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FPL watchlist: Watkins has short-term appeal

The Scout 16 Jul 2021
Ollie Watkins, Aston Villa

The Scout on why forward can make quick impact thanks to Aston Villa’s short-term fixtures

As Fantasy Premier League managers can now select their 15-man squads, The Scout analyses standout budget and premium players in each position.

Ollie Watkins (AVL) £7.5m

The short-term schedule looks hugely encouraging for Aston Villa’s early prospects in Fantasy.

Dean Smith’s men face two promoted sides, Watford and Brentford, in the first three Gameweeks, as well as hosting Newcastle United.

Create your 2021/22 FPL squad now

Villa are the only side whose first three matches all score just two in the Fixture Difficulty Ratings (FDR).

Aston Villa’s first three Gameweeks
GW Opponent FDR
1 WAT (A) 2
2 NEW (H) 2
3 BRE (H) 2

Watkins enjoyed a successful debut campaign in Fantasy last term, producing 14 goals and nine assists to total 168 points.

After a slow start, the Villa striker was far more effective in the second half of the campaign.

Watkins recorded attacking returns in only four of his first 16 outings.

But he then produced a goal or an assist in 13 of his subsequent 21 appearances.

Watkins' goals 2020/21


The underlying numbers also back up Watkins’ strong finish to 2020/21.

From Gameweek 20 onwards, his 43 shots inside the penalty area and 26 shots on target were both top among forwards in Fantasy.

His 23 key passes ranked third, just two behind Roberto Firmino's (£9.0m) league-leading total.

Managers' choice

Watkins’ early run of opponents has certainly made an impression on managers as they assemble their opening squads.

He is the second most-owned forward in Fantasy, selected by 33.2 per cent.

Watkins can repay their faith quickly before Villa's schedule becomes a lot tougher in Gameweek 4.

See: The Scout's FPL watchlist for 2021/22

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