Both the start to the Prem and the first game week of the FPL season are an occasion perfectly constructed for both endless optimism and gut wrenching nerves. The constant tinkering prior to the season’s beginning seems tireless and never-ending, and does not satisfy nor provide resounding confidence in predicting what has yet to come in the upcoming 38 weeks. Similar to one’s first week of school (FWOS), this is where all of the potential combinations and progressions of events exist: maybe you’ll be the cool kid with a shiny new ₤10.5m that will go on to increase their team value as everyone jumps on your party, or perhaps your season will unfold as the hipster trying to make their team appear unique with a ₤4.0m max budget defense. All realms of fantasy exist prior to GW1, but the truth is that we must always remain on our toes and ready to react to new changes within the player market, and noticing recent trends as well as trying to sort out which ones amount to a bit of good fortune and the others that are really about hard-fought goals and assists over a positive long-term period.

After that long-winded intro, one thing I’d like to make an effort to achieve this season is more communication from you readers in what trends or results you’ve seen in the FPL universe after every game week’s slate of matches. It will help this weekly piece have a better focus on players we should all be considering bringing in, and what they have been up to recently that would justify transferring them in to your roster.

For clarity, I am generally just posting the names of players that finished tops of the total point score by position for the past week. Not all players make it every week, and I’ll often throw in a negative performance as well so we are exposed to those weeks that should all help us sympathize with a portion of managers suffering from negative points in any given GW…

GW1 Forward Scoring

Player, Team Percentage Owned Current Price GW 1 Result GW 1 Total/Last 3/Season
Wilson, BOU 5.9% ₤6.0m 1 G, 1 A, 1 Pen. Miss, 1 BP 8/8/8
Vardy, LEI 7.4% ₤9.0m 1 G, 1 BP 6/6/6
Jiménez, WOL 4.4% ₤5.5m 1 G, 0 BP 6/6/6
Zaha, CRY 31.7% ₤7.0m 1 GS, 0 BP 5/5/5
Tosun, EVE 6.7% ₤7.0m 1 A, 0 BP 5/5/5
Firmino, LIV 36.3% ₤9.5m 1 A, 0 BP 5/5/5
Sturridge, LIV 1.4% ₤6.0m 1 GS, 0 BP 5/5/5
Joselu, NEW 3.2% ₤5.0m 1 G, 1 YC, 1 BP 5/5/5
  • Callum Wilson finished as the top point getting among forwards had a penalty miss, but still finished 2 points clear of Jamie Vardy and new Wolves striker Raul Jimenez.
    • Wilson and Jimenez are great 3rd striker options for any team. Jimenez is a tall forward that finishes strong around the net. He had 6 goals last season for Benfica and 7 the season before. He was barely featured during Mexico’s run in the world cup due to La Tri’s infatuation with Chicharito, but certainly will be looking to make a case to be included as a starter for them moving forward.
    • Callum Wilson has 14 goals in just about a full season’s minutes over the past two years (6 goals in 1361 minutes for 16/17, 8 goals in 1981 minutes for 17/18). He is clinical (except on the penalty) and should keep seeing starter’s minutes up top for the Cherries.
  • No goals from the three most expensive forwards in the game: Harry Kane, Kun Aguero, P.E. Aubameyang. Don’t knee jerk any of them out, as you didn’t put them on your squad for just the first gameweek of the year. Do, however, notice the value elsewhere in the positions and consider trading them out for a higher-priced MF that is getting involved in the attack consistently.

