tied in with 61 goals conceded and only 13 clean sheets would lead you to the conclusion there are better options. The summer transfer window will be an interesting one for Villa, so monitoring their activity would be a wise move.
Taking a watching brief on potential player and manager movement in the coming weeks, initial thoughts are either Ederson and a cheap £4m bench warmer, or choose 2 from Pickford, Dubravka, Guaita and Henderson to give options week in week out.
Thanks for taking the time to read my thoughts, follow me on Twitter @FPLThinker for more insight into the new season.