We’ve added an additional telegraph fantasy football pundit in Ben Humphrey who’s a top 1000 finisher in TFF. His first article looks for potential bargains in TFF which is influenced by his support for Norwich City
Telegraph fantasy football – Ben Humphrey looks at some potential bargains in TFF
In the process of having a TFF tinker yesterday, I came across some players that I feel have the potential to far outperform their price. I thought I would write up my thoughts in the hope that they might be of some use to you. I should mention at this point that I am a Norwich supporter. I say this because it quickly becomes clear that there is a strong Norwich link throughout, and I wanted to assure you all that this is purely coincidental.
It’s quite rare to get a cheap keeper who will bring you unexpected fantasy riches, but here are a few that could do better than expected.
Patricio (Wolverhampton) £3.0m
The first keeper to pluck out of the under priced bracket is Wolves new signing, Patricio. He may be part of a newly promoted team, but Wolves are no ordinary newbie. I witnessed first hand how they dominated the Championship last year. They were never in any danger of wasting the ticket they had bought for the Premier League. On top of what they already had, they are a club with deep pockets and powerful contacts. I don’t expect them to be struggling at the bottom of the table come the end of the season.
Gunn (Southampton) £3.0m
Here is the first character in our Norwich story. Angus Gunn’s Dad, Bryan, was a goalkeeping legend at Carrow Road, and his son looked like he was destined to follow in those large footsteps. Angus then moved to the Manchester City academy, but made his first professional appearance last season while on loan at Norwich. He was confident and assured, keeping the number one spot for the entire season. His performances were rewarded with a call up to the national team and a host of admirers. With Southampton spending such a chunk of cash on him, he is surely in contention to be the new number one at St Mary’s. He’ll be high on my watchlist for pre-season
Van Aarnholt (Crystal Palace) £3.2
This is one of the first players that I noticed was priced out of sync with the FPL game. If PVA can stay fit, his attacking potential is huge. I think he could be one of the bargains of the season.
S Ward (Burnley) £3.0m
There’s a bit of a left back theme appearing here. The cheapest of the Burnley back line regulars, Ward was looking like the Burnley defender of choice last season before being halted by injury. I think he and Lowton could both do well, but Ward has the price advantage.
Holgate (Everton) £2.9m
This one is a wait and see. It is as yet unclear who will be first choice centre backs, but if Holgate can nail down one of those spots, he will be a bargain way in to an Everton side blessed with good early fixtures.
Holebas (Watford) £2.7m
The set piece specialist left back could well outperform his price. He did briefly lose his place last season and this has competition from Zeegelar and new signing Mesina. However, he ended the year as the first choice. If he remains first choice and Watford can start to keep clean sheets, the bonus of free kicks and corners could prove profitable.
Jota (Wolverhampton) £3.2m
I’ve already spoken about the new power that is rising in Wolverhampton, and Jota was a big part of that last season. Playing as an attacking midfielder, he finished as Wolves leading scorer with 17 goals and could be worth a gamble.
Elyounoussi (Southampton) £3.1m
This player comes from Basel with a big reputation and the stats to back it up. However, he wouldn’t be the first player to pack up his reputation and head to England only to find out he can’t cut it. He is though, very much one to keep an eye on.
Stanislas (Bournemouth) £3.1m
If this man could stay fit, he would be the bargain of the season. When he is on the pitch, Bournemouth are better, and when they score, he’s usually involved. Unsurprisingly, he currently seems to be injured.
Maddison (Leicester) £3.0m
Another member of the cast from Norwich, Mr Maddison is pure quality. He is young, but he is calm and confident, finishing last season with 14 goals and more opportunities created than any other player in the league. It seems he was bought as a replacement for Mahrez so has to be a strong contender to start although that may depend on how the manager sees his position in the side.
Pereya (Watford) £3.0m
He’s never quite managed to manufacture a run in the Watford side, usually because of injury, but when he does play, he shows flashes of what could be. It’s another if and but. However, he’s another one to keep an eye on.
Lennon (Burnley) £2.9m
The former Spurs man has started off pre-season like a man with something to prove. If he can keep that up and see off the competition, he’s well worth a ponder.
Pritchard (Huddersfield) £2.8m
Another player who left The Canaries for the Premier League, as well as being a product of the Tottenham academy. He is a classy, attacking midfielder with superb vision. He also seems to have made himself a permanent fixture in the Huddersfield side as a CAM, giving great value without the worry of rotation.
Brady (Burnley) £2.8m
This one really surprised me, and guess what? He arrived via Norwich. He has a wicked left foot and loves a good free kick. He’s also starred for The Republic of Ireland on the big stage. The only reason his price is this low, must be down to his injury hit season last time out.
Redmond (Southampton) £2.8
Another one who surprised me, dropping substantially from last season. It’s true he struggled to get in to the side come the end of the season, but there is a player in there somewhere, and he is looking good so far in pre-season. Well worth looking out for. And guess what? He came from Norwich too.
Murphy (Cardiff) £2.7m
Josh Murphy was hunted down and signed up by Neil Warnock for around £11m. His twin brother joined Newcastle last year, and has yet to make an impact. I know this is getting silly now, but they both came from Norwich. I promise I’m not doing this on purpose. Josh, the Cardiff Murphy, has taken pretty well to life in Wales, netting four times thus far in pre-season. In their early years, it was generally thought that Josh would go on to be the better of the twins. Now he has a chance in the Premier League to see if it’s true.
Tosun (Everton) £5.5m
I know he’s not cheap cheap, but I think he might be slightly undervalued, especially bearing in mind his lack of serious competition and Everton’s early fixtures.
Arnautovic (West Ham) £5.2m
He is now classed as a striker, but in the world of TFF, that doesn’t really change much. Since being moved to the roll of a forward last season his form has been incredible. If West Ham score, he’s generally involved. So far in pre-season, it looks like he will be keeping hold of his new and improved position.
Wood (Burnley) £4.5m
A natural goal scorer plucked from the Championship, Wood is the first choice striker at Burnley when fit. Injuries were a problem last season, but if all is right with Mr Wood’s fitness, this could be a profitable season.
Mitrovic (Newcastle) £4.3m
At present he has returned to Newcastle, but he spent the second half of last season on loan at promoted Fulham. In his time in London, he scored for fun, and was a huge part of Fulham’s journey in to the promised land. If Fulham can get him on a permanent deal, or even if he can break in to the Newcastle side, when he gets going, he is a goal machine.
MY TOP PICK
I can’t help feeling that some of these players will prove to be bargains, but it’s picking the right one which can be difficult. If you need a cheap player or two, or maybe even three, to free up money for some big spending elsewhere, at least there are some good options.
I keep finding myself drawn back to James Maddison. Partly I’m sure because of what he did for Norwich last season, but he is pure class, and in my opinion is on a trajectory to the very top. I will be shocked if he doesn’t play for England in the next few years. He could be that ball playing midfielder that we’ve been crying out for. He also takes free kicks and penalties, though I assume there will be a certain English striker at Leicester who might have something to say about that. If Maddison has indeed been signed to replace Mahrez, he will surely play, especially after Leicester dished out somewhere in the region of £24m for him.
I hope this has been of some interest, and maybe some help to some of you.
Enjoy the build up to the new season.
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