FPL Gameweek 13 preview

Here we’ll preview gameweek 13 game-by-game, mulling over recent stats to consider which team is likely to have the advantage.

 

We’ll also provide a player pick for each fixture – someone we think could haul a high points total in the upcoming gameweek.

 

Wolves vs Chelsea

Tuesday 15th December 18:00

 

Wolves aim to avoid a third consecutive defeat in gameweek 13, as Nuno’s men host a Chelsea side who will be looking to bounce back themselves after a 1-0 defeat at Everton.

 

Wolves have failed to score in their two games since Raul Jimenez’s injury and Chelsea are unlikely to offer up many concessions to the host’s attack. Only Manchester City have conceded fewer shots in the box than Lampard’s men over the last six gameweeks – so expect clean sheet returns for Chelsea defenders this week.

 

Christian Pulisic (8.2m) should return to bring some welcome creativity to Chelsea’s forward line, although Wolves are rarely pushovers at Molineux. Reece James (5.3m) is in fine form at present, and the youngster has had more shots than any other defender since gameweek 7 – so he is our player pick this week.

 

Player pick – Reece James

 

Man City vs West Brom

Tuesday 15th December 20:00

 

Manchester City were uncharacteristically pragmatic in a goalless Manchester derby last Saturday – but Pep Guardiola is likely to go all-out attack against a hapless West Brom side.

 

Sergio Aguero (10.3m) should return to contention, but the Argentinian is unlikely to start as he continues his injury recovery. Second guessing City’s team during a hectic schedule is hazardous business, and Pep roulette could strike in some form in midweek.

 

Assuming he starts, John Stones (4.8m) offers a cut-price route into the imperious Manchester City defence. The England international has started in each of the last three gameweeks – keeping three clean sheets.

 

Kevin De Bruyne (11.9m) is always City’s most reliable pick, but Stones’ potential value makes him stand out ahead of a very favourable run of fixtures.

 

Player pick – John Stones

 

Arsenal vs Southampton

Wednesday 16th December 18:00

 

We said last week that “Arsenal just don’t look like scoring” and that proved true in their abysmal 1-0 home defeat to Burnley in gameweek 12. Granit Xhaka’s red card for attempting to chokeslam Ashley Westwood didn’t help matters. His apparent desire to emulate the Undertaker could prove useful should this match turn out to be the last nail in the coffin for Mikel Arteta.

 

There’s no way we would recommend an Arsenal player this gameweek, but there’s plenty of options to be found in an exciting Southampton side. Danny Ings (8.4m) grabbed an assist on his return to the starting line-up last week – and his xG of 0.99 was the highest of any forward during gameweek 12. Che Adams (6.0m) and James Ward-Prowse (6.3m) are cheaper alternatives who provide good value.

 

It’s the third week in a row we’ve recommended Ings as a player pick, but the Saints’ number nine is such a reliable pick when he’s available. If Arsenal underperform again, expect Ings to take full advantage.

 

Player pick – Danny Ings

 

Leeds vs Newcastle

Wednesday 16th December 18:00

 

Leeds are now winless in their last five home matches after they fell to a 2-1 defeat to an in-form West Ham side in gameweek 12. They host a Newcastle team who are surprisingly strong on the road – having lost just one of their five games on their travels so far this season.

 

The skilful Raphinha (5.4m) is an interesting option for those looking to replace the injured Diogo Jota – the Brazilian ranks below only Mason Mount and Jarrod Bowen for xA in the past three gameweeks, for midfielders below the 7.0m price mark.

 

No team have conceded more shots in the box than Leeds and their defensive issues aren’t helped by the fact Luke Ayling is having to fill in at centre back. They have struggled to cope with pacey players, with the likes of Mo Salah and Jamie Vardy finding joy against Bielsa’s side. Callum Wilson (6.6m) will be licking his lips.

 

Player pick – Callum Wilson

 

 

Leicester vs Everton

Wednesday 16th December 18:00

 

Jamie Vardy (10.3m) saved my gameweek 12 with a haul of 13 points against Brighton last time out, and his owners (myself included) will be looking for more of the same on Wednesday evening.

 

Vardy’s and Leicester’s chances are boosted by Everton’s current crisis at the back. Mason Holgate and Ben Godfrey played at full back in their encouraging win against Chelsea at the weekend, but they were helped by the absence of wingers Christian Pulisic and Hakim Ziyech.

 

James Maddison (7.1m) emphatically returned to form with a brace in gameweek 12 and the largely forgotten playmaker could prove an effective differential – with an ownership of just 4.3%. But with upcoming fixtures against Spurs and Manchester United, it may be best to hold fire for now.

 

Player pick – Jamie Vardy

 

Fulham vs Brighton

Wednesday 16th December 20:00

Shockingly, Fulham looked the better side for large swathes of their 1-1 draw against Liverpool in gameweek 12. Liverpool seemed to be feeling the effects of a lengthy injury list. Or perhaps they were just overly distracted by Scott Parker’s good looks.

