Premier League Logo
Fantasy Premier League

FPL pre-season lessons: Watkins double justifies early faith

The Scout 1 Aug 2021
Ollie Watkins

The Scout on why Villa striker is the most-owned forward in early squads after assist and goal in friendly

The Scout is highlighting the form players in Fantasy Premier League and making key tactical observations during pre-season.

Watkins leads the line

A goal and an assist against Bristol City showed why Ollie Watkins (£7.5m) is the most-owned forward in early squads in Fantasy Premier League.

The Aston Villa striker has been involved in four goals in his side’s three pre-season friendlies, also scoring twice against Walsall.

It's not too late Use GW1 matches as a guide to start your FPL season in GW2 Create Squad

Watkins is found in 35.5 per cent of squads ahead of Villa’s very favourable short-term schedule.

According to the Fixture Difficulty Ratings (FDR), each of their first three matches, against Watford, Newcastle United and Brentford, score two.

Bristol City 0-3 Aston Villa highlights

Watkins was among a host of mid-priced forwards who found the net on Saturday, highlighting the numerous options for managers in Fantasy.

Patrick Bamford (£8.0m) netted in Leeds United’s loss to Real Betis, with new full-back Junior Firpo (£5.0m) supplying the assist.

Wolverhampton Wanderers striker Raul Jimenez (£7.5m) scored his first goal since being sidelined with a head injury last season, earning his side a 1-1 draw with Stoke City.

Daka on target

Meanwhile, Patson Daka (£7.5m) and Kelechi Iheanacho (£7.5m) both made a big impact from the bench in Leicester City’s 3-3 draw with Queens Park Rangers.

Daka scored his side’s second goal and was then brought down for Iheanacho’s converted penalty. 

Brendan Rodgers had changed tactics midway through last season, preferring a 3-4-1-2 formation.

But he began with a 4-3-3 formation on Saturday, playing Jamie Vardy (£10.5m) as a lone striker and the fit-again Harvey Barnes (£7.0m) on the flank. 

QPR 3-3 Leicester highlights

The impact of his substitutes, and a switch back to a front two, will certainly give Rodgers plenty to think about in terms of tactics.

Low-owned duo star again

Elsewhere, Fantasy midfielders Riyad Mahrez (£9.0m) and Said Benrahma (£6.0m) extended their impressive form.

Mahrez produced a goal and an assist in Manchester City’s 4-0 win over Barnsley.

The Algerian has scored in both his side’s summer friendlies, yet is owned by a mere 4.7 per cent of managers.

Man City 4-0 Barnsley highlights 

Benrahma scored the decisive goal as West Ham United defeated newly-promoted Brentford 1-0.

Like fellow countryman Mahrez, Benrahma has two goals and an assist in the Hammers’ last two outings, but can be found in just 1.0 per cent of squads ahead of a favourable early schedule.

Three of West Ham’s first four matches score only two in the FDR. 

Also in this series

Part 1: Buendia makes early impact
Part 2: Zaha shining under Vieira
Part 4: Man City duo look dangerous
Part 5: Bertrand can replace Fofana
Part 6: Bamford and Antonio strike again
Part 7: Ings emerging as top target

Latest News

More News: Latest News

Latest Videos

More Videos: Latest Videos

Cookies on

The Premier League website employs cookies to make our website work and improve your user experience. Essential cookies are required for the operation of our website. You may disable these but this may affect website functionality. Non-essential cookies help us improve the functionality of our website by collecting information and reporting on your use of the website as well as improving your user experience. You can manage your cookie settings and switch off non-essential cookies via the “Manage Settings” below.

Manage Settings
I accept cookies from this site