The Hard Tackle brings you all the Fantasy Premier League tips you need for Gameweek 28.
A weekend that just sees one of the top six feature is certainly going to be a tedious ordeal for FPL managers. Usually, the managers enjoy picking players of the bigger teams, so to speak, as their return on investment is higher than with those of the lesser teams.
However, with only Liverpool featuring from the big six, it is safe to say that the Reds players are going to be in serious demand from now until the GMT 14:00 deadline on the 11th of March.
One Reds player who has been making the headlines before the season even began is Sadio Mane. The Senegalese moved to Anfield in the summer for a fee of £34 million, that received a lot of criticism as spokespersons in the media did not believe he was worth the price tag.
But, 27 gameweeks into the season, Mane has managed to silence each and every critic that ever doubted him, and has done so with a smile on his face. The FPL managers who have invested 9.6m in him will also have a slight grin as they have been delighted with the attacker’s performances this term.
Playing in a 4-3-3, Mane is one of three forwards leading the line for the club. While Roberto Firmino tends to drop slightly deeper and find spaces in the opposition defence and Philippe Coutinho plays the role of creator in chief, the onus is on the former Southampton man to deliver the goals, and he has done just that.
His absence through international duty dented Liverpool’s performances, and it took him a while to get back, but now he looks ready for the ask and is backed to score in every game regardless of the opposition.
At 8.2m, Mane’s teammate Coutinho is also a decent option, and with the lack of fixtures, it may be a sensible move to bring in the Brazilian. Liverpool are expected to win comfortably at home against a Burnley side that have been woeful on the road this season.
Mane and Coutinho have been two of their major goal-scoring sources, and are likely to fancy their chances against the Clarets on Sunday.
This weekend also sees a resurgent West Ham take on Bournemouth at Dean Court. The Cherries have one of the poorest defences in the league, and despite absence of Dimitri Payet, the Hammers attack has enough steam in its tank to ruffle a few feathers on Saturday.
West Ham’s talisman Andy Carroll (6.2 m) is a popular option for most FPL managers as he provides a fantastic points-to-price ratio. What makes him an even better choice is that Bournemouth have conceded the most headed goals this season, and the English striker scores aplenty in that manner.
The Hammers also have solid wingers and their full-backs are likely to overlap and whip in delightful crosses for Carroll. This makes the likes of Michael Antonio (6.2m) and Aaron Cresswell (5.2m) has options that can be considered if you are to revamp your squad on a wholesale basis.
Everton striker Romelu Lukaku has been transferred in by nearly 300,000 managers this week and with good reason. The top strikers in Harry Kane, Sergio Aguero, Diego Costa and Zlatan Ibrahimovic do not feature this week, which has seen the Belgian as a popular candidate to lead the line.
At 10.1m, Lukaku doesn’t come cheap, but he comes with that high-scoring benefit and is likely to score more than a solitary goal when he gets going. The Everton forward is a worker off the ball and is also decent at setting up chances for his teammates.
With the Toffees playing host to a relatively weaker West Brom side, Lukaku could fancy his chances against the Baggies defenders. While Tony Pulis is going to set out his men to frustrate the opposition, the Belgian front man may just have what it needs to spark a good performance.
Which is why he is the preferred option to be handed the captain’s arm-band, particularly due to the fact that he is likely to receive more chances than Sadio Mane or Philippe Coutinho. Everton also have a decent fixture list ahead, meaning Lukaku will not only be a short-term option.
THT’s Team of the Week
Goalkeeper: Lee Grant (Stoke City)
Defenders: Stephen Ward (Burnley), Marcos Alonso (Chelsea), Winston Reid (West Ham), Seamus Coleman (Everton)
Midfielders: Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal), Manuel Lanzini (West Ham), Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool), Gylfi Sigurdsson (Swansea)
Strikers: Diego Costa (Chelsea), Romelu Lukaku (Everton)
Bench: Jordan Pickford (Sunderland), Peter Crouch (Stoke City), Antonio Valencia (Manchester United), Joe Allen (Stoke City)
Points earned last week: 58