FPL GW10 tips: Best fixtures, who to captain, the woe of Ivan Cavaleiro

GW9 was a success for a handful of nostalgic FPL bosses who picked Theo Walcott and Danny Welbeck. But has the Jack Grealish bubble burst?

It was supposed to be so easy.

With Mohamed Salah sitting out the weekend due to illness, more than three million FPL bosses turned to Jack Grealish, new England hero, to save their GW9.

Brighton at home. A defence conceding 1.75 goals per game. A budding football romance with a rejuvenated Ross Barkley.

But then Danny Welbeck (£5.5m) rolled back the years like he was playing for David Moyes’ Manchester United and Brighton came away with the win, while Grealish and his owners took just 1 point.

If nothing else, Salah’s absence opened things up a bit.

The two-time Golden Boot winner is now owned by just a quarter of the game’s bosses — many of those being inactive teams — and has been replaced in many squads by Grealish and/or Bruno Fernandes.

Salah is back in action though and faces Welbeck’s Brighton and hapless Fulham over the next three weeks, which could make things very interesting.

Will the Salah sellers get him back in time for those potential big scores?

Other key factors going into GW10 include the Harry Kane vs Jamie Vardy debate, the game of dare-you-to-take-three-points chicken between West Brom and Sheffield United, and the question of whether Michael Hector should be putting more Fulham players in his FPL team.

These are our GW10 tips.

Best fixtures

Leicester – Fulham

A dull pick but a sensible one.

Fulham have the joint-worst defence in the league, and the ball seems to find its way past poor Alphonse Areola whenever it comes near the Fulham goal.

Much like Skittles vodka, Leicester’s FPL points tend to get unceremoniously funnelled into Jamie Vardy, but there might be a few other options with a fixture this promising.

Wesley Fofana (£5.0m) put in another bonkers performance against Liverpool. Can he defend? I’m not sure. But his libero sensibilities suggest a long-range screamer is on the cards.

Meanwhile, James Maddison (£7.0m) seems to have forced his way back into the side and could profit. He’s also in the same price bracket as the COVID-stricken Wilfried Zaha, so could be worth considering if you’ve already got Diogo Jota (£6.7m).

READ: The only team to vote against PPV: How Leicester City became the fans’ club

Everton – Leeds

Everton were looking hot favourites for this one, but an injury to Lucas Digne — on top of Seamus Coleman’s continued absence — makes life interesting for Leeds’ creative players like Raphinha (£5.3m) and Jack Harrison (£5.5m).

Bielsa’s side were unlucky against Arsenal, hitting the woodwork multiple times, and will surely prefer to face Jordan Pickford over the flying Bernd Leno.

Additional food for thought: the Toffees lost the one game they played without Digne this season (as well as the one he got sent off in).

Who to captain

Mohamed Salah

If you’ve got him, use him. Mo Salah (£12.2m) wasn’t at his best in Liverpool’s midweek defeat to Atalanta, but he’ll surely find a way past Lewis Dunk and co, by spot-kick or other means.

Given how many FPL bosses sold him ahead of GW9, he’s also something of a differential this week. A big haul from the Egyptian could cause a shakeup in your mini-leagues.

Salah’s got previous as well. He’s faced Brighton six times in the PL, winning every game and scoring five times in the process.

He got two goals and an assist in the most recent fixture when Liverpool beat Brighton at the AMEX in July.

Interestingly, only five of Brighton’s 15 goals conceded this season have come from open play. Four have been penalties, and another four have come from set-pieces, which bodes well for Andy Robertson and his corners.

Jamie Vardy

Jamie Vardy (£10.2m) has only faced Fulham once in the Premier League.

On that day in 2019, he scored twice and set up another, and Fulham’s current defensive pairing of Tosin Adarabioyo and Joachim Andersen won’t fancy its chances any more than Tim Ream and Havard Nordtveit did back then.

There is just the small matter of Vardy’s home form. Seven of his eight goals have been scored away from the King Power, with the striker blanking in straightforward home fixtures against Burnley and West Ham.

But if anyone can break up that pattern, it’s Fulham.

A bigger question is whether it’s worth selling Harry Kane (£11.0m), obviously, one of the best strikers in the world at the moment, to make way for the in-form Vardy.

Kane’s difficult run of fixtures means he’ll continue his Wayne Rooney-like withdrawal into central midfield, but he’ll still be in the running for the Golden Boot come the end of the season.

Getting Vardy for Kane is tempting, but it’s the kind of sideways move that can often come back to haunt you.

READ: The top five players with the most Premier League goals after turning 30

Fulham’s very mini mini-league

Scott Parker’s Fulham are struggling in the real world, but are their players any good at FPL?

Three Fulham first-teamers, Michael Hector, Bobby Decordova-Reid and Ivan Cavaleiro, are competing in a mini-league called ‘It’s a vegan ting’.

Hector leads the league and has a very respectable overall rank of 366K.

Unfortunately, the defender sold his soul to get there: in GW1 he picked himself, plus teammates Josh Onomah and Harrison Reed. By GW4, however, he’d played his Wildcard and sold the lot, including himself.

Bobby Reid is more loyal to his teammates. He’s got Alexsandar Mitrovic and Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, but he’s only ranked 2.3M.

Way, way down at the bottom is Ivan Cavaleiro, who, despite being ranked 6M, at least has enough sense of self-worth to pick himself, along with Mitrovic and Kenny Tete.

Don’t worry, Ivan; it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

By Benedict O’Neill

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