GW1 Midfielders Scoring

Player, Team Percentage Owned Current Price GW 1 Result GW 1 Total/Last 3/Season
Mané, LIV 20.9% ₤9.6m 2 G, 1 CS, 3 BP 16/16/16
Pereyra, WAT 4.1% ₤6.1m 2 G, 1 CS, 3 BP 16/16/16
Richarlison, EVE 21.4% ₤6.6m 2 G, 3 BP 14/14/14
Neves, WOL 19.9% ₤5.0m 1 GS, 1 A, 2 BP 12/12/12
Fraser, BOU 2.1% ₤5.5m 1 GS, 3 BP 11/11/11
Pogba, MUN 13.2% ₤8.1m 1 GS, 2 BP 10/10/10
Pedro, CHE 2.9% ₤6.5m 1 GS, 1 CS, 1 BP 9/9/9
Jorginho, CHE 11.7% ₤5.0m 1 GS, 1 CS, 1 BP 9/9/9
Alli, TOT 5.3% ₤9.0m 1 GS, 2 BP 9/9/9
Kanté, CHE 21.6% ₤5.0m 1 GS, 1 CS, 1 BP 8/8/8
Salah, LIV 54.6% ₤13.0m 1 GS, 1 CS, 0 BP 8/8/8
B. Silva, MCI 8.0% ₤7.5m 1 GS, 1 CS, 0 BP 8/8/8
Sterling, MCI 2.7% ₤11.0m 1 GS, 1 CS, 1 YC 7/7/7
Willian, CHE 9.3% ₤7.5m 1 A, 0 BP 6/6/6
Milner, LIV 0.8% ₤5.5m 1 A, 1 CS, 0 BP 6/6/6
Sánchez, MUN 9.2% ₤10.5 1 A, 0 BP 5/5/5
Mata, MUN 2.5% ₤6.5m 1 A, 0 BP 5/5/5
Ritchie, NEW 1.1% ₤6.0m 1 A, 0 BP 5/5/5
Jota, WOL 6.1% ₤6.5m 1 A, 0 BP 5/5/5
Hazard, CHE 11.1% ₤10.5m 1 A, 0 BP 4/4/4
  • Great returns from tons of budget midfielders this past week! Neves, Pereya, Richarlison, Pedro, Jorginho and Kanté, all available for ₤6.6m or less, scored as much or more than expensive MF studs Salah, Sanchez, Hazard and Sterling.
  • Mané comes through scoring double the points for ₤3.5m less than Salah; let’s get used to the idea of one of the two of them or Firmino getting double digit returns every week. I wouldn’t be surprised if they all finish relatively similar in the points totals, with the two MF finishing 1 and 2 due to the extra point for MF goals scored.
    • Salah’s ownership number of 54.6% kind of stands in the way from wanting to do much with him. If you get rid of him, then you are losing ground on tons of managers whenever he has a big game due to the captain points. However, for those managers that want to set themselves apart from the pack early, picking a correct captain choice every week without Salah could be the ultimate season-long differential.

