We are now two weeks in to the Fantasy Premier League season and already we have learned much from the opening games couple of matches; we have established essentials like Ibrahimovic, Aguero and Hazard, alongside bandwagons like Negredo and best defenses like Mourinho’s United and West Brom. However, what really sets you apart in this game isn’t high ownership players like the must-haves previously mentioned but differentials who only a few people own.
For those who are new with these articles, this is the second year for the series with the FPL Academy. You can see last year’s season review of my picks and my success rate here. The #MadPick is my top selection of a differential for the Gameweek ahead and the honorable mention, #MadHM, is my second place selection. There is only one rule in this feature, players must have less than 5% ownership to be qualify.
Last week, my two picks didn’t live up to the expectations. My honorable mention, Mark Noble, seemed to be tired after playing 90 mins three days before in the Europa League competition and the team got a late win from an Antonio header where Noble got one clean sheet point getting him a total of 3 pts. As for the MadPick, Gaston Ramirez, he played a huge role in Boro’s two goals before Karanka subbed him off for tactical reasons before the hour mark which got him an unfair single point. I think these two can still deliver in the upcoming weeks and I would still hold on to them.
My honorable mention for the week is someone who is a very promising young talent. Adnan Januzaj is currently on loan at Sunderland AFC from Manchester United. With David Moyes taking over at Sunderland, he has brought three young talents from Manchester United on loan including Januzaj who is looking to feature consistently for the former Red Devils’ boss. He will face Southampton away and Everton, Crystal Palace and West Brom at home in his next 5 fixtures. At £5.5m and a low ownership of 1.2%, he is my #MadHM for Gameweek 3.
My top pick for the week, the #MadPick, is a player who hasn’t necessarily impressed over the last couple of seasons but has been looking attractive FPL wise recently with the Gunners. England international, Theo Walcott in the first two fixtures for the Gunners has played the entire 120 minutes in which he scored a goal and will be looking to keep a starting place in Arsene’s plans. With Ozil and Giroud potentially back next gameweek alongside Sanchez, the foursome can really do some magic to boost the team’s position. This week, Arsenal are away at Watford in a must win game for them having only picked up a point so far. Favorable fixtures follow all the way to Gameweek 10 with the exception of Chelsea at home in Gameweek 6. At £7.5m, he’s the cheapest option from the Gunners’ team and a steal when you consider that in the past he has been valued more around the £9m mark. Only currently owned by 2.6% of FPL managers but expect this to increase if he continues to see minutes on the pitch. Walcott always looks dangerous when he plays and that’s why he’s my #MadPick for this week.
The new season kicked off with a bang last weekend with varying degrees of success across the board, a thing we should all come to expect by now in the Premier League. The biggest shock of the weekend was last season’s champions Leicester’s defeat to promoted Hull which nobody would have seen coming. Time will tell if it was a freak result or if the wheels have already started to fall off the Leicester train, Blackburn Rovers anyone?