For many FPL managers, gameweek 34 is the time for them to activate their wildcard and start building a team for the final games. In this article, we have looked at each team and highlighted the best players to own in your wildcard team. This will also provide information for those without a wildcard, as we have looked at the long term and those players who we think will perform.
Like a number of sides, Arsenal have a double gameweek in 35 with a notable home match against Crystal Palace. They do not face a ‘top 6’ side for the rest of the season, but they do have 4 of their 6 matches away.
Arsenal have not kept an away clean sheet this season, and have only won 5 of these 15 matches. Of these away matches, they have some tough games against in-form sides in the likes of Watford, Wolves and Leicester.
Due to the poor away record and the tricky fixtures that they have to face, we don’t value Leno as a good wildcard pick for managers. Priced at £4.9m, we think that he isn’t offering the points potential that both some budget and premium options offer. While Arsenal’s defence leave a lot to desire, there might be some value found in the wing back areas.
Defender – Kolasniac (£5.0m/6.8%)
We have mentioned Kolasniac in our latest podcast and the attacking threat that he brings to the Arsenal side. For us, the priority for FPL defenders is the ‘bread and butter’ clean sheet potential, but for those that don’t value that as highly, he could be a wise pick.
He has registered 7 assists so far this season and averaging 1.56 key passes per 90.
Forwards – Lacazette (£9.4m/11.3%); Aubameyang (£10.9m/19.4%)
While the defence poses question marks over FPL points, the attackers create a gametime headache. Aubameyang has the best points per match (5.5) whereas Lacazette trails on 5 points per match. However, Aubameyang has been benched in 4 of his last 6 league matches while Lacazette has started the last 4.
Both are at risk of rotation and this problem gets worse the further Arsenal get into the Europa League. At £10.9m, Aubameyang looks too expensive to take a risk on his gametime for the remainder of the season. Especially with Lacazette getting more minutes of late, at £9.4m he looks the better option for those that are considering the Arsenal frontmen.
Bournemouth have only picked up 5 points in their last 9 league matches, with the only win coming against relegated Huddersfield. It seems that the players are in that mid table funk, with minds already on the beach.
The Cherries do have a few great budget players that have performed well over the course of the season. However, based on recent form you would be a brave manager to take a punt on owning any of their players. Bournemouth have also collected the majority of their points at home this season, but with only two home matches remaining they might struggle in the other away games. If you are fancying a risk, then these would be our picks:
Midfield – Fraser (£6.3m/23.7%)
Fraser has only produced attacking returns in 1 of his last 12 league matches, and his form has seriously declined. However, on set pieces and averaging over 2 key passes per match over the last 4 league games, he can offer FPL value.
Forwards – King (£6.6m/7.6%); Wilson (£6.6m/17.3%)
Both have been playing together up front for Bournemouth, but like the team, both have been struggling to maintain form. Priced at £6.6m each, they are a budget option however do fall into a competitive striker bracket. We think that there are much better players at this price range, but if you fancy Bournemouth then either of these are the picks.
Brighton have been one of the hot topics for managers, especially those that are playing their wildcards. They have back to back double gameweeks, with the first double being favourable fixtures at home to both Bournemouth and Cardiff. 3 of their 7 league matches are against ‘top 6’ sides, but the other 4 are realistic winnable matches.
Brighton have the best home defensive record outside of the ‘top 6’, conceding 16 goals in 15 matches including 5 clean sheets.
Goalkeeper – Ryan (£4.4m/4.2%)
Outside of the Asian Cup, has played every league minute this season and Brighton’s number 1. At £4.4m, he is a decent budget option for managers and with two double gameweeks could be a great option for managers.
Defenders – Duffy (£4.7m/7.7%); Dunk (£4.3m/3.2%)
Both have been Brighton’s main central defenders this season with Dunk playing 2521 mins and Duffy 2457 mins. Duffy’s £0.3m higher price is justified with his attacking potential, scoring 5 and assisting 2 this season. In comparison, Dunk has only scored 2 goals and got 1 assist.
While triple Brighton defence would be overkill, we think there is defiantly a case to have a double up. Ryan + Duffy would be our pick if you have the available funds, but Dunk provides a cheaper alternative that shouldn’t be ignored.
