Time to get picking!
As time begins to run out before thousands (if not millions) of fans to pick their Fantasy Premier League team, those who still have to make a decision will wonder which players will do the business, who will represent value for money and who the big duds are likely to be. Given the limited amount of money each player has to work with, a mix of big stars and unheralded journeymen is essential.
Pick of the playmakers?
The first thing on players’ minds will be which player is likely to score the most points. The favourite to finish top of the charts is Manchester United striker Robin van Persie, who is 3/1 with Ladbrokes. He’s followed by Gareth Bale, Luis Suarez and Sergio Aguero in the betting, but after that, a host of attacking midfielders look like good value.
At 18/1, Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla is likely to score a few, but most of his points could come from assists, which might be valuable if Arsene Wenger manages to sign a much-needed world-class striker. Fellow Spaniard Juan Mata is also likely to be top of many Fantasy Premier League players’ shopping list, and at 20/1, he looks decent value.
New boys to make an impression
A clutch of new strikers and midfielders have made their way to the Premier League this summer, many of whom carry glowing reputations from their old clubs. The most tempting might be Alvaro Negredo, now at Manchester City. He’s 40/1 to outscore every other player at the end of the season, but someone a little less well-known might outshine him.
Joining for close to £13m from Vitesse Arnhem in the summer, Swansea’s Wilfried Bony should have plenty of chances to hit the back of the net, and might be good value at 66/1. The Norwich pair of Gary Hooper and Ricky van Wolfswinkel, who excelled for Celtic and Sporting Lisbon respectively, might cause a few problems this season, and are both 80/1 to finish top.
Benteke to back it up?
A great debut season for a struggling Aston Villa side showed that Christian Benteke could mix it with the best, and now that he has pledged his future to the club, he might feel confident of scoring more than 20 goals this season. A lot depends on how well the Villa midfield do, but at 25/1, the big Belgian cannot be ignored. Either way we seem to be in for one of the most competitive seasons with many further players still to be added in the next two weeks, you may want to test your football knowledge in time for the weekend.