The Premier League is back. Two weeks without Premier League football feels like a month, but thankfully there will be no more breaks till the World Cup begins. There are seven more gameweeks until then, making this a great time to make use of the Wildcard chip, especially since another will be available after gameweek-18.
This season, strikers have retaken the goalscoring mantle from midfielders. The likes of Haaland, Mitrovic, Kane and Toney have led the points in FPL while Salah, Fernandes, and Son are yet to hit the heights of previous campaigns.
Let’s take a look at some of the players that can help us make gameweek-9 a memorable one.
David Raya (£4.5m, Bournemouth v Brentford)
Raya is expected to be in goal when the Bees travel to face goal-shy Bournemouth this weekend. The Cherries have only scored six times in seven games this season. The opponent’s poor goalscoring record makes this fixture the perfect match for Raya to record his second clean sheet.
Jose Sa (£5.0m, West Ham v Wolves)
Second highest-scoring shot-stopper Sa has been part of a Wolves defense that has three clean sheets this season, and he has also recorded a penalty save. Priced at £5.0m, Pope provides a more economical option to the premium priced goalkeepers and yet still offers you the potential for good returns.
Kieran Trippier (£5.4m, Fulham v Newcastle)
Owned by over 44% of managers, Trippier once again makes our picks due to his potential to deliver attacking results even when Newcastle fails to record a shutout. Thirteen points accrued in the last two gameweeks and a fixture against a Fulham side that has shown defensive weakness over the years makes him a suitable candidate for a spot in your defense. Trippier has delivered a league-leading 66 crosses this season, creating 13 chances for his teammates.
William Saliba (£4.9m, Arsenal v Tottenham)
Do do do do do do Saliba♫♫♫ Who still doesn’t own Saliba? Saliba has taken the Premier League by storm by helping the Gunners record three clean sheets, and has also contributed two goals and an assist in just seven games this season. With 44 points already, Saliba is currently the defender with the most points and is priced at a meager 4.9m.
Joao Cancelo (£7.1m, Man City v Man United)
Cancelo has proven to be the best among the premium-priced defenders this season. The Portuguese international has accrued 42 points compared to Liverpool’s Alexander-Arnold, who has only managed 24. Keeping Cancelo and selling off Alexander-Arnold for a lesser-priced defender might prove to be a wise move at this point.
James Tarkowski (£4.4m, Southampton v Everton)
Back-to-back clean sheets for Everton against West Ham and Liverpool have seen Everton defenders as popular choices among FPL managers, with Nathan Patterson the biggest benefactor. The injury to Patterson during the international break makes Tarkowski the next best selection in the Toffees backline. Priced at 4.4m, Tarkowski, with five shots attempted and three shots on target, has proven to be the biggest goalscoring threat among Everton defenders.
Hueng Min Son (£11.7, Arsenal v Tottenham)
He’s back!! After six gameweeks without a goal, Son shut his critics up by scoring three in under thirty minutes in the Spurs clash against Leicester. Son will surely be reinstated to the starting lineup when they take on Arsenal this weekend, and we can expect him to be at his best for the North London derby.
De Bruyne (£12.3m, Man City v Man United)
Can Haaland do it all on his own? No. This is where midfield meastro De Bruyne comes in. De Bruyne is enjoying finally having a cold-blooded finisher in front of him and already has five assists this season. The Belgian will once again be called upon to provide service for Haaland when the Citizens take on rivals Manchester United this weekend.
Bukayo Saka (£7.8m, Arsenal v Tottenham)
Saka is back in form after a very slow start to the Premier League season. Saka has registered returns in his last four gameweeks and will be fully fired up to help the Gunners grab full points when they take on Tottenham this weekend. Priced at just 7.8m and owned by a paltry 11.5%, Saka could prove to be the differential you need to grab an edge against your rivals. It’s also important to remember that he’s on penalty duties for the Gunners.
Wilfred Zaha (£7.2m, Crystal Palace v Chelsea)
Four goals in just five matches makes Zaha a very suitable midfield option for FPL managers. Zaha will be well rested due to The Eagles blanking in the last two gameweeks. Next for Zaha and Crystal Palace are fixtures against Chelsea, Leeds, Leicester, Wolves, Everton, and Southampton, which looks like a pretty favorable run of games for Zaha.
James Maddison (£7.9m, Leicester City v Nottingham Forrest)
Despite what has been a very poor season for Leicester that has the team rooted to the bottom of the log with zero wins, Maddison has stood out among his peers. The midfielder has only failed to return twice this season and will be well rested for the clash against Nottingham Forest after being left out by Gareth Southgate for England. The midfielder will be eager to impress in a bid to secure a place on England’s rooster for Qatar.
Philip Billing (£5.5m, Bournemouth v Brentford)
Sixteen points in the last two games for Bournemouth makes Billing a good option for FPL managers going into gameweek-9. Priced at 5.5m and owned by just 0.2% of managers, Billing is a cheap differential going into the fixture pile-up before the World Cup.
Ivan Toney (£7.2m, Bournemouth v Brentford)
Five goals, two assists, and eight bonus points in just seven games makes Toney a shoo-in for our gameweek 9 player-picks. Toney is the third top-scoring player in FPL and has a 20% ownership, making him something of a differential. His responsibilities for free-kicks and penalties also adds to his appeal.
Erling Haaland (£12.0m, Man City v Man United)
Need I still preach about Erling Haaland? Owned by over 80% of managers and yet to blank this season, Haaland is a must-have for every FPL manager. Eleven goals and one assist in just seven games tells you all you need to know about the Norwegian.
Harry Kane (£11.4, Arsenal v Tottenham)
Interested in owning two premium-priced forwards? Harry Kane is enjoying an impressive season of his own as he helped ease the pain of the goal drought suffered by strike partner Son. Kane has returned in every gameweek bar the opener and is currently placed second on the top scorers chart. Up next for Kane is the London derby, a clash in which he has an impressive record. Kane has scored 13 goals in 19 North London derbies.
Aleksandar Mitrovic (£6.9m, Fulham v Newcastle)
In need of a goal-hungry and relatively cheap striker? Mitrovic is the obvious candidate as he has notched six goals in just seven games for The Cottagers. Despite not scoring in Fulham’s 3-2 victory against Nottingham Forest, Mitrovic remains an excellent choice. Scoring a hattrick while on national duty for Serbia will have only boosted his confidence.
What do you think of this week’s picks? Whom have I missed? What is your strategy for this week — will you use your wildcard? What about your captain? Please log in and let us know in the comments below!