We are almost two-thirds into the 2015-16 Premier League season, and one look at the league table is bound to astound even the most seasoned football pundit.
Leicester City are firmly in the race to win the Premier title, while last season’s winners Chelsea are battling relegation in one of the most topsy turvy seasons of all time. The uncertainties of the English Premier League this season have also spilled over into the world of fantasy football with several seasoned managers struggling to gain a foothold in the race to be crowned the FPL champion.
At this late juncture in the season, it is important for the managers to look at potential differentials in order to significantly boost their standings in the Fantasy Premier League. Here are 5 differentials for your Gameweek 23 fantasy squads.
1. Patrick Van Aanholt
Dutch full-back Patrick Van Aanholt has undergone a minor renaissance since the arrival of Sam Allardyce at Sunderland. Quite incredibly, Van Aanholt has managed to find the back of the net in Sunderland’s last three league outings. The Dutchman’s attacking returns have been flourishing since his deployment as a left wingback in Big Sam’s 3-5-2 formation. Priced at a reasonable £4.6m, Van Aanholt will be hoping to continue his goal scoring form against Bournemouth at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.
2. Christian Eriksen
After enduring a 13-game spell without scoring, Danish playmaker Christian Eriksen bounced back in style last week as his brace against Sunderland helped Tottenham consolidate their place in the Premier League’s Top 4. Despite missing just 3 matches all season, Eriksen has failed to reach the heights that saw him score 10 goals last season. His brace against Sunderland in the league came barely a week after he scored against Leicester City in the 3rd Round of the FA Cup. With Spurs having lost just a single match away this season, valued at £8.3m, Eriksen has the capacity to serve as a deadly differential when his team travel to Selhurst Park to take on a struggling Crystal Palace side.
3. Charlie Austin
In one of the coups of the season, Southampton FC signed Queens Park Rangers striker Charlie Austin for a paltry sum of £4 million. The former Burnley striker, who scored 18 goals and provided 8 assists last season, is available to fantasy managers at a cut price value of £7m. After undergoing a torrid spell of 6 defeats in 8 matches in November and December, Ronald Koeman’s Southampton side bounced back in style after registering convincing wins over West Brom and Watford in their last two. A striker of proven Premier League pedigree, Austin will be hoping to hit the ground running as he travels to Old Trafford to take Louis van Gaal’s struggling Manchester United side.
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4. Johnny Evans
West Bromwich Albion have endured a Jekyll & Hyde campaign under Tony Pulis this season. Sitting at 13th position in the league table, the Baggies have failed to replicate their defensive mastery which saw them accrue 12 clean sheets last season. Having said that, Tony Pulis and his West Brom defence, who have two tasty home fixtures coming up against Aston Villa & Swansea City, will be hopeful of keeping out two of the worst attacks in the league at the moment. Sitting in just 1.2% of the sides, former Manchester United defender Johnny Evans (£4.8m) will serve as a great differential for Fantasy managers who are hoping to play catch at this late stage in the season.
5. David Silva
Manchester City’s mercurial Spanish playmaker David Silva has endured a torrid campaign after missing 8 games due to injury this season. Silva started off the season with a bang after registering 4 assists in 4 matches for the Citizens. However, an ankle injury kept him out of action for the next two months with the Spaniard only making his much awaited return in late November. With an ownership of just 5.7% and valued at £9.9m, Silva set off fantasy alarms last week as he scored one goal and assisted another on his way to a 12 point haul. With Sergio Aguero back from injury and Manchester City finally hitting some steam, Silva is likely to serve as a solid differential in the Sky Blues upcoming run of away fixtures against West Ham United and Sunderland.
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