Like previous seasons, this upcoming FPL season will feature new faces – players whom have not have never previously featured in the Premier League before. As we all know, the Premier League is unforgiving – some of these few faces will find success and turn out to be legends. Others will fade into obscurity and out of memory. A good FPL manager will need to tell apart one from another and make the right choices early on.
We attempt to do that here so here’s our picks…
YES #1 > Alvaro Morata (£10.0 / CHE)
At nearly £60m, Morata is the most expensive Spanish player of all time. He was purchased by Chelsea with Diego Costa’s imminent exit in mind and in all likelihood, will be Chelsea’s first choice, with Michy Batshuayi in reserve. Morata’s strike rate has been average at both Real Madrid and Juventus. At Real Madrid he had not been a regular but at Juventus, he managed just 7 goals in a league season where he was not often dropped. However, we think that at Chelsea, he can find home and rake up the goals under Conte’s expansive 3-4-3 system. Should be drafted quickly and picked immediately, especially because the Champions kick start their campaign at home against Burnley.
YES #2 > Tammy Abraham (£5.5 / SWA)
Abraham has been at Chelsea since 2004 but this will be his first season in the Premier League … albeit with Swansea. He enjoyed a sensational season with Bristol City in the Championship last term, scoring 23 goals for a rather average side. He comes with a lot of promise and could be played immediately in the starting XI alongside Fernando Llorente. At his current price we reckon he is a bargain not to be missed – he could score a handful of goals even if the Swans fail to do well.
YES #3 > Mohamed Salah (£9.5 / LIV)
OK, granted, this is not Salah’s debut season in the Premier League but his previous stint with Chelsea had been rather forgettable by all accounts. His statistics, in terms of goals and assists, have been sensational during his time at Roma and he looks like a polished product on his return to English shores. Throw in the possible exit of Philippe Coutinho at Liverpool, Salah looks likely to start most of the Reds’ games this season. He will flourish under Klopp’s attack-minded game-plans and a double-digit goal tally is almost a given, barring injuries.
NO #1 > Roque Mesa (£4.5 / SWA)
Swansea does not have a good record with big money Spanish signings and Mesa may be another of those flops. He arrived at a price tag of £11m from Las Palmas and is described as a hardworking midfield player in the mould of Leon Britton. We have not seen Mesa play but will advise avoid a non-scoring midfield player from a side like Swansea.
NO #2 > Tiemoue Bakayoko (£5.0 / CHE)
Bakayoko is a big-money signing from AS Monaco but there are two reasons why we will avoid him. Firstly, he is described as N’golo Kante Mark II. He is often praised for his ability to break up play from his defensive midfield role and we reckon that he is bought likely as a compliment to Kante, rather than an upgrade. Secondly, the Frenchman is carrying a serious knee injury and had undergone surgery only in June. He currently has no return date and will be eased into the Chelsea squad rather than pushed into it. We recommend not drafting or selecting Bakayoko until he gets game time.
NO #3 > Danilo (TBC / MNC)
At time of writing, Danilo is the third full-back signed by Manchester City who looks set to revamp their back-line. At this stage, he does not look likely to usurp Kyle Walker as City’s first choice right-back and we think that despite his £24m price-tag, he will be second-fiddle to Walker throughout the season. Avoid him, regardless of the FPL price.
MAYBE #1 > Victor Lindelof (£5.5 / MNU)
Lindelof is a definite maybe for us because United has no less than 5 other center-backs on their books. Jose Mourinho rotated heavily last season because of their hellish schedule so at this stage, it is hard to second-guess how he will line-up United for their first five matches. Lindelof comes highly rated but he is young at 23, so United may opt to ease him into the team slowly. At his current price-tag, it is best to play the wait and see for him.
MAYBE #2 > Davy Klaassen (£7.5 / EVE)
Klaassen comes with a strong reputation, having captained Ajax to the Europa Cup Finals last term. He is an attacking midfielder who averages a goal every 4 games in the Dutch league and is a full Dutch international. What we are unsure of is how much game time will be given to Klaassen at the start of the season. At time of writing, Ross Barkley, Wayne Rooney, Kevin Mirallas and youngster Tom Davies all play similar roles to Klaassen and the Toffees are also eyeing on Icelandic maestro Gylfi Sigurðsson. There is no need to commit on Klaassen early on.
MAYBE #3 > Antonio Rüdiger (£6.0 / CHE)
Rudiger also comes highly rated after two solid seasons at Roma but the question is who will he replace in the Chelsea back three. Cesar Azpilicueta. David Luiz and Gary Cahill have done exceptionally well last term and it would be almost criminal to drop any of them. We also know that Conte likes stability and does not like to change a winning team. He will not have that luxury this term with the Champions League but it’s best to wait and see how Rudiger will break into the team before making any commitments.