Welcome to GW-5, the campaign’s first midweek slate of fixtures. Scheduling around the upcoming World Cup hiatus brings some unusual early-season fixture congestion. Rotation will be key this season, and it’ll be interesting to see how managers handle it so early on; especially as sides start to find form.
Vital Scheduling Note:
There are THREE early matches on Tuesday, with Palace v Brentford and Fulham v Brighton starting at 19:30 BST followed closely by Southampton v Chelsea just 15 minutes later at 19:45. Even Leeds v Everton kicks off not long after at 20:00. That puts at least six lineups into play — Expect them to be confirmed before our Fantrax deadline, so come back to NMA in the countdown hour to see those lineup announcements in our Pre-deadline Chat!
Aaron Ramsdale (ARS vs AVL, $7.95)
Ramsdale is surely frustrated to have conceded last time out after Gabriel made the error on which Mitrovic pounced. But the Arsenal shot-stopper still went on to make some key saves in that game. He’s now up against a Villa side that failed to score last time out.
Ederson (MCI vs NOT, $5.50)
Man City will fancy a clean-sheet chance against new-boys Nottingham Forest. Forest failed to score against Tottenham on the weekend and have blanked a couple of times so far this season. Ederson offers a cheap route into a top side that the bookies favor as most likely to keep a shutout in GW-5.
Pervis Estupiñán (FUL vs BHA, $5.48)
The new boy slotted in well last game-week for his first start, having previously featured as a substitute. He was putting in dangerous deliveries in the 1-0 win over Leeds and offers value at both ends of the pitch as 4th-place Brighton looks to continue an impressive start.
Konstantinos Tsimikas (LIV vs NEW, $4.35)
Tsimikas is cheap and offers up as a great differential should he start. The Greek fullback replaced Robertson in the 9-0 drubbing of Bournemouth and got himself a couple of assists. He offers good value for money if he makes Klopp’s S-XI.
Joachim Andersen (CRY vs BRE, $12.68)
We all love a goal-scoring defender, and Anderson was exactly that last time out against Man City. After going 2 goals ahead, Crystal Palace will be disappointed that the game slipped away. Palace has been scoring well enough since GW-1 and will hope to record a first clean-sheet of the season.
Dejan Kulusevski (WHU vs TOT, $7.70)
Son is struggling for Spurs so far, but Kulusevski is a great option, providing the cool assist for Kane on the weekend. He currently looks favorable for a start this one — Richarlison came on for an assist, so it may be Son who is rotated. In any case, Kulusevski is the much cheaper route into Tottenham’s attack.
Ilkay Gundogan (MCI vs NOT, $11.03)
Gundogan started on the bench last time out, so he should be good to start a mid-week fixture. He has scored well so far, bagging himself a couple of goals to-date.
Matheus Nunes (BOU vs WOL, $4.35)
Wolves’ new record-breaking signing should be in for a start, which works well with the fixture congestion. Nunes was a starter at Sporting CP and has a perfect opportunity to open his account against a Bournemouth side that just shipped nine goals on the weekend. He’s cheap, and his stock could soon go up.
Martin Odegaard (ARS vs AST, $10.85)
Arsenal is the team in form right now, and Odegaard is the attractively priced architect who led the comeback against Fulham on the weekend. He now has three goals in his last two games and looks hungry for more.
Roberto Firmino (LIV vs NEW, $11.58)
Firmino starred in the record-equaling 9-0 thrashing of Bournemouth, showering his owners with plenty of points from two goals plus three assists. Newcastle will be a more stern test, but Firmino was the only forward to get subbed off to rest, and Darwin Nunez is still suspended, so the weekend hero should be in line for another start midweek.
Marcus Rashford (LEI vs MUN, $8.47)
Man United are slowly showing signs of improvement after recording back-to-back wins. The Red Devils have another great opportunity against a rock-bottom Leicester side that is struggling to get going this campaign. Rashford should continue to lead the line in the absence of Martial.
Raheem Sterling (SOU vs CHE, $10.28)
Sterling is back on our radars after grabbing a brace in the 2-1 victory last time out against Leicester. Chelsea won the game despite having 10 men for the vast majority of the game and should fancy themselves against Southampton.
How much of a concern is rotation for your team? Any key differentials? Please let us know your thoughts in the comments!