Unfortunately for Burnley, they face 3 of the ‘top 6’ in their last 5 league matches making their players unattractive FPL assets. They had a great victory against Bournemouth last GW, however at their price there are much better players available for managers.
Similar to Brighton, Cardiff have a double gameweek in 34, away to Burnley and Bournemouth. 4 of their 6 league games come away from home, and they have only won 2 of their 15 away matches scoring only 9 goals.
We don’t see much FPL value in the Cardiff side, both from an attacking or defensive perspective. If you were looking at them as a cheap option for your squad, then we think the only player in contention is their top goalscorer.
Midfielder – Camarasa (£4.5m/2.4%)
Although Cardiff have been in a relegation battle, Camarasa has been their leading light in attack. Scoring 5 goals and assisting 3, although not spectacular, he is the driving force in their team. He also has decent underlying stats considering their league position, averaging 1.44 sh/90 and 1.72 kp/90.
As mentioned, we wouldn’t recommend managers investing in Cardiff players, but if you have £4.5m and looking for double gameweek players he could tick a few boxes.
Chelsea have been one of the most inconsistent teams this season, with their previous two results reflecting that. A lucky win against Cardiff followed by a comfortable 3-0 victory against Brighton didn’t make for good watching at some points for FPL managers.
Chelsea face two notably tough fixtures – Liverpool (A) in GW34 and Man Utd (A) in GW36. They do not have any double gameweeks and only play two home games till the remainder of the season.
The big caveat for Chelsea is the Europa League that they are still competing in, and now the favourites for the competition. Winning this competition looks like their best hope of qualifying for the Champions League next season, therefore rotation could be a factor in the coming weeks.
Midfield – Hazard (£11.1m/32.9%)
Of all the Chelsea players, Hazard is the main man at the club who gets the team clicking. He has scored 14 and assisted 12 league goals, including a goal and assist in GW33. However, as mentioned Chelsea have a mixed bag of fixtures and a rotation risk associated with many of the key men.
We think that at £11.1m he is a premium player with plenty of question marks around, and in turn not the best option. A wildcard squad usually only consists of a handful of premium midfielders, therefore this kind of money needs to be spent wisely. We think that the likes of City, Tottenham and Liverpool offer both the form and fixtures to invest this premium money into better options.
Crystal Palace picked up another good victory in GW33, this time against Newcastle with ANOTHER Milivojevic penalty – it’s getting ridiculous now! Palace have a tough few fixtures, playing Man City and Arsenal in GW34 and 35, naturally making their assets less attractive.
Their final three fixtures are quite nice however, and although Crystal Palace players won’t be in our wildcard side, they are ones to watch in the final gameweeks.
Marco Silva was being booed by the fans no more than a few months ago, with a call for his sacking. Fast forward 3 wins on the bounce, including impressive wins against both Chelsea and Arsenal, and suddenly their players have become FPL value.
The big change is their defensive displays, keeping 5 clean sheets in their last 6 league matches, conceding only 2 goals. Everton’s fixtures are a mixed bag, but with their current form they shouldn’t be overlooked as potential wildcard options.
Defender – Digne (£5.2m/8.2%)
The Frenchman has been both the hero and villain throughout this season, returning a range of FPL points. He has registered 3 double digit returns – including a 17-point haul – but also 3 negative points, 2 of which were back to back.
Lately however, it seems that his points have become consistent averaging 6 points per game over the last 6 league matches. We think he is the best defensive FPL option for managers, and while they have some tricky fixtures, Digne could be a differential pick for managers.
Fulham might be a surprising inclusion in our wildcard analysis, and rightly so as they have been awful this season. However, Fulham do have a great run in until the end of the season, with 3 of their remaining 5 league games at home.
Defensively they offer no FPL value, having officially the worst defensive record of all the sides. For us, we feel like picking their players is a last resort for managers but some of their options might be playing for the summer transfer window. The likes of Mitrovic will not want to be playing Championship football next year, so it will be interesting to see if players begin to try and attract teams ahead of their relegation.
Not too much to say about Huddersfield, avoid.
