Coasting at the top of the league? Stuck in mid-table and desperate to make a push? Scrapping around at the bottom and losing enthusiasm?
Wherever you are in the fantasy football table, you are always looking for those differentials that can boost your team’s performance.
Here are a few things to think about before you select your side for this weekend’s Premier League fixtures…
|Premier League fixtures – week 12|
|Cardiff v Brighton||Newcastle v Bournemouth|
|Huddersfield v West Ham||Southampton v Watford|
|Leicester v Burnley||Crystal Palace v Tottenham|
|Liverpool v Fulham||Arsenal v Wolves|
|Chelsea v Everton||Man City v Man Utd|
Why it is worth considering Man Utd players…
Played 6; Won 6; Goals scored 24; Goals conceded 3
They say form goes out of the window in a derby match… perhaps logic does too in the world of fantasy football.
Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City have not just won all of their home Premier League games this season, they have won them in style.
But if City are going to stall against any side at Etihad Stadium then the statistics suggest it could be when they face neighbours Manchester United.
That’s because City have not beaten their rivals in their past three trips to the Etihad, including when United came from 2-0 down to win 3-2 last season.
If you are tempted to scour the United squad for options, Anthony Martial is an obvious choice having scored five goals in the past four Premier League games.
Marcus Rashford, meanwhile, has two goals and an assist in his past five games. It’s also worth noting United have the likes of Crystal Palace, Southampton and Fulham coming up after the derby…
And while United might have conceded plenty of goals this season, keeping just one clean sheet, is it worth considering bringing in a defender?
Jose Mourinho is often perceived as a defensive manager, particularly when playing away in games against his side’s rivals, meaning he could be tempted to try to shut up shop.
Added to that, Sergio Aguero and Raheem Sterling – City’s top two scorers in the league – have struggled against United recently.
Aguero has failed to score in his past three derbies, while Sterling has never netted against them, despite attempting 19 shots in 12 games.
|Manchester’s top scorers|
|Sergio Aguero (City)||7|
|Raheem Sterling (City)||6|
|Anthony Martial (United)||5|
|Riyad Mahrez (City)||4|
|Romelu Lukaku (United)||4|
|Paul Pogba (United)||3|
|Bernardo Silva (City)||3|
|David Silva (City)||3|
|Leroy Sane (City)||3|
Home banker for Chelsea?
Chelsea’s unbeaten start to the season means your fantasy football team is already likely to feature a Blues player or two – particularly the points machine that is Eden Hazard.
If you haven’t got any of Maurizio Sarri’s men then this weekend’s home game against Everton might be the perfect time to bring one in.
Not only are Chelsea playing well and scoring goals, but history and form shows us the Toffees might have problems at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea have not lost any of their past 28 home matches against Everton, while the Merseyside club have only won four of their previous 32 away games in the Premier League.
Added to that, Everton have also only won one of their past 16 league fixtures in London – and have lost their past four.
Mitrovic’s fire fizzling out
Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic might have been an automatic pick for many managers as a thrifty attacking option earlier in the season, but this looks likely to be the weekend to drop him if you’ve kept faith so far.
The Serb is set to lead the line when the Cottagers go to Liverpool on Sunday, but don’t rely on him to score you many points.
Mitrovic has rarely looked like scoring in his past two matches, managing just one shot on target in each game. That’s the same amount as the number of bookings he has received…
In addition, form and history are stacked against Fulham succeeding at Anfield.
Slavisa Jokanovic’s side have lost all three games against sides from the ‘big six’ this season by an aggregate score of 11-2, while Liverpool have won all eight home Premier League games against newly promoted teams under Jurgen Klopp, scoring 25 goals and conceding just three.
The Cottagers have managed just one win in their 33 trips to Anfield, scoring only four times in their past 17 visits.
|Which strikers are getting the big chances?|
Do you bring back Doucoure?
Watford midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure emerged as an influential player last season – both for the Hornets and many fantasy football sides.
With a cheap price tag and the ability to pop up with goals, the Frenchman became a big hit with managers looking for bargain buys.
That saw his price tag rise this season and, with him not having scored yet in this campaign, Doucoure has been out of favour with plenty.
This could be an opportune time to bring him back though.
That’s because the Hornets go to Southampton on Saturday, a side who Doucoure has scored against in all three of his Premier League appearances so far.
Added to that, the Saints have been leaking goals in recent weeks, while Watford continue to create plenty of chances.
Their problem, particularly in their last outing at Newcastle, was finishing those opportunities – but if they do take them at St Mary’s then Doucoure could be involved.