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Premier League Gameweek 3 – Fantasy Preview

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Premier League Gameweek 3 is ahead of us and here is the Fantasy Preview!

Hello! I’m Kieran (@FPLRatchet) and it’s my pleasure to be back this week to bring you the latest edition of my weekly Full Round Classic team reveal article.

Full Round is a weekly competition held on Fanteam where players choose a starting XI (no subs) from the teams playing that Gameweek from a budget of 100.0M, with the objective of scoring as many points as possible. Players score points using the same system as in the €1M season-long game – a scoring system that will feel very familiar to those who have played FPL.

The prize structure for the Full Round Classic game has recently been updated to make the contest even juicier than it already was… There are now both €2 and €20 buy ins available, with players in the €20 buy in contest sharing a minimum guaranteed prize pool of €50,000 every week!

Players are priced in accordance with the match odds for each given fixture. This means that the price list will be different every week, and will read very differently to the season-long game, as prices are brought up or down depending on the quality of the fixture, and the form of the player.

So, now I’ve introduced the Full Round Classic game and how it works. Let’s get into the Premier League Gameweek 3 Fantasy Preview. Here are my selections!

Goalkeeper

Like last week, I’ve gone for a budget option in goal – Vicente Guaita (5.9M), at home to Everton.

As much as I like this new look Everton side for this season, it is worth remembering that they’ve as yet only faced a disappointing Spurs, and a West Brom side currently putting up the worst defensive numbers in the league.

Furthermore, Palace have flown in the face of pre-season predictions of being a defence to target so far, with two very stubborn defensive showings against Southampton and Manchester United. On top of this, Guaita is an elite goalkeeper in my opinion, which always gives confidence for the potential of plenty of save or penalty save points, even if he can’t keep a clean sheet.

Defenders

With last week providing 44 goals – a record number in the Premier League – I was determined to spend less of my budget in defence than last week, and to only choose three defenders for my team this week.

My first defender is Romain Saïss (7.9M) facing West Ham away. Wolves had one of the best defences in the league last season, boasting the second best xGA behind on Manchester City with 37.39. Despite a somewhat encouraging performance against Arsenal last week, West Ham still appear to be in a slump as rumours of disquiet behind the scenes continue, making them a potential team to target for fantasy football at the moment.

Whilst I also like the look of new full-back Nelson Semedo (8.0M), I can’t be sure he’ll start so soon after joining the club, in a distinct system like Wolves’ especially, so I’ll be playing safe with Saïss for this week.

Next up is Kyle Walker-Peters (7.5M) against Burnley away. Now, I understand this may come as a surprise as Saints have looked very open at the back in the first two weeks we’ve seen them, however, I feel that Southampton’s tactic of pressing high and holding a high line should be very effective against this Burnley side, whereas it played right into the hands of Spurs last week. Burnley lack the pace to get in behind and really exploit that high line like a Heung-Min Son can, for example, and I also feel that Burnley’s slightly inexperienced centre backs could potentially fall victim to the high press of Che Adams and Danny Ings.

Matty Cash (6.7M) is my next choice, facing Fulham away. Villa impressed on their way to keeping a clean sheet against Sheffield United in their opening game of the season on Monday, and the quality of Cash down the right flank was something that stuck out to me whilst watching. He pushed high forward recording an intriguing heat map, and his crosses looked inviting for the forward runs of Ollie Watkins and co. With Fulham 2nd bottom of the league for xG out of teams that have played twice so far, Cash looks a budget route to a defender with both clean sheet and attacking potential this week.

Midfielders

For my midfield this week I’ve started with the most expensive player available this week, then tried to nail some mid-priced picks to fill out the rest of my midfield four.

My first choice is Kevin De Bruyne (14.5M). With the news that Wilfried Ndidi is out injured for 8-12 weeks, I fear for this Leicester defence. They went through a period last season where Ndidi was out injured as well, and their defensive stats took a nosedive. Whilst current full backs Castagne and Justin offer a threat going forward, they appear to put their defensive responsibilities at second priority. For these reasons I think City are plenty capable of scoring a few against Leicester, and now on penalty duty, De Bruyne looks like he might be a better FPL asset than ever.