Leicester have been one of the form teams over the past month, with the appointment of Rodgers having a big influence. Vardy and co have been important FPL assets for managers, with the frontman scoring 6 goals in his last 5 league matches.
Unfortunately, from an FPL perspective, their long term fixtures are unappealing even with their recent form. They have two great fixtures coming up against Newcastle and West Ham where managers can find some great FPL value. If you do choose to own Leicetser assets, it might be worth considering an exit strategy before their GW36 fixture.
Midfielders – Tielemans (£6.1m/2.5%); Maddison (£6.9m/7.9%)
Both players have thrived under Rodgers, offering gametime security and attacking potential. At their price ranges, they are in current form the best FPL picks for managers. However, with the fixtures mentioned we think there might be better teams and players. It’s the typical case of fixtures v form and which one managers value more in their wildcard squads. There is no doubting the current form Leicester are in!
Forward – Vardy (£9.2m/13.1%)
We think that if you are going to choose form over fixtures, then Vardy is the best attacking asset to include in your wildcard squads. His goalscoring has been highlighted and at £9.2m he is in direct competition with the likes of Lacazette for that forward spot.
His form shouldn’t be ignored, especially with the upcoming two fixtures.
Liverpool don’t have a double gameweek like some sides, but do have great long term fixtures. The Reds still have the best defensive record in the league, however have not kept a clean sheet in their last 4 league matches.
The stats are good for Liverpool, they face both Cardiff and Huddersfield who have conceded the 2nd and 3rd most goals. Both have also been very light offensively,
Goalkeeper – Alisson (£5.9m/23.6%)
The most expensive goalkeeper option and rightly so having conceded the least goals in the league. However, at his price range we think there is better value in the defenders and the money should be spent in other areas. Alisson has a lower ceiling due to the little shots he faces, whereas the full backs offer attacking potential at a similar price range.
Defender – Alexander-Arnold (£5.5m/20%); Robertson (£6.8m/37.3%)
Both players have been once again great FPL options this season – although TAA has had his injury problems. If money is no option, then Robertson is the best option for sure. He is guaranteed game time throughout the fixtures and with 10 assists, leads the charts for defenders.
Although significantly cheaper, our one worry about TAA would be his potential rotation risk with the return of Gomez or even Milner. After his early substitution against the Saints it raised alarm bells, but we think that was just an in-game tactical decision. However, don’t be surprised that by the end of the season TAA gets some rotation!
Midfielders – Salah (£13.2m/35.7%); Mane (£10.1m/34.5%)
Salah finally rewarded patient owners after 6 blanks with a goal last gameweek against Southampton. At £13.2m he has been an expensive asset to have blank over this period, and although he scored last weekend he is a big investment for managers wildcarding.
His underlying stats are still strong, taking 17 shots and 5 key passes in his last 4 league matches, however his xG over this period was only 1.33 compared to Mane’s 3.12. Mane is priced at £10.1m, and based on his recent form provided much better FPL value.
We think that Salah could well hit a purple patch after getting his belated goal, but it is not supported by stats. Mane being £3.0m cheaper and better underlying stats and form, it is hard to consider Salah. For us, Mane is the best option into the Liverpool attack, especially for those managers who are trying to fit a handful of premium players in their teams.
Forward – Firmino (£9.3m/17.2%)
Firmino has somewhat flown under the radar from an FPL perspective, scoring 33 points over his last 4 league matches, consisting of 3 goals and 2 assists. At £9.3m he falls into that awkward price bracket competing with the likes of Lacazette and Vardy. The fixtures are largely in Firmino’s favour, facing 2 of the current bottom three over these matches.
Although Firmino looks a great option, managers need to decide whether a triple up on Liverpool is the best move, and if so investing outside of their defence. For us, we think ownership in a Liverpool defender and midfielder is essential, therefore that leaves a potential spot to fill. Personally, we won’t be moving for Firmino largely because we want to have the flexibility of investing further into their defence down the line.
Goalkeeper – Ederson (£5.6m/21.7%)
Ederson is probably the only player in the City side that you can guarantee will play every league match till the end of the season, having played every minute so far. Like Liverpool, the question is whether you want to invest in a premium goalkeeper when the points ceiling is lower than other teams due to their domination over teams.
