FPL Double Gameweek 35 – Fixture Analysis: Free hits, triple captains, bench boosts and Deeney replacements

With free hit chips aplenty set for deployment in DGW35, we assess the best single and double gameweek options. Those transfer targets are also on the radar of managers building a squad for the season run-in, with Troy Deeney replacements a key consideration. The triple captain chip may also be popular this week as bench boosters with Brighton assets are tempted into a slight strategy switch.

DGW35 FIXTURES

Saturday 20th April

Man City vs Spurs (12:30)

Bournemouth vs Fulham (15:00)

Huddersfield vs Watford (15:00)

West Ham vs Leicester (15:00)

Wolves vs Brighton (15:00)

Newcastle vs Southampton (17:30)

Sunday 21st April

Everton vs Man Utd (13:30)

Arsenal vs Crystal Palace (16:00)

Cardiff vs Liverpool (16:00)

Monday 22nd April

Chelsea vs Burnley (20:00)

Tuesday 23rd April

Spurs vs Brighton (19:45)

Watford vs Southampton (19:45)

Wednesday 24th April

Wolves vs Arsenal (19:45)

Man Utd vs Man City (20:00)

MAN CITY

Schedule

APRIL – 9: Spurs (a) [UCL] Result: 1-0

14: Crystal Palace (a) Result: 1-3

17: Spurs (H) [UCL] Result: 4-3

20: Spurs (H) 24: Man Utd (a) [DGW35]

28: Burnley (a)

MAY – 4: Leicester (H)

12: Brighton (a)

18: Watford [FA Cup final]

Potential transfer targets: Ederson (£5.6m), Aymeric Laporte (£6.1m), Kyle Walker (£6.4m), Bernardo Silva (£7.6m), Kevin De Bruyne (£9.7m), Raheem Sterling (£11.5m), Sergio Aguero (£11.7m)

Synopsis: Knocked out of the Champions League in dramatic fashion, Man City now have a clear run at their final five league fixtures. Sterling made it two braces in two games as a 4-3 victory over Spurs was not enough to send Pep Guardiola’s men through, as the in-form attacker’s hat-trick goal was ruled out for offside.

KDB assisted three of City’s four goals, including Aguero’s second-half strike. Laporte was culpable for Spurs’ first two strikes, a slight worry for his owners considering the availability of three other centre-halves. The left-footed Frenchman has been rotated in the league just once this season, however, with his passing ability a key cog in building City attacks.

While the City squad is too full of talent for Guardiola not to rotate, key players should be set for significant minutes over the next four gameweeks. A triple up on the Citizens is very enticing, with their UCL knockout only adding to the captaincy credentials of several assets ahead of two pivotal league clashes in DGW35.

SPURS

Schedule

APRIL – 9: Man City (H) [UCL] Result: 1-0

13: Huddersfield (H) Result: 4-0

17: Man City (a) [UCL] Result: 4-3

20: Man City (a) 23: Brighton (H) [DGW35]

27: West Ham (H)

30: Ajax (H) [UCL]

MAY – 6: Bournemouth (a) [to be moved to May 4/5]

8: Ajax (a) [UCL]

12: Everton (H)

Transfer targets: Hugo Lloris (£5.4m), Jan Vertonghen (£5.9m), Kieran Tripper (£6.0m), Lucas Moura (£6.8m), Christian Eriksen (£9.3m), Heung-min Son (£8.8m), Fernando Llorente (£5.1m)

Synopsis: Son took full advantage of Laporte’s defensive errors to bag a brace in the opening 10 minutes of that UCL quarter-final second leg. The attacker’s yellow card in that tie means he is suspended for the visit of Ajax between GW36 and GW37. At his press conference yesterday, Mauricio Pochettino said on Son: “Of course, that is going to be sure that if he is OK he is going to play [in the PL] because for the first leg of the Champions League he is going to be suspended. It is normal with the situation we have in the squad, we need to be careful how we are going to manage the next few games.”

