Gameweek 2 of the FPL season is upon us, with gameweek 1 providing some sizable returns.
Yes, the 2021/22 Premier League campaign kicked off in dramatic fashion with big wins for Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea ensuring strong points returns for FPL managers; the average score being 69.
If you passed the 100-point barrier, we salute you; but if you struggled, then remember that there are 37 more gameweeks to make up ground on your friends, family members, rivals, and the total strangers that make up the weird and wonderful world of Fantasy Premier League.
With no Friday night game this week, you were given an extra nights’ sleep to worry about your transfers, squad picks, captains and potential differentials before the deadline hits at 11am BST today - Saturday, August 21.
Here are some of the key players you should be keeping an eye on this weekend...
Edouard Mendy | £6m | Chelsea (vs Arsenal)
He is an expensive keeper, but you tend to get what you pay for in FPL. Chelsea look the strongest team defensively this season, so you can just spend the £6m for peace of mind and regular six-point returns this term.
Ederson | £6m | Man City (vs Norwich)
Another fairly obvious star pick, it would be a bit of a shock to see Norwich score at the Etihad - even taking Man City’s loss at Tottenham into account - and the Brazilian is an outside bet of an assist in a game like this.
Kostas Tsimikas | £4.1m | Liverpool (vs Burnley)
The left-back would have been something of a surprise pick earlier this summer, but Andy Robertson’s injury means Tsimikas is, for now at least, a starter for Liverpool at a budget £4.1m. He almost scored at Norwich and also notched a clean sheet, so it should be more of the same against a Burnley side who already look like they could struggle this season after losing to Brighton at home.
Trent Alexander-Arnold | £7.5m | Liverpool (vs Burnley)
The same rguments for Tsimikas apply for Trent regarding facing Burnley, but the England right-back is a major creative force for the Reds. Despite his high price, you’d expect a double-digit score at Anfield.
Harry Maguire | | £5.5m | Manchester United (vs Southampton)
One major criticism of Maguire’s impressive United career to date is that he doesn’t score nearly enough headers given his ability in the air. The England international appears to have taken that on board, and though he didn’t score against Leeds, he has headed in goals in recent friendlies against Everton and Burnley - so back him for a possible goal and clean sheet at Southampton this Sunday.
Ethan Pinnock | £4.5m | Brentford (vs Crystal Palace)
Pinnock returned 11 points with an assist, clean sheet and two bonus points in the 2-0 win over Arsenal. At £4.5m, he’s a well-priced pick given Brentford have a winnable game at Palace this weekend.
Marcos Alonso | £5.5m | Chelsea (vs Arsenal)
Despite almost leaving for Inter as a makeweight in the Romelu Lukaku deal, Alonso has started the season as first-choice left wing-back with ben Chilwell still building fitness after the Euros. A fine free-kick goal and bonus points against Palace saw him score 15 for the opener, and he should start again here - and he’ll have Lukaku to aim crosses at as well.
Bruno Fernandes | £12.1m | Manchester United (vs Southampton)
If you didn’t spend big on Fernandes in gameweek 1, you would have missed out on his 20-point return - and double as captain - for his fine hat-trick against Leeds. A 3-1 loss at Everton doesn’d bode well for Southampton with the Portuguese midfielder in fine form.
Paul Pogba | £7.6m | Manchester United (vs Southampton)
Four assists in the opening day yielded a 16-point return, and like Fernandes, an away trip to St Mary’s looks like an ideal chance to get more points on the board - and all for a decent price given his relative inconsistency.
Mo Salah | £12.5m | Liverpool (vs Burnley)
Like Fernandes, Salah is a premium signing that makes a balanced squad difficult - but can you afford not to have him against Burnley at Anfield?
The Egyptian returned 17 points with two assists and a goal in a selfless display at Norwich, and with Burnley losing at home to Brighton in their opener, Salah would be disappointed with anything less than a couple of goals.
Said Benrahma | £6m | West Ham (vs Leicester)
Benrahma has been tasked with stepping up to fill Jesse Lingard’s shoes at West Ham this term, and it’s a case of so far, so good after a goal and an assist at Newcastle.
An inviting price of £6m for a regular starter at a team that finished sixth last term means he could be a long-term bet this season, and picking him in what could be an open game against Leicester on Monday night is a decent bet.
Heung-min Son | £10m | Tottenham (vs Wolves)
Son scored a fine goal to down Man City last time out, and is Spurs’ star man while the Harry Kane saga rumbles on. Spurs face Nuno’s old team Wolves at Molineux on Sunday, and the coach should have some ideas about how to beat his former club - with Son set to be key again on the counter.
Sergi Canos | £5.5m | Brentford (vs Crystal Palace)
As with his team-mate Pinnock, Canos is a great option at his current price with Palace up next. A great goal against Arsenal helped him return 11 points, and that strike should breed confidence for the trip to Selhurst Park.
Romelu Lukaku | £11.5m | Chelsea (Arsenal)
It’s always a risk throwing a brand new signing straight into your XI, but all the talk from Thomas Tuchel and Lukaku himself suggests the Belgian will lead the line against Arsenal on Sunday.
The Gunners looked brittle against Brentford as they lost 2-0 in west London, and Chelsea are, quite clearly, a level or two above the Bees. That means it could be a hard day for Arsenal, and a rewarding one for Lukaku.
Ivan Toney | £6.5m | Brentford (vs Crystal Palace)
The striker didn’t get on the scoresheet against Arsenal, but Sky Sports awarded him man of the match - and his presence created the opportunity for the Bees’ second goal. Expect him to cause more problems for Palace.
Danny Ings | £8m | Aston Villa (vs Watford)
Villa started badly with a defeat at Watford, but almost fought back for a point as they lost 3-2. Ings scored a late penalty, and up next is a home game against a Newcastle side who conceded four times at home to West Ham. If Villa start brightly, they could hit a few with Ings likely to be on the end of them.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin | £8m | Everton (vs Leeds)
The England striker started last season brilliantly, and is off the mark this term with a goal in the 3-1 win vs Southampton. Leeds offer a unique test this weekend, but Marcelo Bielsa’s side shipped five at Old Trafford - and Toffees boss will smell blood with Calvert-Lewin ready to finish any counter-attacks.
Emmanuel Dennis | £5m | Watford (vs Brighton)
An ideal choice as your third forward given his low price and 12-point haul against Villa. Dennis got a goal and an assist first time out, and the Hornets will offer Brighton a real test on the south coast on Saturday - but Dennis has a slight knock, so be sure to check his fitness on Friday.