We personally think that there is better FPL value in other options, and like Liverpool, each FPL player is vital at City. Ownership in outfield players is the preference, especially in a team that score soo many goals.
Defenders – Laporte (£6.0m/10.5%); Mendy (£6.1m/5.9%)
We see two players as potential options, both very different FPL assets. Similar to Ederson, of any outfield player Laporte should offer the best chance of playing every league match. Mendy on the other hand has just come back from a serious injury, but of his games he played averaged a points per game of 6.3 – the best of any defender.
We think it might be too early to invest in Mendy with his recent injury problems, but with injuries to Delph and Zinchenko he could be forced to play. Our money would go to Laporte from the two, just beciase of the gametime securitt and the surpising attacking threat – scoring 2 and assisting 2. He has also had 4 shots and 1 key pass in his last 2 league matches.
Midfielders – Sterling (£11.5m/18.5%); De Bruyne (£9.7m/3.6%); B. Silva (£7.6m/8.7%)
With have picked out the three above for the following reasons: Sterling is the highest points scorer for City, B. Silva has played the most minutes for midfielders, De Bruyne returning from injury and the highest points scorer last season for City. Each player has their own pros and cons, and as mentioned while we value gametime security, Man City are the exceptions.
We think that Sterling is the best option for managers, currently averaging 7.2 points per game. His price tag is higher than the other options but we think it is justified with his recent form. Sterling’s gametime has been questioned, averaging only 57 minutes in his last 7 league matches.
Silva has averaged 4.4 points per match, however his attacking underlying stats are worse than Sterling (cant measure to De Bruyne). We cant predict Pep’s rotation, but if you are worried over gametime then B. Silva is the saftest picks for managers.
De Bruyne has started the last 2 leagye matches, and passed the eye test with flying colours. He scored 1 goal last GW and registered 6 shots and 9 key passes over this period. We think that he is a great differential pick for managers that are chasing rank. He is the riskiest pick in our eyes, but also with his low ownership could be the most rewarding.
Forwards – Aguero (£11.8m/34.4%)
Along with Kane, we see Aguero as one of the best premium options for wildcard squads. You can’t argue with 6.5 points per game, 19 goals and 10 assists! We sound like a broken record, but the obvious issue over Aguero is the potential rest Pep might give him for the games he deems the most important.
Yes, he has started the last 9 league matches prior to is injury, but the deeper they go into the Champions League, the bigger the matches become.
We think that he is a great FPL option for managers, but in comparison to Kane you will be getting a potential gametime risk.
The honeymoon period seems to be over for Solskjear, after losses to both Wolves and Arsenal in recent weeks. They are still involved in a massive Champions League match against Barcelona and fighting for a top 4 position. Their remaining fixtures are a mixed bag with difficult back-to-back home matches against City and Chelsea.
We don’t see any value from a defensive perspective for United, having only kept 7 clean sheets this season. While they have a tough fixture schedule, we do still see some value in the attacking areas.
Midfielder – Pogba (£8.7m/36.4%)
We have included Pogba in this list, but this inclusion is more of a warning to managers. Recent comments from Solskjear suggests that Pogba could play in a deeper position similar to France, which would have a negative impact on his FPL value.
Pogba has taken 10 shots in his last 6 league matches, a big drop in comparison to the early form of the Frenchman. We think that at £8.7m, it is as good of a time as ever to move away from Pogba. The fixtures don’t suggest opportunities to get back to his offensive ways and at his price there are alternatives in the likes of Spurs that can provide value.
Forwards – Rashford (£7.5m/23.2%)
Rashford has been a big beneficiary of the appointment of Solskjear, and has now taken his league goals tally to 10. At £7.5m, Rashford still provides FPL value and is clearly a favourite of the managers. The issue surrounding Rashford is the return of Lukaku, and how Solksjear plans on using the two. If Rashford moves to the wing, his FPL returns dimish compared to his role as a center forward.
We think that Rashford is still a good FPL value pick for managers, but should acknowledge the negative impact Lukaku has on his returns.