While Pochettino’s comments are more positive for Son owners in GW36, Spurs’ other injuries are a plus point for the midfielder’s pitch time in DGW35. Direct competitor Erik Lamela (£5.9m) remains a doubt, while Victor Wanyama (£4.9m) is Poch’s only fully-fit senior option in the engine room. That injury situation should also benefit Llorente, who came on to convert a controversial goal on Wednesday which saw Spurs into the UCL semi-finals. A lack of central midfielders means that Pochettino’s 4-2-3-1 probably requires four of five from Dele Alli (£8.8m), Eriksen, Lucas Moura, Son and Llorente to feature from the beginning of matches. The Spaniard also offers money in the bank to those ridding themselves of the suspended Deeney, while Alli’s ability to drop deeper when required lessens his fantasy appeal.

LIVERPOOL

Schedule

APRIL – 9: Porto (H) [UCL] Result: 2-0

14: Chelsea (H) Result: 2-0

17: Porto (a) [UCL] Result: 1-4

21: Cardiff (a)

26: Huddersfield (H)

1: Barcelona (a) [UCL]

MAY – 5: Newcastle (a) [to be moved to May 4]

7: Barcelona (H) [UCL]

12: Wolves (H)

Potential transfer targets: Alisson (£5.9m), Andy Robertson (£6.8m), Trent Alexander-Arnold (£5.5m) Virgil van Dijk (£6.6m) Jordan Henderson (£5.3m), Sadio Mane (£10.1m) Mohamed Salah (£13.2m) Roberto Firmino (£9.3m)

Synopsis: Mane, Salah, Firmino and Van Dijk all netted for Liverpool on Wednesday to set up an away date at Barcelona between GW36 and GW37. Jurgen Klopp’s rotation policy will be extremely difficult to call, with any slip up in the league at this stage likely to be cataclysmic. A Friday night fixture at home to Huddersfield in GW36 – when many a remaining triple captain chip could be deployed – is beneficial in terms of rest period, while the trip to Newcastle looks set to be brought forward by a day.

Mane and Salah also notched an assist each against Porto, while Firmino had the fantasy bonus of only playing half the tie as Divock Origi (£5.0m) earned a rare start. Henderson was also used from the bench, assisting the Brazilian striker’s goal as his output from a more advanced midfield role continues to catch the eye.

The England man is still unlikely to be seen in too many FPL squads considering the number of options on offer in the Liverpool ranks. Despite only playing once in DGW35, the title chasers have the ongoing fixture list to keep racking up fantasy returns.

WOLVES

Schedule

APRIL – 13: Southampton (a) Result: 3-1

20: Brighton (H) 24: Arsenal (H) [DGW35]

27: Watford (a)

MAY – 4: Fulham (H)

12: Liverpool (a)

Potential transfer targets: Rui Patricio (£4.5m), Willy Boly (£4.7m) Matt Doherty (£5.3m), Leander Dendoncker (£4.3m), Diogo Jota (£6.2m), Raul Jimenez (£6.9m)

Synopsis: Jimenez’s audition for the DGW35 captaincy did not go swimmingly as Wolves were beaten 3-1 by Southampton in GW34. The Mexican put one of his two shots on target, with the other so far off target it went out for a throw. But back on home soil, the forward remains a viable armband option for Wolves’ two fixtures this gameweek. Jimenez has three double-figure hauls in Wanderers’ last four Molineux ties, scoring three times and providing two assists over that period. His points per home match stands at 6.2 for the season.

Brighton have conceded 12 times in five games since a 1-0 home win against Huddersfield in GW29. The Seagulls last kept a clean sheet away from home in Gameweek 9. Arsenal, meanwhile, struggled to a first away shut-out of the season against a 10-man Watford on Monday night. Already in double figures for both goals and assists in FPL, two home games in quick succession will give Jimenez the chance to further beef up his tally. The striker has only been rotated to the bench twice this season – in GW16 and for the first of Wolves’ DGW32 fixtures, which fell just after the last international break.

