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It’s the day of the season’s first Fantasy Premier League (FPL) deadline, a time when well-thought-of teams are often prone to last-minute gut-feeling decisions.
Whereas our most recent article covered the most-owned players heading into Gameweek 1, not everyone wants to play it safe. In fact, picking the correct low-owned differential could fire your team high up the early rankings.
For those wanting to stray from the template picks, here are six of the most exciting names with less than 10% ownership.
Bryan Mbeumo (£6.5m, owned by 8.5%)
A few weeks ago, Brentford attacker Mbeumo was in roughly one-quarter of teams. Reclassified as an FPL midfielder rather than forward, he had a strong end to 2022/23, has generally nice fixtures and is on penalties whilst Ivan Toney is suspended.
Yet a slight knock picked up in the Bees’ final friendly drastically reduced his selection, even though Thomas Frank has since declared him fine to play.
Team-mate Yoane Wissa is also a differential worth considering. They’ve swapped in-game positions and, between them, collected 14 goal involvements from five Toney-less matches.
Bryan Mbeumo should be ok for GW1 😅 pic.twitter.com/dVx6lzVVJs
— Fantasy Football Scout (@FFScout) August 6, 2023
Leandro Trossard (£7.0m, owned by 6.3%)
A couple of recent events have made Trossard a legitimate option. Firstly, Gabriel Jesus picked up a knee injury that will keep him out of early matches. Secondly, the Belgian came on to equalise for Arsenal in last Sunday’s Community Shield – his fourth pre-season goal.
That should put him in Mikel Arteta’s starting line-up ahead of Eddie Nketiah, possibly as a false nine. It’s a great-looking fixture run too, starting at home to last season’s worst travellers Nottingham Forest and hosting Fulham in Gameweek 3.
Trossard’s 2022/23 season was split between Brighton and Arsenal, finishing on the second-most number of FPL assists (13) behind Kevin De Bruyne. That’s despite only playing 66.5% of possible game time.
Diogo Jota (£8.0m, owned by 3.2%)
Managers mustn’t disjoint their team for the sake of one player and one match. But those with Mohamed Salah are undoubtedly thinking about Liverpool’s home match with Bournemouth in Gameweek 2. After all, they won last year’s equivalent meeting 9-0.
As unlikely as that is to be repeated – especially as the Cherries look decent – having a Liverpool asset for that match remains desirable. It’s just a shame that Jurgen Klopp’s XI will be hard to predict, as both Jota and Cody Gakpo could be great cheaper alternatives.
Jota in particular, knowing he ended last season with seven goals from nine matches.
Moussa Diaby (£6.5m, owned by 6.5%)
One of the more intriguing imports of this summer is Aston Villa’s Diaby. They spent £51.9m to buy him from Bayer Leverkusen, after averaging 7.75 goals and 9.5 assists over each of four Bundesliga campaigns.
The Frenchman has already netted twice in pre-season, used up front alongside Ollie Watkins but down as a midfielder in FPL. His devastating pace, dribbling ability and drilled shots could cause a lot of mayhem for Premier League defences.
Richarlison (£7.0m, owned by 3.1%)
This pick hinges on Harry Kane’s departure, should he leave for Bayern Munich. Ange Postecoglou has already declared that Richarlison is “someone who has got all of the attributes I look for in a striker”, backed up by his second-half hat-trick against Lion City Sailors.
As soon as the game switches him into midfield, the Brazilian could be about to offer out-of-position potential amongst a very attacking Tottenham team. He only scored one league goal last season but fixtures turn for the better from Gameweek 3, by which time we’ll know more about whether Spurs intend to buy a replacement forward.
Sam Johnstone (£4.5m, owned by 2.1%)
Finally, time to give love and respect to a goalkeeper. Johnstone’s spot as Crystal Palace’s number one seems secure now that Roy Hodgson has spoken of Vicente Guaita and his refusal to play.
Surprisingly, the Eagles had last season’s fourth-best expected goals conceded (xGC) total of 48.83 – better than the likes of Man United and Liverpool. Between Hodgson’s Gameweek 29 arrival and the final weekend, no team allowed fewer big chances (12) to opponents.