The Scout looks at the best players for managers’ opening squads in Fantasy Premier League, according to price and position.
Joao Pedro (£5.5m) and Harry Kane (£12.5m) both have the potential to play crucial parts in managers’ forward lines alongside Manchester City's Erling Haaland (£14.0m).
Brighton & Hove Albion’s summer signing Joao Pedro now appears to have secured a starting role ahead of the new campaign.
He was named alongside fellow forward Danny Welbeck (£6.0m) in the Seagulls’ final friendly, a 1-1 draw with Raya Vallecano at the weekend.
Crucially, Joao Pedro took and scored his side’s penalty when Pascal Gross (£6.5m) was on the pitch, suggesting he has overtaken the midfielder as Brighton’s first-choice player for spot-kicks.
At a cost of only £5.5m, Joao Pedro can be the ideal partner for Haaland for managers playing a 3-5-2 formation, allowing them to plough more funds into big-hitting midfielders.
The Brazilian also has an ideal schedule to start the season, with Brighton offering four home matches in the first six Gameweeks.
Kane, meanwhile, is owned by a mere 12 per cent of managers due to uncertainty surrounding his future at Tottenham Hotspur.
If he stays at Spurs in 2023/24, Kane’s display in his first home match under Ange Postecoglou suggests he could challenge his career-best haul of 263 points from last season.
The forward scored four goals in a 5-1 win over Shakhtar Donetsk on Sunday, with the north London side producing five goals for the second successive match.
An in-form Kane playing for the attack-minded Postecoglou is likely to force many managers to reassess their plans and move more money into their forward lines.
On hand from close range 🤝 pic.twitter.com/k1o9J7y6Dw— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) August 6, 2023
Watkins certainly has the form to reward his 22 per cent ownership, scoring four goals over the summer.
He was the third highest-scoring forward in Fantasy following the arrival of Unai Emery as head coach in Gameweek 15 last season, averaging 5.6 points per match thanks to 13 goals and six assists.
Clinical. 🎯— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) August 6, 2023
Ollie Watkins’ fourth goal of pre-season! 🔥 pic.twitter.com/Nz30NRSUBh
Christopher Nkunku (£7.5m) and Nicolas Jackson (£7.0m) have both impressed since joining Chelsea over the summer and have an excellent schedule from Gameweek 3 onwards.
Nkunku is being assessed after sustaining a knee injury last week and his fitness may determine how managers invest in Mauricio Pochettino’s attack.
Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo (both £7.5m) may well share minutes for Liverpool in the early stages, at least, while Alexander Isak (£7.5m) and Callum Wilson (£8.0m) are also likely to be rotated for Newcastle, particularly around UEFA Champions League fixtures.
Manchester United’s new signing Rasmus Hojlund (£7.0m) adds further competition to this bracket once he is fit.
The Dane delivered nine goals and two assists in 32 outings for Atalanta in Serie A last season.
Further down the price list, Man City’s Julian Alvarez (£6.5m) could be a handy, short-term differential.
The Argentinian is one of only two players, along with centre-back Ruben Dias (£5.5m), to play 90 minutes in each of his side’s last two matches.
Brentford’s Yoane Wissa (£6.0m) has an extended run of kind opponents to lift his mid-term output.
According to the Fixture Difficulty Ratings (FDR), five of the Bees' first seven matches score only two.
Brentford's first seven fixtures
|1||TOT (H)||3||5||NEW (A)||4|
|2||FUL (A)||2||6||EVE (H)||2|
|3||CRY (H)||2||7||NFO (A)||2|
Wissa is expected to play as Brentford's lone forward in the first few months of 2023/24 as Ivan Toney (£8.0m) is suspended.
Also in this series
Part 1: Who are the best FPL goalkeepers for 2023/24?
Part 2: Who are the best FPL budget defenders for 2023/24?
Part 3: Who are the best mid-priced and premium FPL defenders?
Part 4: Who are the best FPL budget midfielders for 2023/24?
Part 5: Who are the best mid-priced and premium FPL midfielders?