Gameweek 24 of the Premier League is all set to kick off tonight with the deadline time set at 11:45pm Indian Standard Time.
Before we reach to that point, here's my compiled list of tips where I will be providing the latest updates on rescheduled fixtures, postponements, blanks, chip strategy and more for future double gameweek fixtures in order to maximise your scores.
The following teams have double gameweeks in gameweek 26 as it stands:
- Crystal Palace [Chelsea(H) and Watford(A)]
- Tottenham Hotspur [Manchester City(A) and Burnley(A)]
- Arsenal [Brentford(H) and Wolves(H)]
- Wolves [Leicester(H) and Arsenal(A)]
- Watford [Aston Villa(A) and Crystal Palace(H)]
- Burnley [Brighton(A) and Spurs(H)]
- Leeds [Manchester United(H) and Liverpool(A)]
- Liverpool [Norwich(H) and Leeds(H)]
Apart from these double game week fixtures of gameweek 26, we also have two teams who are going to be having a double gameweek in gameweek 25.
These teams are Manchester United, who play Southampton at home followed by Brighton, again at home; and Brighton, who play Watford away, followed by Manchester United away.
The reason I have brought gameweeks 25 and 26 to your attention before turning to the immediate fixtures, is that this month of February is going to be crucial and will most probably decide how your season is going to turn out based on the upcoming games as a whole.
So all in all, I personally am not looking at game week 24 as a week in which I may be able to rack up a significant total. Rather, I am attempting to approach the forthcoming game week as a stepping stone to allow me to get the boost that I need till at least game week 31, which is ideally when I am planning to use my second Wildcard chip of the season.
It is my prerogative that you indulge in largely the same strategy going forward, targeting free hit chips in gameweeks 26 and 27, the wildcard chip in gameweeks 30 or 31, the triple captain chip sometime around the gameweek 26-31 period and last but not the least, your bench boost chip in gameweek 36.
Here are a few key points that you may want to take into account while building your team for the upcoming make or break month in Fantasy Premier League:
1) Firstly, I would like to remind all of you that we are living in extraordinary times and that games could easily get postponed or called off at any point. Same is the case with players - any one of them could test positive for covid at any point, sidelining them for at least one week, and so it is my humble advice that you hold your transfers as late as possible and make your final team as close to the deadline as possible, preferably in the final 30 minutes.
2) Let’s talk about Crystal Palace for a minute. The key point to note here is that Palace are doing very well in the league and are being called by many FPL experts as a “golden team”, one to target for the month of February and the players to look out for are Edouard(6.5m) and Olise(5.4m). Both are good attacking options and I personally would pick them over the Watford strikers anyday. The one caveat to note here is that there might be some rotation between Eduoard and Mateta, however, that chance is too small and the upside of owning Eduoard, too high. If I were you, I’d jump on him as early as possible. Also the reason that I have not included Gallagher (6.1m) in the list of players to watch out for is because even though Palace have a dgw in 26, Gallagher will only be able to play in one fixture as he cannot play the other fixture which is against his parent club (Chelsea).
3) Our next talking point will be centered around Manchester United. I think it is safe to say that United have not had the kindest run of form in the past couple of months, even though the fixtures could not have been kinder. The opposition to target when it comes to United, is Southampton, who travel to Old Trafford in GW 25 and while the home and away performances of all teams in the premiership have contrasts, the most striking difference between home and away performances is visible when it comes to the Saints. Other than that, considering the fact that United have to play a total of 7 fixtures, spanning 3 different competitions, I am expecting Ronaldo’s (12.5m) minutes to be managed and Bruno(11.7m), as a result, emerges as a good option to own and even possibly a half decent captain pick, provided that you already have a route to get to Mohammed Salah (12.9m) once he returns from AFCON. One other key thing to discuss is that with Greenwood(7.2m) suspended, Rashford(9.4m) could see a return to the first team on a regular basis, with Paul Pogba(7.4m) also returning to action in Ralf Rangnick’s new 4-3-3 system at United.
4) If there is one team I would advise everyone to target in terms of defense, it would be Wolves, followed closely by Spurs. The problem, however, is that Wolves do not have a kind run of fixtures as they play Arsenal twice, along with Spurs, Leicester and West Ham once in their next five fixtures. In Spurs, on the other hand, the only thing that would dissuade me from buying into their defense is the simple uncertainty. Romero is back to full fitness and we could see an overhaul of the current back 3. Other than that, there is also a massive rotation risk for the wingback positions with Reguilon(5.4m), Sessegnon(4.3m), Davies(4.5m), Emerson(4.9m), and Doherty(4.7m), all in contention for just 2 positions, not to mention the arrivals of Bentancur(5.0m) and Kulusevsk(6.0m), which will add further competition in the middle of the park and in the wing back positions respectively. But if I had to select one player each from Spurs and Wolves, they would be Sanchez(4.5m) and AIt Nouri(4.3m) respectively.
5) In today’s final point, I want to throw some light on Liverpool. It's going to be fairly short. Just get Salah(12.9m) back in your team. That’s it. Apart from that, if you own Jota (8.5m), it might be time to move him on for someone like Liverpool’s new signing, Luis Diaz (8.0m) or Liverpool’s former star and the new signing of Aston Villa's biggest star, Phillipe Coutinho (7.0m).
Written by – Parth Tiwari, MUSC RDNCR (Overall global FPL 2021-22 current rank 237,880)