Well, that was some opening weekend. Three huge scorelines, a whopping points average of 65 and some immense performances from the holy trinity of Harry Kane, Mohamed Salah and Raheem Sterling have already blown the FPL race wide open, and with much of the same in store this week, it's time to reassess the options at your disposal.
Struggling Saints host rampant Reds
The last thing Ralph Hassenhuttl would have wanted after being thoroughly outplayed at Burnley is a match against this Liverpool side. However, with the Reds having played 120 minutes in their midweek UEFA Super Cup victory over Chelsea, this one's not quite as straightforward as it could have been. Mohamed Salah (£12.5m) and Sadio Mane (£11.5m) both played most of the match, and either one might potentially be given a rest in favour of Divock Origi (£5.6m) up top. Yet manager Jurgen Klopp did state that the pair 'suffered least in the game,' so maybe don't go benching Salah just yet.
In defence, Trent Alexander-Arnold (£7m) is almost assured of a start, after the full-back was handed a breather in midweek. Southampton have struggled to find goals in recent matches, and a settled Liverpool defence is hardly likely to give them many opportunities. Adrian (£4.5m) had a debut to remember with Liverpool, winning a trophy after a penalty shootout in his first outing between the sticks for the Reds. At an absolute bargain, he'd probably be a top contender for a starting spot, but unfortunately, the Spanish goalkeeper was injured in a bizarre incident during Liverpool's celebrations and could miss out on this week's action.
Lol. Adrian a doubt for Southampton with a swollen ankle cos a Liverpool fan two-footed him pic.twitter.com/UEAp5Yj031
— Nooruddean (@BeardedGenius) August 16, 2019
Can Kane spur the Spurs to victory?
Another week and another huge clash at the top of the table. On Saturday, it's comeback kings Tottenham who make the trip north to Manchester, where they will take on defending champions City, and this one could go either way. Raheem Sterling's (£12.1m) hat-trick against West Ham United and Harry Kane's (£11m) brace against newly-promoted Aston Villa make them the stand-out choices when it comes to attack. However, if you don't have Kane at the moment, you can afford to wait a week, with some promising fixtures in store for the English striker, whose hefty price tag could make him slightly awkward to bring in.
Bernardo Silva (£8m) only came on as a substitute against West Ham, but that was a precautionary move, and he looks likely to start this game. Unfortunately, his versatility often brings up more questions than answers, as the Portuguese midfielder could replace either Riyad Mahrez on the right flank or David Silva in midfield. Either way, his comparatively modest going rate and his penchant to score big goals make him a very feasible option.
Top picks for GW 2:
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£11m): The Gabonese striker was one of the standout performers in Arsenal's low-key win over Newcastle on the opening weekend, scoring the only goal of the evening. With Burnley having won their first match by a 3-0 margin, this could potentially be a tougher fixture for the Gunners, but Aubameyang has scored twice in each of his last three outings against Sean Dyche's side and there's nothing to suggest that he won't come up with the goods yet again.
Lucas Digne (£6m): The Everton full-back scored four goals, bagged five assists and had many clean sheets last season, and he looks all set to continue that fine form in this campaign as well. Digne scored a respectable 6 points in his first outing of the season and a home fixture against Watford, who were quite unimpressive last week, makes him a must-have.
Anthony Martial (£7.6m): Martial has been consistently inconsistent since joining Manchester United, and has often rewarded managers who have taken a chance on him with long barren spells in front of goal. This time around though, the Frenchman looks like a player reborn, bagging the goal that knocked the wind out of Chelsea's attempted comeback last Sunday. Playing away at Wolves is always tricky, but Solskjaer's United have already made a major statement of intent, and the Red Devils could be in for another impressive victory.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (£7m): Alexander-Arnold is a no-brainer for Saturday's clash against Southampton, having played very little football in mid-week, only coming on as a sub for Andy Robertson in the ninetieth minute of the Super Cup. The young full-back bagged an assist against Norwich last time around, the fifth consecutive match in which he has done so, and with a clean sheet also looking likely, he could bring home the bacon.
Teemu Pukki (£6.6m): Pukki was on the radar of quite a few FPL stars in the build-up to the season, with the Norwich striker having set the EFL Championship alight with his free-scoring form last season. While it's still early days, he did manage to net at Anfield in a 4-1 loss, and a home fixture against Newcastle could see him add to that.
Mason Mount (£6m): Despite performing adequately against Manchester United in his first Premier League start, Mount found himself on the wrong side of a 4-0 defeat. However, with the faith of manager Frank Lampard firmly behind him, the young English midfielder could do well against Leicester, especially since he came on quite late in the marathon Super Cup clash against Liverpool.
Richarlison (£8m): Richarlison has proved time and again that he has all the makings of an FPL mainstay, coming up with key goals in each of his last two seasons. This week, the Brazilian will face his former team Watford, who started their campaign with a 3-0 loss to Brighton and Hove Albion and look thoroughly underwhelming.
O Captain, my Captain!
This one's tough. Salah played a full 120 minutes of football in midweek, while Sterling and Kane face off against each other, so the favourites are already looking a bit doubtful. In this scenario, Arsenal's Aubameyang could be your best bet, but if you're feeling lucky, Alexander-Arnold could be a good choice, provided he comes up with an assist or two.
Updated Date: Aug 17, 2019 14:43:55 IST