Fantasy Premier League

Is it time to replace Trippier with a cheaper defender?

By The Scout 31 Oct 2023
Trippier Andersen lead

The Scout pinpoints defenders with kind short-term schedules as Newcastle’s fixtures get tougher

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Newcastle United’s tough schedule could persuade many Kieran Trippier (£7.0m) owners in Fantasy Premier League to look for a replacement.

The Magpies entertain Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United over the next four Gameweeks, which may limit Trippier’s potential for clean sheets and assists and threaten his place at the top of the defender standings. 

See: FPL experts: What to do with Trippier?

His closest rival, Crystal Palace’s Joachim Andersen (£5.0m), has a far more favourable run of opponents.

According to the Fixture Difficulty Ratings (FDR), four of the Eagles’ next five matches – including their visit to promoted Burnley this weekend – score just two.

Cheaper alternatives offer big potential

Andersen sits only five points behind Trippier on 54 points thanks to his multiple routes to returns.

The centre-back has two goals, an assist, four clean sheets and nine bonus points over the opening 10 Gameweeks.

Aston Villa’s Matty Cash (£5.2m), Man Utd full-back Diogo Dalot (£4.9m) and West Ham United's Nayef Aguerd (£4.5m) also have the schedules and attacking potential to score big. 

According to the FDR, all three of those clubs have three matches which score only two in the next four Gameweeks.

Schedules compared, GW11-14
  Trippier Andersen Cash Aguerd Dalot
GW11 ARS (H) BUR (A) NFO (A) BRE (A) FUL (A) 
FDR 4 2 2 3 2
GW12 BOU (A)  EVE (H) FUL (H)  NFO (H) LUT (H)
FDR 2 2  2 2 2
GW13 CHE (H) LUT (A) TOT (A)  BUR (A) EVE (A)
FDR 3 2 3 2 2
GW14 MUN (H) WHU (A) BOU (A) CRY (H) NEW (A) 
FDR 3 3 2 2 4

Villa’s Cash has scored twice and supplied an assist over the opening 10 Gameweeks. 

His 16 shots, 13 shots in the box and eight shots on target are all more than any other defender in Fantasy.

Andersen and West Ham’s Aguerd are identical for both shots and shots on target, with each ranking among the top four defenders for the latter statistic.

Aguerd’s threat at set-pieces has been boosted by the arrival of James Ward-Prowse (£6.2m), with an ownership of only 0.8 per cent marking him out as a big differential. 

Man Utd full-back Dalot has scored once and created nine chances, a total bettered by only two team-mates since he made his first start of 2023/24 in Gameweek 3.

That makes Andersen’s 10 chances created all the more impressive, given he plays as a centre-back.

Attacking stats comparison
Player Shots Shots in box Shots on target Goals Key passes Assists
Cash 16 13 8 2 4 1
Andersen 9 8 4 2 10 1
Aguerd 9 8 1 1 1 0
Dalot 5 4 2 1 9 0
So, who's the best pick?

Ultimately, Andersen’s potential for defensive and attacking returns, in addition to bonus points, make him the standout pick for managers seeking a short-term replacement for Trippier.

Cash can also enjoy a profitable upcoming period, although he may have to rely on his attacking threat; Villa have struggled to keep out opponents on their travels and have three away matches in their next four.

Liverpool left-back Konstantinos Tsimikas (£4.6m) and Arsenal’s Ben White (£5.7m) can also be key figures for Fantasy managers across the next few Gameweeks.

Tsimikas has earned back-to-back clean sheets since replacing the injured Andrew Robertson (£6.5m) and has the schedule to deliver excellent value. Four of Liverpool’s next six matches score only two in the FDR. 

White’s schedule turns kinder from Gameweek 12, with contests against Burnley, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Luton Town in the subsequent four rounds of fixtures.

White's goal v Bournemouth

The right-back’s all-round style of play not only make him worth the extra outlay over his fellow Gunners defenders, it also means he is the likeliest member of the back four to collect bonus points. 

Managers should also monitor the fitness of Brighton & Hove Albion’s Pervis Estupinan (£5.0m), who is close to a return from injury.

The Ecuadorian scored once and supplied three assists in six outings before being sidelined.

Four of the Seagulls’ next six matches score only two in the FDR, a run that is likely to bring Estupinan, who was previously the most-owned defender in Fantasy, back into many squads.

View all the latest FPL tips ahead of Gameweek 11 in Fantasy Premier League 

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