Newcastle only have Liverpool remaining of the ‘top 6’ sides and face relegation threatened Southampton, Brighton and relegated Fulham. The stats aren’t mind-blowing regarding Newcastle, and we think there are better options at similar prices.
If we were to pick, we think Lascelles and Rondon would be the best options from Newcastle.
Defenders – Bednarek (£4.0m/6.7%); Valery (£4.1m/2.7%)
Both have been regulars in the team over the past few months, with Valery popping up with 2 goals. Having a double gameweek, they could be great options for managers aiming to bench boost especially. Southampton have not kept many clean sheets this season, therefore their defenders shouldn’t be a priority. But as mentioned, the double gameweek alone makes them attractive for those that want budget picks. If you can afford, we would own Valery due to the added attacking potential.
Midfielders – Ward Prowse (£5.1m/3.5%); Hojbjerg (£4.4m/2.6%)
Ward-Prowse has enjoyed his best form under the new management, scoring 3 goals in his last 5 league matches. On set pieces and a regular in the team, Ward-Prowse would be our number 1 pick from the Southampton midfield.
If you can’t stretch, then Hojbjerg is a great alternative at a cheaper price. Again, he is a gametime guarantee and has also scored 4 goals and assisted 2.
Of all the top 6 sides, we think Spurs arguably have the best run in until the end of the season. Having moved into their new ground, 4 of their last 6 matches are home matches and we expect them to put on a show for the fans.
Their GW34 fixture against relegated Huddersfield is the stand out fixture, and could be a great opportunity for Spurs attacking assets. They notably have a double gameweek 35, however the opening match is against title chasing Man City at the Eithad. We don’t expect Spurs to get a result there, but we don’t think that it is enough to be put off by Spurs as FPL assets.
Goalkeeper – Loris (£5.4m/5.3%)
Lloris hasn’t impressed throughout this season, however Spurs face low scoring sides such as Huddersfield, West Ham – 14 goals in 16 away matches – and Brighton. If there was ever a time to own the Frenchman, it would be now and we can see him doing well over this period.
His price might put off managers as he is still an expensive option, but for those managers that can’t stretch to Alisson and Ederson, he could be the next best pick.
Defenders – Vertonghen (£5.9m/4.1%); Trippier (£6.0m/15%)
Rotation is the main issue with the Spurs defence, with Pochettinho mixing up from a back 4 and 3. This includes the regular changing of the full backs, which has impacted Trippier this season having started 23 of the 32 league matches. However Aurier is confirmed to have an injury – the duration unknown yet – and could in turn open the door for a regular spot for Tripper. The Englishman has managed 1 goal and 5 assists this season and is arguably the best defender when his gametime is secured. If information becomes clearer on Aurier, we would recommend Trippier if he gets his gametime locked in, especially with those fixtures.
If you want a piece of the Spurs defence and Trippier is still a minutes risk, we don’t think you can go wrong with Vertonghen. He has missed a number of games through injury, but has started 7 of the last 8 league matches.
Midfielders – Eriksen (£9.2m/6.2%); Son (£8.5m/14.7%)
Two Spurs midfielders come to mind when creating a wildcard side, and unfortunately Alli doesn’t make the cut. The absence of midfielders such as Winks and Dier has seen his position become deeper and while this might change over the coming weeks, we think the other two have a higher attacking potential.
Again, if money was no object then our preferred choice would be Eriksen. He has started the last 15 leagye matches and seems to be the one that Pochenttinho struggles to replace in the midfield. Son on the other hand has had his minutes managed, only playing 90 minutes twice in his last 7 league matches.
Both found some form in the last gameweek, Eriksen grabbing a goal and assist while Son picked up the opening goal in the new stadium. We think Son could still be under threat of rotation, but does provide great FPL value when he is on the field. Our pick would be Eriksen, but Son’s 5.8 points per match shouldn’t be overlooked!
Forward – Kane (£12.5m/16.8%)
For us, Kane is the first name on our GW34 wildcard squad. When creating a wildcard side, we value gametime security and of any striker, Kane guarantees this. His underlying stats have been decent, taking 17 shots and 3 key passes over the last 3 league matches.