My second midfielder is Daniel Podence (8.9M). I’ve already discussed why I believe West Ham might be a team to target, and I think this applies even more from an attacking perspective than it does for defenders.

Podence is a player I chose for my full round squad last week as well, delivering an assist against Man City. As you may see more as the weeks go by, he’s a personal favourite of mine. Though the chances haven’t quite fallen perfectly for him yet, I continue to see him drift into central positions so often, and with his blistering pace and excellent dribbling, I have no doubt the goals are coming if he keeps getting starts.

Jack Grealish (8.6M) is my third pick for my midfield this week. Though he didn’t return last week, he got into promising positions and continued to put up good numbers as usual. I’ve already discussed the strategy to target this Fulham side, and so I see no reason Grealish can’t bag a return or two this coming weekend. I’ll also be hoping he can provide some chances for the third Villa player in my team this week, as you’ll soon see…

My final midfield pick this week is Wilfried Zaha (7.6M). A slight punt for the final midfield slot, but, as always, there is logic to back up this pick. Zaha has started up front in a two man strike force for Palace in the first two games of this Premier League season, and has got three goals already as a result. Zaha can look devastating at his best, and, with the transfer window still open, Zaha might be looking to continue this hot streak if he still harbours a desire to leave Palace, as he’s publicly stated he intended to in the past. Furthermore, there’s the possibility that he’s now on penalties after Jordan Ayew missed his spot-kick last weekend.

Attackers

I’ve gone for a three man attack this week, with one premium, and two mid-priced assets completing my XI.

Timo Werner (13.9M) is my first pick away to West Brom, and, to be honest, he was the first name in my team despite his lack of a Premier League goal as yet. This is because I want to look for the players with the potential to explode first things first, and with West Brom conceding the highest xGA so far by a large distance – 7.12 – they look right now to be the main defence to target in the league. Whilst Werner is yet to score, he has looked sharp and threatening on the eye-test, and I’m backing him all the way to open his Premier League account this weekend.

Raul Jiménez (9.9M) is my next pick away to West Ham. To complete my Wolves triple-up this week, is the man known in the fantasy community as “The Postman” – a name given due to season after season of such consistent delivery of points for the Portuguese number 9. He’s scored in both of his opening two fixtures, and I certainly wouldn’t bet against him scoring again going into this match against a weak West Ham defence.

The final player I’ve chosen for my team is Ollie Watkins (8.4M) facing Fulham away. The second triple-up of the week goes to Aston Villa, but Watkins is certainly more of a punt than Jiménez. Watkins is yet to score a Premier League goal, but he looked excellent in the Championship last season scoring 26 league goals for Brentford, and with the quality of player he is I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see him open his Premier League account against Fulham this weekend.

Captaincy

With a slightly less risky starting XI than I chose last week, I wanted to choose a slightly riskier captain than De Bruyne, and in my opinion, Timo Werner (13.9M) offers the perfect explosive differential choice for what I’m looking for. Of his 28 goals in the Bundesliga last season, Werner scored three hat-tricks, and performed much better against the weaker teams. I say this to say that he has very explosive potential, and his record from last season would lead you to the conclusion that whilst he may be slightly streaky, he is a firm captaincy option when facing a weak defence like West Bromwich Albion’s looks to be.

Strategy for Premier League Gameweek 3 Fantasy Preview

I’ve targeted a 3-4-3 formation this week due to the record number of goals scored in the Premier League last week, but I think 3-5-2 is a totally logical formation to choose this week instead. I just personally found far more choice in the attacking option than the midfield this week – I think I would have chosen a 3-3-4 formation if I was allowed to!

I’ve also held on to the strategy of fully committing to my predictions, as evidenced by my Wolves and Aston Villa triple-ups, as I predict both of these teams to win this week. I’ve also tried to shift my funds further forward than last week, in the hunt for those explosive returns that will really fire me into those cash prize positions.

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