It’s Thanksgiving here in the USA. There’s so much to be grateful for, including the support and community on this blog!
I’m thankful for a cheap goalkeeper option this week.
I’m thankful for defenders who play up front (Maxwel Cornet!).
I’m less thankful for midweek games in Europe (at least as they affect my EPL teams). Midweek games never make it easy on managers, fantasy or otherwise. Injury and rotation risks increase.
As a Gunners fan, I’m also thankful that Arsenal plays winless Newcastle this week in the early game. I could see a few changes to the lineup after the loss to Liverpool, so there may be some players on discount. Be ready to make changes.
Alvaro Fernandez (£2.25, BRE vs EVE)
Despite giving up goals, Brentford’s fill-in keeper is still a value pick. He has 10 saves over his last two games. Everton is on a slide too, so this is still a keeper to consider buying into your side.
Ben Foster (£7.30, LEI vs WAT)
He’s not keeping clean sheets, but he is making saves. Watford has conceded only a single goal in each of the last three matches, The Hornets are playing better and have climbed out of the bottom three. They get Leicester who have scored only once in the last three game-weeks.
Nuno Tavares (£5.45, ARS vs NEW)
Tavares had a rough game against Liverpool and Mo Salah (but it’s Mo, so understandable). I’m a little worried about him getting the start, but we will be able to see the lineup. He’s been very active going forward and the Gunners had been rolling before running into Liverpool.
Marcos Alonso (£8.60, CHE vs MAN)
With Ben Chilwell potentially out for the season, Alonso may resume the starting role he had at the beginning of the season before Chilwell deposed him, but there’s nothing certain with Cesar Azpilicueta and even Callum Hudson-Odoi also in the mix. We know that when Alonso plays he always has a chance to earn big points. I’m paying attention to team news for any hints. Reece James is still affordable at £12.12, but he won’t be that “cheap” for long. Oh, also who knows which Man United will show up right now? Will Chelsea face the same clowns who fell to Watford? Or will caretaker Carrick again whip them into the world-beaters who shutout Villareal midweek?
Rayan Ait-Nouri (£4.21, NOR vs WOL)
Wolves have climbed slowly up the table. The Canaries have grown a defensive spine, so they aren’t the pushovers they had been. Ait-Nouri is getting serious stats on both sides of the ball making him a relatively safe pick at his price.
Joel Matip (£7.89, LIV vs SOU)
Matip started at centerback midweek with Konate so that Virgil Van Dyke could rest. It seems likely that he will start again this weekend though. He’s the cheapest way into a solid defense against a shy attack that has scored just 11 goals this season. If you have any of the other three premium Liverpool defenders, you should hold. Andy Robertson did play 27’ midweek.
Emile Smith Rowe (£11.29, ARS vs NEW)
The Arsenal #10 will lead the Gunners against last place Newcastle, who have yet to win or keep a clean a sheet. ESR had scored in three straight before being silenced by Liverpool. Most likely he will be in my squad.
Conor Gallagher (£15.87, CRY vs AST)
I have been hesitant to include him in my teams, but his recent numbers show that he is worth the price. Palace hasn’t lost in seven, and Gallagher has been a prime reason why. He has four goals plus five assists on the season. He’s among the top-five for midfielders (Fantrax) in shots on target and accurate crosses. Aston Villa won last week but had lost the previous five. I also don’t see him in many squads. It may be time that changes.
James Maddison (£8.88, LEI vs WAT)
It hasn’t been a great year for Maddison. But the prolific Youri Tielemans is now out, so I’m assuming that Maddison gets more of the ball and taking kicks. Watford has been improved but still isn’t keeping clean sheets. He’s worth a look this week.
Phil Foden (£10.25, MCI vs WHU)
Foden didn’t start against PSG midweek because he wasn’t recovered from a knock he picked up against Everton. If he’s ready for West Ham, he’s most likely to start for Pep and City. With key injuries still in the midfield (e.g. KDB and Grealish), Foden has taken up the slack. He’s always dangerous, and this is a big game for Man City and West Ham.
Daniel Podence (£4.34, NOR vs WOL)
Podence was active and dangerous last week, recording an assist for his efforts. The price is right in a good matchup.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£8.73, ARS vs NEW)
PEA’s four goals this year have all come at home. Newcastle gave up three to Brentford last weekend. I’m a little worried that PEA has lost PK responsibilities, but I’m not sure yet who is next in line. It’s a good matchup for him to get going again.
Raul Jimenez (£7.10, NOR vs WOL)
Wolves have pushed their way into the top six. Raul and company are playing well and getting goals from various sources. At the center though is Raul who has scored in back to back home games. Norwich has the most goals-against in the league even after winning two straight.
Diogo Jota (£11.52, LIV vs SOU)
Jota should return to the starting eleven after being rested (but on the bench) against Porto. If you’re paying full price for a Liverpool attacker, he’s the cheapest way. He’s not Mane or Salah (whom you should get/hold if possible), but he does score goals and benefit from playing with Mane and Salah.
Romelu Lukaku (£6.61, CHE vs MAN)
The striker should finally be back. Chelsea has managed well without him, but I have to think that once he’s ready he’ll be starting. I’m not sure I’m ready to throw him into my lineup just yet, but his price is tempting. If nothing else, be ready to pounce on him before the barn door closes; his upcoming game is against Watford.
Anthony Gordon (£2.31 , BRE vs EVE)
This is a true enabler pick. At his price, he will get his value back with his defensive and other stats, and there’s potential for more against Brentford who have been conceding. Salomón Rondón is even cheaper, and, with Richarlison suspended and Dominic Calvert-Lewin still hurt, he most likely will start up front.
How’s your team shaping up? What matchups are you focusing on? Who’s on your watch-list for barn-door shopping? What are you thankful for? Please share in the comments!