GW1 Defenders Scoring

Player, Team Percentage Owned Current Price GW 1 Result GW 1 Total/Last 3/Season
Mendy, MCI 14.7% ₤6.1m 2 A, 1 CS, 3 BP 15/15/15
Holebas, WAT 4.2% ₤4.5m 2 A, 1 CS, 2 BP 13/13/13
Wan-Bissaka, CRY 19.5% ₤4.1m 1 A, 1 CS, 3 BP 12/12/12
Alonso, CHE 17.9% ₤6.5m 1 A, 1 CS, 2 BP 11/11/11
Schlupp, CRY 1.9% ₤4.5m 1 GS, 1 YC, 1 CS 11/11/11
van Aanholt, CRY 5.9% ₤5.5m 1 A, 1 CS, 2 BP 11/11/11
Robertson, LIV 16.5% ₤6.0mm 1 A, 1 CS, 2 BP 11/11/11
Vertonghen, TOT 10.9% ₤6.0m 1 GS, 3 BP 11/11/11
Rüdiger, CHE 3.2% ₤6.0m 1 CS, 3 BP 9/9/9
Aké, BOU 4.1% ₤5.0m 1 CS, 2 BP 8/8/8
Mee, BUR 5.1% ₤5.0m 1 CS, 2 BP 8/8/8
Stones, MCI 10.5% ₤5.5m 1 CS, 2 BP 8/8/8
Tarkwoski, BUR 9.7% ₤5.0m 1 CS, 1 BP 7/7/7
Sakho, CRY 1.6% ₤5.0m 1 CS, 1 BP 7/7/7
Walker, MCI 12.6% ₤6.5m 1 CS, 1 BP 7/7/7
Janmaat, WAT 0.6% ₤5.0M 1 CS, 1 BP 7/7/7
Steve Cook, BOU 1.5% ₤4.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Adam Smith, BOU 0.6% ₤4.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Lowton, BUR 1.0% ₤5.0m 1 CS 6/6/6
Ward, BUR 2.6% ₤5.0m 1 CS 6/6/6
Azpilicueta, CHE 15.7% ₤6.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Tomkins, CRY 8.5% ₤4.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Gomez, LIV 0.5% ₤5.0m 1 CS 6/6/6
van Dijk, LIV 18.3% ₤6.0m 1 CS 6/6/6
Laporte, MCI 1.5% ₤5.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Bertrand, SOU 7.1% ₤5.0m 1 CS 6/6/6
Stephens, SOU 0.3% ₤4.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Hoedt, SOU 0.4% ₤4.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Vestergaard, SOU 0.6% ₤5.0m 1 CS 6/6/6
Cathcart, WAT 0.1% ₤4.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Kabasele, WAT 0.8% ₤4.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Daniels, BOU 17.1% ₤4.5m 1 CS, 1 YC 5/5/5
David Luiz, CHE 4.1% ₤5.5m 1 CS, 1 YC 5/5/5
Keane, CHE 2.7% ₤5.0m 1 A, 1 BP 5/5/5
Alexander-Arnold, LIV 17.0% ₤5.0m 1 CS, 1 YC 5/5/5
Sánchez, TOT 2.9% ₤6.0m 1 A 5/5/5
Aurier, TOT 1.2% ₤6.0m 1 A 5/5/5
Francis, BOU 0.5% ₤4.5m 1 A 4/4/4
Pereira, LEI 1.7% ₤5.0m 1 A 4/4/4
  • So much value in defense in just 1 week! Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Watford, Southampton and Burnley all returned clean sheets, leaving lots of owners happy with big defensive point hauls.
  • Benjamin Mendy looked particularly good attacking for Manchester City, hopefully he and the other defenders on that team are able to find a successful starting rotation that will allow managers to pick a player “nailed” to play in front of Ederson.
  • Big ups to the Watford crew and Holebas for chipping in 2 assists with the clean sheet! Yes, it was versus Brighton, but Watford only had 6 total clean sheets all last season, so that is a start in the right direction. Fixtures, however, aren’t particularly good from GW 4-7. I’d look to bring them in GW 8 vs Bournemouth.

GW1 Goalkeepers Scoring

Player, Team Percentage Owned Current Price GW 1 Result GW 1 Total/Last 3/Season
McCarthy, SOU 1.8% ₤4.5m 6 SV, 1 CS, 3 BP 11/11/11
Hennessey, CRY 1.9% ₤4.5m 6 SV, 6 CS, 1 BP 9/9/9
Ederson, MCI 18.4% ₤5.5m 3 SV, 1 CS, 1 BP 8/8/8
Hart, BUR 5.2% ₤4.5m 3 SV, 1 CS 7/7/7
Alisson, LIV 14.4% ₤5.5m 2 SV, 1 CS, 1 BP 7/7/7
Begovic, BOU 4.9% ₤4.5m 1 SV, 1 CS 6/6/6
Etheridge, CAR 0.3% ₤4.5m 2 SV, 1 PEN SV 6/6/6
Kepa, CHE 3.6% ₤5.5m 1 SV, 1 CS 6/6/6
Foster, WAT 5.0% ₤4.5m 1 CS 6/6/6
Cech, ARS 1.7% ₤5.0m 6 SV 3/3/3
Fabri, FUL 0.3% ₤4.5m 7 SV 3/3/3
De Gea, MUN 30.0% ₤6.0m 3 SV 3/3/3
  • Tons of value through just 1 week in the goalkeeper ranks. Going with two lower-priced GK might be the best way to get CS at a cheap rate.
  • Highest owned GK, David De Gea, was tied with the lowest returns out of all GK not scoring the basic 1/2 points from minutes.
  • Save leaders on the young year so far are Southampton, Crystal Palace, Arsenal and Fulham; these teams just faced Burnley, Fulham, Manchester City and Crystal Palace, respectively.