The Gameweek 12 deadline is almost upon us which gives us an opportunity to have a look at some differential options.
This time, we’ve selected low-owned picks from Brighton and Hove Albion, Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal, who we think have the potential to make an impact.
As always, to qualify, the player must have an ownership of 5% or less at the time of writing.
- FPL ownership: 0.9%
- Price: £5.5m
- GW12-16 fixtures: lei | ful | SHU | whu | ARS
Following the inclusion of Pascal Groß (£5.8m) in last week’s column, this time it’s the turn of team-mate Danny Welbeck (£5.5m).
The 30-year-old forward arrived at Brighton and Hove Albion back in October after a turbulent spell at Watford, and now settled in a more stable environment, has had an encouraging start.
Welbeck has played over 80 minutes in the Seagulls’ last four matches, scoring at Villa Park and registering assists against Liverpool and Southampton. During that period, amongst forwards, he ranks joint-eighth for shots in the box, first for penalty area touches and joint-fourth for created chances.
At 6ft he has the ability to hold the ball up, and offers something different to colleagues Neal Maupay (£6.2m) and Aaron Connolly (£5.3m). For many, he is the exact sort of striker Brighton have been crying out for since Glenn Murray departed.
Albion have been unable to find the back of the net all too often this season, with Maupay the chief culprit. The Frenchman’s expected goal (xG) delta of -2.32 is the highest of any forward in the league, and the hope is now that Welbeck can start converting some of those chances supplied by Adam Lallana (£6.2m), Groß, Tariq Lamptey (£4.8m)and Solly March (5.0m).
Next up for Brighton is a trip to Leicester City, with matches against Fulham and Sheffield United to follow. Although their league position doesn’t really show it, their numbers are good and if that continues, they should improve as the season goes on.
The major concern with Welbeck is his injury record, but having featured in all nine of Watford’s matches post lockdown, maybe he has turned a corner, and providing he can stay fit, could offer FPL managers real value in the forward category.
- FPL ownership: 3.6%
- Price: £5.0m
- GW12-16 fixtures: cry | liv | LEI | wol | FUL
While Jose Mourinho has Harry Kane (£10.9m) and Son Heung-min (£9.6m) to thank for Tottenham Hotspur’s impressive start to the season, their defence has perhaps gone under the radar, and in particular Eric Dier (£5.0m).
Spurs have now kept four Premier League clean sheets in a row and have conceded just one in six games since giving up three in the final eight minutes to draw with West Ham United in October. Interestingly, Dier was absent that day, which means they’ve let in just six goals in ten games with him at the heart of their defence.
The England international has been a regular starter under Mourinho, who has helped him get back to his best, and has formed a good partnership alongside Toby Alderweireld (£5.4m). With the impressive Pierre-Emile Højbjerg (£4.9m) and Moussa Sissoko (£4.8m) screening them, they’ve limited Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal to just 10 shots on target, which bodes well for their prospects ahead of Sunday’s game against Crystal Palace.
While clean sheets will no doubt be Dier’s primary source of points, he can threaten in the opposition’s box from corners, and has also taken the occasional direct free-kick too. Yes, attacking returns are unlikely, but they’re not completely out of the question either.
Dier is an integral part of the divisions best defence, and at just £5.0m is the cheapest route into Spurs’ backline. While Sergio Reguilón (£5.7m) remains the headline pick, the former Sporting Lisbon man is worth a look if funds are tighter.
- FPL ownership: 2.3%
- Price: £5.2m
- GW12-16 fixtures: BUR | SOU | eve | CHE | bha
Despite a miserable start to the season for Arsenal, Bukayo Saka (£5.2m) has once again proved to be one of his team’s better performers.
Against Tottenham Hotspur last time out, the versatile teenager looked like the Gunner most likely to make something happen, but a lack of service often left him isolated. Throughout the game, Arsenal had issues progressing the ball into dangerous areas, but the introduction of Dani Ceballos (£4.8m) at half-time did at least ensure they were more efficient in possession.
Saka, who came through the club’s academy, has scored just one goal this season, but the numbers suggest he has perhaps been a little unfortunate not to add more. Amongst team-mates over the last four Gameweeks, he sits top for created chances and ranks second for shots in the box. He also leads the way for penalty area touches – in fact, amongst all midfielders, only Sadio Mané (£12.0m), Marcus Rashford (£9.4m) and Riyad Mahrez (£8.4m) have had more. If there is to be a reaction against Burnley on Sunday, it does look like Saka will be central to it.
He certainly proved he was capable of providing a creative spark last season: despite only starting 29 matches in all competitions and spending much of that time at left-back or left wing-back, his 11 assists meant he recorded more than any of his colleagues.
Arsenal are languishing down in 15th place after a fourth Premier League game without a win, but have an opportunity to get back on track this weekend, against a Burnley side who are themselves struggling with just one win in 10 games.
Having failed to register a single attacking return since Gameweek 4, Saka is one of the riskier picks we’ve tipped so far, but if Arsenal are to click, the youngster could be a nice midfield enabler.
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