Fantasy Premier League: Keeping Haaland, and finding Toney and Saka replacements

Gameweek 14 was another interesting round of fixtures, throwing up many events and implications for our Fantasy Premier League teams.

It was business as usual for Manchester City, Arsenal and an increasingly impressive Newcastle United side, but Liverpool suffered another shock defeat, this time against Leeds United.

But what does all this mean for our FPL prospects?

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Ivan Toney substitutes

One of the biggest topics of conversation was Ivan Toney (£7.5m) picking up his fifth yellow card in Brentford’s 1-1 draw with Wolves. This means he now misses Gameweek 15, which would be a very good match against Nottingham Forest.

It would be his last competitive game until the World Cup, with Brentford playing Manchester City away in Gameweek 16. So Toney became a fixture.

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There are plenty of capable replacements for the next two weeks of play, depending on how much money you have in the bank or how many free transfers you have.

If you have two free streams to fundraise, I’d love to switch to them Darwin Nunez (£8.9m). Liverpool’s next two games are Tottenham (a) and Southampton (h) and he looks set to get most of his side’s scoring chances. Although their results were bad, it was mostly due to their defense. They actually looked good in the final third, scoring 23 league goals (fifth most) from an expected goals (xG) of 21.42 (fifth).

Darwin Nunez

Nunez could be a good replacement for Ivan Toney (Photo: Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Callum Wilson (£7.4m) is another good option that you could probably do in one transfer. He has six goals and three assists this season and just recorded his most game week points (19). Newcastle look great this season and you would expect them to score in the next two games (Southampton and Chelsea).

Gianluca Scamacca (£6.7m) also an option, as his next two fixtures are pretty decent, with West Ham United against Crystal Palace and Leicester City, both at home. He has now started the last six games and looks set to be their first choice forward Michail Antonio (£7.0m). He scored two goals in the last six league games.

If you are looking for a big difference, Dominic Calvert-Lewin (£7.9m) is your man. Owned by just 0.6 per cent of FPL players, he has started Everton’s last three games, scoring once. His team have some great games, followed by Leicester City and Bournemouth, and he is a proven Premier League goalscorer. It is very likely that he will also be on penalties.

What to do with Bukayo Saka?

jacket (£8.0) he had to be substituted after just 27 minutes after picking up an ankle injury against Nottingham Forest. It looks like it will be out of action for at least a week, which means it’s probably best to sell it. With only the next two games to go, we need to be aggressive with our plans and transfers.

From some angles, Phil Foden (£8.5m) is an obvious replacement. His schedule is just too good – City play Fulham (h) and Brentford (h) before the World Cup – and he has been in scintillating form. However, it is worrying that he was on the bench in the last two league games. This came as a huge surprise as he started City’s first 10 league games.

Haaland Foden

Will Haaland and Foden link up again this weekend? (Photo: Matt McNulty – Manchester City/Manchester City FC via Getty Images)

Pep Guardiola did talk about fatigue after the Champions League game against Borussia Dortmund and named Foden as one of those players. City are likely to field a weakened side against Sevilla on Wednesday, having already qualified, which should mean Foden starts in the Premier League.

For those who already own a Foden, Miguel Almiron (£5.6m), Leandro Trossard (£6.9m), and Marcus Rashford (£6.6m) are suitable substitutes for Saka.

Almiron was absolutely sensational, scoring seven goals and one assist this season. Only Kevin De Bruyne (£12.4m), Harry Kane (£11.6m) and Erling Haaland (£12.2m) have collected more points than his 79. Newcastle have scored 24 goals (fourth) with an xG of 23.10 (second) and are now clearly a force to be reckoned with.

Trossard is also enjoying his best season with seven goals and two assists. Brighton face Wolves and Aston Villa next, a good pair of games.

Rashford has four goals and two assists and was actually unlucky not to have more attacking returns. Manchester United have turned the corner after a terrible start and next face Aston Villa and Fulham, both attractive fixtures for attacking players. Villa and Fulham are in the bottom six in terms of goals conceded and expected goals conceded (xGC), with Fulham last in the latter metric.

Sell ​​or keep Haaland?

The biggest news before Gameweek started was whether Haaland would be fit. Turns out he wasn’t and it’s still unclear if he’ll be ready for Gameweek 15 and beyond.

Now it’s a pending situation and we shouldn’t rush transfers — he’s just too good an asset. We should have clearer information at the end of the week.

However, if it turns out he won’t be fit for Gameweek 15 against Fulham, then it certainly becomes a debate. A move to Kane could be on the horizon. Spurs play at home to Liverpool and Leeds in the next two games which are attractive for strikers.

The downside to this is that you will lose some value in Haaland and will have to pay more to get him back after Gameweek 16, especially if you got him earlier. However, if he isn’t there for the Fulham game, he will suffer at least one drop in price, and it’s worth remembering that we’re playing for points, not team value.

If we’re in yet another situation where we’re not sure if he’ll start at Fulham or not, keeping him is a gamble worth taking. His tally could be huge, with City having Brentford at home after that.

Be sure to check out The Athletic Football Podcast, hosted by The FPL General, for all the latest tips and tricks. Catch it free on all major listening providers and ad-free on The Athletic app.

(Photo: Barrington Coombs/PA Images via Getty Images)


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