FANTASY PREMIER LEAGUE

FPL 2021-22: Team Selection Strategies – Forwards

Premier League player

Top performers from last season. Best premium and mid-range forwards for your team based on attacking potential and fixtures. We take a look at the must-have forwards for the upcoming FPL season.  

In the continuously evolving sport of football, the forward’s role is not just about finishing off an attacking play or scoring goals. He is the first line of defence for his team, pressuring the opponents in their own box. A blend of strength, speed, and agility to take on defenders. 

The forward sometimes spend long durations of the game isolated in the attacking half, awaiting the right moment to make his run. Stamina, brains, and technique to convert opportunities his teammates create. The role sees very few players remain consistent at the top levels. 

But when it comes to FPL, it is all about the goals and assists, and of course bonus points. Forwards are a prime candidate for captaincy with the potential to score 15+ points.

Premium Option – Harry Kane – 12.5m 

2020-21 stats :

  • Minutes – 3085
  • Goals – 23
  • Assists – 14 
  • Points – 242 

First six fixtures: MCI, WOL, WAT, CRY, CHE, ARS 

2021-22 expected stats: 

  • xG (expected goals) – 20.23 
  • xA (expected assists) – 3.63
  • xGI (expected goal involvement) – 23.86
  • Mins/xGI (minutes per goal involvement) – 129.3 

 The Spurs captain is on the transfer market currently but his $100+ million price tag means there are very few teams who can afford him. Manchester City is looking to sign him and his FPL potential only rises with a move to the defending champions. 

The appointment of a new head coach Nuno Espirito Santo is sure to yield results. If Kane stays, Nuno’s focus will be to build the team around their talisman which works well for FPL managers as it would increase his goal involvement. 

Mid-range option 1 – Dominic Calvert Lewin – 8.0m

2020-21 stats: 

  • Minutes – 2874
  • Goals – 16
  • Assists – 6
  • Points – 165 

First six fixtures: SOU, LEE, BHA, BUR, AVL, NOR

2021-22 expected stats: 

  • xG (expected goals) – 16.31 
  • xA (expected assists) – 2.08
  • xGI (expected goal involvement) – 18.39
  • Mins/xGI (minutes per goal involvement) – 156.3 

The Everton frontman emerges as the best option in this price range that includes the likes of Patrick Bamford, Ollie Watkins, Jimenez, and many others purely on the basis of fixtures. He is also on penalties adding more value. 

The team hired Rafael Benitez who is no stranger to the premier league. His direct style of play with a more compact formation will suit Calvert-Lewin who is more of a traditional number 9. For a 24-year old, he is developing well in the Premier League and can be a candidate for top scorer this season. 

Mid-range option 2 – Kelechi Iheanacho – 7.5m 

2020-21 stats: 

  • Minutes – 1456
  • Goals – 12
  • Assists: 2
  • Points: 110 

First six fixtures: WOL, WHU, NOR, MCI, BHA, BUR

2021-22 expected stats: 

  • xG (expected goals) – 8.20 
  • xA (expected assists) – 3.28
  • xGI (expected goal involvement) – 11.48
  • Mins/xGI (minutes per goal involvement) – 126.8

The Foxes frontman numbers may be lower in comparison to the others on the list, but it should be noted that he played only half the amount of minutes. A case can be made that teammate Jamie Vardy is the first choice in the starting XI, but Vardy is now 34 years old. 

Coach Brendan Rogers experiments less and focuses on tried and tested tactics. Iheanacho’s performance in the second half of the season makes it impossible for Rogers to overlook the striker. Whether he is starting or coming off the bench, Iheanacho’s FPL potential is undeniable.

Conclusion: 

While Harry Kane’s high cost(12.5m) and uncertain future can be off-putting, he is one of those players that you can lock in for the whole season. Such is his potential. But if you are looking to take more risks, a combination of Calvert-Lewin and Iheanacho could see higher gains. Their affordability means it frees up more funds for other positions. 

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