Erling Haaland’s omission from Manchester City’s team against Luton meant that Fantasy Premier League managers were desperately trying to remember who they’d chosen as vice-captain. The Manchester City forward looks to have picked up an injury meaning decisions will have to be made whether to keep him in the squad or replace him with cheaper options.
With the season nearing the halfway point, there is still time to decide which are the best options to pick up points and how that can play into any strategies for the second half of the season.
Here are five players we think could impress in gameweek 17 with managers needing to decide when and how to utilise their transfers and whether to play any wildcards still available.
Richarlison, Tottenham (6.6)
Is he back? Maybe but maybe not. The Tottenham forward (though he’s a designated midfielder in the FPL) made his first start in six games as Spurs defeated Newcastle 4-1 on Sunday. Playing centrally, he scored twice managing to get on the end of threaded passes into the box and was clinical inside the six-yard area collecting 15 points for the gameweek.
Though one positive outing may not be enough to convince managers to take the risk on him, the Brazilian may be at the start of a resurgence in form that could pay dividends over the next few weeks. Son Heung-min (£9.5m) is a more expensive alternate option.
Marcos Senesi, Bournemouth (4.3)
The centre-back has returned 29 points in his last two gameweeks, thanks in part, to getting on the scoresheet against Crystal Palace and Manchester United. FPL managers can’t count on him scoring goals every week but the signs are strong that he is a solid option from set pieces which is a huge bonus.
More importantly, Bournemouth are unbeaten in five matches and have kept three clean sheets in that run. They’re playing Luton, Nottingham Forest and Fulham over the next few weeks which are all possible shut outs should the Cherries continue their fine form.
Elijah Adebayo, Luton Town (4.8)
The Luton forward is cheap pick for the forward. Less than £5m means managers can release funds for other areas of the squad and would be a decent replacement for the injured Erling Haaland. As the Hatters are languishing near the bottom of the table, Adebayo will go overlooked but he’s scored in his last two outings (against Arsenal and Manchester City) meaning he’s coming into form at the right time.
Fixtures against Bournemouth, Newcastle and Sheffield United are to come in the next three weeks meaning a goal of two more from Adebayo could be the difference in especially tight gameweeks.
Mohamed Salah, Liverpool (13.1)
Mo Salah is an icon of FPL and he is already in 51% of the teams playing the game. If you’re one of the 49% that don’t have him in the squad now is the week to bring him in. Getting rid of Haaland should open up the funds for Salah though a second transfer made need to be made to as they play in different positions.
Even if it means taking a (-4) hit, this will be worth it as Liverpool take on Manchester United this Sunday. Salah has 10 goals and four assists in his last seven Premier League outings against United. He last failed to score against them in 2020/21 as part of a 0-0 draw.
Both teams are aggressive and leaking goals which should mean plenty of space for Salah to add to his already impressive tally. Make him your captain too.
James Tarkowski, Everton (4.4)
Like Bournemouth, Everton are on an upwards trajectory and should be worth taking note off. They have a team full of cheap options and the results to back up choosing them. We’re going with James Tarkowski due to his accummulation of 20 points from the last three fixtures.
Potentially difficult games against Newcastle and Chelsea saw the Toffees win both matches without conceding and they’re shaping up to become a standard Sean Dyche team that is tough to score against. With Tarkowski also coming up against his old club Burnley this week, the defender will want another clean sheet and it is more than possible that Everton will be able to deliver.