An eventful international break is finally coming to an end, and many fantasy managers will likely face massive, wildcard-sized FPL headaches. Too many high profile players have found SARS-CoV-2 while away for their national teams and must now self-isolate for a few weeks until they can test negative. On top of that, other players are bringing home the usual slew of new injuries to add to the misery caused by this year’s packed domestic schedule.
Just to name a few, the likes of Joe Gomez, Trent Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andrew Robertson, Mo Salah and Ben Chilwell are out or major doubts this weekend. However, we still have a few options to ponder.
Game-week 8 wasn’t entirely bad, but many did have a mixed feeling about it as managers averaged only 55 points. Let’s not forget, fantasy managers have time till Saturday now instead of Friday as a deadline to fix their squads. Here are some players one may consider for patching holes.
Emiliano Martínez – £4.8m vs Brighton (H)
It’s crazy to think that one can opt for a shot-stopper keeper who has four clean sheets in eight fixtures for such a bargain price. Martinez has faced the likes of Liverpool, Leicester and Arsenal, of which two were clean sheets, so we can’t rule out another when when he hosts a Brighton side that is having difficulty placing the ball in the net.
Edouard Mendy — £5.1 vs Newcastle (A)
Mendy could be this summer’s best signing. His stats really say it all: eight clean sheets in all competitions, 74 shots faced, 20 faced on target, two goals conceded, and a 90% save average. Better to have the Chelsea keeper as soon as possible with the form he is in at the moment.
Michael Keane — £5.1m vs Fulham (A)
The honeymoon period for the Toffees has come to an end, and they are struggling to find their winning momentum again. Carlo Anceloti’s men have suffered three consecutive defeats, but a game against Fulham could be a turning point. Keane already has two goals, and he has a decent shot at a clean sheet. Lucas Digne is another lethal option having the ability to move forward, but for a bargain price, Keane is the less risky entry to the Everton defense.
Tyrone Mings — £5.3m vs Brighton (H)
Mings has played every minute in the Premier League for Aston Villa, and rightly so. The defender has been a rock at the back with four clean sheets and the ability to score. He has 42 points and two goals already this term.
Thiago Silva — £5.5m vs Newcastle (A)
Chelsea has been extremely strong at the back with the leadership aspect of Thiago Silva playing a massive role along with Edoaurd Mendy. The Brazilian international has played a full 90 minutes in each of the previous three games, keeping two clean sheets out of the three. Frank Lampard will aim to keep consistency at the back, and Newcastle can be the perfect match for it.
Wilfried Zaha — £7.4m vs Burnley (A)
Zaha has already equaled his goal involvement from last season with five goals and two assists so far, worth an average of 6.8 PPG. The major reason to go for the winger is his next three fixtures: Burnley, Newcastle and West Brom.
Jack Grealish — £7.5m vs Brighton (H)
Grealish has been phenomenal for club and country so far. His performance can simply be stated by his numbers; he has nine goal involvements in the Premier League, just behind Hueng-min Son (10) and Harry Kane (15).
Bruno Fernandes — £10.6m vs West Brom (H)
The best hope for Manchester United to put a goal in the net is to look for Bruno Fernandes. The Portuguese play-maker has been directly involved in 11 goals (six goals, five assists) in 11 club fixtures this season in all competitions. He has been excellent in the majority of his matches despite his club playing inconsistently to start the season. Against West Brom we can look for Bruno to find points again.
Che Adams — £5.9m vs Wolves (A)
With Danny Ings out injured, Southampton will likely look to second striker Che Adams to do the job. He has three goals plus three assists, earning 40 points so far, and he looks to be in a great form to create troubles for Wolves.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin - £7.8 vs Fulham (A)
60% of FPL managers have DCL right now. The England international added a goal in his international duty and has eight goals so far in the league already. He has a decent chance to grab another against the likes of Fulham who have been suffering at the back.
Jamie Vardy — £10.1 vs Liverpool (A)
Vardy and team will quite possibly face a depleted Liverpool squad missing its top four defenders: Virgil van Dijk, Trent Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andrew Robertson, Fabinho, Joel Matip and even replacement Joe Gomez are all out with injury. Vardy will look at this as the perfect chance grab three points from the Premier League champions. Also, the 33-year-old already has eight goals, one assist in seven appearances, so expect the Vardy Party to carry on at Anfield to keep the Foxes on top of the league.
What do you think of our picks this week? What are your thoughts on international break causing injuries? Should five substitutions be an option now? Which player will get the spotlight this week? Please let us know in the comments section below!