 

Even more shockingly, Fulham’s Ivan Cavaleiro (5.3m) has the highest xG, the most big chances and the most shots on target of any player over the last four gameweeks. With an ownership of 0.1%, the winger turned striker seems to be a great punt as Fulham host Brighton, especially as he is on penalties.

 

Brighton have kept just two clean sheets this season and they were far too soft at the back against Leicester in gameweek 12 – as the Foxes plundered three goals in the first half. A fortnight ago it was recommended to stay a healthy distance away from Fulham assets. Now, the rules have changed.

 

Player pick – Ivan Cavaleiro

 

 

Liverpool vs Tottenham

Wednesday 16th December 20:00

 

After sharing the points with Fulham last time out, Liverpool will be glad to return to Anfield this weekend – where they are yet to drop points this season. Tottenham too had to settle for a share of the spoils in gameweek 12 – as a goal from Jeffrey Schlupp cancelled out Harry Kane’s opener.

 

Mo Salah (12.3m) is always a great pick when he’s playing at Anfield – no player has more points when playing at home so far this season. Spurs have kept four clean sheets in their last five though, while Jose Mourinho loves to park the bus on his trips to Anfield, so the likes of Bruno Fernandes and Kevin De Bruyne should probably be favoured for the captain’s armband in gameweek 13.

 

Trent Alexander-Arnold (7.2m) returned to the starting line-up at Craven Cottage and Liverpool’s main set piece taker is probably the most dependable defender to go for in what should be a low-scoring match. Eric Dier (5.0m) also provides great value in the Spurs backline.

 

Player pick – Trent Alexander-Arnold

 

West Ham vs Crystal Palace

Wednesday 16th December 20:00

 

Tomas Soucek (5.0m) is firmly rewarding his 7.1% ownership at present, as his third goal in five games helped West Ham to a 2-1 win at Leeds in gameweek 12. Crystal Palace will be far less obliging on set pieces than Leeds were, so don’t rush to bring the Czech midfielder into your starting line-ups. He remains a fantastic enabler though should you wish to upgrade other areas of your squad.

 

No player had more shots in gameweek 12 than Said Benrahma (6.0m), as the 0.3% owned midfielder impressed on his first start for West Ham. With a low price tag and an even lower ownership – the ex-Brentford man could be a great differential pick with some great fixtures coming up.

 

Palace proved that they are no pushovers in their 1-1 draw with Spurs and they should prove tough opposition again in this London derby. It’s games like these where you just have to back the home side – so Benrahma is our player pick for gameweek 13.



Player pick – Said Benrahma

 

Aston Villa vs Burnley

Thursday 17th December 18:00

 

Aston Villa sealed a late win at Wolves in gameweek 12 – courtesy of a late Anwar El-Ghazi (5.7m) penalty. Dean Smith confirmed that Jack Grealish (7.8m) would have taken it had El-Ghazi not been on the pitch – which is encouraging for the 43% of managers who own the England international.

 

Burnley have kept three clean sheets in their last four away games, although they did concede five at the Etihad in gameweek 10. They’re unlikely to roll over in midweek though, so we wouldn’t recommend trying to be too clever by opting for Grealish as captain.

 

Matty Cash is suspended after an accumulation of yellow cards – so Ahmed El Mohamady (4.3m) could be the one to deputise at right-back. Both him and Matt Targett (4.5m) can reasonably be expected to pick up clean sheet points this gameweek – but we’ll opt for the latter as the player pick due to his regular run of starts.

 

Player pick – Matt Targett

 

Sheffield United vs Manchester United

Thursday 17th December 20:00

 

Sheffield United fell to their seventh straight defeat in gameweek 12 – as a sparkling Southampton side proved too strong in a 3-0 defeat. Chris Wilder’s mood is unlikely to be improved as away specialists Manchester United visit the Steel City. 


Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men have scored 16 goals on the road in just five matches and they should be confident of adding to that tally. Bruno Fernandes (11.0m) is again the standout option for United – the Portuguese midfielder is yet to blank away from home since he joined the club in January.

Marcus Rashford (9.4m) could prove to be an effective, slightly cheaper pick should you be unable to afford Bruno. All five of his attacking returns this season have come in away matches.

 

Player pick – Bruno Fernandes

 

Last week’s picks:

Patrick Bamford (5 points)

Jack Grealish (2 points)

Callum Wilson (1 point)

Kevin De Bruyne (3 points)

Christian Pulisic (0 points)

Danny Ings (5 points)

Harry Kane (9 points)

Mo Salah (8 points)

Gabriel (2 points)

Jamie Vardy (13 points)

 

Best of luck gameweek 13 FPL managers!

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