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GW8 Ones to watch: Virgil van Dijk

The Scout 10 Oct 2017
Virgil van Dijk, Southampton

With potential for clean sheets, bonus points and goals, The Scout tips Southampton’s centre-back for a big return this weekend

The Scout is naming five players to target for Fantasy Premier League Gameweek 8.

Virgil van Dijk (SOU) £5.4m

The Dutch defender is back on the radar as an option for FPL managers.

Van Dijk was handed a first Premier League start for Southampton in Gameweek 7.

He failed to prevent a 2-1 defeat by Stoke City but, despite conceding a penalty which was missed by the Potters, he made an impressive return.

Van Dijk produced 14 clearances, blocks and interceptions (CBI). It's a key statistic in the Bonus Points System (BPS) and was double that of any team-mate.

He won a Gameweek-high 11 aerial duels and was a threat on the attack, recording three shots on goal.


The centre-back has shown his Fantasy potential since signing for Southampton ahead of 2015/16.

A debut season brought three goals and 16 bonus points.

That was followed by a goal and 14 bonus points from only 21 starts in an injury-hit 2016/17.

The Southampton defence has been a key source of FPL talent.

Mauricio Pellegrino’s men have been blessed with a favourable run of recent fixtures, a spell that continues over the month ahead.

Their next four opponents score just two in the Fixture Difficulty Rankings (FDR).

Southampton's next four Gameweeks
GW Opponent FDR
8 NEW (H) 2
9 WBA (H) 2
10 BHA (A) 2
11 BUR (H) 2

That run begins with Newcastle United, who arrive at St Mary’s Stadium on Sunday having scored once in three away trips.

Rafael Benitez’s attack will face a tough task breaking down a Southampton rearguard now reinforced by Van Dijk’s presence.

His height and heading ability will be difficult to contain at set-pieces.

The Magpies were exposed at a free-kick by Tomer Hemed’s (£5.0m) winning goal for Brighton & Hove Albion in Gameweek 6 and will be wary of the Saints' threat.

Notably, Southampton have won 50 corners this season, only Manchester City (57) and Tottenham Hotspur (55) have had more.

Now with Van Dijk as a target, those deliveries could turn into much-needed goals.

For FPL managers the potential is clear: Van Dijk can steer Southampton to a sustained run of clean sheets, with the potential for bonus and attacking points along the way.

Also in this series 

Part 1: Harry Maguire

Part 3: Raheem Sterling

Part 4: Pascal Gross

Part 5: Alexis Sanchez

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