On the defensive side, things are less promising. After shipping three to Southampton, Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo told BBC Match of the Day: “It is something that we have to look at because our defensive structure was not the best. After we conceded the opener we controlled the game well and made chances until we drew level. We then went behind and were not able to stand up again and the second half was poor. We left too many spaces and we allowed them to play. Today they were better than us and we have to regroup and bounce back immediately. Our trip to Spain was planned before and we feel it is a good moment to have an opportunity to train and be together.” Boly got his fourth goal of the season in that defeat, while Doherty has shown – mostly in the FA Cup – that he has goals and assists in his locker. Brighton’s visit should also give Wolves the chance to make it three clean sheets since GW24.

SOUTHAMPTON

Schedule

APRIL – 13: Wolves (H) Result: 3-1

20: Newcastle (a) 23: Watford (H) [DGW35]

27: Bournemouth (H)

MAY – 4: West Ham (a)

12: Huddersfield (H)

Potential transfer targets: Angus Gunn (£4.3m), Jan Bednarek (£4.0m), Yan Valery (£4.1m), Maya Yoshida (£4.1m), James Ward-Prowse (£5.1m) Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (£4.4m), Nathan Redmond (£5.3m), Shane Long (£4.6m), Danny Ings (£5.4m)

Synopsis: Redmond was the star of the Saints’ GW34 show, bagging a brace in the 3-1 win at home to Wolves. After the victory, Ralph Hasenhuttl said to MOTD: “When we took the lead we saw what we wanted to and we were very aggressive. I gave Josh Sims (£4.4m) the chance today because I needed those deep runs and he showed he could do it. We showed we can always be a danger on the counter attack. We lost here not long ago against Cardiff and it seemed it would go right to the end so we are very happy, but I can guarantee we will do everything we can to get to 40 points.”

In-form, affordable and seemingly well motivated, there is a lot to like about Southampton assets ahead of a good fixture run. GW34 wildcard darling Valery is fit, while Ings and Long are both risky Deeney replacements. Neither forward looks likely to play significant DGW minutes, with the Irishman offering the advantage of being particularly cheap.

WATFORD

Schedule

APRIL – 15: Arsenal (H) Result: 0-1

20: Huddersfield (a) 23: Southampton (H) [DGW35]

27: Wolves (H)

MAY – 4: Chelsea (a)

12: West Ham (H)

18: Man City [FA Cup final]

Potential transfer targets: Ben Foster (£4.6m), Adam Masina (£4.3m), Craig Cathcart (£4.5m), Abdoulaye Doucoure (£5.9m), Andre Gray (£5.9m)

Synopsis: Troy Deeney (£5.9m) will serve a three-game suspension after Watford’s appeal against his red card failed. On GW34 absentees Gerard Deulofeu (£5.6m) and Roberto Pereyra (£6.0m), Javi Gracia said yesterday: “Both trained [for the first time] with the team [on Thursday] and we’ll see tomorrow how they are to play. We’ll decide tomorrow. Maybe [they can play]. We have another training session tomorrow and we’ll decide. I’m optimistic both will be ready, but I think they are close to coming back.”

The Spaniard was a little less evasive on Jose Holebas (£4.8m), adding: “In the next week or two weeks Jose will be ready for sure.” Deputy left-back Masina looks a decent DGW35 option, particularly for free hitters. Gray has emerged as one of several potential replacements for the Watford captain. Since returning from injury in GW25, the forward has logged two starts and made seven substitute appearances. His two goals and two assists over that period all came from the bench. From limited pitch time, Gray has notched an attacking return once every 87.25 minutes.

Huddersfield have conceded four goals in both of their fixtures since the club’s relegation was confirmed. Over the last four gameweeks Jan Siewert’s men have shipped 14 times, with Ben Hamer (£3.9m) between the posts for 10 of those. Southampton will provide a much sterner test of Watford’s attacking credentials. Ralph Hasenhuttl’s men have conceded five times in their last four outings, with Liverpool accounting for three of those. Fulham and Brighton are the only sides that the Saints have managed to shut-out since GW22, however.

With Isaac Success (£4.5m) available and Deulofeu a likely starter if passed fit, Gray’s place in Javi Gracia’s XI is by no means guaranteed. However, the ex-Burnley man did begin Watford’s FA Cup semi-final win against Wolves at Deulofeu’s expense and will undoubtedly benefit from Deeney’s absence over DGW35.