The fixtures Spurs face till the end of the season provide, in our eyes, at least 4 captaincy games for Kane. He is the most expensive forward in FPL, but we think that he is worth it especially with the upcoming fixtures. Obvioiusly there is the debate of whether to own Kane, Aguero or both, and we will be discussing this in our Q&A article tomorrow.
But for us, Kane ticks all the boxes and will be our top pick for the wildcard squad!
Goalkeeper – Foster (£4.6m/6.6%)
Ben Foster has played every league minute this season, keeping 7 clean sheets in the process. The big stand out for Watford is their great double gameweek 35 against Huddersfield and Southampton.
Based on the double alone, a good wildcard option for managers to alternate with another goalkeeper. As a stand alone, we don’t think he provides enough FPL value with the upcoming fixtures.
Midfielders – Deulofeu (£5.7m/5.4%); Doucoure (£5.9m/1.7%)
Doucoure has been under the radar for the majority of managers, only owned by 1.7%. However, he has managed 5 goals and 6 assists, averaging 3.8 points per match.
Deulofeu is the better attacking option from Watford, scoring 7 goals and assisting 5. The worry right now over him is his potential injury during the cup match, one to monitor for managers. Deulofeu has a gametime risk associated – unlike Doucoure – and we think that the latter could be the best pick for those wildcarding.
Forward – Deeney (£5.9m/5.2%)
The penalty hero in the Cup semi final, Deeney has been a great FPL option this season scoring 9 goals and assisting 5. He has started 10 of the last 11 league matches and become the leading man in an impressive Watford side.
We think that if managers cannot reach to the price of Jimenez, Deeney is a great option until the end of the season. He is producing some decent underlying stats, averaging 2.17 shots per 90 and 1.44 key passes per 90.
West Ham have found themselves in the awkward mid-table position, and this has reflected in their performances. They face a run of tough fixtures until the end of the season, and in turn we don’t see their players as wildcard options.
Wolves have a double gameweek in 35 with both of their fixtures being played at home. Their fixture against Arsenal shouldn’t put managers off, as the Gunners haven’t kept an away clean sheet this season. Brighton too don’t have the best away record, conceding 30 goals and only scoring 15 in their 16 matches.
We think that Wolves offer some great FPL assets in both the attacking and defensive areas. Here are our picks:
Defenders – Doherty (£5.3m/22.4%)
Without doubt the best defensive option if money isn’t a problem. Doherty is a premium option in comparison to the other options in the Wolves defence, but his attacking potential is far greater. Doherty has registered 3 goals and 6 assists, however it is worth noting that his last attacking return was back in GW27. He averages 1.26 sh/90 and 1.05 kp/90.
His minutes have been managed over the past 4 league matches, but whether this is due to form or rest it is unclear. We think that Doherty is the best Wolves option and could be a great wildcard option for the rest of the season. For those that can’t afford the wing back, Boly provides the second best attacking potential while Bennett is the bargain budget pick.
Midfielder – Jota (£6.1m/5.5%)
Jota was in many teams at the start of the season, and has certainly been a late bloomer. He has been in good form of late, scoring 2 and assisting 2 in his last 4 league matches.
The problem with Jota is his gametime, averaging 75 minutes over his last 10 league games. With their double gameweek he could be one that is at the risk of rotation, but of the midfielders he does offer the best attacking potential for those managers that want a piece of the Wolves midfield.
Forward – Jimenez (£6.8m/33.3%)
Arguably the FPL player of the season, scoring 12 goals and assisting 10 in his debut season. Jimenez has proved to be the main frontman and in turn a great wildcard option, providing the essential gametime security.
We have no doubts that Jimenez will play the majority of the remaining matches, and with some great fixtures we fancy him to continue his form. At £6.8m, he isn’t in the premium bracket and can therefore create further funds to strengthen in other areas. We don’t think that there are any other players at his price that offer the same FPL value, a great option in our eyes.
We hope that this analysis has helped some managers – both wildcarding and not – plan for GW34, and resolve some of those headaches. Remember that each squad is different, and each manager plays the game differently so be sure to take the advice but ultimately make the decisions that make the most sense to you.
For those that are interested, we have discussed in detail our personal wildcard team and thoughts on our latest podcast.
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