ARSENAL

Schedule

APRIL – 11: Napoli (H) [UEL] 2-0

15: Watford (a) Result: 0-1

18: Napoli (a) [UEL] Result: 0-1

21: Crystal Palace (H) 24: Wolves (a) [DGW35]

28: Leicester (a)

MAY – 2: Valencia (H) [UEL]

4: Brighton (H)

9: Valencia (a) [UEL]

12: Burnley (a)

Potential transfer targets: Bernd Leno (£4.9m), Henrikh Mkhitaryan (£6.7m), Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£10.9m) Alexandre Lacazette (£9.4m)

Synopsis: It is no surprise to FPL managers that Unai Emery contines to switch personnel and formation amid a busy Arsenal schedule. Now into the Europa League semi-finals, that trend is set to continue.

With that in mind, trying to decipher which Arsenal attacker might play the most minutes over DGW35 is a difficult task. Aaron Ramsey (£7.1m) is out of that equation after suffering a hamstring injury last night. Lacazette scored the only goal in a 1-0 win at Napoli, while also coming off in the 68th minute as Aubameyang completed the tie.

Laca was handed a night on the bench in GW34 as Arsenal made hard work of beating Watford 1-0 at Vicarage Road. That ended a run of four consecutive league starts for the French striker. He had also begun seven games in a row before being rotated in GW28. Since Gameweek 21, the forward has scored seven goals and set up three – providing an attacking return every 93.7 minutes. Crystal Palace and Wolves have both conceded eight times in their last six fixtures, with both Roy Hodgson’s men and Nuno’s outfit shipping three times in GW34.

Aubameyang is not far off his fellow forward over the same period of games, returning attacking points every 101.5 minutes. The Gabon striker’s start on Monday night was only his third in the past seven gameweeks but considering the risk of rotation and the extra £1.5m required to bring in Auba over Laca, the latter might be a safer bet for FPL bosses seeking to invest in Arsenal for the double. Apart from goalkeeper Leno, it’s a case of ‘hit and hope’ for fantasy bosses investing in Gunners’ assets.

MAN UNITED

Schedule

APRIL – 10: Barcelona (H) [UCL] Result: 0-1

13: West Ham (H) Result: 2-1

16: Barcelona (a) [UCL] Result: 3-0

21: Everton (a) 24: Man City (H) [DGW35]

28: Chelsea (H)

MAY – 5: Huddersfield (a)

12: Cardiff (H)

Potential transfer targets: Paul Pogba (£8.7m), Anthony Martial (£7.2m), Marcus Rashford (£7.4m)

Synopsis: A lacklustre performance against West Ham in GW34 was of no encouragement to potential investors in United assets. Post-match, Paul Pogba admitted to BT Sport: “It was really open but we didn’t play well. With the chances and space we had, maybe we played too slow. We will have to fix that, we learn from that and focus on next one. I think we had the luck, you always have to take it, sometimes it is for the other team but we took it today.”

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men claimed three points via two Pogba penalties but otherwise failed to impress. The midfielder’s near-guaranteed pitch time and spot-kick duties make him a viable target this week, though a difficult set of fixtures coupled with United’s form means that FPL cash might be best spent elsewhere. Rashford is a contender in the Deeney-replacement stakes, though has competition from Romelu Lukaku (£10.8m) for the No 9 spot while Alexis Sanchez (£10.0m) is another option in attack for Solskjaer.

BOURNEMOUTH

Schedule

APRIL – 13: Brighton (a) Result: 0-5

20: Fulham (H)

27: Southampton (a)

MAY – 6: Spurs (H)

12: Crystal Palace (a)

Potential transfer targets: David Brooks (£5.1m) Ryan Fraser (£6.3m), Josh King (£6.5m), Callum Wilson (£6.7m)

Synopsis: After several poor showings, Bournemouth attackers jumped back onto the radar by hammering Brighton ahead of Fulham’s visit to the Vitality Stadium on Saturday. Cherries assets may be more tempting for free hitters, though Wilson and King represent affordable Deeney upgrades.